Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Help and support for HDHomeRun DVR and HDHomeRun software for Windows 10, Mac, Android, XBox, etc.
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CLorox
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Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by CLorox » Sat May 18, 2019 6:47 pm

I am seeing a problem where my Xbox One (either new or old UI) freezes for .5-3 seconds or so while displaying LiveTV. This seems to have coincided with a recent release (perhaps 20190417). The freeze happens sporadically while watching a program, and occurs fairly consistently within about 10 seconds of first tuning a channel. I don't see any issues when playing back recorded content and the freeze seems to occur regardless of how many tuners I have in-use. I just enabled diagnostics if anything jumps out.

jasonl
Silicondust
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by jasonl » Mon May 20, 2019 2:34 pm

Do you see the same issue on Windows 10? Note that the last update of the Xbox One app was in early February.

CLorox
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by CLorox » Mon May 20, 2019 5:48 pm

Oddly enough, no. The W10 app seems like it handles the channel change and live playback without the stutter/freeze.

jasonl
Silicondust
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by jasonl » Mon May 20, 2019 7:43 pm

Did you enable the sending of diagnostic data within the Xbox One app? I'm seeing logs from the HDHomeRun but not the app.

Also, if possible, can you note a couple of times that it happens, down to the second if possible, based on a device that has its clock properly synced? That way we can accurately compare the log times and see if anything happened at that exact point. A cell phone would be the easiest thing to get the accurate time from since it would normally be synced to the cellular network.

CLorox
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by CLorox » Wed May 22, 2019 5:01 pm

I just toggled on diagnostics on the XB1 and tried a few tests. Results as follows (all times ET). Apple in their infinite wisdom does not actually have a digital second hand that I can find OOB, but I used http://time.is to check my drift. The numbers below are adjusted accordingly already (my laptop was about 13 seconds too fast).


h:mm:ss
Change channel 1004 7:46:28
stutter - 7:46:44-7:46:45

Change channel 1009 - 7:47:10
freeze/stutter - 7:47:31-41
freeze/stutter - 7:48:48-52

Change channel 1044 - 7:48:14
microstutter - 7:48:30

jasonl
Silicondust
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by jasonl » Wed May 22, 2019 5:51 pm

It looks like something is weird with your DVR. There are some spikes where it goes from the usual ~1/3 of a second delay to write to the disk to nearly 2 seconds, and those big spikes appear to match up with the issues you're seeing on the Xbox. It's running out of stream to play and trying to buffer. Usually those kind of spikes happen on DVRs running on Windows and are caused by antivirus or other filtering software taking too long to scan the data as it gets written to the drive. It's very odd to see that on a Linux NAS unless something is hammering the CPU or the drive is starting to go bad. I would suggest finding a time when you don't have any recordings scheduled and turning off or disconnecting the NAS so the DVR isn't available, then doing some testing on the Xbox to see if plays normally. If so, then you need to take a closer look at the NAS.

CLorox
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by CLorox » Wed May 22, 2019 6:21 pm

So strange, wouldn't this manifest during playback of recordings made at this time?

HDHomerun is one of the only services doing writes at the time of this testing. CPU, IO and load average on the device are low. I don't see any disk read/write errors jumping out in dmesg. I do have a firmware update that I recently applied to the MyCloud that also lines-up with this issue from a timing perspective.


https://support.wdc.com/downloads.aspx?g=904&lang=en
Current Version
2.31.174

Last Update
Monday, 2019 April 22, 3:25:57 PM

jasonl
Silicondust
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by jasonl » Wed May 22, 2019 6:37 pm

The data does eventually get written, it just takes way longer than it should. If it takes longer to write, read back, and send to the Xbox than the length of video the Xbox currently has in its buffer, the Xbox runs out of video to play and has to pause and wait for more to come in.

CLorox
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by CLorox » Wed May 22, 2019 7:05 pm

Gotcha, that makes sense. Downgraded the firmware to .163 and running a scan on the disk.

The problem was noticeably worse following the firmware downgrade (right after it auto-restarted) and seemed correlated to high CPU use on the MyCloud.

jasonl
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by jasonl » Wed May 22, 2019 7:28 pm

I'm not sure how valuable of a data point it is, but there are a lot of people using My Clouds for the DVR, and we typically get a pretty high volume of tickets and posts if something WD does causes problems for the DVR, and no one else has reported anything abnormal with it so far.

