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View Full Version : New user's experience on SC: Slow, unintuitive, generally not fun



Jooseppi
2008-08-20, 15:14
My first weeks have been disappointing with SBR and SC. The software functions very slowly. One of my ways to enjoy music is to have a session where I pick songs and create the mix (playlist) on the fly. Doing this is a dreadful experience with SC. I find SC OK when playing albums from start to finish or when playing pre-defined playlists.

Question: What steps can be taken in order to make SC snappy, responsive and D'voidOfLatency?

My gear is modern and SBR connected via LAN.

Thank you

Jooseppi
2008-08-20, 15:21
I guess I have to add that there is nothing seriously flawed in my setup. It is as it should. I functions normally. However, that normal is below my standards. In my opinion the UI experience should remind the ease of use and snappiness that of a CD player for example.

List all albums for a genre - click, BANG! - they're there, on the screen. No waiting. Add a song to playlist - click, BANG! - it's there. No waiting for the list to reappear with the new song. This is how it should be.

Jooseppi
2008-08-20, 15:47
This is the level of intuition, ease and snappiness I'm craving for: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ev7QqN0GvD4 (cue to 1:00), it's the Sooloos system in action.

And please don't get started with the price. Sooloos is nothing that can't be achieved on a modern mid-level computer. That's exactly what it is: a generic computer inside a funky case and with an audiophile-grade price tag.

The ease and "flow" of use is only a software issue. That's, it seems to me, where SC has still a lot to accomplish.

seanadams
2008-08-20, 16:49
That's exactly what it is: a generic computer inside a funky case and with an audiophile-grade price tag.

There is a difference between achieving performance on a closed system, even "just a computer", vs any given customer's existing Windows installation. In the latter case you have viruses, anti-viruses, firewalls, background tasks, memory usage, VPN software, and a million other things you'd never even imagine that can cause problems. That is the hostile environment we have to contend with.

Anyway... has it finished scanning your music yet? If you have a lot of tracks that can take a while, and the system will be less responsive during that time due to the disk activity.

bhaagensen
2008-08-20, 17:15
List all albums for a genre - click, BANG! - they're there, on the screen. No waiting. Add a song to playlist - click, BANG! - it's there. No waiting for the list to reappear with the new song. This is how it should be.

Thats basically how it works for me... It depends though, on whether I'm connected over the Internet, the current load on my server, the current load on my network, whether I'm streaming from local or remote sources etc. These things are a bit hard to discuss without hard numbers and specific examples. So perhaps you could say a little bit more about your hardware specs etc. And also give a few specific examples of operations, so others can try, that are slow in your setup. That will make it easier to discuss matters.

Uluen
2008-08-20, 17:39
My gear is modern and SBR connected via LAN.What kind of hardware is your SC running on and what is the host OS?

On my system, when I click the "rock" genre (where I have most albums I think) it takes 2-3 seconds for the system to come up with the result (797 albums with 9871 songs by 400 artists).

How long does a similar query take on your system?

damager
2008-08-20, 21:36
What kind of hardware is your SC running on and what is the host OS?

On my system, when I click the "rock" genre (where I have most albums I think) it takes 2-3 seconds for the system to come up with the result (797 albums with 9871 songs by 400 artists).

How long does a similar query take on your system?

Just did this same test on mine - I have 39,000 songs and just under 3000 albums. I started my controller, went to "Music Library", then "Genres", then "Rock". 3-4 seconds later I had my list. I consider that to be pretty damn good.

Nonreality
2008-08-20, 23:46
Just did this same test on mine - I have 39,000 songs and just under 3000 albums. I started my controller, went to "Music Library", then "Genres", then "Rock". 3-4 seconds later I had my list. I consider that to be pretty damn good.
Nice speed, its fast sometimes on mine and sometimes it is very slow. I can understand the OP's frustration. I'm not sure why but sometimes it's so slow that that it really bugs me and others it's so fast that I wonder what I was thinking why was I ever upset. Like Sean said there are so many factors with an open system but I like being able to have someone create things that benefit me that a closed system can not. It's so much cooler that the wait can be written off most of the time. Sometimes it's just a version that happens to run slow and an upgrade can do the trick. Play around with it as it is fluid not static. You'll start to understand it the more you play with it I believe.

EDIT: This is on the web interface. The SB3 interface is very fast.

ModelCitizen
2008-08-21, 01:05
Unless you are using a low-powered PC the help you get here will solve your "snappiness" problems.

It might be useful for you (as a new user) to supply feedback about why you found the interface (UI) unituitive, and exactly what you found intuitive about it.

The most remarkable thing about the product you have just bought is the amount of development that that takes place on an ongoing basis.

If you (or any other new users) find the SBC (controller) or the player (SB1/2/3 Transporter) user interface unintuitive or difficult to use then you should attempt to decribe the problems you have with it.

User feedback is is very useful for improving any product and SlimDevices/Logitech listen to feedback and act upon it.

IMHO it would be great if the various SlimDevices were as immediately obvious to use as something like an iPod.

MC

pimd
2008-08-21, 02:13
I agree that the system can be very slow sometimes. To a point where it is annoying.
I have an album containing about 300 songs (top40 1966). It takes almost half a minute to display the songs of that album on my SC. The same when i browse the files using Folder display.
For normal albums with 10-20 tracks the speed is usually ok.
300 songs may not be a problem for a database like MySQL so I believe that the software is not completely finetuned. At the moment i have 97 albums and about 1500 songs in my collection.

Nonreality
2008-08-21, 02:22
I agree that the system can be very slow sometimes. To a point where it is annoying.
I have an album containing about 300 songs (top40 1966). It takes almost half a minute to display the songs of that album on my SC. The same when i browse the files using Folder display.
For normal albums with 10-20 tracks the speed is usually ok.
300 songs may not be a problem for a database like MySQL so I believe that the software is not completely finetuned. At the moment i have 97 albums and about 1500 songs in my collection.It's not the database it's how the network handles the database in my opinion. I have 17k in songs and like I said it is fast at times and other times it takes forever. I think it has to be the network and what ever stage it's in at the time you query. Then again I'm pretty simple on these things so I'm not totally sure.

Uluen
2008-08-21, 03:47
It's not the database it's how the network handles the database in my opinion. I have 17k in songs and like I said it is fast at times and other times it takes forever. I think it has to be the network and what ever stage it's in at the time you query. Then again I'm pretty simple on these things so I'm not totally sure.What do you mean "network handles the database"? The db queries is done on the SC host, it doesn't travel the network.

I have 41K+ tracks and getting all albums from the largest genre (rock) takes less than 3 seconds on the web UI like I said.
Searching for "a" takes 3-4 seconds, pretty impressive in my opinion.

Can you put some numbers behind "takes forever"?

Jooseppi
2008-08-21, 04:29
Hello everyone,

And first of all thank you for the many replies and understanding attitude. Many times if you post something with a negative undertone ("I'm not satisfied") to a dedicated forum, you most often end up with emotional defensive attacks from them so called fanboys.

