Music library corrupts every few weeks; requires Factory Reset to fix


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Every few weeks, the music library info in my Play 5 and Playbase speakers becomes corrupted. Sonos controller will start saying it cannot find the next song in the playlist, or the next, or the next and so on. The music library is stored on an up-to-date Win10 PC. The music library is managed by MusicBee (NOT iTunes). "Update Music Library Now" does NOT help. Reboot speakers does NOT help. The only solution: (1) Completely uninstall Sonos Controller app on PC and on Android phone; (2) Factory Reset the speakers and set up the system again. When will Sonos write the "Update Music Library Now" software so that it actually does what it says it does: "This will update the Music Library of your Sonos System to match any changes you have made in iTunes or other shared folders."

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33 replies

Hi. The software is fine and works perfectly for me. It is pretty clear that your problems are network related and your resets are doing nothing to address the real issues. Next time the problem occurs you should submit a system diagnostic and post the number back here or pick it up with Sonos Support.
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Diagnostics submitted: confirmation # 274633572
Note that the forum mods tend not to be around on weekends (but that's not a hard and fast rule), so if you want to get a quicker answer, you may want to contact Sonos Support to discuss it.

Both the Twitter and Facebook support folks are available 24/7.
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If the problem is "clearly" the network, then why does "Update Music Library Now" NOT fix it, but Factory Reset of the speakers DOES fix it. If the problem is the network, then Factory Reset should not fix the problem; in fact, Factory Reset would be impossible because it is necessary to use the same network infested with the same "clearly network related" errors, and a bad network would make setup of the Sonos speakers impossible. Also, why wouldn't these same network errors have some sort of adverse effect on the 11 other devices on the network?
Because when you "update music library now" the network is still broken, but when you "factory reset' your speakers, you're temporarily fixing the issue, so it works for a bit?

For instance, if you were having duplicate IP address issues, something that's not really easy to see, it could be that when you do a factory reset, you're forcing the devices to override the other device that's fighting for the same IP address for a certain amount of time, but eventually, it grabs back the IP, and consequently your speaker loses its connection to the rest of the system, and fails out on the command.

Or it could be wifi interference, that doesn't occur at all times, and may even be from outside of your home, and rears its head at random intervals.

This is why John B was suggesting that you send in a diagnostic. There's liable to be information in it that will help Sonos identify why it is that you're experiencing this. Shoot, it's even possible that there's an issue with the hardware in the speakers, although that's an extremely low possibility (below 1%, IMHO)....but that would show up in the diagnostic as well.

Music streaming devices are much more sensitive to connection/bad LAN issues, while most other devices on your network are much more tolerant, so it may be that you're not perceiving a problem, but the Sonos does.

Let them look at that diagnostic. Have faith, they'll do what they can to help you resolve this issue.
Agree totally with Bruce. The only problem might be that factory resets wipe all the useful diagnostic information, which is one reason why Sonos advise against factory resets as a troubleshooting measure. Another reason is that resets never properly deal with whatever the underlying issues are and so those issues inevitably reappear.
I was wondering how the PC is connected to the network and whether the connection 'adapter' has a power saving mode enabled in the control panel and is not waking from 'remote access'. The power saving settings are also often accessible from the device manager by double clicking the 'adapter' in the network section of the tree layout and looking at its property tabs.. I would check that and maybe prevent it from entering powering saving mode.
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Every few months the Sonos Controller app on both Windows and Android starts failing to play random songs in a playlist that it has been playing normally for months without error. Songs are stored on an up-to-date Windows 10 PC connected to the same WiFi network as the speakers.

No changes have been made to the playlist or the music library. No changes have been made to the network or the PC or the speakers.

Errors indicated by controller app include:
(1) The song could not be found
(2) Unable to play the song

Attempted solutions include:
(1) Steps provided in "Music library troubleshooting" article in Sonos support
(2) Windows Controller app > Manage > Update Music Library Now
(3) Removed the music folder from Sonos and added it back again, letting Sonos re-analyze the folder
(4) Completely uninstalled the Sonos Controller app (including folders in Program Files, ProgramData, and AppData/Local). Rebooted, reinstalled.
(5) Rebooted both Sonos speakers.

