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lemmy999
2009-06-16, 13:21
I have had a V3 Squeezebox for 2.5 years and a Boom for 0.5 year. Both are hooked up wireless and my network is using WPA and I originally had a US Robotics router and now a Linksys WRT54 running dd-wrt firmware. The computer is wired to the router. I have always had problems with the music playing fine and then just stopping...sometimes in the middle of the song, sometimes at the end. I can navigate around the menus just fine. The only way to get it to play again is to advance to the next song or go back to the beginning of the song (<< or >> buttons) If I fast forward or rewind a small amount it will start playing again as well. But if I just hit the pause/play button it won't start playing. Also, the display doesn't say "paused" or anything like that. It is frozen. The time bar will just stop where it is. The signal strength is near 60% and on the squeezebox it was in the same room as the router and had >90% signal strength and I still had the problem. I even ran an unsecured network for a while and it still did it. Usually it isn't that bad but today the Boom did it 3 times on 3 songs in a row. It has done this from Slimserver 6.3 up to more recent SqueezeCenter builds. Also I have run network tests on the players and they are 100% at 3000 and 97% at 4000 and 90% at 5000. Is there anything I can do to fix this problem? Thanks.

lemmy999
2009-06-18, 08:19
I know I can't be the only person having this problem, I only know one other person with a Squeezebox and he has this problem (but not as much as I do).

jrichardson
2009-06-18, 08:48
How about some details on your server specs?

What equipment is SqueezeCenter (server) running on
What version of SC are you currently running
What OS version
Do you have any other equipment in the house with connection issues
Does the same thing happen if your SB3 or Boom are Wired to your router
Is the source of your music on the same physical HDD as your server or a remote location

lemmy999
2009-06-18, 10:09
I am running SqueezeCenter 7.3.1 on an XP SP2 computer with a Intel Core 2 Duo 6200 @ 1.86GHz and 2GB RAM. I am running SqueezeCenter 7.3.1 but I have had this problem from 6.3 until now and I have had several different version of SqueezeCenter/SlimServer and they all had this problem. Nothing else (wired or wireless) has any connection problems. I can also stream music over the internet to SoftSqueeze without problems. The music is on a separate physical HDD than where the SqueezeCenter software is locate. I have not tried with them wired to the router. The SqueezeBox is now wired to a a wireless bridged router (so the wireless communication is handled by the two Linksys routers and not the SqueezeBox) and I haven't had any problems yet, but it is too early to tell. The problem comes and goes. The Boom is not nearly as bad as the SqueezeBox was, but one day it paused 3 times on 3 songs in a row. Once I took encryption off of the network and I thought it had fixed the problem, but then the SqueezeBox did it again.

My friend had his SlimServer/SqueezeCenter running on an older Linux machine and he never had this problem. However he recently updated to squeezeCenter 7.3.2 and updated to a newer build of Linux and he is now having these problems too.

toby10
2009-06-18, 10:53
It sure sounds like an intermittent WiFi issue. I run SC7.3.3 on WinXP to a Boom via WiFi and it never stops music playback.

A friend was having similar issues with an AirportExpress device so I emailed him this (very basic) WiFi troubleshooting guide. He found a number of issues and has been streaming flawlessly ever since.

If possible, try the player wired temporarily to see if the issue goes away.
Or, try the player via WiFi but very near (same room, not too close to) the WiFi router.
If either resolves the problem then your issue is likely WiFi related.

If so, try taking a laptop to the very spot where the player is located, then run your laptopís WiFi program showing ďall available networksĒ that are close to your location.
From this info pay particular attention to:

Network Name: What is your networkís name? Same as any other network name listed?
If YES, change your network name to something UNIQUE so your player canít inadvertently connect to the incorrect network. If you and your neighbor both use LINKSYS as your network name then your player may try connecting to your neighbors WiFi.

Network Channel #: What Ch # is your WiFi network? What are the Ch #ís near you showing the strongest signals? If your network is using the same Ch # as a close by network you may be getting interference. Change your routers WiFi Ch #. Best to choose either Ch 1 or Ch 6 or Ch 11 (or Ch 13 if in EU), preferably choosing one of these Chís that are not showing up at all or are the weakest signals showing.

Network Spectrum: Is your network showing it is A? B? G? N? All? Try changing your router to just G.

