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  • AKAK460 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Yes, I tried manually setting the DNS numbers and it didn't work.  However, I did notice these last couple of times I tried it that it always pauses at the 15 second mark.  Maybe that's significant somehow or maybe that's just how much the ATV buffers...

     

    I will go back and see if there are any other solutions I may have missed somewhere in the 38 pages of posts, but so far everything I've tried seems to fail in exactly the same way, whether it's resetting the atv, changing the video quality, manually setting the DNS, paying to upgrade my internet service (which I'm still not convinced works consistently, but I don't know how to test that), resetting the router, etc.

  • AKAK460 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hey, I think I may be right that it's just my connection...I tried downloading something on my computer and I am getting a dl speed in the vicinity of 25 kbps.  I think this may be the issue in my particular case.

  • nmballa Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I have tried just about everything on this forum thats been suggested except for setting a static IP.  This will be te next thing I try.  I am throughly convinced its an issue with Apple TV.  I have never had this issue on my ipad, my macbook air, my GF's laptop, my roommates laptop.  Only ATV2.  My father has a web enabled tv and streams netflix not issues.  So I am at about the end of my rope with ATV2.  They need to update it or they need to compensate all those that have been duped into buying one.

  • Zach Karpinski Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    This problem is definitely due to the latest update to the ATV2 software.  Before this last update, the buffering problem never happened regularily.  I have an 18Mbps connection and my ATV2 is connected via gigabit ethernet to a switch attached to my Time Capsule (which is my "router).  I run a local DNS server on a linux box and it is always available and never has problems.

     

    Proof positive this is Apple's fault and not Netflix is that my XBOX360 is attached to the same switch.  When the ATV2 starts pausing, we just turn on the XBOX and use the Netflix app there. It works with absolutely no pausing under the exact same conditions that cause problems with the ATV2.

     

    Those of you getting the run around from Apple, Netflix or internet providers are just being put through the customer service machine.  You'll never get a solution until the people who actually maintain the Netflix app on the ATV2 development team figure it out.

     

    You'd think with so many people returning their ATV that Apple would pay attention. 

  • Thomas Harnish Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)

    @ Zach "This problem is definitely due to the latest update to the ATV2 software.  Before this last update, the buffering problem never happened regularily."

     

    For you perhaps. My experience is different.

  • Zach Karpinski Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Out of curiosity, are you suggesting there is some kind of bug in the ATV dhcp code that is causing this?  Why is it only manifested with Netflix?  I regularly stream movies from my Mac mini and Mac book air with no buffering problems at all.  It seems more likely that the atv2 is not gracefully responding to lower bandwidth from Netflix after the last update.

     

    I will test this theory out tomorrow but I just do not see how dhcp could cause a Netflix only problem.  It just doesn't make sense that everything else related to network access is fine. 

  • honel Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    @Zach I totally agree, it MUST be the ATV2 as it is possible to systematically eliminate all other causes

     

    Here are some suggestions that have been voiced in this forum

     

    DNS: optimise via Namebench, may improve results but why should ATV2 need different DNS settings from your other net connected devices. Even after optimising, the streaming still pauses regularly

     

    Static IP: bogus suggestion, if the device uses dynamically assigned IP address, it still works the same and routers don't continually reassign IP addresses when the device is in constant use. IP address reassignment would likely only occur when the device is rebooted, if at all

     

    IGMP Proxy: this setting on my router did improve streaming on all my devices, but didnt fix the streaming pauses on ATV2

     

    Wired vs WiFi Network: Most responders agree that this is having no impact. If you set Netflix to the lowest quality, the bandwidth is easily within the working capacity of even a basic WiFi

     

    Other Devices: Everyone seems to agree that their TV, XBox, Wii, iPad, laptop, PC, Mac etc all stream Netflix without issue, whether wired or WiFi.

     

    The ONLY conclusion is that the ATV2 is to blame, either the firmware, the Netflix app or some compatibility issue between them.

     

    If Apple will not respond to this thread (and 39 pages of comments suggest they won't), I suggest every ATV2 user experiencing this issue logs a separate support request. Perhaps a flood of disaffected users will coax Apple to work on a fix? 

  • Zach Karpinski Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Something occurred to me last night after my last post in this thread.  I work from home two days a week and am able to stream kid's shows on Netflix all day with zero buffering.  This further reinforces the hypothesis that the problem is related to the last software update and handling throttled connections.

     

    For most of the morning and afternoon on Mondays and Tuesdays my daughter watches Sesame Street with only pauses for eating and naps.  Once my wife starts using the ATV2 Netflix app after around 6pm central time, the pausing starts.

     

    For folks who are getting better results with a static IP, they might want to investigate the DHCP lease time on their router/firewall.  By default they usually get configured at an hour or less.  I have mine set to a week and that would explain why it isn't a problem for me.  If your ATV2 is getting a new address every hour, of course you will eventually get a hiccup here or there.

  • Zach Karpinski Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    For most of the morning and afternoon on Mondays and Tuesdays my daughter watches Sesame Street with only pauses for eating and naps.  Once my wife starts using the ATV2 Netflix app after around 6pm central time, the pausing starts.

    I should clarify, the "pausing" during the day is intentional by using the remote   The evening pausing is of the unintended variety.  That is what I get for posting with so little sleep.

  • Neo829 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)


    Zach Karpinski wrote:

     

    Out of curiosity, are you suggesting there is some kind of bug in the ATV dhcp code that is causing this?  Why is it only manifested with Netflix?  I regularly stream movies from my Mac mini and Mac book air with no buffering problems at all.  It seems more likely that the atv2 is not gracefully responding to lower bandwidth from Netflix after the last update.

