Your Digital Media Has Never Looked So Good

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shelleyp
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crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 11:52 am

Have had nothing but problems with Netflix lately. I know this isn't a Netflix forum, but since Netflix won't provide one, please excuse me while I vent my frustration and disappointment.

We're only getting 2 and 3 dots, regardless of what time of day we access. And I've tried every combination of DNS I can, going through Namebench, old standbys, and using my ISP's default.

I'm able to get Hulu and Amazon, but Netflix, not a chance.

I've also noticed after a Roku update a couple of updates ago, that I can no longer run two Rokus at the same time. It's like one box starves the other, yet I was able to run two at the same time until recently.

All in all, I'm getting progressively disappointed at online access, at a time when it should be getting better.
 
kumasuki
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Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 12:32 pm

shelleyp wrote:
I've also noticed after a Roku update a couple of updates ago, that I can no longer run two Rokus at the same time.

Is it that you can't run Netflix simultaneously on 2 Rokus at once; or that you can't run Netflix on one Roku and Amazon (or something else) on another Roku simultaneously; or that you can't run anything on 2 Rokus simultaneously ??
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shelleyp
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Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 12:53 pm

kumasuki wrote:
shelleyp wrote:
I've also noticed after a Roku update a couple of updates ago, that I can no longer run two Rokus at the same time.

Is it that you can't run Netflix simultaneously on 2 Rokus at once; or that you can't run Netflix on one Roku and Amazon (or something else) on another Roku simultaneously; or that you can't run anything on 2 Rokus simultaneously ??


Can't run anything on another box when one is running. One or the other ends up stuck, waiting for the other's buffer to be full or whatever. Both degrade, even though I should have enough bandwidth. And I don't think the problem is bandwidth.

I can't work on the computer at all when one of the Rokus is running--I'm in a continuous cycle of DNS look ups. The speed of downloading web pages or what not isn't impacted, it's the DNS that's causing problems.

I can go to Google news now, access stories at web sites that do a ton of DNS lookups, and get reasonable performance. I start the Roku, and I'm stuck waiting for the lookups to finish. And waiting, and waiting.

Now, perhaps the hogging of the bandwidth slows the DNS lookups, I don't know.

And speaking of DNS: one DNS setting gives me OK performance with Netflix (up to a whole 4 dots, golly), but then, general web access seems to degrade, even when I'm not on the Roku.

I've heard that if you call Netflix, you can get DNS ip addresses in your area for maximum Watch Now performance, but that doesn't mean everything else runs great.

And I'm get tired of tweaking, only to have things go OK for a while, and then Netflix plays some other game, or the Roku upgrades, and we have to start all over again.
 
dellsweig
Posts: 419
Joined: Mon Mar 31, 2008 10:03 am
Location: Campbell Hall NY

Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:13 pm

shelleyp wrote:
Have had nothing but problems with Netflix lately. I know this isn't a Netflix forum, but since Netflix won't provide one, please excuse me while I vent my frustration and disappointment.

We're only getting 2 and 3 dots, regardless of what time of day we access. And I've tried every combination of DNS I can, going through Namebench, old standbys, and using my ISP's default.

I'm able to get Hulu and Amazon, but Netflix, not a chance.

I've also noticed after a Roku update a couple of updates ago, that I can no longer run two Rokus at the same time. It's like one box starves the other, yet I was able to run two at the same time until recently.

All in all, I'm getting progressively disappointed at online access, at a time when it should be getting better.


This sounds like issues wioth your local network - not the Roku.

By default, you home router will try to give all of your available bandwidth to ANY user of ANY service. This means two compting devices will effect each other.

You might want to read up on a subject call QoS or bandwidth throttling/prioritization. Some home routers have this capability - some better than others. Also - some home routers support third party software like dd-wrt (http://www.dd-wrt.com) which allows you to build very detailed rules to control bandwidth on a per device basis.

I personally have 2 Roku boxes, 2 Vonage Internet phone lines, Internet based security cameras, up to ten computers/iphones/ipods/etc and all of my home media (video, audio, photo, files) are shared on my network. Without careful planning and controls, the phones would be useless when the Roku was streaming.....

