How to get info on buffering performance


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As I understand it, Sonos buffers music streams as a protection against variations in network throughput. Is there somewhere in the Sonos performance statistics that would give me insight into how the buffer is performing? For example, if I am buffering Pandora, I suspect there is a lot more of the buffered stream (192k) than if I am buffering Deezer or Tidal (1440k), correct? Where does it show how much is being buffered?

I ask because the periodic interruptions in my Deezer stream seem to be related to the fact that the buffer is not being maintained, so the connection drops.

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You'd need to look at the recent CHSNK Fill Level percentages in http://x.x.x.x:1400/status/perf. It represents the most recent 10 minutes of active play in 30 second chunks, the latest results at the top.

However all it's going to show you is that the buffer is starving from time to time. It won't help determine why.
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You'd need to look at the recent CHSNK Fill Level percentages in http://x.x.x.x:1400/status/perf. It represents the most recent 10 minutes of active play in 30 second chunks, the latest results at the top.

However all it's going to show you is that the buffer is starving from time to time. It won't help determine why.


Thank you for your response. While I understand that the performance stats don't help us understand root cause of issues, perhaps you can help me understand what I am looking at here:

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/78476446/Sonos%20Forum%20Posts/Sonos%20Buffer.JPG

The screen shot was taken within 30 seconds of a Deezer network dropout.
perhaps you can help me understand what I am looking at here
That's the CHSRC info block, not CHSNK. (I've never figured out quite how to interpret CHSRC.)
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That's the CHSRC info block, not CHSNK. (I've never figured out quite how to interpret CHSRC.)

Sorry about that. Here is a recent copy of the CHSNK. It was taken immediately after I received a "Network connection speed insufficient to maintain playback buffer" for a music stream coming from my local NAS. The NAS is directly connected to the router. Strange that I would get that error for a file on my own network.

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/78476446/Sonos%20Forum%20Posts/Sonos%20Buffer%207-27.JPG

Can you help interpret what the log information is showing us? It looks like something unusual happened on the third and fourth lines down from the top.

BTW, the Phyerr logs during the exact same period show nothing unusual. The Anacapa.trace log shows several errors while Sonos is trying to read files from the NAS.

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/78476446/Sonos%20Forum%20Posts/Sonos%20Anacapa.trace%207-27.txt
All that shows is that the buffer exhausted.

You've plainly got some kind of intermittent local network problem. If it's not wireless related or a case of IP duplication then I'd start to suspect a bad cable or RJ45 connection.
AustinJerry,

Here is a time saving suggestion.

For copy and paste text from the diagnostics, start with a pair of [noparse]"
code:
"[/noparse] tags on separate lines, then copy and paste text from the diagnostics between these tags. This does not work well for the Network Matrix, but it is great for other areas.

Here is an example of the results:

code:

contents of /proc/ath_rincon/phyerr
10 100 1000 5000 10000 10001+
721773 0 39 82 0 0 0
721834 0 30 91 0 0 0
721894 0 43 78 0 0 0
721955 0 44 77 0 0 0
722015 0 86 35 0 0 0
722076 0 85 36 0 0 0
722136 0 89 32 0 0 0
722197 0 86 35 0 0 0
722257 0 18 88 10 4 1
722318 0 43 69 9 0 0
722378 0 63 57 1 0 0
722439 0 63 58 0 0 0
722499 0 64 57 0 0 0
722560 0 28 93 0 0 0
722620 0 54 67 0 0 0
722681 0 56 65 0 0 0
722741 0 56 65 0 0 0
722802 0 59 62 0 0 0
722862 0 85 36 0 0 0
722923 0 17 9 0 0 0


I picked this view since I know that you occasionally have some interference issues. This is from my wireless PLAYBAR. I deliberately setup my system in a contorted manor in an effort to push the boundaries. The burst of noise is caused by the use of an iPhone while checking email. I've been using this configuration for a couple of years and have yet to observe any issues caused by these bursts.
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I am getting to the end of options for improving the stability of my Deezer music streaming service.

Based on the earlier recommendation, I replaced the network cable (to the Boost) with a brand new one. I also moved the ZP90 completely out of my equipment rack, as shown here:

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/78476446/Sonos%20Forum%20Posts/Sonos%20ZP90%20Moved%207-28.JPG

If things are not stable now, I will conclude that the issue is external from my local network and system.
The fact that you're having these problems when playing from your NAS indicates that it's not Deezer, but a local issue of some kind. Music from a NAS should play flawlessly.

Can you temporarily move the NAS, wiring it to a port on the ZP90? If even that gives trouble then, apart from a possible cable fault, the finger points at the NAS or the ZP.

Assuming it works, change one thing at a time and test at each stage. Begin by moving the NAS connection from the ZP to the BOOST.
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I appreciate the suggestions. The NAS issue I reported on earlier happens rarely. The Deezer issue happens almost every listening session. At this time, I don't want to move the NAS because I am having a hard time understanding how it being hard-wired to the router isn't the best option (for other non-Sonos uses as well), and it is unrelated to the Deezer issue.
AustinJerry,

When in diagnostic mode if one assumes that the problem cannot be caused by [...] or must be caused by [...], one is likely to be blindsided.

Failing routers can be very hard to diagnose. I've been there a number of times. Nothing seems to make sense, there are no clear causes and effects. As a last resort I replaced the router, mostly on a whim, without clear justification, and the vague problems went away.
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AustinJerry,

When in diagnostic mode if one assumes that the problem cannot be caused by [...] or must be caused by [...], one is likely to be blindsided.

Failing routers can be very hard to diagnose. I've been there a number of times. Nothing seems to make sense, there are no clear causes and effects. As a last resort I replaced the router, mostly on a whim, without clear justification, and the vague problems went away.