Signal Strength: What is your players WiFi signal strength reporting (before and after the above router changes)? A strong signal is great, but even then you might be getting interference from near by networks or other RF/radio devices (like microwaves).
You can find the player signal strength from the players menuís or by going to SC > Settings > Information.

tcutting
2009-06-18, 11:10
Some of your descriptions of your setup are a little hard to understand.
When you say: "The music is on a separate physical HDD than where the SqueezeCenter software is locate" is this on a NAS, or just a separate hard disk directly connected to the computer running Squeezecenter? If on a NAS, is this connected to your network wireless? You also say: "The SqueezeBox is now wired to a a wireless bridged router (so the wireless communication is handled by the two Linksys routers and not the SqueezeBox)" - is the Squeezebox connected to the router by wires? Does this router somehow connect to the rest of your network wireless?
One thing I'm trying to understand is how many wireless "hops" your audio files need to go through to get to your Squeezebox player. Can you be more specific on your setup - what your server is running on, where your files are located, how everything is connected together on your network. As the previous poster mentions, there may be some issues with your wireless network which may be fixable... there may be a better way for you to string everything together to make the setup more robust. I like to avoid wireless where possible because it's susceptible to interference and signal strength issues, but it's often not possible to get rid of wireless altogether.

lemmy999
2009-06-18, 17:01
Some of your descriptions of your setup are a little hard to understand.
When you say: "The music is on a separate physical HDD than where the SqueezeCenter software is locate" is this on a NAS, or just a separate hard disk directly connected to the computer running Squeezecenter? If on a NAS, is this connected to your network wireless? You also say: "The SqueezeBox is now wired to a a wireless bridged router (so the wireless communication is handled by the two Linksys routers and not the SqueezeBox)" - is the Squeezebox connected to the router by wires? Does this router somehow connect to the rest of your network wireless?
One thing I'm trying to understand is how many wireless "hops" your audio files need to go through to get to your Squeezebox player. Can you be more specific on your setup - what your server is running on, where your files are located, how everything is connected together on your network. As the previous poster mentions, there may be some issues with your wireless network which may be fixable... there may be a better way for you to string everything together to make the setup more robust. I like to avoid wireless where possible because it's susceptible to interference and signal strength issues, but it's often not possible to get rid of wireless altogether.

"The music is on a separate physical HDD than where the SqueezeCenter software is located"

This means that inside of 1 single computer case (that contains one CPU and multiple HDD) there is one HDD that has all .flac and .mp3 music on it. There is another HDD (C:\, the one the computer boots to and has Windows XP SP2) that has SqueezeCenter on it. No NAS at all. The C: drive is a completely different HDD than the one with the music, this is not just differnt partitions.

"The SqueezeBox is now wired to a a wireless bridged router (so the wireless communication is handled by the two Linksys routers and not the SqueezeBox)"

This means that I have one router (A) and a second router (B). The second router is bridged to the first router (wirelessly). So anything physically plugged in to the LAN ports on B (with an ethernet cable) is exactly like being plugged in to the LAN ports on router A. But A and B are connected wirelessly. I used to let the SqueezeBox connect to router A via WIFI, but I have found these SqueezeBox devices don't do a great job of WIFI. Wher it was located I was getting only 15% signal. However the router B is getting 45% signal. The SqueezeBox used to barly be able to play FLAC files and now they play fine. The computer with SqueezeCenter on it is plugged in to router A with an ethernet cable. So I have a total of 1 wireless connection (from router A to bridged router B). I have had this setup only 1 month. For 1 month before that the SqueezeBox was connected to A (via WIFI), but for 2 years before that, it was still connected to A via WIFI, but it was in the same room 4 feet from the router. Also, I was using a completely different router then (US Robotics). So for 2 years I had problems with it pausing...in the same room with the US Robotics router that was wired to the SqueezCenter computer. I then moved it far away and it was almost unplayable (this was just a signal level problem, not the pausing problem I am discussing). Then since I have switched to router A a linksys (with dd-wrt) and router B (linksys with dd-wrt) I have had no problems with the Squeezebox, But I haven't listened enough to prove it is fixed. It doesn't do it every time I use it. Other devices plugged in to router B work flawlessly.

The Boom is connected via WIFI to router A (which earlier was US Robotics and is now Linksys with dd-wrt). It is a moderate distance from the router A and has 40%-60% signal. It has had much fewer pausing problems than the squeezebox, but the other day it started doing it bad. I checked the signal strength and it was at 62%.