Anyway. What I've gathered so far, the lack of that last bit of snappiness and lightning fast speed is a result of several factors. Maybe these are some of them?
- Software side is an open system that has to work in conjunction with who knows how many applications (AV, FW and so forth) and who knows how badly maintained OS's
- SC software may not be finetuned enough. Some reference to this might be in the way SC uses memory, which is a lot IMHO. I wouldnt mind the memory hogging if it resulted in super snappy operation. I can understand that money dominates business and that modern cheap ram is a far more economical solution than hiring developers. But isnt there a line to be drawn somewhere? To be honest, SC is only a simplified server and an audio streamer. Following this cheap ram stick ideology, the developers have only some responsibility over software, the rest is laid upon users.
- The software is web browser based. Why was that decision taken in the past? I can see it is a globally compatible solution and it helps with networking but is browser-based really the best way to do it?

Please bare in mind that I do not have deep knowledge over SC or coding. I may well have wrong ideas on some matters.

What I'm still trying to comprehend is how it can take so long (some seconds is too much) to display a pre-indexed list of a given number of albums? Let's say I have 1000 albums. All the crucial metadata has been indexed during the music library scanning process, right? So now, as I select to display for example all rock albums, which there are 100 for example, how can it take some seconds for them to appear on the display? It would be understandable if the information was gathered from the actual library directories but no, all the library metadata is indexed (right?).

pimd's example of a 300-song album is great. Half a minute to display 300 songs! I think that is much too much.

Nonreality, you said "This is on the web interface. The SB3 interface is very fast". With the latter, are you referring to softsqueeze interface or hardware interface à la remote control?

Did any of you watch the youtube clip of Sooloos? Isn't that UI just mind blowing? Aesthetic, ultra snappy, intuitive.. truly a Human Interface Device.

Mark Lanctot
2008-08-21, 06:08
- Software side is an open system that has to work in conjunction with who knows how many applications (AV, FW and so forth) and who knows how badly maintained OS's

Yes. SC has to work under Windows, Mac and Linux. From what I can see on the forums, in terms of speed and reliability of the software under these various OSes, it's clear that the fastest is under Linux. Windows is a mixed bag due to the sheer variability of installations, and SC under Mac appears to be problematic for some users.

You've never said what OS you're using. I bet it isn't Linux...SC is snappy for me even using a slow 1.2 GHz Duron chip with 512 MB of RAM and a library over a network.

This may be due to the fact that SC is coded in perl for such amazing cross-compatibility. perl in Linux is very efficient, Windows perhaps not so much. That said, I ran the older SlimServer on Windows XP and it was just as fast for me.

The protocol for communicating with the players is open and documented and anyone could write a server. Many have proposed this over the years but amazingly no one has come up with anything...Perhaps SC is more than a 'simplified server and audio streamer'? If you're on Windows, you may want to try Moose. It should be noted this still relies on SC as a backend but it's written as a native Windows app.


- The software is web browser based. Why was that decision taken in the past?

- easy cross-platform compatibility

- easy network control (any device with a web browser can control SC, even over the Internet)

- no installation necessary on devices other than the server

- well-documented methods common to web development

kesey
2008-08-21, 06:40
Did any of you watch the youtube clip of Sooloos? Isn't that UI just mind blowing? Aesthetic, ultra snappy, intuitive.. truly a Human Interface Device.

Jooseppi, may I suggest that you use Squeezecenter on your computer for a while. For instance on the "Home" screen click on "Albums". Now you have a list of albums gazing politely at you, waiting for you to make a selection. What could be prettier, snappy or more intuitive? Now, select a different letter from the alpha index to bring up the relevant albums. How long did that screen take to fill? In my mind there is plenty of fun to be had here.

I'll agree the Controller is taking a wee while to get to perfect. I've been used to the Squeezebox 3 (wired network) for some time now, and it reacts a bit quicker than does the Controller - but then it is pretty fully formed as of now, not under daily evolution as is the Controller/Reciever. There's as bit of growing in the Duet yet, but I can wait and see how the development goes. I like what's there now - it can be finnicky but that's computers for you. The Controller is in a state of development, but it a fine thing as it is.

Would I prefer that it was finalised first and then sold? Absolutely not. I've been downloading beta stuff for years. I want what is available now. Boys and their toys etc. I'll cope with a bit of a hiccup here and there.

What would I really like? Maybe a version of a tablet PC to run Squeezecenter on. iPeng is probably not too far off there, but I'm not inclined to get another iPod. The iPhone is too darn expensive to operate where I live, and I prefer the Blackberry email facility for the moment. A development of the iRex Iliad/Kindle/Sony PRS 505 able to handle Squeezecenter would be cool. What do you think Slim Devices/Logitech? :-)

Jooseppi
2008-08-21, 07:56
Hi,

I'll answer some unanswered questions.

I don't have the Controller at all. I bought only the Receiver and set it up with net-UDAP. I'm on XP SP3 and a well resourced computer (X2 5000+, 2GB 800, 7200rpm).

I can later on, when I have more time, take some measurements of the exact times it takes for certain tasks. However, I dont see so much relevance in exact numbers of seconds. To me, if it takes more than two seconds, it's too much. Am I being unreasonable? I dont think so. So far I've ripped to FLAC about 500 albums, so the database isn't huge. And, if Sooloos can do it, SD should get close to it.

Have any of you experimented with SSDs? You can DIY a very fast small SSD reletively cheap. Just get an ultra fast CF card (around 45MB/s, UDMA) and put in a PATA adapter and hoot up to computer. Those things are fast. The adapters cost under 10 dollars and 4GB cards some tens of dollars. The seek times on flash drives are mind blowingly little. Maybe flash could be a way to increase the so called snap factor?

Have any of you found comprehensive data on Sooloos' specifications? It would be interesting to learn more about it's technicalities. Maybe SD could learn something from it even though it is as a whole a different approach (closed).

Siduhe
2008-08-21, 08:12
I should start by saying that I think these threads are interesting and the discussions worth having - there are enough people who have this immediate reaction that it's clearly an issue for some. However, it's very different from my own experience.

I run SC on an old Windows PC (XP SP3) but it's pretty much a dedicated server (I also use it to rip and store my music and photos/videos, so there's attendant software for those things too) as well as ESET Security software. Doesn't have a high end spec, but has 1gb of RAM so it's not exactly underpowered.

SC is blistering fast on my setup despite a library of 10,000k+ tracks - the reaction from the web interface is easily sub one second unless I'm doing a MusicIP mix which probably takes about two.

I always put it down to the fact that:

a)I don't use the box SC is installed on for anything else;

b)I have stripped out some of the XP bells and whistles (graphics and animated menus for example);

c) My Squeezeboxes are wireless, but the SC box is wired to my router (only one wireless hop);

d) I have the server priority set to above average in SC so even if I'm doing something else on the box, SC should take priority.

None of which necessarily answers the points made in the OP's original post, but may give him some ideas how to improve your experience given the current software. Also, if you're running XP, have you looked at the Moose front end for Windows - lots of people who have problems with the web interface say it runs a lot faster for them. Search for Dr Lovegrove and Moose in the search engine of your choice.

Mark Lanctot
2008-08-21, 08:18
Have any of you experimented with SSDs? You can DIY a very fast small SSD reletively cheap. Just get an ultra fast CF card (around 45MB/s, UDMA) and put in a PATA adapter and hoot up to computer. Those things are fast. The adapters cost under 10 dollars and 4GB cards some tens of dollars. The seek times on flash drives are mind blowingly little. Maybe flash could be a way to increase the so called snap factor?