CLorox
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by CLorox » Thu May 30, 2019 6:50 pm

This must be hardware related, and doesn't seem to be specific to firmware or hdhomerun versions unless something is being persisted between versions. I have reverted to older releases of both firmware and the DVR and still see the same symptom. Wondering if this drive is failing in some non-standard way (?bad cache? . There are no SMART errors or other diagnostic errors being shown by the MyCloud GUI or dmesg log that I can see, but I am starting to believe it.

Are there any increased buffer options for server or client LiveTV that can be supplied via the hdhomerun.conf to add a little more resiliency when hardware conditions are less than optimal? Similarly is there a way to revert to having the client hit the tuner directly even with the RECORD engine running?

I don't know if this is related or just a behind the scenes change, but I see one other oddity since I last started manually. I normally have HDHomerun set to start from the MyCloud UI, but during testing I started the DVR (including the latest beta download) from the shell. It now fails to start initially with a permission error. It does however copy a version of itself to /tmp. This version runs fine (although its about half the size of the original downloaded / executed file).

e.g.

./hdhomerun_record_arm start -conf hdhomerun.conf
hdhomerun_record_arm: line 10: /tmp/hdhomerun_record_arm: Permission denied
cp /tmp/hdhomerun_record_arm .
./hdhomerun_record_arm start -conf hdomerun.conf
<works>

jasonl
Silicondust
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by jasonl » Thu May 30, 2019 8:14 pm

My WD NAS, at least, doesn't show the raw values in the SMART status, so you're reliant on what WD interprets as an error, and I'm not particularly inclined to trust WD.

There are no options to adjust the buffering. Trying to work around a failing drive is not recommended. The client will always use a DVR for buffering if available.

The manual install for the DVR is actually a shell script that extracts the correct binary for the CPU architecture to /tmp and runs it from there. A couple firmware versions back, WD changed /tmp to be mounted as noexec (a good thing from a security perspective), which prevents this mechanism from working. The install package was changed to just include the proper binary for the CPU architecture of the NAS, but if you're setting it up manually, you would need to extract the proper binary and run it from another location, which is effectively what you're doing.

CLorox
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by CLorox » Fri May 31, 2019 6:11 pm

Understandable. While some additional buffering capabilities would be cool for lossier connections / wifi, this really isn't a Silicondust issue, and I thank you for going above and beyond here. SMART via smartctl on the backend does actually look okay. I think this is still hardware, but perhaps I am looking in the wrong location.

The issue is centered around one device (our most heavily used). I don't see this on any other devices including Android and W10. It seems like this XB1 S is starting to see (or perhaps is just reacting more poorly to) a low level of packet loss (1% with an occasional burst to 5% or so). The MyCloud does not see any packet loss. The packet loss / missed pings on the XB1 occur right when the Live TV feed stutters. Despite what is indicated by the diagnostics modes, this doesn't look like a read/write issue with the DVR engine on the MyCloud.

Oddly enough this also doesn't look like cabling (swapped the cables on both ends and switched to a different drop) and the same problem exists. Whatever this is it looks specific to the XBox One S and only in LiveTV. This device is in the preview program, wondering if MS I switched something up, or something is silently is failing on the hardware side. Changing the auto-negotiate from a max of 1000Mbps to 100Mbps had no effect. I'll start looking for other interference as well.

Thanks again for your help. I think this safely resides on the "not your problem" side of the fence.

CLorox
Posts: 33
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Device ID: 13107370,131A76C0
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Re: Xbox One freezes for several seconds on Live TV since moving to 20190417

Post by CLorox » Tue Jul 16, 2019 3:33 pm

Final verdict... this was a network issue and the problem has been resolved since a few days after my last post. The issue appears to have traced back to a device with what I suspect was a failing onboard 100Mbps ethernet interface. It was causing sporadic packet loss to other devices on the same switch including the Xbox One S.

All stuttering was fixed purely by accident when I unplugged the onboard Ethernet port and upgraded that server to gigabit Ethernet.

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