My network name is not the same name as any other near me, but I am on channel 11. I know the nearest WIFI network to me is on channel 6, I am not sure of any others. I only pick up two others and not sure of the channel.

dsdreamer
2009-06-18, 20:10
For 802.11g, there are only effectively 3 WiFi channels available in the US: 1, 6 and 11. These channels are also shared with BlueTooth(tm), certain cordless phones and microwave oven leakage. Most of these interference sources can move around and are sometimes in use and sometimes not. In addition to this you could have a co-channel WiFi interference that is minimal for most of the day, but occasionally is used for downloading the latest game from Steam or the like.

Given all the above you may wonder how we ever expect to be able stream music for hours on end without interruption, and the fact is that in most urban areas it is becoming increasingly difficult to do so. People are buying more and more wireless devices and expecting them all to "just work".

You might want to try to do your own site survey (DD-WRT supports it), or if you want to keep you network up for the experiment try to download Netstumbler and take a look at what's happening. One technique is to keep Netstumber handy on a laptop or netbook and, as soon as you hear that your SB3 has paused, rush over and have a look at the Netstumbler screen. Learn what SNR values and RSSI values to expect for your own system when working properly (recognised by the network name aka SSID) and see if you get lower SNR values when the SB3 falters in its playback. If so, it is definitely sporadic interference.

Also, you can use the site survey to see if another choice of WiFi channel cleaner in the sense that it is giving you better SNR values.

One thing you could try is pair of Apple airport express units configured as a wireless bridge at 5GHz to get away to where the air is cleaner. 2.4GHz is just getting too crowded in manny places, and sounds like it is where you live too.

--dsdreamer

lemmy999
2009-06-19, 16:47
I had the Boom and the Squeezebox playing all day today. The Boom hasn't frozen yet but the Squeezebox just did. It froze at with 9 seconds remaining in the song. When I go to the web interface on the computer running SqueezeCenter, the timeline is at -0:09 and then counts down a few seconds (it is always different, sometimes just to 0:08 remaining and sometimes down to 0:00) and then it jumps back to 0:09 remaining. It just keeps repeating this over and over. So it looks like the server is trying to send data, but the SqueezeBox just won't receiver it.

The bridged router is is plugged in to is working fine. The main router reports 33% signal from the bridged router and the bridged router reports 35% from the main router.

After a very long time of it repeating, I clicked in the timeline in the web interface (at about 0:14 remaining) and it counted down to 0:00 and went to the next song and kept playing like it is supposed to.

I can believe that interference could cause this, but shouldn't the design be robust enough to sync back up and keep playing after a while? I have experienced WiFi problems at other locations with my laptop, and the connection doesn't just permanently freeze forever.

CatBus
2009-06-19, 16:52
7.3.3 fixed a few corner cases where playback would very rarely stop for me on long web streams. Certainly can't hurt to update to the most recent version and find out if it helps you.

toby10
2009-06-20, 02:56
............
The bridged router is is plugged in to is working fine. The main router reports 33% signal from the bridged router and the bridged router reports 35% from the main router.......

I've never messed with bridging but 33% and 35% sure doesn't sound very robust to me. If my SB players had only 35% signal to my one router I'd certainly expect drop outs and other issues.

To summarize your network (is this correct?):
Boom > *WiFi* 62% signal > router A > *wired* > PC
SB3 > *wired* > router B > *WiFi* 35% signal > router A > *wired* > PC

In essence this would be the same as your SB3 being connected via WiFi at only 35% signal strength, and I'd certainly anticipate issues at such a low WiFi signal strength.

Are the Boom and SB3 synced?

lemmy999
2009-06-20, 07:36
Yes, you have everything correct as far as connectivity. And no they are not synced, actually I have them playing two different play lists.

In general I agree with what you are saying (about signal strength). However that exact same SB3 had this problem for 2 years with 95% signal strength in the same room with router A. Actually, it was worse then. When I moved it to the new location, the SB3 only had 20% signal. It could only play mp3 files, when I tried to play .flac files it would keep rebuffering and pausing (different problem than what I the pausing I am talking about). This was due to poor signal levels and it would always begin playing again after pausing and rebuffering. However I hooked it up to the bridge configuration I have now and I placed the router in a position where it got really bad signal (16%) and the SB3 could play flac files all day long and not have to rebuffer. It just seems like the wifi part of the SqueezeBoxes isn't that great. The SB3 performs better now plugged in to the bridged router with 35% signal than it ever did when it was handling its own wifi and was in the same room with the router with great signal. On the network test it is 100% at 4000 and 97% at 5000. Today I am going to wire it to the same router that is connected to the server PC and see how that does.