You never mentioned what your ISP service is rated at (up and download).

IN addition, you may want to look at your home router. Many low-end devices or older devices cannot handle large data loads. This can be simply due to power supplies or internal issues. You might want tin install IPERF on a couple wireless PC's/laptops and do some speed tests in your home network to see what you are really getting.
Going where the wind don't blow so strange
 
robertm
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Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 1:26 pm

dellsweig wrote:
This sounds like issues wioth your local network - not the Roku.

By default, you home router will try to give all of your available bandwidth to ANY user of ANY service. This means two compting devices will effect each other.



I think the OP might have mentioned it was working up until recently.

I know different equipment, areas, time of day etc. but as a point of reference I just started two simultaneous HD streams and 20 minutes in there have been no issues. Usually if an update causes a connectivity problem I am among those that are affected.
 
maylea31
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2010 11:50 am

Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:09 pm

Well, yet another thread started about degraded Netflix AFTER most recent firmware install. I think there is a pattern emerging. And I don't mean to be contrary, but enough with router set up etc. Yes, that could be the case for some people, but the recent posts are all coming from people who have had Rokus for quite some time that performed great until recently. PLEASE ROKU, comment on this growing parallel threads discussing Netflix performance after the firmware update.

I really love my ROKU but we need an answer of some type. It is NOT and I repeat NOT my wireless settings or ISP. All that has checked good and I am now not the only one noticing a change in performance. For example, I was watching Thomas with my daughter today and all of a sudden it got really pixellated (sp?). That never happened before the update. And does not happen with my backup Sony blu-ray player.
 
slugworth
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:07 pm

Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:15 pm

You need a better router, my friend.

Better is not the same as more expensive, either. Many routers (perhaps even your existing one) support 3rd-party firmware that can drastically increase performance and bandwidth sharing. A great choice is an older Linksys WRT54G v2 or earlier. Put on DD-WRT or Tomato firmware and you'll be off to the races.
 
shelleyp
Topic Author
Posts: 857
Joined: Fri Jun 06, 2008 10:02 pm
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Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:23 pm

dellsweig wrote:
shelleyp wrote:
Have had nothing but problems with Netflix lately. I know this isn't a Netflix forum, but since Netflix won't provide one, please excuse me while I vent my frustration and disappointment.

We're only getting 2 and 3 dots, regardless of what time of day we access. And I've tried every combination of DNS I can, going through Namebench, old standbys, and using my ISP's default.

I'm able to get Hulu and Amazon, but Netflix, not a chance.

I've also noticed after a Roku update a couple of updates ago, that I can no longer run two Rokus at the same time. It's like one box starves the other, yet I was able to run two at the same time until recently.

All in all, I'm getting progressively disappointed at online access, at a time when it should be getting better.


This sounds like issues wioth your local network - not the Roku.

By default, you home router will try to give all of your available bandwidth to ANY user of ANY service. This means two compting devices will effect each other.

You might want to read up on a subject call QoS or bandwidth throttling/prioritization. Some home routers have this capability - some better than others. Also - some home routers support third party software like dd-wrt (http://www.dd-wrt.com) which allows you to build very detailed rules to control bandwidth on a per device basis.

I personally have 2 Roku boxes, 2 Vonage Internet phone lines, Internet based security cameras, up to ten computers/iphones/ipods/etc and all of my home media (video, audio, photo, files) are shared on my network. Without careful planning and controls, the phones would be useless when the Roku was streaming.....

You never mentioned what your ISP service is rated at (up and download).

IN addition, you may want to look at your home router. Many low-end devices or older devices cannot handle large data loads. This can be simply due to power supplies or internal issues. You might want tin install IPERF on a couple wireless PC's/laptops and do some speed tests in your home network to see what you are really getting.


Sorry, I should have been more specific with details.

I've had Rokus since they came out (three of them, only two ever in service at one time). I've had the same DSL (ATT 6mbps down) in that time, and same modem.

Two of the Rokus are used for SD only, only one for HD. I can't really remember the last time I was able to get an HD signal on my Roku and have it stay HD all the way through -- not for Netflix.

