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View Full Version : Squeezebox+wifi+XP = serious dropouts



Electric Slimpy
2004-03-26, 07:43
I have had GREAT success with my Slimp3 under Linux over the past couple of years and currently
drive it via WIFI (WAP11 + WET11).

Unfortunately, a friend trying to mirror my results with a Squeezebox under XP has
had LOUSY results and his situation needs some serious improvement.

On a daily basis he has drop-outs. Sometimes the music just stops, other times there is
a message on the squeezebox about not being able to contact the server. He says that it does
often happen after a period of inactivity.

I have tried many releases and nightly builds since he purchased in December. I
increased the priority of the Slimserver service as suggested in the FAQ.

I just reviewed the FAQ again and find the documentation very lacking compared to how many
times I see related issues on this mailing list.

I have suggested that he drop the WIFI for now and go to ethernet to see if the
problems resolve. I am about to cable that up for him. He is pissed because he bought
the AP specificaly for the Squeezebox and he feels like he threw money away.

He is running XP on an Athlon XP2200, 256 MB ram, WAP11, WET11. I have him on channel 10 to
avoid a couple of weak AP's on channel 6. He has these problems even when the windows box is
completely idle.


Thanks for any help!


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Ron Thigpen
2004-03-26, 07:52
Electric Slimpy wrote:


> Unfortunately, a friend trying to mirror my results with a Squeezebox under XP has
> had LOUSY results and his situation needs some serious improvement.

Does your friend have an Intel NIC? There is a networking issue that
has been traced back to Intel NIC driver offloading certain functions to
XP, which apparently handles them differently.

The fix is simple.

See:
<http://lists.slimdevices.com/archives/discuss/2003-December/thread.html#22092>

Short instructions:
================================================== ======================
Install the newest driver from Intel. It's available here:
<http://support.intel.com/support/network/adapter/index.htm#PRO/1000>

Next, open the network control panel and click "Configure", then view
the advanced options. Look for "TCP Segmentation Offloading" - turn that
off.
================================================== ======================

--rt

Daniel Cohen
2004-03-26, 08:12
On 26/3/04 at 6:43 am -0800, Electric Slimpy wrote
>
>On a daily basis he has drop-outs. Sometimes the music just stops,
>other times there is
>a message on the squeezebox about not being able to contact the
>server. He says that it does
>often happen after a period of inactivity.

I have the following problem, similar in effect, don't know if it is
related in the cause.

i do the following:

Set Squeezebox to standby. I tehn get a clock display, as I should.
Put computer to sleep. the display goes blank, as I would expect.
Wake computer up.

the display *usually* produces the clock display, and I can then turn
the Squeezebox on and play music. But sometimes (not often, but not
rarely) he display stays blank and if I try to turn Squeezebox on I
get a "lost connection to server" message. i can then go through the
setup procedure (which fortunately is fairly fast, as all the
relevant data is stored so I can just keep using the right button and
don't have to enter anything) and it sets up ok and I can then play
music.

I'm not quite sure of any common features of when this happens. I
think it's most likely to occur after I have put the computer to
sleep in the evening and woken it up in the morning. Shorter sleep
periods rarely if ever cause the problem.

Mac OS 10.3.3 (also happened with 10.3, but I don't recall it in
10.2.x), Slim Server 5.1.1, Squeezebox firmware 8, wifi via Airport
Extreme. The Airport Extrem base station is working on wakeup, as I
can get a connection on my laptop.
--
Daniel Cohen

rtitmuss
2004-03-26, 08:34
Electric Slimpy wrote:

> He is running XP on an Athlon XP2200, 256 MB ram, WAP11, WET11. I have him
on channel 10 to
> avoid a couple of weak AP's on channel 6. He has these problems even when
the windows box is
> completely idle.

I would suggest trying channel 11 or channel 1 on your friends AP. In 802.11
you need at least 4 clear channels between APs to avoid all interference. So
channels 1, 6 and 11 are OK to run at the same time, but 6 and 10 can still
interfere.

Does he use WiFi for any other application, or just for the Squeezebox? I've
had problems with fault APs before where the usable range can be much
reduced.

Regards,
Richard

seanadams
2004-03-26, 10:30
Two issues have been addresses in the upcoming squeezebox firmware
(this weekend) which should improve the situation:

1) problem with intel ethernet cards that do "TCP segmentation
offloading" in windows XP. In the faq, there is a workaround to disable
this feature. In the next firmware rev there should not be a problem
any more and you can turn the feature back on.

2) several improvements in TCP should yield much better performance
over wireless.



On Mar 26, 2004, at 6:43 AM, Electric Slimpy wrote:

> I have had GREAT success with my Slimp3 under Linux over the past
> couple of years and currently
> drive it via WIFI (WAP11 + WET11).
>
> Unfortunately, a friend trying to mirror my results with a Squeezebox
> under XP has
> had LOUSY results and his situation needs some serious improvement.
>
> On a daily basis he has drop-outs. Sometimes the music just stops,
> other times there is
> a message on the squeezebox about not being able to contact the
> server. He says that it does
> often happen after a period of inactivity.
>
> I have tried many releases and nightly builds since he purchased in
> December. I
> increased the priority of the Slimserver service as suggested in the
> FAQ.
>
> I just reviewed the FAQ again and find the documentation very lacking
> compared to how many
> times I see related issues on this mailing list.
>
> I have suggested that he drop the WIFI for now and go to ethernet to
> see if the
> problems resolve. I am about to cable that up for him. He is pissed
> because he bought
> the AP specificaly for the Squeezebox and he feels like he threw money
> away.
>
> He is running XP on an Athlon XP2200, 256 MB ram, WAP11, WET11. I have
> him on channel 10 to
> avoid a couple of weak AP's on channel 6. He has these problems even
> when the windows box is
> completely idle.
>
>
> Thanks for any help!
>
>
> __________________________________
> Do you Yahoo!?
> Yahoo! Finance Tax Center - File online. File on time.
> http://taxes.yahoo.com/filing.html
>

seanadams
2004-04-01, 11:21
On Mar 27, 2004, at 7:06 PM, David N. Blank-Edelman wrote:

> On Fri, Mar 26, 2004 at 09:30:42AM -0800, Sean Adams wrote:
>> 1) problem with intel ethernet cards that do "TCP segmentation
>> offloading" in windows XP. In the faq, there is a workaround to
>> disable
>> this feature. In the next firmware rev there should not be a problem
>> any more and you can turn the feature back on.
>
> Given that I had the pleasure of seeing you guys hunt this problem down
> until it was subdued, I'm curious: how are you actually fixing it?
>
> -- dNb
>

It was a combination of a few things, but the root cause was an
off-by-one error that could cause a wrap-around of the buffer. This
problem was only triggered by those ethernet cards because a) they're
really REALLY fast, and b) they aren't exactly RFC compliant in terms
of TCP transmission.... they were just sending all the data in the rx
window in a burst without waiting for any acks.

So now it works fine with those cards - since audio data rates are
really low compared to 100+Mbps, the performance difference for us
should be negligible as far as whether that feature is on or off.
However, it's probably better to turn it back on now because it'll
improve throughput to other high-speed hosts on the local network.