Years back DTV was beta testing Whole Home and it was free. I have a very well-networked home with gigabit to all endpoints that aren't wireless. I ran ethernet cables to each receiver, gave each a static IP address, and configured Whole Home on each receiver. We loved the results after DTV ironed out a few bumps. One day Whole Home disappeared.
Many months later Whole Home was a service advertised by DTV that required an installer and a monthly fee. I called in to ask about it, explaining that it had been working well. I was told I had to pay for installation and the equipment to make it work. I explained I needed neither as it was working fine and I maintain a very robust network, etc. I was directed to a technical person. I explained how it had all been working for us prior to the end of the beta. The tech didn't know much about networking but was at least willing to turn the service on to see if it would work. And, lo and behold, it did. DTV started charging me the $2.99/month (or however much it is) for the pleasure of using it.
A number of techs have been out over the years since: moving the dish, adding a receiver, moving a receiver, etc. Each was at least confused with some curious about how I had it working. But, again, it's been flawless (other than one wireless-bridge-connected DVR which was a signal strength issue since resolved). One tech left me a DECA for each receiver saying I was paying for them and should have them even if I'm not using them. The last tech, however, told me I was all wrong, was lucky, etc. as he installed a Genie. One of his concerns was 'balancing' the system so that the same number of receivers are on either side of some switch or splitter or something. And he was saying that the Whole Home as I had it set up would cause problems. So I thought I'd seek an education and/or affirmation.
1. Am I the only one using an out-of-band ethernet network to run my Whole Home?
2. Is there some 'requirement' for using the DECAs either legally or technically? If so, please explain.
3. Is there other equipment needed if I want to use DECAs?
Thank you for any constructive answers!