April 15, 2014

How to bypass MLB.TV Blackouts. A workaround.

April 15th, 2014.

Just updated with instructions for even more devices, including: Windows, Mac, Apple TV, iPhone/iPad, Roku, Playstation, Xbox and other devices.



The new and easiest way to get access to blacked-out games is to use Unlocator. The service is simple to set up, is tailored for MLB.TV, and doesn't interfere with the way you use the web on your device.  It is also free to try for 7 days with no credit card. See the links below for instructions on how to set up Unlocator on the device of your choice. 

Tip: If you set up Unlocator on your router, then any device that connects to the Wifi in your home will be able to see blacked-out games. 

Find instructions for the device you want to use below:



Windows 8 – working
Windows 7 – working
Mac – working
Apple TV – working
iPhone – working
iPad – working
Roku – working
PS3 / PS4 – working
Xbox 360 / Xbox One – working
Windows Vista – working
Windows XP – working
Ubuntu – working
Chrome (windows) – old method, not working
Firefox (windows) – old method, not working
Internet Explorer (windows) – old method, not working
Safari (mac) – old method, not working
Chrome (mac) – old method, not working



The Long Answer:


The best way that I have discovered to get around MLB.tv's blackouts is via the use of a proxy server.


"What is a proxy server?" you might ask. You can think of a proxy server as a computer in a location different from your own which you can connect to and route your internet traffic. The fact that the proxy server is (most likely) located in a different location than your own is key to this method of bypassing the MLB.tv blackout restrictions.

MLB.tv determines your eligibility to view a game according to this map. For instance, if you live in Los Angeles and want to watch the Dodgers play on MLB.tv, you will be blacked out. You can check what teams you are blacked out from watching on MLB.tv by typing in your zip code here.

"How does MLB.tv know where I am located" you might wonder. MLB.tv accomplishes this by looking at your IP address. Every computer with a connection has an IP address. Check out what this website knows by looking at your IP: www.whatismyipaddress.com

"So how do we get around the blackout already?!" The answer is to "trick" MLB.tv into thinking you are connecting from another part of the country (or world!) that is not subject to blackout. This is done by changing your internet settings to use a proxy server to access pages.

For instance, if I change my internet settings to use a proxy server located in New York, upon connecting, MLB.tv will poll my IP and read the location as New York rather than Los Angeles (my actual location).

HOW TO BYPASS BLACKOUT


1. Find a suitable proxy server. The following sites list free, public proxy servers that anyone can use.:
*It can be very difficult to find a public proxy that will have enough speed for you to stream a game. You can get a reliable private proxy here for a couple bucks a month.*


**If you are having trouble finding a proxy server that works for MLB.tv, you can get a reliable one here for a couple of bucks.**



What you are looking for is proxy server information in the following form:

10.24.577.233:8080
[ proxy IP ] [proxy port]

The first section is the proxy's IP address. The numbers listed after the colon are the proxy's port. Sometimes a proxy server site will list these numbers in a different form. You will need both of the numbers.

2. Change your internet settings to use the proxy server

For Google Chrome (on windows):

1) Click on the wrench icon in the upper right and choose "Settings". 




2) Scroll down if necessary and click "Show advanced settings".




3) Click the "Change proxy settings" button.




4) Click the "LAN settings" button.




5) Check the indicated box and fill in the proxy IP address and port settings as shown. (Substitute your proxy address and port for the ones given in the example. The example proxy will not work.).




6)  Click the "Advanced" button.




7) Ensure that the the "Use the same proxy server for all protocols" box is checked. This is very important. The proxy will not work for mlb.tv without this setting.




8) Click "OK" on all windows and then go to www.whatismyipaddress.com. By first going to www.whatismyipaddress.com you can see whether the page loads and shows your new IP address and location. This needs to be a location outside of the blackout region for the game you are trying to watch. If the page loads and your new location is detected, then try loading up an MLB game and see if it works. 

If you have trouble getting either the IP address page or MLB.tv to come up, then this is where the trial-and-error and challenging part of bypassing a blackout come into play. Most free public proxy servers will either not work or will be too slow to stream an MLB.tv game. You can get a private, working proxy here for a couple of bucks.

**NOTES**

If you are still having problems getting things to work try completely closing your browser and starting again. Sometimes this step is required in order for mlb.tv to detect your new location.

If you are using a private proxy, you may be presented with a username/password dialog box. Enter in the user/pass for the private proxy there. 






For Mozilla Firefox (on windows):

1) Click on the "Firefox" dropdown in the upper left. Then "Options" and "Options" again.


2) Go to the "Advanced" tab.

3) Go into the "Network tab and click the "Settings" button within the "Connection section".

4) Select the radio button ("Manual proxy configuration") and then fill in the proxy IP and port. Be sure to check the box "Use this proxy server for all protocols". This setting is very important! MLB.tv will not work without this box checked. 






5) Click "OK" on all windows and then go to www.whatismyipaddress.com. By first going to www.whatismyipaddress.com you can see whether the page loads and shows your new IP address and location. This needs to be a location outside of the blackout region for the game you are trying to watch. If the page loads and your new location is detected, then try loading up an MLB game and see if it works. 

