NICE AND EASY: Wally on a boat?

DISH’s Wally receiver is the latest and greatest way to add a receiver to your DISH system. While you can have up to 8 Joeys in a Hopper system, sometimes you just need a standalone receiver. Wally, unlike older DISH products, can work with the same dish and hardware that Hopper and Joey use. It replaces the 211 series of receivers have have been around for about a decade.

But can you take it with you?

The 211 series receivers from DISH had one other advantage. They also worked with portable dishes. This means you could take one with you when you tailgated, camped, or even just went to the garage. This very ability kept the 211 in service for a long time.

The Wally receiver was originally designed as an option for Hopper users. It very quickly became obvious that you would want something like this for mobile dishes as well. So, it was upgraded to work with mobile dishes like the DISH Playmaker and popular marine dishes like Intellian and KVH.

The secret to making it all work

At this point, all Wally receivers have had the magic “firmware” to make sure they work for mobile dishes for a while now. Version u420 added the ability to work with mobile dishes and it’s been out long enough that almost every receiver we get from DISH already has it. However, there is a way to make sure that you’ll get the latest software.

If you have DISH at home, connect the Wally to your home setup and connect it to your home internet as well. Leave it there overnight and it should magically update to the latest version. As I said this isn’t usually necessary because you probably have the right version already.

If you connect your Wally to a Playmaker or other mobile system and it doesn’t find the satellite, there can be other reasons. If you have another older receiver you may want to try it in the same place to see if the cabling is bad. The receiver itself may be one of the rare ones without the latest firmware. If you suspect this, you can try rebooting it to see if that helps. Most likely though a firmware update solves the problem.

If you run into problems with your Wally and you don’t have the ability to leave it connected at home overnight, call the experts at Solid Signal at 888-233-7563. They can suggest options that may help, and can check the activation status of the receiver to make sure that isn’t the problem.

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.