I used to be able to run 4 dots on one, and usually HD on the other--but minimum 4 dots on both.

Now, Netflix seems to be maxing out at 2-3 dots. 4 dots in a good day. And only one at a time. Network configuration is _exactly the same_ now, as it was 6 months ago, and a year ago. Well, the Roku I use is a newer one than the other two.

I can watch something like Hulu Plus, by itself, and get good quality. If the other box is running though, the show stops, and just doesn't continue.

As for Netflix, I don't even try anymore. I now assume only one person can watch Watch Now at a time. And even then, it's knock on wood time if the quality goes above 3 stars.

When my setup is the same, I have to look at what's changed. Netflix is always tweaking its CDN, so that could be it. And Roku provides upgrades, so that could be it. ATT could be throttling in the background, but I doubt that's it.

I do know I'm tired of playing musical chairs with the DNS settings.
 
shelleyp
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Posts: 857
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Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:25 pm

slugworth wrote:
You need a better router, my friend.

Better is not the same as more expensive, either. Many routers (perhaps even your existing one) support 3rd-party firmware that can drastically increase performance and bandwidth sharing. A great choice is an older Linksys WRT54G v2 or earlier. Put on DD-WRT or Tomato firmware and you'll be off to the races.


I'd rather think that Roku could perhaps do a little better on how it handles bandwidth. Sucking up the universe because it can isn't my idea of good bandwidth management.

I'm hesitant about spending more money on trying to fix something, when I don't know what's broken.
 
mikebdoss
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Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:37 pm

maylea31 wrote:
Well, yet another thread started about degraded Netflix AFTER most recent firmware install. I think there is a pattern emerging. And I don't mean to be contrary, but enough with router set up etc. Yes, that could be the case for some people, but the recent posts are all coming from people who have had Rokus for quite some time that performed great until recently. PLEASE ROKU, comment on this growing parallel threads discussing Netflix performance after the firmware update.

I really love my ROKU but we need an answer of some type. It is NOT and I repeat NOT my wireless settings or ISP. All that has checked good and I am now not the only one noticing a change in performance. For example, I was watching Thomas with my daughter today and all of a sudden it got really pixellated (sp?). That never happened before the update. And does not happen with my backup Sony blu-ray player.


Everyone bitches about the firmware installs and blames them for EVERY problem - but the vast majority of us have had none of the problems a few people describe. I think it's much, much more likely that the problems are unrelated, but due to the timing, people blame the upgrade. The OPs problem, for example, seems entirely related to his in-home network setup. The fact is, I see messages like your after the updates, blaming Roku for everything from not being vocal enough to intentional throttling, and it turns out the problems are very, very, VERY rarely related.
 
nextoo
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jan 05, 2011 7:14 pm

Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:58 pm

There is a thread over at AVS titled "anyone else having sudden problems with at&t dsl and netflix".

From one of the posts in that thread:

Starting on February 1, the sony blu ray player no longer could stream netflix content. Called on Feb 2 and Netflix support said they had a problem with ATT DSL users, but now being fixed. Feb 3 still having problem. Sony unit can stream from Hulu HD no problem. PC on same network can stream netflix, sometimes sluggish but watchable. Lots of finger pointing among ATT, Netflix, and Sony but no solution!
 
shelleyp
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Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 2:59 pm

nextoo wrote:
There is a thread over at AVS titled "anyone else having sudden problems with at&t dsl and netflix".

From one of the posts in that thread:

Starting on February 1, the sony blu ray player no longer could stream netflix content. Called on Feb 2 and Netflix support said they had a problem with ATT DSL users, but now being fixed. Feb 3 still having problem. Sony unit can stream from Hulu HD no problem. PC on same network can stream netflix, sometimes sluggish but watchable. Lots of finger pointing among ATT, Netflix, and Sony but no solution!


That's interesting to hear. Do you have a link to that thread?
 
nextoo
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Jan 05, 2011 7:14 pm

Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 3:01 pm

shelleyp wrote:
nextoo wrote:
There is a thread over at AVS titled "anyone else having sudden problems with at&t dsl and netflix".

