Network buffer

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nikiiv Offline
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Post: #1
Hi guys,
I have a problem with network buffer(WiFi), some times it 'runs' out and I have to wait. Boxee on the other hand does not have this problem, generally I see in XBMC vq about 23-25% and in Boxee 60-65% (same movie)
On the other hand, I don't like Boxee at all, so .. any chance I can tune network buffers?

To be honest, I tried 3 different WiFi routers (one is draft-N) and three different network adapters(RaLink, Intel and AirPort express), with the same sad result.. network hiccups every now and then (generally 7-8 minutes) on HD content..

Also I am suspecting the network card, but I put two network cards in it so there is a dedicated card for streaming @home .. and it still same results.

Any advices?
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althekiller Offline
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Post: #2
Use a wire, wifi sucks in most case for streaming media. It's completely dependent on how clean your RF environment is. There's no option to tune buffers in XBMC. Besides, the example you gave would imply boxee's buffers are smaller, not larger.
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nikiiv Offline
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Post: #3
althekiller, thanks for the info, still can you elaborate on what exactly vq means on the second line exactly on OSD display (O button)
Unfortunately I cannot use wire on my bedroom Sad
May be I should try Wifi on 5Ghz because I have like 20 wireless network within my reach and probably at leas 4-5 2.4Ghz phones around in my neighbors..
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nikiiv Offline
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Post: #4
I have been testing all day same movies same time on boxee and XBMC and boxee plays those without problems in my wireless environment.
I intend to check the source why, keeping in mind that those have common source, but I am not experienced C++ developer, just J2EE, but let's see how difficult it may be.
Any guidance to right direction is highly appreciated
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Neepawa Offline
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Post: #5
I've noticed a similar problem recently. Movies freeze in XBMC and VLC, but play much better in Windows Media Player. I'm not convinced that the problem is the WiFi.
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nikiiv Offline
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Post: #6
It is WiFi related, because such problem does not exist if I use the wire... Same movie, same part of the movie
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nikiiv Offline
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Post: #7
I made a test today and frankly Boxee can manage to play 720p content from sshfs mounted share while XBMC fails in first minute.
It must be network buffer thing..
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Seb.26 Offline
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Post: #8
I've the same issue using 100Mbps wired network using SMB share ...

I cannot watch 1080p (13GB) movie without "pause - buffering" ...

I haven't this problem some days ago with my Windows setup (same hardware, just XBMC Live is new) ...

It's not possible to increase network buffers Confused ... bad news ... Sad

[Edit] can't we set the mplayer buffer with "-cache xxxx" option ?

Is it possible to add some options in mplayer command line under "XBMC Live" Confused
(This post was last modified: 2010-01-08 14:33 by Seb.26.)
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nikiiv Offline
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Post: #9
This is getting more and more interesting
Let me first explain the situation.. I have a HTPC with asus mobo with integrated nvidia 9400 I thinkg and ATV.
Also because of upcoming atv upgrade with Broadcom chip I bought Apple Airport Express to use as a wireless bridge
Some of the tests I made included using airport just to make sure that I try all combination to get strong wireless signal but results were more or less disappointing .. until..

Today I installed my atv with broadcom chip and 26352 revision and connected airport express to my atv and guess what.. I can watch 720p on my wireless without any problems what so ever.. on CodecInfo screen I can observe the same behavior on filling network buffer as I can see on Boxee's alpha..
So may be this problem have been worked out and will be fixed in upcoming release
I will install one of the nightly builds to see how it is going Smile

Best Regards to all XBMC developers and to the community of course
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isthisadagger Offline
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Post: #10
Same issue here.
My setup:

asrock ion 330ht 9.11 live install
2x linksys draft n router (1 as repeater)
xbox1 with xbmc from 2007
popcorn hour
synology 207+ nas with smb shares as mediaserver

Connecting the asrock to the same router as the nas = no problem with 1080 mkvs. Connecting the asrock to the 2nd router (using the same cable) stuttering/buffering even with sd material.
Dir listing of 160 movies takes 2-3 mins!

The funny thing is when i connect the old xbox to the 2nd router (as it has been for more than 2 years) everything plays just fine (no hd obviously). Connecting the popcorn hour to 2nd router i can stream 1080 mkvs with no problem! all using the same cable to connect the players to the router.