Unfortunately the slowness you're seeing is not due to disk I/O. As I indicated I have a slower server which accessed the music collection over my network. Sure rescan times were longer (7 minutes versus 3 minutes locally) but SC operation was almost as fast. I'm comparing a 1.2 GHz AMD Duron with 512 MB of single-channel PC-2100 RAM versus a 2.4 GHz Core 2 Duo E6600 with 2 GB of double-channel PC2-4200 RAM. That's a huge difference but SC operation was largely unaffected. However both were running Ubuntu Linux.

It's probably more related to how the OS interacts with perl and MySQL, which in my uneducated opinion is probably mostly due to the OS itself and a little bit on memory I/O.

ds2021
2008-08-21, 08:36
With a moderate sized collection of 13,000 tracks, in about 1000 albums, I find performance very snappy. Perhaps it is my reference point: Instead of imagining a comparison of placing one cd in a player and pressing play (by which standard I would still say the interface on my hardware with my network is very fast - even for large albums), I consider the task of digging through 1000 CDs to find the one that I want, pulling the CD out, getting up, putting it in the player (do I need to remove the existing CD and put it back in its place first?), and pressing play. With this as the reference point, the SC7 interface is lightning fast.

Kaizen28
2008-08-21, 11:00
Hi

I really need to comment here as I'm not always a fan of SC but the comparison to Sooloos is unfair. There are too many unknowns in that demo. A head-to-head comparison via browser interfaces running on the same hardware across the same network would have been more relevant.

While the big screen is cool, you're not going to strap it to your belt and walk around the house with it. Also, while you may think it looks good, WAF (wife acceptance factor) is really low if it's in public etc. etc.

The comment made about the performance of a closed system versus an open one is also very accurate. I work with applications the run on Windows and are accessed via a web interface. Even with the most brutal hardware the performance of the interface is unlikely to meet your "snappy" requirement.

It really depends on what you want the system to do. The fast, open and subtle operation of SC wins for me.

damager
2008-08-21, 11:14
And, if Sooloos can do it, SD should get close to it.

Just a couple of comments on this statement. First, if you want EXACTLY what Sooloos is offering, then you should buy it. What? You don't want to spend that much? Then you shouldn't expect other products to have the same experience. It's really not a fair comparison to demand the performance of an open, reasonably priced product to be just like the performance of a closed, tightly controlled and outrageously priced product.

Second, the times I reported earlier are for accessing my collection on a SB Controller. Through the web interface, it's significantly faster.

peter
2008-08-21, 11:37
Jooseppi wrote:
> Hi,
>
> I'll answer some unanswered questions.
>
> I don't have the Controller at all. I bought only the Receiver and set
> it up with net-UDAP. I'm on XP SP3 and a well resourced computer (X2
> 5000+, 2GB 800, 7200rpm).
>
> I can later on, when I have more time, take some measurements of the
> exact times it takes for certain tasks. However, I dont see so much
> relevance in exact numbers of seconds. To me, if it takes more than two
> seconds, it's too much. Am I being unreasonable? I dont think so. So far
> I've ripped to FLAC about 500 albums, so the database isn't huge. And,
> if Sooloos can do it, SD should get close to it.
>
> Have any of you experimented with SSDs? You can DIY a very fast small
> SSD reletively cheap. Just get an ultra fast CF card (around 45MB/s,
> UDMA) and put in a PATA adapter and hoot up to computer. Those things
> are fast. The adapters cost under 10 dollars and 4GB cards some tens of
> dollars. The seek times on flash drives are mind blowingly little. Maybe
> flash could be a way to increase the so called snap factor?
>
> Have any of you found comprehensive data on Sooloos' specifications? It
> would be interesting to learn more about it's technicalities. Maybe SD
> could learn something from it even though it is as a whole a different
> approach (closed).
>

The difference is probably in the architecture. SC is a client server
system. Don't forget that both the client (web) and server can run on a
wide range of systems. But a web interface is just not that responsive.

I've often thought (and even said) that SD would do well in creating a
smart client in something like Java, that would give users the
flashyness and snappyness that people have come to expect of software.
The web-interface is great IMHO, but something quick and pretty would
please a lot of users.

Regards,
Peter

Goodsounds
2008-08-21, 11:40
I am AMAZED at how magnanimous the postings have been to what were essentially a set of whingey comments that probably didn't deserve any response.

mudlark
2008-08-21, 12:49
My linux system works a treat.

I must admit i find it very sad that there isn't anyone around who seems to be doing a "dedicated" squeezeserver. The price of computer parts these days, you could put together a fantastic system for £300.

Mnyb
2008-08-21, 13:12
My linux system works a treat.

I must admit i find it very sad that there isn't anyone around who seems to be doing a "dedicated" squeezeserver. The price of computer parts these days, you could put together a fantastic system for £300.

You must have missed the ripserver, see tread in 3rd party hardware.
It also rips the CD's and tags them, thats their "special sauce", it's a nice package, could of course be bettered by some diy efforts(you have to put in some time and dedication for it thou). But it is actually a prepacked fanless linux server made for SC.
I also see that some retails are selling nas'es with preinstalled SC.

On topic:, as I understand it your supposed(by design) to use an controller or a remote to use your SB installation, the main feature is to controll your music by NOT sitting in front of your PC, showe the server into a closet and forget it. I use the web UI for initiating scan's tune in url and messing with the occasional playlist, on daily basis i'm not near the web UI.
I'm seeing this from another angle, I can suffer the admittedly clunky web-UI because i can actually stream lossles flac files wirelessly all over my home and the system does this with absolute fidelity no quality loss compared to anything, and I'm not locked in to proprietary solutions. The controller is fast enough for me

The fact that you can use it differently is due to it's open nature. If it had been an closed system you would not have been able to get an receiver going without the controller, then this discussion would not exist.

Btw is any of the other skins eg "classic" faster than the default skin ? that could be a way to go ?

iPhone
2008-08-21, 13:55
This is the level of intuition, ease and snappiness I'm craving for: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ev7QqN0GvD4 (cue to 1:00), it's the Sooloos system in action.

The ease and "flow" of use is only a software issue. That's, it seems to me, where SC has still a lot to accomplish.

Welcome to the Forum and the world of Squeezebox. This is not intented to be a flame and I hope you can understand where this is coming from because it was you that made the unfair comparison.


And please don't get started with the price. Sooloos is nothing that can't be achieved on a modern mid-level computer. That's exactly what it is: a generic computer inside a funky case and with an audiophile-grade price tag.

I am going to say exactly that! The Sooloos is $10,500!!!!! But the important thing as Sean said in the post right after you posted this Watermelon to Raisin comparison, is the use of a "dedicated Server".

If you think SC is to slow, then spend another $700 on a "Dedicated SC Server" running Linux with FireFox web browser and it will fly. You can speed up using your current XP by installing FireFox3 for Windows and don’t open any IE sessions while using the SC WebUI (if your PC is fairly "Clean" this switch will shock you). With a Linux SC Server there are no viruses, no background tasks, no other open programs, no VPN, no firewalls, to deal with or cause possible problems; just a dedicated SC Server just as the Sooloos box is dedicated (but SC is still an open source system unlike the closed Sooloos). Now for the nice part, even after buying and building your dedicated SC Server, you still have spent less then a tenth of what a Sooloos system costs! There is the added bonus of the pride that you did it, instead of you went out and bought it at 10 times the price because somebody else did it for you. Which is basically what the Sooloos, Linn, McIntosh, and other high dollar audiophile all-in-one NMPs are; somebody doing it for you. Just insert a CD, repeat, repeat (until all CDs are copied), play music. Sooloos is a closed system and if one wants multiple music locations, one has to buy the model five and then run RCA cables pairs all over the place. For $15000.00 it should be wireless so, No Thank You!

neu242
2008-08-21, 14:43
I also find the SqueezeCenter way too slow. I ended up creating my own UI that remote controls SqueezeCenter -- you can find it at http://musicbrowser.sf.net/. It's not fantastic and it doesn't do ID3 parsing, but it's faster than SqueezeCenter.

