Constant buffering

Nov 25, 2009 at 5:52 PM

I am having trouble viewing my live streams from Windows Media Services on Server 2008, with Starlight 2.0b1 server component installed. I am encoding a live stream through the WMS, and I can view that multicast stream with no problem using Windows Media Player. My Windows Media Encoder 9 is using 'Windows Media 9 Advanced' codec, which I believe is VC-1. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

When I try to view it using Sliverlight in either IE 7, IE8, or Firefox 3.5 all I get is a black image with constant buffering. Then after a while my browser crashes with high processor utilization. I've tried this on multiple clients and client OS's

I also tried duplicating this setup on a Win2k3 server and the results were similar, but not identical. On the 2003 server the stream buffers for about 2 minutes, but then it will eventually play.

If I eliminate the encoder, and just stream a file direct from WMS, it plays ok in the sample player. So my constant is the encoding portion of this equation. Any ideas what might be the issue?

Nov 30, 2009 at 5:57 PM
Edited Nov 30, 2009 at 5:58 PM

So I decided to go back to my Windows 2003 Server setup, since I was at least getting it to play in the sample player, it was just taking a long time to buffer. I started troubleshooting by adjusting my codecs and bit rates. I discovered something interesting: By changing the bit rate of the audio stream, the buffering time was less. But what doesn't make sense to me was the higher I made the audio bit rate, the less time it would take to buffer. I would expect it to be the exact opposite.

For example:

Audio bit rate = 32kbps | buffer time = 2 minutes 15 seconds

Audio bit rate = 64kbps | buffer time = 1 minute 23 seconds

Audio bit rate = 128kbps | buffer time = 45 seconds

Audio bit rate = 384kbps | buffer time = 19 seconds

During these tests, I kept the video bit rate and resolution consistant. Any ideas as to why this might be happening? For this project, I want to keep my audio bit rate lower, but either way I don't think this is what is supposed to happen.