The only thing that works is to Factory Reset the speakers.

The system works for a few months, then cycles back to being unable to find the songs in the same playlist that it has been using for months.

Diagnostics confirmation # 274633572
Unplug your Sonos devices.

Reboot your router.

Plug your Sonos devices back in to the power.

Investigate in your router’s manual how to assign reserved IP addresses, and do so for all devices on your network.
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I monitor my router every day. The IP address for the PC with the music library has always been reserved, and still is. None of the devices has had their IP address changed. As a computer network administrator for a large law firm, I cannot fathom the rationale for the suggestion. If all IP addresses for all devices on a network need to be static, then the Sonos setup procedures are grossly incomplete and inadequate.
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If all IP addresses for all devices on a network need to be static, then the Sonos setup procedures are grossly incomplete and inadequate.

The iP reservation is to cope with crap routers that give totally new IP addresses on every reboot and/or on every DHCP refresh, one assumes that you have a decent router that does not need this pre-assignment (as do I).
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I monitor my router every day. The IP address for the PC with the music library has always been reserved, and still is. None of the devices has had their IP address changed.
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I have a very nice router, pfSense on a Netgate-2440 box and have spent hours fighting this issue. I have read so many logs that my eyes hurt thinking about it. I never saw a single indication in the logs of any unexpected or odd Sonos activity so I discounted this solution for many months.

In a fit of frustration after an update triggered the issue again I spent the few minutes needed to assign all my Sonos devices static/reserved IP addresses. The power cycle, update, reboot issues have never resurfaced.

I have no clue why, all I can say is there is something odd and this fixed it.
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I'm confused by the focus on the network. How does the network suddenly change an IP (dynamic or static) in the middle of playing a playlist? There was no power interruption. If the problem is the network, why does the network work okay during a given session, then not work, then go back to working? Sonos starts out playing the songs in the playlist normally. Then, without warning or power interruption, it suddenly "cannot find" the next song, or the next, or the next. Then, it aborts and goes back to the first song in the playlist and starts playing the songs normally . . . until it gets to the same song that "triggered" the problem earlier. What does IP have to do with this behavior? I've never heard of IPs changing on the fly without some sort of power interruption. If the queue is cleared and a playlist re-added, Sonos plays songs in the playlist for awhile, but then suddenly, it cannot find the next song, or the next, and the whole cycle starts again. If the problem is IP centered or network related, then how does Sonos work okay, playing songs in a playlist, during the troubled session . . . until it gets to a certain song (which it had been playing just fine a few hours earlier)? If the problem is network related, how does the network "know" which is the problem song to start generating network errors? (Note: the music server PC and both Sonos speakers have reserved IPs).
MacInOhio,

A description of your network might help here... make/model of router, any switches, access points, repeaters, hubs, software firewalls on the laptop etc.

Are some devices wired, or is everything running on WiFi? What other devices are using the WiFi etc.

Have you considered WiFi channel scanning and changes to reduce WiFi overlap or using SonosNet, or perhaps in some cases, Ethernet?

Just to briefly add, I have been using my music library of 25000+ songs on a dual gigabit wired Netgear mirrored NAS box for a good many years and not ever encountered a single corruption issue, nor any issues with the Sonos indexing or playing of music. I’m sure a good many others will tell a similar story, as it’s quite rare to see an aspect of 'local library indexing corruption' reported in these pages, so I’m not convinced it’s the software at fault, but rather the hardware or network setup is at the root of the problem.

Are you able to see the corruption, or is this really just a break/disruption in the network connection occurring at intermittent times for some unknown reason? Even a microwave or Baby monitor can interrupt a wireless network signal, for example. Local Bluetooth signals too may cause issues.

Have you ever tried wiring the laptop/library to the router to see if that perhaps eradicates the issue for you?

A good description of the actual physical setup may help to throw a little more light on your issue and there are plenty of experienced users here willing to troubleshoot these issues with you.