From one of the posts in that thread:

Starting on February 1, the sony blu ray player no longer could stream netflix content. Called on Feb 2 and Netflix support said they had a problem with ATT DSL users, but now being fixed. Feb 3 still having problem. Sony unit can stream from Hulu HD no problem. PC on same network can stream netflix, sometimes sluggish but watchable. Lots of finger pointing among ATT, Netflix, and Sony but no solution!


That's interesting to hear. Do you have a link to that thread?


http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?p=19951601#post19951601
 
robertm
Posts: 2665
Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2009 3:06 pm

Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 3:04 pm

mikebdoss wrote:
maylea31 wrote:
Well, yet another thread started about degraded Netflix AFTER most recent firmware install. I think there is a pattern emerging. And I don't mean to be contrary, but enough with router set up etc. Yes, that could be the case for some people, but the recent posts are all coming from people who have had Rokus for quite some time that performed great until recently. PLEASE ROKU, comment on this growing parallel threads discussing Netflix performance after the firmware update.

I really love my ROKU but we need an answer of some type. It is NOT and I repeat NOT my wireless settings or ISP. All that has checked good and I am now not the only one noticing a change in performance. For example, I was watching Thomas with my daughter today and all of a sudden it got really pixellated (sp?). That never happened before the update. And does not happen with my backup Sony blu-ray player.


Everyone bitches about the firmware installs and blames them for EVERY problem - but the vast majority of us have had none of the problems a few people describe. I think it's much, much more likely that the problems are unrelated, but due to the timing, people blame the upgrade. The OPs problem, for example, seems entirely related to his in-home network setup. The fact is, I see messages like your after the updates, blaming Roku for everything from not being vocal enough to intentional throttling, and it turns out the problems are very, very, VERY rarely related.


Right. It is a huge coincidence that an update brings problems to some people then after a few other updates they go away. Do you have multiple Roku boxes? Does the vast majority of people who have no problems have more than one box?

Also, I couldn't help but notice that your nic was registered last October. The OP has been here since mid 2008. I have been here since Oct 09. The problems presented after updates are often very similiar among those that have problems. We have had fixes that were related to a single router.

I have gone through 2 different periods of time where netflix and/or amazon have been unreliable for weeks the first one and months the second one. Without any change on my part the problems have come and gone. I am no longer interested in tweaking anything because 15ish of the 18 months I have owned rokus have been with a solid reliable performance. If a new problem arises that is not across my entire network or obviously ISP related I will point my finger at roku or the service providing the channel.
 
shelleyp
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Re: crappy Netflix access-Roku choking each other out

Fri Feb 04, 2011 3:16 pm

mikebdoss wrote:
maylea31 wrote:
Well, yet another thread started about degraded Netflix AFTER most recent firmware install. I think there is a pattern emerging. And I don't mean to be contrary, but enough with router set up etc. Yes, that could be the case for some people, but the recent posts are all coming from people who have had Rokus for quite some time that performed great until recently. PLEASE ROKU, comment on this growing parallel threads discussing Netflix performance after the firmware update.

I really love my ROKU but we need an answer of some type. It is NOT and I repeat NOT my wireless settings or ISP. All that has checked good and I am now not the only one noticing a change in performance. For example, I was watching Thomas with my daughter today and all of a sudden it got really pixellated (sp?). That never happened before the update. And does not happen with my backup Sony blu-ray player.


Everyone bitches about the firmware installs and blames them for EVERY problem - but the vast majority of us have had none of the problems a few people describe. I think it's much, much more likely that the problems are unrelated, but due to the timing, people blame the upgrade. The OPs problem, for example, seems entirely related to his in-home network setup. The fact is, I see messages like your after the updates, blaming Roku for everything from not being vocal enough to intentional throttling, and it turns out the problems are very, very, VERY rarely related.


I do know that there is one specific Roku problem, which I reported.

When shows were stopped on two Rokus, the devices didn't release the Netflix copyright locks on the shows, and I couldn't start another stream on a third box because of the locks and only having a two dvd at a time limit.

Netflix said specifically this was a Roku problem, not Netflix or streaming. And that hadn't happened before the last upgrade.

Just because you live in Florida, doesn't mean there ISN'T an abominable snowman.
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