BTW, after I made that post the Boom froze in the exact same way a few hours later.

lemmy999
2009-06-22, 10:29
I played both players (Boom and SB3) all day. On the first day each froze one time. On the second day the same thing happened. On day three I wired the SB3 to the router and got no freezing (the Boom was still wireless and it didn't freeze either). On the fourth day no pauses on the wired SB3. So it is definitely caused by being wireless. I know wireless isn't perfect and I don't care if it cuts out from time to time. I just don't understand why it can't recover from the error...ever. It looks like the server is still trying to send data but the SB3 isn't sending the acknowledge or its part of the handshake back to the server.

toby10
2009-06-22, 11:50
I played both players (Boom and SB3) all day. On the first day each froze one time. On the second day the same thing happened. On day three I wired the SB3 to the router and got no freezing (the Boom was still wireless and it didn't freeze either). On the fourth day no pauses on the wired SB3. So it is definitely caused by being wireless. I know wireless isn't perfect and I don't care if it cuts out from time to time. I just don't understand why it can't recover from the error...ever. It looks like the server is still trying to send data but the SB3 isn't sending the acknowledge or its part of the handshake back to the server.

Yeah, WiFi certainly seems the culprit here, and not a big shocker with only a 35% signal. :(
I can tell you I can stream FLAC without issue, but that's with a 78% signal strength. I've even seen posts in here of people streaming FLAC using a double-hop WiFi setup (player and PC both using WiFi), but again I'm sure their signal strength is quite good.

To be honest, I'm quite surprised you have so few interruptions streaming FLAC with only a 35% signal. Maybe one or two song cut outs per day is about as good as it can get with your current setup.

Maybe getting a WiFi repeater? Using DD-WRT or Tomato FW to boost your signal? Upgrading WiFi antennas? Buying or making antenna directional boosters?
Powerline Adapters (this would be my choice in your situation)?

lemmy999
2009-06-22, 21:18
I don't think signal quality is even an issue. It is the inability of the SB to recover from a wifi problem. I don't mind cut outs at all. I actually expect it. And as I have posted already in this thread, I had this problem when I had 95% signal quality in the same room. The Boom has 65% signal quality and has the same problem. It makes no difference if it is flac or mp3 and signal quality makes no difference. When I had 15-20% signal quality and the SB3 was handling the wifi, I had all kinds of cutouts (as expected) and rebuffering, but it always would recover and keep playing. This is different, it is a permanent stop that lasts for ever and the server does not seem to be what is locked up (this has also happened with 2 different routers and every build of server software from about 6.53 to the current versions.

toby10
2009-06-23, 04:01
I don't think signal quality is even an issue. It is the inability of the SB to recover from a wifi problem. I don't mind cut outs at all. I actually expect it. And as I have posted already in this thread, I had this problem when I had 95% signal quality in the same room. The Boom has 65% signal quality and has the same problem. It makes no difference if it is flac or mp3 and signal quality makes no difference. When I had 15-20% signal quality and the SB3 was handling the wifi, I had all kinds of cutouts (as expected) and rebuffering, but it always would recover and keep playing. This is different, it is a permanent stop that lasts for ever and the server does not seem to be what is locked up (this has also happened with 2 different routers and every build of server software from about 6.53 to the current versions.

At this point all I can suggest is to call tech support. *shrug*

If you cannot successfully stream from a wired PC to a either of two SB players (including one at 95% WiFi signal) then something is certainly wacked. I assure you many like myself do so without issue, with the same setup and far less than 95% signal and from SC 6.5 forward, so there must be a solution in your setup somewhere. :(

If it were just the SB3 I'd think the possibility of a loose WiFi card, but an SB3 and a Boom exhibiting the same symptoms suggests this is highly unlikely your fix. :(

Let us know what support suggests and it's results. :)

y360
2009-06-23, 08:27
check the logs

lemmy999
2009-06-25, 08:31
I have contacted tech support and they told me to change some of the log settings to debut. I was fortunate enough to catch a pause with a flac file. It just seemed to begin to fill up the buffer and then continuous do this for 30 minutes (untill I forced it to go to the next track):

[09-06-24 09:08:17.0037] Slim::Player::StreamingController::_eventAction (269) 00:04:20:06:5c:45: StatusHeartbeat in WAITING_TO_SYNC-STREAMING -> Slim::Player::StreamingController::_StartIfReady

He now has me setting it to convert flacs to mp3 so that only mp3 files are being sent to the player. It has always frozen on both types of files, so I don't know how much that will help.