Adding your Sonos IP addresses to your routers DHCP Reservation Table is a good idea to do by the way as it does add stability to some routers leasing problems that may lead to dropouts of your Sonos devices, but that is just one of a good many things to explore in this type of situation.
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How would a microwave or baby monitor know to trigger a problem on the same song in a playlist, over and over? How would any network issue affect only a certain song? How is a network selective about one item in a database?
I have been offering support for over 10 years in this and other Sonos fora. In those years, the number of times Sonos software has been at fault I can count on two fingers, and both times it caused threads that contained thousands of posts. All other times it was the user's local network, and 99% of those times it was IP conflicts.

Bottom line: If you don't want help, just say so. But please don't waste our time arguing that it is not your network at fault.
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As stated above: there are no IP conflicts. I monitor my router every day.

I asked a simple question: How would a microwave or baby monitor or a IP conflict know to trigger a problem on the same song in a playlist, over and over? How would any network issue affect only a certain song? How is a network selective about one item in a database?
As stated above: there are no IP conflicts. Every device on the net has been checked and double checked. Every Sonos related device has a reserved IP (even though the DHCP assigned IP was verified to be stable for over 18 months).

I asked a simple question: How would a microwave or baby monitor or a IP conflict know to trigger a problem on the same song in a playlist, over and over? How would any network issue affect only a certain song? How is a network selective about one item in a database?

Because the index that is written to almost every Sonos device got interrupted and corrupted during wireless transmission, perhaps? ... and continues to throw the same error each time you try to play the track.

My money and 'mouth' is still 'firmly' on it most likely being a local networking issue, but I think I will choose to leave you troubleshoot this one for yourself. There are plenty of things that you can still go onto try if you want to research through these community pages for yourself.
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"the index that is written to almost every Sonos device got interrupted and corrupted during wireless transmission, perhaps?"

That is what I suspected after troubleshooting. But why doesn't going to the Windows Controller app > Manage > Update Music Library Now fix it? Why is the same corruption still present afterward?
The library index update will only re-examine files it thinks have changed. You can force a full re-index by removing and re-adding the network share(s).

FWIW my money is also on either a network problem or file system corruption on the storage device.
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That was step (3) mentioned above. "Removed the music folder from Sonos and added it back again, letting Sonos re-analyze the folder"

The same corruptions persisted.

If the file system corruption is on the storage device, then why does that corruption disappear after the Sonos speakers are Factory Reset?
That was step (3) mentioned above. "Removed the music folder from Sonos and added it back again, letting Sonos re-analyze the folder"

The same corruptions persisted.

If the file system corruption is on the storage device, then why does that corruption disappear after the Sonos speakers are Factory Reset?

It sounds like you didn’t Reboot your devices.

Reboot all your speakers after the index deletion process... it maybe the case that a speaker is intermittently losing network connection due to 'communication issues” on your network. You should not need to factory reset them each time to solve your indexing problem.

It all points to networking problems... you just can’t seem to accept that ..that’s where the real problem lies here.
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Step (5) above: rebooted both speakers.

If it is a networking problem, how does a network be selective about choosing one item in a database? Once the problem surfaces, only certain songs are affected, regardless of how much time goes by. The troubleshooting process outlined in the five steps previously stated takes awhile to plow through. During that entire process, the system is tested over and over. Only certain songs are affected. If it was a network problem, it should exhibit itself randomly, over various songs. I don't see how a network could choose only certain songs to refuse to play on one day, and choose to refuse to play only those same songs the next day. If it was problem with the PC server, it should exhibit itself on the PC itself; MusicBee should have a problem playing the same songs with which Sonos has a problem. But that is not the case. As stated in the title: all is resolved when the Sonos speakers are factory reset. Sonos support articles discourage this, but it has become the only way to get the system back to normal . . . for a few months.
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There is no IP conflict on the network. The network functions perfectly in connecting Roku, phones, tablets, TVs, PCs. As stated, the (1) Steps provided in "Music library troubleshooting" article in Sonos support have been followed. What else?