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  1. #1

    Slower performance with squeezebox than expected

    Hello,

    We have bought the following:
    Squeezebox duet and a readynas duo (with 2x1TB in raid 1 mode).

    Installing the squeezebox gave a bit of trouble but after learning the product we managed to install it. Also installed the latests squeezecenter 7.3.3 on the readynas Duo.

    Now the bad that thing:
    The performance is not good. We have scanned our music directory (alot of songs mostly in mp3 some flac).
    When playing music using the controller in music folder mode it takes about 10-20 seconds to see the music folder (we have one big directory containing all artists).

    It was even worse before I've started troubleshooting.
    Changed the priority in linux (on the NAS) and the scanner is now done in 4 hours instead of 16 hours. Loading up the music folder goes a bit faster since we gave the mysqld process more priority.

    What else is there to speed things up?
    Thinking of:
    1. creating folders A to Z so the artists are no longer in one folder.
    = Would this help alot or not?
    2. add memory to readynas duo to for example 1GB.
    = Some people say this doesn't help because the cpu is botteneck here.
    3. change settings in the my.sql file but I'm not a mysql user.
    = any thoughts on that?
    4. wait for the squeezecenter 8 to run sqlite.
    = any tests on performance yet?
    5. buy another NAS
    = any recommandations?

    Any help is very much appreciated and if you have questions about installing and stuff I can help (only got the duet for 3 days so no hard questions yet...)
    Last edited by l.vervaecke@telenet.be; 2009-08-06 at 12:02.

  2. #2
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    First thing that comes to my mind, since you have one big directory with subdirectories for all artists, why do you use 'Browse Music Folder' at all? Browse through your music with 'Library - Artist' instead, that's what the scan at the beginning is for.

    signorRossi.

  3. #3
    Senior Member radish's Avatar
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    The performance of Browse Music Folder will always be related to the number of items in the folder, so yes, reducing that will help. However, as signor_rossi mentioned, you're missing out if you're only using BMF. The whole point of the scan is to populate the db so you can browse/search it instead of the filesystem. That should be _much_ faster than BMF, particularly with large directories.

    As for scan time, yes it's slow on an (average) NAS. There's no magic bullet to improve that, but for tips/suggestions ask in the 3rd Party Hardware forum. When sqlite and the new scanner are in place things will be better (people were seeing maybe 30% improvement during testing) but that could be a way off. What I (and many others) do is just not use a NAS. A small PC is cheaper & (much) faster than a dedicated NAS, and doesn't have to use much more power. It takes my $100 server <20 mins to scan 20k tracks.

  4. #4
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    VIA boards make excellent and cheap servers. Can't really beat a C7 on price and power usage. Yes its not as low power as a NAS but at last it has enough horse power to do other things.

    Mine has 4x250GB in raid5 (will update to 4x1TB soon), samba, appletalk, printing, itunes serving, ... and of course squeezecenter. NAS boxes, IMO, are overrated. 15min for 10k tracks on my box.

    Lawrence

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by l.vervaecke@telenet.be View Post

    What else is there to speed things up?
    Thinking of:
    1. creating folders A to Z so the artists are no longer in one folder.
    = Would this help alot or not?
    2. add memory to readynas duo to for example 1GB.
    = Some people say this doesn't help because the cpu is botteneck here.
    3. change settings in the my.sql file but I'm not a mysql user.
    = any thoughts on that?
    4. wait for the squeezecenter 8 to run sqlite.
    = any tests on performance yet?
    5. buy another NAS
    = any recommandations?

    Any help is very much appreciated and if you have questions about installing and stuff I can help (only got the duet for 3 days so no hard questions yet...)
    Of that list #1 is definitely worth trying, but......

    What you're coming up against is that the ReadyNAS Duo is hopelessly underpowered for running Squeezecenter at a performance level expected by most people.

    Bottom line, the CPU in that NAS is too slow. End of story. You can tweak and tune, but in the end you are polishing a turd.

    I've run SC on a slow NAS in the past and it's no fun. My rule of thumb is that is if it takes your server/NAS more than 1hr to do a full scan of your music library, your server/NAS is not up to the job of running SC and delivering adequate performance for your library. This is not because the scan itself is a major issue, it's because the scan is a great indicator as to the size of your library vs. the CPU speed of your server.