Some speedtesting revealed the following:

one large file:
scp nas > asrock 400-600kb/sec
sft filezilla > asrock 500-600kb/sec
ftp "get" nas > asrock 2000-2500kb/sec

400-600kb/sec is not much BUT should be enough for a simple 200mb episode. nothing makes sense.

if the asrock works while connected to the first router > it is not xbmcs fault but seems to be a wlan problem
if no other player BUT xbmc has a problem streaming over the wlan > it seems to be a xbmc problem.
if wlan speed > bitrate the buffer should stay full > no stuttering due to rebuffering.

Code:
ethtool eth0
Settings for eth0:
        Supported ports: [ MII ]
        Supported link modes:   10baseT/Half 10baseT/Full
                                100baseT/Half 100baseT/Full
                                1000baseT/Full
        Supports auto-negotiation: Yes
        Advertised link modes:  10baseT/Half 10baseT/Full
                                100baseT/Half 100baseT/Full
                                1000baseT/Full
        Advertised auto-negotiation: Yes
        Speed: 100Mb/s
        Duplex: Full
        Port: MII
        PHYAD: 3
        Transceiver: external
        Auto-negotiation: on
        Supports Wake-on: g
        Wake-on: d
        Link detected: yes


Code:
ifconfig eth0
eth0      Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 90:e6:ba:a8:4b:0f
          inet addr:192.168.1.124  Bcast:192.168.1.255  Mask:255.255.255.0
          inet6 addr: fe80::92e6:baff:fea8:4b0f/64 Scope:Link
          UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST  MTU:1500  Metric:1
          RX packets:132499 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
          TX packets:92308 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
          collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000
          RX bytes:90672260 (90.6 MB)  TX bytes:13351340 (13.3 MB)
          Interrupt:21 Base address:0x4000
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nikiiv Offline
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Post: #11
Try using svn versions from
https://launchpad.net/~team-xbmc-svn/+archive/ppa like I did yesterday and see the difference..
My stupid Asus router kind-a disconnects the net every 7 minutes (I can see how light on airport goes amber and flashes for a second and goes back to green) which means I have a faulty router, but on 720p content it does not matter because the net buffer covers the situation, only in 1080p content I experience shutter now if the glitch happens when there is high bitrate scene going on.
I am going after another router probably Linksys DDR610
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rcrh Offline
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Post: #12
althekiller Wrote:Use a wire, wifi sucks in most case for streaming media. It's completely dependent on how clean your RF environment is. There's no option to tune buffers in XBMC. Besides, the example you gave would imply boxee's buffers are smaller, not larger.

I was also wondering why there are no network cache setting in xbmc now. I'm on a wired setup and often get buffering issues.

I usually end up stopping the file, SFTP in, and copy the file to the local hard drive. Not really the best solution, but ...

I'd appreciate any insight you can share.
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pumkinut Offline
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Post: #13
rcrh Wrote:I was also wondering why there are no network cache setting in xbmc now. I'm on a wired setup and often get buffering issues.

I usually end up stopping the file, SFTP in, and copy the file to the local hard drive. Not really the best solution, but ...

I'd appreciate any insight you can share.
If you're wired into your network and are having transfer issues, I'd check the network. If it a full duplex 100Mb connection, there's no way you're overrunning the connection streaming video content.
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touser Online
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Post: #14
The developers removed all control for a network buffer some time ago for reasons i cannot fathom. I travel fairly often and for years streamed all of my media from home over an ssh tunnel with xbmc. Start playback and let it buffer for a few minutes and everything worked flawlessly. Hopefully they decide to give us some control back, this is a sorely missed feature which has ruined my favorite software.
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prae5 Offline
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Post: #15
touser Wrote:The developers removed all control for a network buffer some time ago for reasons i cannot fathom. I travel fairly often and for years streamed all of my media from home over an ssh tunnel with xbmc. Start playback and let it buffer for a few minutes and everything worked flawlessly. Hopefully they decide to give us some control back, this is a sorely missed feature which has ruined my favorite software.

The only platform that has ever supported a variable buffer is the xbox using mplayer.
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