Jooseppi
2008-08-21, 16:41
I am AMAZED at how magnanimous the postings have been to what were essentially a set of whingey comments that probably didn't deserve any response.

Well, there will always be evil-spirited and maligned people like you, so I will stand your non-contribution.

But to answer your amazement, it seems you never think of the option you might be wrong (well what do you know!). As you can see, several people agreed to the said frustration. That is some indication, even if your fanaticism won't allow it.

CatBus
2008-08-21, 16:59
I agree that a web browser-based interface is inherently problematic, so I just use the remote interface, which is much more appealing to me (I want to listen to music, not use a computer!). I have never run into any problems with responsiveness.

ncarver
2008-08-21, 19:41
Like some have said, if someone wants what the Sooloos provides, then they should buy it (if they can afford it). I don't have any place to put that giant control unit where I want to listen to music, but maybe you do!

I personally prefer the more generic, open, and flexible approach that SlimDevices takes. I can walk up to any computer in the house and control any player in the house (or walk around the house with the Duet controller). The fact that is takes 2 secs to get a list of albums instead of 1 sec doesn't strike me as a big deal, since I am listening to music mostly instead of searching and making playlists (and no operation ever takes more than 2-3 secs from either controller or web interface, and this is using an oldy P4 as the server). Furthermore, it works with any OS in the house, as for me, a system that doesn't work with Linux is totally useless (I am a CS prof and won't use Windows).

What would be interesting would be a video of someone controlling the Sooloos via their web interface, called ControlPC. Think that will really be any faster than SC via a web interface?? I downloaded the manual for it and found the following:
Control:PC requires a PC running Windows XP or Vista or an Apple MacIntosh computer with an Intel processor running the Parallels Desktop or VMWare Fusion. [So completely and utterly useless for me!]
...
Run the setup program, then launch Control:PC. It will search for the Sooloos system and load after finding it. If Control:PC fails to load, the most likely reason is a network problem, since the program must communicate intensively with the Sooloos system in order to function. Try shutting down everything on the network and rebooting the router. Restart the Sooloos system and your computer, then launch Control:PC again. If the problem persists and your computer talks to the router via WiFi, try making an Ethernet connection instead, since wired connections are more reliable. If you have an old router, or one supplied by your internet service provider, replacing it with a new one may also help.

Sure sounds foolproof, doesn't it? :)

pimd
2008-08-22, 01:11
I agree that the system can be very slow sometimes. To a point where it is annoying.
I have an album containing about 300 songs (top40 1966). It takes almost half a minute to display the songs of that album on my SC. The same when i browse the files using Folder display.
For normal albums with 10-20 tracks the speed is usually ok.
300 songs may not be a problem for a database like MySQL so I believe that the software is not completely finetuned. At the moment i have 97 albums and about 1500 songs in my collection.

I have to add that in my case only the Controller is slow. When i use the webinterface this album displays fast enough. Even on my simple mobile phone it is quite fast so i don't beleive the problem is on the server-side or with my network.
The Controller still takes ages. I tested this album again this morning and again it took about 30 seconds.

mherger
2008-08-22, 01:46
> I have to add that in my case only the Controller is slow. When i use

what hardware are you running your SC on? This is a known issue with slower hardware (can literally take minutes on really slow hardware and largish collections):

http://bugs.slimdevices.com/show_bug.cgi?id=9069

> the webinterface this album displays fast enough. Even on my simple
> mobile phone it is quite fast so i don't beleive the problem is on the
> server-side or with my network.

It is: when displaying the web UI or (even faster!) the SB3's player UI only a few (or one on the player) item is analyzed at a time. On Controller it's all the items in your folder at a time. In my case the Controller might be around 400x slower to show the first item than the player UI, because I have around 400 folders at the top level.

--

Michael

pimd
2008-08-22, 02:39
Thanks, this explains a lot, although i still not quite understand it. I now understand why Browse Music Folder is slow on the controller, but it is also slow when i browse the other items like Albums.
Is the UI of the controller different from a Web UI? i always thought of the Controller as a small linux computer with some sort of webinterface to the server.

My hardware is indeed quite old /slow. It's a Pentium II 733mhx / 256 MB.

mherger
2008-08-22, 03:08
> Thanks, this explains a lot, although i still not quite understand it. I
> now understand why Browse Music Folder is slow on the controller, but it
> is also slow when i browse the other items like Albums.

That's not normal (thus a different issue).

> Is the UI of the controller different from a Web UI? i always thought

Of course it does. And it should be faster than the web UI, as SC doesn't have to prepare the bulky web page.

> of the Controller as a small linux computer with some sort of
> webinterface to the server.

It's not a web interface running on the controller. It's using a much more efficient protocol to talk to the server.

> My hardware is indeed quite old /slow. It's a Pentium II 733mhx / 256

No race horse. I guess it might be a bit short on memory, too. Mine's not that much faster (Via C3/1GHz, 1GB RAM), but using the controller is very snappy.

--

Michael

Nonreality
2008-08-22, 03:39
What do you mean "network handles the database"? The db queries is done on the SC host, it doesn't travel the network.

I have 41K+ tracks and getting all albums from the largest genre (rock) takes less than 3 seconds on the web UI like I said.
Searching for "a" takes 3-4 seconds, pretty impressive in my opinion.

Can you put some numbers behind "takes forever"?What I'm saying is how the web interface receives the info. It can hang 10 to 15 seconds sometimes and at others 2-3 seconds or less. What I'm saying is I believe that it accesses the database fast but how the browser gets the info can be slow. So the info has to travel the network to get to me on the browser. Maybe I'm not explaining it right for you so sorry to upset you .

Nonreality
2008-08-22, 03:47
Hello everyone,

And first of all thank you for the many replies and understanding attitude. Many times if you post something with a negative undertone ("I'm not satisfied") to a dedicated forum, you most often end up with emotional defensive attacks from them so called fanboys.

Anyway. What I've gathered so far, the lack of that last bit of snappiness and lightning fast speed is a result of several factors. Maybe these are some of them?
- Software side is an open system that has to work in conjunction with who knows how many applications (AV, FW and so forth) and who knows how badly maintained OS's
- SC software may not be finetuned enough. Some reference to this might be in the way SC uses memory, which is a lot IMHO. I wouldnt mind the memory hogging if it resulted in super snappy operation. I can understand that money dominates business and that modern cheap ram is a far more economical solution than hiring developers. But isnt there a line to be drawn somewhere? To be honest, SC is only a simplified server and an audio streamer. Following this cheap ram stick ideology, the developers have only some responsibility over software, the rest is laid upon users.
- The software is web browser based. Why was that decision taken in the past? I can see it is a globally compatible solution and it helps with networking but is browser-based really the best way to do it?

Please bare in mind that I do not have deep knowledge over SC or coding. I may well have wrong ideas on some matters.

