How to avoid stuttering when listening to online radio thru Synology and USB speaker

February 2, 2014

I use a Synology DS213 server as my main multimedia box. It holds all of my music, videos and naturally I use it also to stream online radios. I have a USB Speaker plugged into the NAS and hooked up to my AV receiver.

I decided to subscribe to the excellent TraxxFM feed (http://www.traxx.fm) after having tested their free offer. The subscription brings 20+ channels of excellent curated music. They have everything from Classic to Rap, Deep, Classic Hits, Trance etc. Enough to satisfy the various moods I may be in during the course of a day. Anyway, something interested happened when I switched from free to paid radio : the streams were all in better quality and with no ad but after 20 mns or so of streaming, the sound would start to stutter, stopping for a few milliseconds and restart again. It quickly became super annoying and nearly made me regret the free offer which didn’t suffer from this.

First I thought it had to do with my Internet bandwidth being shared by a download or someone watching YouTube or a general network issue. So I made sure my QoS settings were correct and that the online traffic for the radio was correctly prioritised : it was. The strange thing was that the stuttering occured after 20 mns or so of streaming, sometimes more but never less than 20 mns. It seemed like the Synology couldn’t keep track of the amount of network traffic that Traxx was sending, but I looked at the various stats in the control panel everything was normal (DSM up-to-date, no overheating, LAN ok,…).

I Googled far and wide but nothing… nobody reported anything similar. I nearly gave up and even thought of dedicating an old Android phone to Traxx streaming until I decided to check every single setting available in the Synology control panel and stumbled upon the Hardware option. In there there’s and HDD Hibernation setting that was set to… 20 mns ! Hmmm…. interesting. There’s another option underneath : “enable advanced HDD hibernation to minimize power consumption” which was checked. I changed it the Hibernation time to 5 hours and unchecked “Enable Advanced HDD….”. I launched Traxx FM and this did it ! No more stuttering and lag !

I confirmed this by reenabling both settings and setting the Hibernation to 10 mns and… the stuttering reappeared.

 


Solving “you are not authorised to use this service” when using Synology DS Audio

May 12, 2012

I installed DS Audio on my iPad and recently received “you are not authorised to use this service” error. I knew that the user/password was correct and I could use DS Audio from my Android phone. Turns out I recently enabled “Auto Block” in the network services of my Synology server. Sure enough my iPad’s IP address was there listed as blocked. I removed it from the Block List and all was fine.


How to add network drive to a library in Windows 7

January 18, 2011
  1. Create a directory to use as link (i.e. C:\sharedlibraries\NASDocuments)
  2. Add the directory to the Documents Library
  3. Delete the directory
  4. Launch cmd with Admin privileges (press CTRL+SHIFT+ENTER in the Start Menu search box)
  5. Create a symbolic link from the directory created in 1. to the NAS volume or directory needed : mklink /d c:\sharedlibraries\NASDocuments \\NAS\documents

Background info here : http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/4617-libraries-include-network-folder.html

 



Upgrade harddisk in a synology DS107

December 12, 2010
  1. Buy new harddrive
  2. Buy Sata-2-USB connector
  3. Download new firmware file from Synology website
  4. Download Synology Assistant from Synology website
  5. Create a backup of the settings within Synology using Disk Station Manager (DSM). Option is to be found under Backup/Restore :
  6. Replace harddisk in the synology
  7. Mount the old harddisk and access it from Synology. It will be called USBShare
  8. Restore the settings from backup file created in 5.
  9. Copy the files back to the NAS
    IMPORTANT : if there’s any multimedia files to be copied back, make sure to copy them onto a non-indexed folder (such as Public or TMP  for example) and move them once it’s done. Otherwise the Multimedia indexer will kick in and transfer will be very slooooooow. It this happens, kill the process (enable SSH, login as root and issue killall synoindexd)

 

If there’s a problem, mount the harddisk onto a PC and use explore2FS to browse the files : http://www.chrysocome.net/explore2fs