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Komag
Level 9

Connect Roku to PC via cable or wireless, without internet?

I'd like to work on my Roku game development in a place where I have no internet access. Is this possible?

I tried setting up an Ad-Hoc network from my laptop, and it showed up in the wireless list on the Roku, but it would never connect. I tried simply plugging in a 6ft network cable from the Roku to my laptop, it also would never connect (it connected to "your wired network" but failed on "your local network" and never even got to "the internet").

Is there any way to "fool" the Roku to not care that there is no internet? I don't need it, nothing in the game needs it.

(I can see the Roku screen using "EasyCAP" video capture stick to my laptop, works well enough for SD video)

(I don't have an extra router hanging around, but if I got one, would that help? I'd still not have any internet at this location.)
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5 Replies
renojim
Level 8

Re: Connect Roku to PC via cable or wireless, without intern

At the very least, you need to have a DHCP server running somewhere. I use dhcpd32 under Windows. You'll have to have already setup the Roku with access to the Internet or I think it will choke on the "Connecting to Internet" stage and it will never work, but I'm not sure. Once you've got the Roku all happy, setup the DHCP server to give the same local IP address to the Roku that it was using when it had access to the Internet. You shouldn't have to go through the network setup again and you probably don't want to as it will just choke when it tries to connect to the Internet. I just tried all this with my old N1000 running v3.1 of the firmware and it seems to work. I assume the v5.x firmware will act the same. I know in the past I've also had a Roku connecting to my laptop via a wireless connection with the laptop connected to a router via a wired connection, but in that case the Roku was able to get to the Internet. I'm sure I could have accomplished the laptop to Roku wireless connection without an Internet connection, but I never tried.

It may be easier to use that old router you have lying around, but again I think the main trick is to have setup the Roku completely with an Internet connection and then match the IP address it was getting when you move it to the router without an Internet connection.

-JT
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EnTerr
Level 8

Re: Connect Roku to PC via cable or wireless, without intern

Try using the ICS that comes with Windows. Mac has comparable feature i believe. There might be a problem with Roku's network pings, so you may have to disable them.
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mike_ekim
Level 7

Re: Connect Roku to PC via cable or wireless, without intern

"renojim" wrote:
It may be easier to use that old router you have lying around, but again I think the main trick is to have setup the Roku completely with an Internet connection and then match the IP address it was getting when you move it to the router without an Internet connection.

-JT

Agreed on the 'old router' bit.

Here's my suggestion, since the OP is using a laptop: get the laptop, router, and roku set up somewhere with internet access. Then unplug everything and set it up where there is no internet access. It should all work fine. I.e. my roku can find the plex server on my PC even if the modem is not plugged in.
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Komag
Level 9

Re: Connect Roku to PC via cable or wireless, without intern

I first tried DHCPD32, didn't work for me, said "Can not initialize DHCP server, Insufficient privileges to run". I'm a path of least resistance kind of guy, so instead of diving into that, I just tried the next thing, ICS. It worked easy!

I set up the ICS - Internet Connection Sharing, via Local Area Connection. I also disabled the Roku network pings as suggested.

Now it works fine without a router, only using an ethernet network cable from the Roku to my laptop. I used it last night for a couple hours work on my channel, no internet in sight, even had the laptop wireless turned off. In the Roku settings I see the Roku IP as 192.168.137.### which changes every time I connect everything. So I just note the new number, use it to point my browser and telnet, easy peasy.

Thanks!
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EnTerr
Level 8

Re: Connect Roku to PC via cable or wireless, without intern

You are welcome - and thanks for re-affirming that Roku can work on standalone/isolated network.
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