What I'm still trying to comprehend is how it can take so long (some seconds is too much) to display a pre-indexed list of a given number of albums? Let's say I have 1000 albums. All the crucial metadata has been indexed during the music library scanning process, right? So now, as I select to display for example all rock albums, which there are 100 for example, how can it take some seconds for them to appear on the display? It would be understandable if the information was gathered from the actual library directories but no, all the library metadata is indexed (right?).

pimd's example of a 300-song album is great. Half a minute to display 300 songs! I think that is much too much.

Nonreality, you said "This is on the web interface. The SB3 interface is very fast". With the latter, are you referring to softsqueeze interface or hardware interface à la remote control?

Did any of you watch the youtube clip of Sooloos? Isn't that UI just mind blowing? Aesthetic, ultra snappy, intuitive.. truly a Human Interface Device.

The hardware interface with the remote is very fast for me.

Nonreality
2008-08-22, 03:51
I should start by saying that I think these threads are interesting and the discussions worth having - there are enough people who have this immediate reaction that it's clearly an issue for some. However, it's very different from my own experience.

I run SC on an old Windows PC (XP SP3) but it's pretty much a dedicated server (I also use it to rip and store my music and photos/videos, so there's attendant software for those things too) as well as ESET Security software. Doesn't have a high end spec, but has 1gb of RAM so it's not exactly underpowered.

SC is blistering fast on my setup despite a library of 10,000k+ tracks - the reaction from the web interface is easily sub one second unless I'm doing a MusicIP mix which probably takes about two.

I always put it down to the fact that:

a)I don't use the box SC is installed on for anything else;

b)I have stripped out some of the XP bells and whistles (graphics and animated menus for example);

c) My Squeezeboxes are wireless, but the SC box is wired to my router (only one wireless hop);

d) I have the server priority set to above average in SC so even if I'm doing something else on the box, SC should take priority.

None of which necessarily answers the points made in the OP's original post, but may give him some ideas how to improve your experience given the current software. Also, if you're running XP, have you looked at the Moose front end for Windows - lots of people who have problems with the web interface say it runs a lot faster for them. Search for Dr Lovegrove and Moose in the search engine of your choice.

Nice post Siduhe.

Jooseppi
2008-08-22, 06:57
Many responses here have followed this structure: "If one wants Sooloos-like operability one goes and buys it. Can't afford? Boohoo, don't complain."

I can understand this argument only to some degree. Mostly I don't. Why should we see things so categorically? As if there were no options or alternatives. "Slim Devices know what they're doing, they have provided a finalized product here to our hands and they don't have to follow the competition". What good could follow from that kind of encouragement?

The (technical) competition being in a tenfold price category will not restrain from reaching or getting close to it, only one's lack of ambition or dare will. We don't know where the Sooloos' high premium goes to. How much goes to marketing, design or taking back initial funding? Only a small fraction might go to technical R&D. And since SD operates in an open ideology, a whole lot of priceless equity is tied to SD development. Overall I see it as lack of imagination and courage to disregard a product simply for its price tag.

And if one is satisfied and happy with one's current SD setup, why not be just that, happy and satisfied, instead of implying there isn't space or right to investigate for something more?

cparker
2008-08-22, 07:21
Is this thread actually going anywhere or is it just flamebait? :s

Pale Blue Ego
2008-08-22, 08:08
The OP is unusual in that the WebUI is the ONLY way he can control the player (SBR). He's using the absolute cheapest Squeezebox solution possible, the $149 Receiver without a Controller.

Yeah, it might be a leeetle bit unfair to expect it to perform as snappily as the $10k+ Sooloos system.

But still, there are things he can try. Moose and SlimRemote are Windows programs that may perform better than the WebUI. Firefox or Opera might be quicker than IE at rendering the web pages. A different OS on the server, more RAM, etc. might help the performance.

The performance is much quicker using the Controller or the SB3 + IR remote. The WebUI can be slow, depending on a lot of different factors, but since it isn't the standard way most people control the player, the issue is much less relevant for them.

Anyway, good luck!

kesey
2008-08-22, 08:16
I can understand this argument only to some degree. Mostly I don't. Why should we see things so categorically? As if there were no options or alternatives.

Jooseppi, you have been more than kindly received on this forum. Enough is enough. Have you nothing to offer but whinges? Telling us all ad infinitum that we should shoot for the stars might amuse you, but it is bugger all use - unless perhaps as a trolling device. If your contributions were the latter, then I trust you enjoyed yourself.

tamanaco
2008-08-22, 09:25
After looking at the Sooloos system I can help, but think of Moose with an "enhanced" Touch-Screen interface. From what I can see in the video, Moose appears to have "similar" performance. In addition to supporting a touch screen, some enhancements to the Cover Chooser to accommodate big fat fingers is all it needs. Maybe SD/Logitech should "consider" acquiring Moose as an "alternate" UI. The Web UI (The so called Universal Client) can still use some performance improvements, but I have always been somewhat skeptical about using it as the main "Player". When listening to music... Play, Stop, Skip and "Select-the-track-album-or-playlist-you-want-to-play is all you really need. Allowing anyone else access to the Web UI and its power to reconfigure the whole system is a bit daunting. All the settings and the distinct configurations that you can get are great, but I would not let my wife near it. She mostly uses the SB3 remote and I think I caught her a few times using Moose from my laptop.

Maybe this does not belong here... but before I kill my 13 year old nephew, I think some of the configuration options that are selectable via the remote should be pw protected. Whenever I get visitors I have to remove the Settings Menu from my SB3 via the Web UI for fear that guests (specially my nephew) will start the "Rescan Music Library" during family gatherings. He's done that twice already. I forgot to remove the Settings Menu the last time the little rat got a hold of the remote. I had to explain "again" to the not-so-technically-inclined members of my family why digitizing my CDs was a good thing. I still can hear them asking me… so what happened to the music? Why does it take so long to rescan? (Note: I use MusicIP) I see you have a CD player, is that working? Why not play a CD? All of them with a stupid grin on their faces… and my little fffker nephew giggling uncontrollably in a fetal position in the sofa. Get the picture?

Siduhe
2008-08-22, 09:41
Maybe this does not belong here... but before I kill my 13 year old nephew, I think some of the configuration options that are selectable via the remote should be pw protected. Whenever I get visitors I have to remove the Settings Menu from my SB3 via the Web UI for fear that guests (specially my nephew) will start the "Rescan Music Library" during family gatherings.

Does the NoSetup plugin protect the Settings in the Controller as well if enabled or only via the web interface? I assume it only disables the web interface, but may be worth looking into.

And spot on with the discussion of Moose - I mentioned a few posts back as a suggestion, but the OP hasn't responded yet.

Nonreality
2008-08-22, 10:49
After looking at the Sooloos system I can help, but think of Moose with an "enhanced" Touch-Screen interface. From what I can see in the video, Moose appears to have "similar" performance. In addition to supporting a touch screen, some enhancements to the Cover Chooser to accommodate big fat fingers is all it needs. Maybe SD/Logitech should "consider" acquiring Moose as an "alternate" UI. The Web UI (The so called Universal Client) can still use some performance improvements, but I have always been somewhat skeptical about using it as the main "Player". When listening to music... Play, Stop, Skip and "Select-the-track-album-or-playlist-you-want-to-play is all you really need. Allowing anyone else access to the Web UI and its power to reconfigure the whole system is a bit daunting. All the settings and the distinct configurations that you can get are great, but I would not let my wife near it. She mostly uses the SB3 remote and I think I caught her a few times using Moose from my laptop.

