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Question

How to connect two networked homes via internet

Dec 15, 2017 2:16PM PST

I live and work from two homes...one in Mexico and another in California. I have broadband in both homes, and each home has its own wifi. Unfortunately, I can not access US Netflix or Amazon Prime from Mexico, or, some Mexican premium services from California.

I have 3 sub questions.
1. How can I access my California router (then content in the California server) from my router in Mexico home.
2. Can I access US Netflix or Amazon using California router but accessing it from Mexico.
3. Is there a way to connect both homes as "two" campuses under a single network...so regardless of where the contents are I can access it seamlessly?
I'd be grateful for "easy to understand" answers and how to. Thanks, LuKa

Discussion is locked

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Answer
I fear this is not an easy to understand setup.
Dec 15, 2017 3:01PM PST

Plus there are limits as you have to JUGGLE the setup to do one thing than another.

1. This would be your router or such being a VPN Server. It's mildly complicated but possible.
https://www.howtogeek.com/221001/how-to-set-up-your-own-home-vpn-server/
But wait, what if you don't have a VPN capable router and refuse to install OpenWrt? Then read
https://www.sparklabs.com/blog/getting-started-running-your-own-vpn-server/
That's a lot more work in my opinion.

2. Yes but you can never ask me another question about it. It's breaking a few agreements and I can't help you if they shut you down.
Then NO! Why? Because your internet upload speed is usually too slow to support video streaming.

3. No. I'm going to shortchange you here as there is no known setup where you can have it all without having to dance around picking which VPN to use (US or MX home or the internet direct.) You can't have all three at the same time. If someone claims to do that, remember it's you and them on that swamp ride. At least I warned you off that idea.

I'm not trying to be mean or wearing the robes of a saint here. It's just so you know what you are getting into may not be a happy result as the streaming speeds EXCEED the upload speeds which some may think is by design. It is but not for blocking or throttling this. The usual internet connection is asymmetric because that works best for average home internet users.

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Answer
Maybe, No and Not economically
Dec 16, 2017 2:48AM PST

1. If your Ca router has a fixed IP address, you could create a website on your Ca server, which would probably work for stuff like Office documents (synced cloud would be better) but anything heavier would be limited by your upload speed, unless you have a symmetric connection (rare). You would need to get into website security, maybe even a DMZ. Rather you than me!

2. I believe the EULA for those services makes it illegal.

3. It can be done but not with consumer grade equipment. You'd need to talk to an international network provider but an on demand link would be prohibitively expensive.

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Answer
Simplest solution maybe
Dec 16, 2017 10:05AM PST

Many routers now include one or more USB ports. You can connect an external hard drive to the USB port. The external drive can contain whatever data you desire. Most routers with USB port(s) also offer a way to access the connected external drive when you're away from home. Often, it's simply a matter of going to a special internet address and signing in with a username and password (for security, of course). You could install a router with USB port and an external hard drive at each of your homes. You can type in the appropriate internet address from anywhere in the world and access your data at each location.
Accessing US Netflix or Amazon from another country may require a subscription to a Virtual Private Network (VPN) which allows you to "spoof" or disguise your true location, making it seem as though you are accessing the desired website from a U.S. location. I don't know if this is legal or not. You should check before proceeding.
A VPN may also allow you to access both of your homes as one network.