    I run a QNAP TS-239 which is really the minimim I'd recommend once you have more than a few thousand tracks. Once over 30k or so even a single core Atom is possibly too slow and a dual core something should be considered.
    Last edited by shake-the-disease; 2009-08-04 at 15:21.
    Players: Boom, SB3. iPod Touch w/ iPeng 1.2
    Server: QNAP TS-239 w/ SSOTS 3.18, SS 7.3.3, MusicIP 1.8, 8k+ tracks
    (formally running SS 6.3.1 on a QNAP TS-101 streaming to a SB1)

    Last.FM

  6. #6
    Senior Member radish's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shake-the-disease View Post
    I run a QNAP TS-239 which is really the minimim I'd recommend once you have more than a few thousand tracks. Once over 30k or so even a single core Atom is possibly too slow and a dual core something should be considered.
    I disagree with that last bit - I can't see why you need dual core for SC in any circumstance, in fact seeing as most of SC is single threaded (apart from things like transcoding) a faster-clocked single core would be better. As it is, I run on the slowest CPU AMD make and it's just fine for everything I throw at it.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by shake-the-disease View Post
    I run a QNAP TS-239 which is really the minimim I'd recommend once you have more than a few thousand tracks. Once over 30k or so even a single core Atom is possibly too slow and a dual core something should be considered.
    I also tried running SC on an old Buffalo NAS and it was impossibly slow.

    However, I now run it on a QNAP TS-219P which only has 512MB RAM compared to 1.5GB of TS-239, and the speed is actually faster than running SC off my dual core Thinkpad laptop.

    The rescan speed when running through the laptop was much slower, probably due to the fact that the drive is mapped through the network.

    The web and remote control response is also slower on the laptop, partly because the laptop is not dedicated and runs many other processes. And mostly because of the ailment of Windoze and especially Windoze Vista.

    So for me, the QNAP TS-219P is also acceptable.

    My experience with QNAP is extremely positive, built quality is superb, software is excellent, and the fan is whisper quiet.

    Comparatively my Thecus N299 is built with cheap plastic and the fan sounds like a old Chevette disel with a broken tailpipe. Thecus N299 also had zero firmware update since its introduction, had no spin down for hard disks, their so called support never answered my repeated email for help, not even once.

    Whatever you do, think twice before buying Thecus.
    Main System:
    Source: Mac-Mini/Pure Music/dCS Debussy
    Amplification: Vitus Audio SS-010
    Speakers: Living Voice OBX-R2
    Bedroom System: Airport Express + Meridian AD88

    Missing my Transporter

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by radish View Post
    I disagree with that last bit - I can't see why you need dual core for SC in any circumstance, in fact seeing as most of SC is single threaded (apart from things like transcoding) a faster-clocked single core would be better. As it is, I run on the slowest CPU AMD make and it's just fine for everything I throw at it.
    The idea of a dual core being beneficial is so that 1 core is used for the OS + any other started tasks, and SC can have another core all to itself. I take your point on higher clock speed.
    Players: Boom, SB3. iPod Touch w/ iPeng 1.2
    Server: QNAP TS-239 w/ SSOTS 3.18, SS 7.3.3, MusicIP 1.8, 8k+ tracks
    (formally running SS 6.3.1 on a QNAP TS-101 streaming to a SB1)

    Last.FM

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by signor_rossi View Post
    First thing that comes to my mind, since you have one big directory with subdirectories for all artists, why do you use 'Browse Music Folder' at all? Browse through your music with 'Library - Artist' instead, that's what the scan at the beginning is for.
    Indeed browsing with Library - Artist goes faster but is not really fast yet but I can almost live with it. Only problem is that not all the tags are filled in correctly.

    The scanning time is much faster once you set linux to only do that (don't know why it is default on NICE 20 instead of -20)

  10. #10
    So the things for me to do are clean up the music folder so all the tags are correct and then rescan.

    or look for a small pc (but I hate wasting energy) that has more processing power. A NAS with a fast CPU will to costly I think.
    People here that have a small pc connected to a NAS and that can say that folder browsing goes fast?

    Ooh and I've enable jumbo frames on the NAS. Does the squeezebox handle this? Can't seem to find the answer to that question.


    But after all not so fun to buy a system (what is advertised as a solid solution for large music collections) that doesn't work as expected.
    Last edited by l.vervaecke@telenet.be; 2009-08-05 at 01:58.

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