Maybe this does not belong here... but before I kill my 13 year old nephew, I think some of the configuration options that are selectable via the remote should be pw protected. Whenever I get visitors I have to remove the Settings Menu from my SB3 via the Web UI for fear that guests (specially my nephew) will start the "Rescan Music Library" during family gatherings. He's done that twice already. I forgot to remove the Settings Menu the last time the little rat got a hold of the remote. I had to explain "again" to the not-so-technically-inclined members of my family why digitizing my CDs was a good thing. I still can hear them asking me… so what happened to the music? Why does it take so long to rescan? (Note: I use MusicIP) I see you have a CD player, is that working? Why not play a CD? All of them with a stupid grin on their faces… and my little fffker nephew giggling uncontrollably in a fetal position in the sofa. Get the picture?

Maybe a little duct tape is in order. :) For the nephew, not the remote.

lanierb
2008-08-22, 11:38
The OP is unusual in that the WebUI is the ONLY way he can control the player (SBR). He's using the absolute cheapest Squeezebox solution possible, the $149 Receiver without a Controller.

Yeah, it might be a leeetle bit unfair to expect it to perform as snappily as the $10k+ Sooloos system.

But still, there are things he can try. Moose and SlimRemote are Windows programs that may perform better than the WebUI. Firefox or Opera might be quicker than IE at rendering the web pages. A different OS on the server, more RAM, etc. might help the performance.


Good post. I also think people (including the OP) have been too quick to rule out some kind of individual specific software interference as well, such as anti-virus, that is causing the OP to have more delay than the rest of us.

That said, if I wanted to make a playlist on the fly choosing individual songs, I'm not sure I would choose SC to do it with. I would use the SB or controller directly, but that's not an option here since the OP doesn't have a controller. An alternative suggestion would be to use something else for that purpose. You can use iTunes or winamp or foobar2k or whatever suits your fancy. Heck, you can even use softsqueeze. Make the playlist there and play it in squeezecenter. Not too big a cost given the choice to forgo the normal hardware solution.

Jooseppi
2008-08-22, 12:22
Hi,

And thank you everyone. As it says in the first post, my goal was to gather information on how to make SC snappier.

Many suggestions on how to make things snappier have been raised:
- Install Moose (it's a great idea to develop it into touch controlled UI!)
- Use a certain OS
- Use remote control (however this way playlist managing and music mixing is too tough a task)
- Clean up OS from unnecessary services and applications
- Not yet verified, but I strongly believe that on a fast SSD things will speed up. Maybe one day I'll buy one.
- Switch to other solutions (foobar, winamp, itunes), of which foobar seems the best for it's openness and potential for customization.

Pale Blue Ego, it's not logical to separate 149USD SBR and 10+kUSD Sooloos just like that. Because, what can you do with a SBR? Nothing. You have to attach a computer, display device and a storage device. Those cost a lot of dough, especially if you enclose them in those fancy cases like Sooloos'. Only then you have the form and functionality somewhat comparable to the Sooloos. One shouldn't get overwhelmed by a price tag, that should be common sense in the modern era of branding and marketing. You get what you pay for (like social status or expensive ads :).

sebp
2008-08-22, 14:51
it's not logical to separate 149USD SBR and 10+kUSD Sooloos just like that.
If it wasn't, you'd just have bought this 10k+USD toy instead. Dot.

FWIW, I'm running SC7 on top of a NAS whose horsepower wouldn't even compare to a Pentium machine.
The web UI is too slow to be really usable/enjoyable for browsing my 10k tracks musical collection, but I just don't care since I'm using Squeezeboxen official human-machine interfaces : IR-based SB remotes and SB Controller.
And they are all snappy enough to my taste, thanks.

Buy yourself a SB Controller (USD300), a dedicated box for running SC onto (say a USD300 EeePc), and you'll get a <1kUSD system you'll can fairly compare (technically and sonically speaking) to a 10k+USD one.

peter
2008-08-23, 00:23
Pale Blue Ego wrote:
> The OP is unusual in that the WebUI is the ONLY way he can control the
> player (SBR). He's using the absolute cheapest Squeezebox solution
> possible, the $149 Receiver without a Controller.
>

That's probably the reason he's suffering so much.
> Yeah, it might be a leeetle bit unfair to expect it to perform as
> snappily as the $10k+ Sooloos system.
>

Not really. As you already said something like Moose (which is not a
very good program in many respects, like the horrible installation
'procedure') showas that a much snappier smart client can be made. If
this is what sets SC apart from the $10.000 competition, I'd say, go for
it. Perhaps the software version of the controller (Jive) will fill this
need, I haven't bothered compiling it to check it out...

> The performance is much quicker using the Controller or the SB3 + IR
> remote. The WebUI can be slow, depending on a lot of different
> factors, but since it isn't the standard way most people control the
> player, the issue is much less relevant for them.
>

Very true.

Regards,
Peter

Mnyb
2008-08-23, 00:58
More suggestions, try a different skin classic is faster.

A client server solution !

running the "server" SC AND the "Client" Firefox (don't use IE for SC, no don't ;-) ) on the same machine slow things down.

Put a lightweight Linux distro (no graphic interface ) on any old PC, run this as a headless server (or build an silent energy efficient machine as many have done)you can do this on surprisingly old and tattered slow hardware and still get a god system as it is only doing one thing SC on a very ligthwiegth OS Linux without GUI.

Control Playback trough the WEB UI on any OTHER machine on your network, preferred browser would be Firefox, you can have both browser on your PC nothing would brake if you install that, and FF is aviable on all platforms that SC can run on so that makes it the standard solution.

peter
2008-08-23, 01:15
Mnyb wrote:
> More suggestions, try a different skin classic is faster.
>
> A client server solution !
>
> running the "server" SC AND the "Client" Firefox (don't use IE for SC,
> no don't ;-) ) on the same machine slow things down.
>
> Put a lightweight Linux distro (no graphic interface ) on any old PC,
> run this as a headless server (or build an silent energy efficient
> machine as many have done)you can do this on surprisingly old and
> tattered slow hardware and still get a god system as it is only doing
> one thing SC on a very ligthwiegth OS Linux without GUI.
>
> Control Playback trough the WEB UI on any OTHER machine on your
> network, preferred browser would be Firefox, you can have both browser
> on your PC nothing would brake if you install that, and FF is aviable
> on all platforms that SC can run on so that makes it the standard
> solution.
>

I do all that (except I have a fast, noisy and energy inefficient server
with lots of RAM), but I still feel a more snappy and impressive client
would be a strong advantage.

Regards,
Peter

Mnyb
2008-08-23, 01:26
We probably bang at inherent limitations of an web UI, there was a tread on how to tweak FF to make more connections ? or something simultaneously, but this could be perceived as abusive by some websites, i have to search that one ? and try to see what happens.

Gizmologic
2008-08-23, 01:57
Hi fellas,

I have recently aquired a Ready NAS NV+ with extra internal memory and 4 x 1TB discs. Transferred all the music to it and it is dead slow. I am running transporter.
What bugs me much more is the navigation, when i enter into a music folder, and chose an artist, and start playing the album, then the silly SC does not stay in that folder, but goes out, and forces me to choose music folder and making it load for ages. On my friends SB3 it stays in the folder, and you can continue to browse and scroll the artists in the specific folder, without the SC going out of the whole enchillada.
Is this a matter of set up, or is it apparatus dependent?

Your suggestions and help is welcome.
I have at present 2750 albums that are in FLAC mostly. These are divided in 4 folders.