Well, that is what I did as well, and my current router is only several months old, a Linksys WRT1900AC, one of the best-rated routers on the market. This has been an exercise in Whack-A-Mole since the beginning. I have replaced equipment and cables, changed configurations, moved equipment to provide better isolation, etc. At some point, one arrives at the end of the road with respect to changes that are under one's control. I feel I have arrived at that point.

Here is my current theory. Comments welcome.

Music streaming is subject to the uncertainties of the internet. These are a lot of connections between the music service's computers and my home network, and performance glitches abound. Streaming music is especially vulnerable to network glitches so, in order to prevent such glitches from interrupting the music stream, Sonos has configured their products with buffers. These buffers are configured so that a certain amount of the music stream is cached, which allows the Sonos device to provide a constant stream in the event of a glitch.

However, the streaming business has changed. We now have FLAC files being streamed at 1440Kbs instead of the older services at 192Kbs-320Kbs. This requires a larger buffer to prevent a glitch from interrupting the stream. The current Sonos buffer is no longer large enough, so unless something changes, we are doomed to periodic dropped connections like I am experiencing.

Can Sonos fix this problem? I don't know whether the buffer size is configurable in software, or whether there is a hardware limitation. I do know that my ZP90's are getting a bit long in the tooth, and it would be interesting to know if Sonos has new products to replace the ZP90 under development. How about a product that could support hi-Res music streaming over the local network? Sonos, anybody listening?
Music streaming is subject to the uncertainties of the internet.
Certainly, but your NAS is not. And Sonos should play music from it flawlessly for hour after hour after hour unless there's some kind of local issue. As a test I might, for example, leave FLAC playing for 12 hours then come back and check the ZP anacapa log later.

We now have FLAC files being streamed at 1440Kbs instead of the older services at 192Kbs-320Kbs.

You're correct that Internet sources have a much larger minefield to negotiate than data from a NAS. However I don't believe Sonos is at fault in this regard. I stream FLAC from Deezer Elite all the time, and when I do get a problem it's a major one such as a complete server outage. Normal streams don't routinely suffer from buffer exhaustion.

There are so many possible areas where something could go wrong that when in troubleshooting mode I try and start with the simplest configuation possible. So long as that works I can add steps/links one at a time until something breaks.

This is why I suggested reducing your system complexity to the NAS hard-wired to the ZP90 as a starting point. If you're not prepared to temporarily unhitch it from the router location then at least wire it to the BOOST instead as an experiment.
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That's the CHSRC info block, not CHSNK. (I've never figured out quite how to interpret CHSRC.)

Would you be so kind as to walk me through interpreting what the various column in the CHSNK report signify? What does it look like when the buffer can't keep up with the stream?

Thanks!
Would you be so kind as to walk me through interpreting what the various column in the CHSNK report signify?
They're buffer fill percentages. "=0" and "=100" are empty and full respectively. "^X" is the bin for >X and less-than-or-equal-to the next column. I'm unsure what the actual counts signify.

What does it look like when the buffer can't keep up with the stream?

The numbers troop leftwards, ending up in the "=0" column.
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I don't understand the new forum format. What happened to the rest of this discussion? There used to be at least two pages, and I only see one page.
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It has not all pulled over yet (work in progress) - you would think though a thread would pull over intact.
Userlevel 7
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In this case it looks like the missing posts were made after the final data retrieval so they aren't available to be pulled over. I'm sorry for the inconvenience, but I'd be happy to assist if you need a hand with anything.
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Ok, brief review of where we were before a bunch of posts were lost.

- I have been experiencing frequent lost connections when streaming from Deezer.
- I have followed advice to isolate my ZP90 controllers from other equipment, replace network cables, replace the router, etc.
- Current Phyerr logs are pristine, and the network matrix looks good.
- About a week ago, I had a single occurrence of a stream coming from my local NAS being interrupted by an "insufficient network bandwidth" error, which has not happened again, even though I stream music from the NAS frequently.
- Buzz seems to think that this error from the NAS is an indication that I still have a problem on my local network, and recommended that I launch a stream from the NAS, let it run uninterrupted for 24 hours, and see if the error occurred again.
- I followed this recommendation, and the stream continued for 24 hours without a single error. So much for that theory.
- So now I am sitting here, having followed all the advice that has been given, and the Deezer dropped connections continue to occur. I would like to understand the root cause and get it fixed.
- Next recommendations?
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I guess no one has any new ideas?
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Hey AustinJerry,

I noticed you have a ticket for this with our support team that hasn't been resolved yet. I'm going to get that ticket in the hands of a senior technician. They'll be emailing you after the weekend and some review to setup an appointment for some troubleshooting. The ticket number is 150715-002234 for your records.

From the description and what I've read, it sounds like there's some intermittent trouble connecting to Deezer from your system. This could be due to some server latency, or a number of other reasons. Naturally, this is largely speculation, but the senior technician will be happy to assist and help see what's going on.

Thanks for your help everyone, some really great troubleshooting already done here!
just increase the bloody buffer, 5 sec. will solve all the problems
just increase the bloody buffer, 5 sec. will solve all the problems

The "problem" you are addressing is from 2 years ago. With no posts since the Sonos tech's suggestion, I'm sure it has been solved by now.
just increase the bloody buffer, 5 sec. will solve all the problems

Could you please explain how to increase the buffer?
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Kliment, You can't increase it, Sonos has to and for them to see it as worth doing folks need to submit diagnostics and provide Sonos with a trouble report of the issue and diagnostic number. If enough folks are having a problem the support staff will forward it to the folks that can get the change in progress for an upcoming release.