If you have trouble getting either the IP address page or MLB.tv to come up, then this is where the trial-and-error and challenging part of bypassing a blackout come into play. Most free public proxy servers will either not work or will be too slow to stream an MLB.tv game. You can get a private, working proxy here for a couple of bucks.

**NOTES**

If you are still having problems getting things to work try completely closing your browser and starting again. Sometimes this step is required in order for mlb.tv to detect your new location.

If you are using a private proxy, you may be presented with a username/password dialog box. Enter in the user/pass for the private proxy there. 






For Internet Explorer (on windows):

1) Click on the gear cog icon and then "Internet Options."


2) Click on the "Connections" tab and then press the "LAN Settings" button.




3) In the "Proxy Server" area of the box that pops up, check the box next to "Use a proxy server for your LAN then fill in the proxy IP address and port. 



4) Click the "Advanced" button.




5) Ensure that the box "Use the same proxy server for all protocols" is checked. This is a very important step! MLB.tv will not work without this setting.






6) Click "OK" on all windows and then go to www.whatismyipaddress.com. By first going to www.whatismyipaddress.com you can see whether the page loads and shows your new IP address and location. This needs to be a location outside of the blackout region for the game you are trying to watch. If the page loads and your new location is detected, then try loading up an MLB game and see if it works. 

If you have trouble getting either the IP address page or MLB.tv to come up, then this is where the trial-and-error and challenging part of bypassing a blackout come into play. Most free public proxy servers will either not work or will be too slow to stream an MLB.tv game. You can get a private, working proxy here for a couple of bucks.

**NOTES**

If you are still having problems getting things to work try completely closing your browser and starting again. Sometimes this step is required in order for mlb.tv to detect your new location.

If you are using a private proxy, you may be presented with a username/password dialog box. Enter in the user/pass for the private proxy there. 




For all browsers on Mac:

1) Open up "System Preferences" and choose "Network". (Applications ---> System Preferences ---> Network)

 --->


2) Choose "Wi-Fi" from the vertical menu on the left (or Ethernet if you are plugged into a wired connection), and then hit the "Advanced" button in the lower-right.

3) Click into the "Proxies" tab at the top. Fill in the details for the proxy server that you should have signed up for here. The IP address of the proxy goes into the first box and the port goes into the second box (after the : ). You will also need to enter the username and password for the proxy and make sure the "Proxy server requires password" box is checked.


4) After you're finished entering in the proxy info, just hit "OK" and the be sure to hit the "Apply" button on the next window.



6) Now open up www.whatismyipaddress.com. Here you can see your new IP address and location. This needs to be a location outside of the blackout region for the game you are trying to watch. You ensure this by ordering a proxy located outside of the blackout area for your team. 

If the page loads and your new location is detected, then you are ready to fire up MLB.tv! 

7) When you open up your browser, you may get a prompt asking for your proxy username/password. Simply enter them in just like you did in the network settings. 

8) Enjoy your game, blackout free!




Apple TV

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator set up your Apple TV using the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.






Playstation 3/4

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator set up your Playstation using these guides: PS3 / PS4.
3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.






Roku

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator set up your Roku using the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.




Xbox 360/One

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator set up your Xbox using these guides: Xbox 360 / Xbox One.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.




iPhone

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator set up your iPhone using the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.




iPad

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator set up your Roku using the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.




Windows 8

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator to set up your Windows 8 computer with the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Super easy. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.


Windows 7

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator to set up your Windows 7 computer with the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Super easy. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.


Windows Vista

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator to set up your Windows Vista computer with the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Super easy. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.


Windows XP

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator to set up your Windows XP computer with the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Super easy. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.



Mac OSX

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator to set up your Macintosh computer with the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Super easy. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.



Ubuntu

1) Go to Unlocator and sign up for an account. They will allow you to try the service for 7 days for free with no credit card. After that it's $4.95 per month of access. 

2) Got an account? Now go back to Unlocator to set up your Ubuntu computer with the guide found here.

3) If you followed all the instructions, you should be good to go. Super easy. Fire up your game and enjoy!

Troubleshooting: If the stream seems to hang and not start, try loading up a couple of other games first, and then return to the game you want.

April 1, 2012

MLB.tv Blackouts Are Annoying!



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See how to circumvent the mlb.tv blackouts HERE.

I am a huge fan of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Major League Baseball in general. Becuase I live away from my home in Southern California while in college, I sign up for MLB.tv every year so that I can see my Dodger games. Normally, the service is great and I have few complaints. However, one thing that I find very annoying is when I am blacked out of a game that I have no way of seeing!


Case in point: I go to school in Utah. Utah is zoned by MLB to be blacked out of games played by the Colorado Rockies and the Arizona Diamondbacks. Since both of these teams are in the Dodgers' division, they play each other often. When LA plays Colorado, I simply turn on Fox Sports and I can see the game. However, when the Dodgers play the Diamondback, I have no way of watching my team because the Arizona games are not shown on TV in Utah! Nevertheless, I am blacked out of watching the game via my MLB.tv subscription.

Luckily, there is a was around these frustrating and poorly implemented blackouts. See my post on circumventing MLB.tv blackouts here.