Thanks for your help!

regards

Gizmo

DanielTheGreat
2008-08-23, 02:05
I'm fully behind Jooseppi, as indicated in my post some months ago:
http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=44457

My 3GHz Win2k PC is no slouch, and runs all other applications at the speed I expect. Maybe the comparison with Sooloos (whatever that is) is unfair, but what about my previous comparison with Spider Player, which is free?

In Spider, I can open the same 17,000 track (.m3u) playlist that I feed to SqueezeCenter, and ask Spider to shuffle it, and in less than 1 second the list is shuffled and I can start playing immediately. But ask SC to shuffle a new list (of this size) it hasn't previously shuffled, and it takes 1 or 2 MINUTES on my system. There are many other examples of SC's slowness, not least the the 50 minutes it takes to 'scan' my library, a task it shouldn't need to do since I create my own playlists (in a matter of seconds).

I agree that the interpreted and web-based nature of SC are probably what kill it, and would like one day to write a 'dedicated' PC application (in C) that does the few things I want, and fast (like Spider Player, with which, incidentally, I have no connection - just a satisfied user).

To this end, Mark, can you point me to the protocol for communicating with the players, which you say is open and documented.

Daniel

Nonreality
2008-08-23, 03:44
Pale Blue Ego wrote:
> The OP is unusual in that the WebUI is the ONLY way he can control the
> player (SBR). He's using the absolute cheapest Squeezebox solution
> possible, the $149 Receiver without a Controller.
>

That's probably the reason he's suffering so much.
> Yeah, it might be a leeetle bit unfair to expect it to perform as
> snappily as the $10k+ Sooloos system.
>

Not really. As you already said something like Moose (which is not a
very good program in many respects, like the horrible installation
'procedure') showas that a much snappier smart client can be made. If
this is what sets SC apart from the $10.000 competition, I'd say, go for
it. Perhaps the software version of the controller (Jive) will fill this
need, I haven't bothered compiling it to check it out...

> The performance is much quicker using the Controller or the SB3 + IR
> remote. The WebUI can be slow, depending on a lot of different
> factors, but since it isn't the standard way most people control the
> player, the issue is much less relevant for them.
>

Very true.

Regards,
Peter

Moose is not a good program and has horrible installation procedure???? Did I miss the joke? You put it in a folder of your choice and run it. You are joking right?

Phil Leigh
2008-08-23, 06:10
I have to agree - Moose is about as easy to install as it gets! - literally one click to extract that zip file - and it's done.

Pale Blue Ego
2008-08-23, 09:19
In Spider, I can open the same 17,000 track (.m3u) playlist that I feed to SqueezeCenter

Why not just use the Random Song feature? It's a LOT quicker than loading a huge playlist.


I have to agree - Moose is about as easy to install as it gets! - literally one click to extract that zip file - and it's done.

SlimRemote is easy to install and use, too.

maggior
2008-08-23, 19:13
There are many other examples of SC's slowness, not least the the 50 minutes it takes to 'scan' my library, a task it shouldn't need to do since I create my own playlists (in a matter of seconds).
Daniel

With a machine like you have, I don't know why it would run that slow. I have a P4 from 2005 (1.2 GHz? I forget exactly) with 1GB RAM running SuSE. I have 20,498 songs in my library and my last scan took 25 min.

Perhaps it is because you are using Vista and you use your machine for other tasks aside from acting as a server.

pablolie
2008-08-23, 19:35
i have run SC on a variety of machines.

the thing is - that in itself attests to the power of the concept, and i am surprised this thread doesn't highlight it more. sure, someone claims they find SC sluggish, for whatever reasons, and that some specialized $10k box is more responsive. like others said - buy it... and feel really bad when it goes through the typical obsolescence cycle of computer-based systems.

the squeezecenter approach allows you to ride all hardware waves powered by Moore's law. *that* is why i think the approach is unique and hands-down superior to others - it supports a strategic variety of target systems and operating systems, and gives you a future proof approach. come on. combine that with the audiphile merits, and you have an utter and total *bargain*. really.

sure, the interface isn't always the snappiest, for whatever reasons. i run it on good hardware, and on most occasions i find it more than responsive enough (Duet excepted, unfortunately, as far as my personal experience goes), in fact i find the performance awesome considering the commitment to universal flexibility built into the design philosophy.

this approach allows you to take advantage of performance and power efficiency improvements of each successive hardware wave - good luck accomplishing that with proprietary systems...

i am not a logitech employee, nor have i ever had a stake in slim devices. i have just been a user, and on occasion accused of being overly negative on these forums.

*i* find the system a lot of fun. it has allowed me to totally access my music collection. intuitiveness is good enough, it is at iPod level at least, and has features the iPod world hasn't. as to performance, heck, ymmv and so on, i find the SB3 and SC7.1 based system great both on vista64 and ubuntu based SC-servers. not a fan of the Duet experience yet.

peter
2008-08-24, 01:18
Phil Leigh wrote:
> I have to agree - Moose is about as easy to install as it gets! -
> literally one click to extract that zip file - and it's done.

Last time I tried (a while ago, I admit) I had to install a mysql
library first and jump thru hoops to get it to connect to the mysql
server IIRC (my SC/mysql server's on a different machine as it should
be). Shipping windows programs in zip files is of course horribly
primitive. Wrap the thing in Inno Setup (
http://www.jrsoftware.org/isinfo.php ) to save your users the trouble
and to do things the way they were intended on Windows (with a proper
uninstall option).

Regards,
Peter

Nonreality
2008-08-24, 04:17
Phil Leigh wrote:
> I have to agree - Moose is about as easy to install as it gets! -
> literally one click to extract that zip file - and it's done.

Last time I tried (a while ago, I admit) I had to install a mysql
library first and jump thru hoops to get it to connect to the mysql
server IIRC (my SC/mysql server's on a different machine as it should
be). Shipping windows programs in zip files is of course horribly
primitive. Wrap the thing in Inno Setup (
http://www.jrsoftware.org/isinfo.php ) to save your users the trouble
and to do things the way they were intended on Windows (with a proper
uninstall option).

Regards,
Peter

Totally disagree. Moose is one file without an installer. It doesn't do anyting that you don't see (adding things to your windows system directory etc). It's like the old dos days. You want to get rid of it, you just delete the folder that you put it in. Zip is primative? Simple maybe and most anyone is familiar with it. I like programs that don't add files everywhere and that you know what is what. Unless you have trouble making a folder it's much simpler. Make a folder called Moose. Unzip to that folder. Run moose.exe. Simple. It then makes it's own database file in that folder to speed things up. The newest version is very good. It's not perfect but just very good. I run it on my laptop and my library is on an external hd connected to my desktop. It has never been a problem. You probably need to try it again. It has changed quite a bit from the first one I tried.

tamanaco
2008-08-24, 05:49
Phil Leigh wrote:
> I have to agree - Moose is about as easy to install as it gets! -
> literally one click to extract that zip file - and it's done.

Last time I tried (a while ago, I admit) I had to install a mysql
library first and jump thru hoops to get it to connect to the mysql
server IIRC (my SC/mysql server's on a different machine as it should
be). Shipping windows programs in zip files is of course horribly
primitive. Wrap the thing in Inno Setup (
http://www.jrsoftware.org/isinfo.php ) to save your users the trouble
and to do things the way they were intended on Windows (with a proper
uninstall option).

Regards,
Peter

With the recent versions of Moose the only "installation" difficulty that an average user "might" find is to open the default port (9092) in the firewall of remote server. The days of having to edit the my.tt file in mysql folder are long gone. Moose does not modify or replace any the configuration files in the host computer. It is as simple as it can get. As I mentioned before, there is plenty of room for Moose enhacements, but installation is not one of them. As far as I can tell, Moose is a "one-man" show. If Moose was in the hands of a small development "team", more enhancement could be added in a shorter period of time.

peter
2008-08-24, 09:39
tamanaco wrote:
> peter;331927 Wrote:
>
>> Phil Leigh wrote:
>>
>>> I have to agree - Moose is about as easy to install as it gets! -
>>> literally one click to extract that zip file - and it's done.
>>>
>> Last time I tried (a while ago, I admit) I had to install a mysql
>> library first and jump thru hoops to get it to connect to the mysql
>> server IIRC (my SC/mysql server's on a different machine as it should
>> be). Shipping windows programs in zip files is of course horribly
>> primitive. Wrap the thing in Inno Setup (
>> http://www.jrsoftware.org/isinfo.php ) to save your users the trouble
>> and to do things the way they were intended on Windows (with a proper
>> uninstall option).
>>
>>
> With the recent versions of Moose the only "installation" difficulty
> that an average user "might" find is to open the default port (9092) in
> the firewall of remote server. The days of having to edit the my.tt
> file in mysql folder are long gone. Moose does not modify or replace
> any the configuration files in the host computer. It is as simple as it
> can get. As I mentioned before, there is plenty of room for Moose
> enhacements, but installation is not one of them. As far as I can tell,
> Moose is a "one-man" show. If Moose was in the hands of a small
> development "team", more enhancement could be added in a shorter period
> of time.
>

I'll try it again some time and see if I like it this time. Fully agree
with the one man show bit, that's why I think it would be good if there
was an 'official alternative'. (and I still think it should self-install
like any decent app, even putty - once the ultimate one-file-app - has
self installers these days and I use them).

Regards,
Peter

tamanaco
2008-08-24, 10:07
I'll try it again some time and see if I like it this time. Fully agree with the one man show bit, that's why I think it would be good if there was an 'official alternative'. (and I still think it should self-install like any decent app, even putty - once the ultimate one-file-app - has self installers these days and I use them).

Regards,
Peter

I agree that a self installer should be in order, but at this stage of the game, I rather have that "one" developer fix bugs, add more features and enhance the client UI. The installer could/should be added later in the "beta" development cycle.

Cheers

mherger
2008-08-24, 23:05
> What bugs me much more is the navigation, when i enter into a music
> folder, and chose an artist, and start playing the album, then the
> silly SC does not stay in that folder, but goes out, and forces me to
> choose music folder and making it load for ages.

Choose the "Now Playing (jump on wake)" or similar screensaver. This behaviour is due to the default screensaver, which will jump out of where you left it. Subject to changes, due to some recent discussion of the confusing nature of this topic. But you can have the same behaviour as your friend by changing that preference already.

--

Michael

Mark Lanctot
2008-08-26, 06:16
I have at present 2750 albums that are in FLAC mostly. These are divided in 4 folders.

Putting that many items into such a small number of folders is bound to slow any system down.

You'd be much better organizing it as recommended:

http://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.php/Beginners_Guide_To_Organising

using something like Mp3tag:

http://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.php/Mp3tagGuide#Naming_Files_Based_On_Tags_and_Making_ Directories_Based_On_Tags

which can reorganize your library in a minute or two.

Mark Lanctot
2008-08-26, 06:20
To this end, Mark, can you point me to the protocol for communicating with the players, which you say is open and documented.

See http://[SqueezeCenter IP]:9000/html/docs/help.html then Technical Information.

bobkoure
2008-08-26, 08:27
from Moose setup (http://www.rusticrhino.com/drlovegrove/setup.html)


Moo file - This is used by the library window. Rather than rely on Slimserver's database, Moose maintains its own small super-fast database of music file information. The database is stored in the specified '.moo' file.

This sounds like SQLite, but it might be something bespoke - and I'm wondering if this approach might benefit the server itself (in the sense of a super fast pre-built index-index).

I've also been wondering about the best way to at least give the appearance of being fast. For instance, (many) years ago I wrote editors, which had to run on slow hardware. How not to drive your users crazy? One partial answer: cache the pages that they can get to with one key-press (top, bottom, pgup, pgdn) so at least they're not waiting for the most common thing.
Yes, this uses up memory, but you let the user choose the amount of memory and then cache the most-probable pages that will fit. Building cached pages happens when idling, and then it's just a matter of adding the very simple "page cached? use that - else do make it now".
A lot of this stuff seems to be forgotten now that we're running machines that make Z80 and 8088 based systems look less than pitiful...

Michaelwagner
2008-08-26, 10:09
A lot of this stuff seems to be forgotten now that we're running machines that make Z80 and 8088 based systems look less than pitiful...
Thank god I'm not the only older person on the forum today. I remember Z80s like they were only yesterday. Somewhere in a box I think I still have one ....

In any case, back on topic, I'd like to reinforce the suggestion someone else made further back. Switch to the classic skin from the default one. On my machine, no slouch (1.8GHz, 1GB RAM, W2K, IE6), it made all the difference in the world. I was told something about IE6 and the default skin don't play well together.

DanielTheGreat
2008-09-02, 23:27
See http://[SqueezeCenter IP]:9000/html/docs/help.html then Technical Information.

Thanks Mark; found it.
Daniel

Rubble
2008-09-06, 11:40
Like post #1 in this thread, I'm also a new Squeezebox owner and find the Squeezecenter web interface frustratingly slow.

The interface via the Squeezebox itself is so fast I'm in awe to those who created it every time I hold the remote! I am amazed how well it works, even when the Squeezecenter host PC is loaded with other tasks.

I like exploring my music collection - very rarely do I set-up a playlist and let it run without the first or second song re-igniting some memory within - causing me to play a random album/song I'd forgotten about.

As an analogy, Streetmap/Mapquest etc (server-side html) are good when you know EXACTLY where you want to go. Google Maps (client-side/AJAX) tempts you to explore - you find where you want to go, but then you feel compelled to have a look around, switch to the aerial view, look at the photo of your house from 1995! It's much more fun. Honestly - who's looked where they live/work/been on holiday/... on Streetmap???

So... Is it possible to run a client-side/AJAX Squeezecenter web interface that draws you in?!?!? Or have I missed the point?

Michaelwagner
2008-09-07, 04:41
I think the problem with the client side software is the ajax/java stuff. I'm guessing some web browsers don't implement it very efficiently.

I commented on the same thing in the beta period. I'm told IE is the worst, and some other browsers handle things better.

To compare and contrast, switch for a bit to the "classic" skin. It's plain and ordinary, but fast. So it's not likely the server side that's slowing things down, meaning it's probably the client side. It's an imcomplete answer, to be sure, because the ajax/java stuff in the default skin could be asking so much that it's overloading the server, but it's a comparison point.

amcluesent
2008-09-07, 04:56
>Is it possible to run a client-side/AJAX Squeezecenter web interface that draws you in?<

Peeps are using Google Chrome for SqueezeCenter, set-up as an application from Chrome. Very, very fast javascript engine.

Usual caveats that Google will steal your mojo, log all keystrokes to the NSA etc.