     

    I will test this theory out tomorrow but I just do not see how dhcp could cause a Netflix only problem.  It just doesn't make sense that everything else related to network access is fine. 

    Agreed -- this was what I was just logging in to post. Netflix streaming has been getting more unreliable during high-traffic times (essentially any time during the weekend or evenings) for me, lately. I'm 100% convinced that the Apple Netflix application simply doesn't handle on-the-fly throttling down of bandwidth, and stays on the higher quality stream even when Netflix throttles down bandwidth, making it impossible to keep up a high quality stream without constant buffering pauses.

     

    I've gotten so frustrated that I spent a few hours yesterday afternoon trying to find out if the jailbreak community had a different Netflix app I could try (they don't). It's pretty awful when someone who normally wouldn't mess around with a jailbreak is considering doing so just to try and make a core feature of the device usable.

     

    For what it's worth, it's not my bandwidth:

     

    1740073129.png

  • Fernwooddad Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    This issue is now becoming a joke!  Why won't Apple address the problem?  I have tried everything listed on this thread: 

    Upgraded cable speed (to 30mps), check

    Manually changed DNS (first using Namebench and then to the 8.8.8.8 and 8.8.4.4 as suggested), check

    Tried switching my old wireless G router to the Airport Extreme (thinking it was the router), check

    Unplug/replug to clear memory before watching something, check

     

    Nothing works.  I tried watching an show on Natl Geo show with my son last night and it paused every couple of minutes for 20-30 seconds.  Very frustrating.....  Unfortunatelly I'm past the return timeline or else it would be going back and I'd buy a Roku instead.  The main reason I bought the ATV was to watch Netflix on our bedroom TV.  I'm happy with all of our other Apple products which is why I opted for the ATV in the first place.

     

    Again, this is clearly an ATV issue, Netflix has never paused on my XBOX or PS3.  I also don't recall it pausing on my iPad or iPhone either.

     

    Unless they fix the problem, buyer beware!

  • David Bentz Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Okay, I'm not saying this will work for everyone, but I too was one of the many who was frustrated with this same issue of always having Netflix constantly buffering my movies. It was rare for me to make it through any movie on Netflix without buffering and once the buffering started it was nearly futile to get it to stop. Sometimes unplugging my DSL router along with the wireless Airport Base Station helped, but not always. I did a lot of Internet reading and thinking about this then I tried the following and have not had a problem since.

     

    First a little background. I have DSL service from my phone company. I'm not sure what the speed it, but it's most likely the slowest since it's the cheapest, but still should be plenty to stream movies from Netflix since Netflix's stream is able to dynamically step down to the user's optimal stream speed by continously reducing quality. Once it cannot sustain even a poor quality stream, that is when buffering will begin. I have both an old Apple Airport Extreme 802.11 B/G router (circa 2003) and a newer Airport Extreme (circa 2007-2008) that does 802.11 A/B/G and N. I also have three computers using 802.11. Two have 802.11N capabilities and one has 802.11B only capabilities. Then of course my Apple TV which is 802.11N compliant and a 802.11N wireless stick hanging out the back of my Dish Network receiver. Know what ALL your device's 802.11 capabilites are, is critical! This because if you have one main router as I did for everything, then your Internet speed will be dictated by the slowest 802.11 device on the network. That is, if you have multiple 802.11N (fastest) devices, but one device is only 802.11B (slowest) your wireless router (Airport Extreme/N) will limit all devices regardless of it's upward capabilities to the slowest connection speed (e.g. 802.11B). So, the slowest device on the network is the highest connection speed for all devices to the Internet if you're doing everything via WiFi (802.11).

     

    After this reading (theory/truth) on the Internet, I used Apple's Network Utility on one of my Macs to see the uplink speed to my WiFi router (Airport Extreme/N). The reading can be attained by starting this program and selecting under the "Info" tab in the drop down menu directly below "WiFi (en1). Even though I was using an Apple Airport Extreme/N router, I was only linking at 56 Mbit/s (slow!). I check my other Mac with an 802.11N card and got the same results there too. Finally, I check my uplink from my old Mac with an 802.11B card and got the same number there as well. Since none of my other devices can show me the uplink speed to my WiFi router I figured this was the lowest end setting and that as long as I was using the Mac with only 802.11B speed capabilities on my network, this would be my limitation.

     

    So, here's what I did. I set up two networks. One network runs through my Airport Extreme 802.11B/G router and another network runs through my 802.11N router with only N capabilites allowed. So, the Airport Extreme 802.11B/G router handles all the slow traffic and the other Airport Extreme 802.11N router only handles 802.11N connections. My 802.11N router hooks directly to my DSL modem and out the back of this router I hard wired the connection to the 802.11B/G router. Each WiFi router has a separate name and is configured to hand out differing sets of dynamic addresses (as a safe guard) which can be set up in using Apple's Airport Utility. In the Airport Utility I set up the 802.11N router to only use 802.11N and the 802.11B/G router to use only those settings as well. In essence, I've elimated access to the 802.11N router by devices running anything less than 802.11N. Since my two Macs and the Apple TV are 802.11N capable, I select the 802.11N router to receive wireless Internet. All other devices and my one older Mac use the slower 802.11B/G router.

     

    Since I have established this set up, I've not had one streaming issue. My two Macs now measure 300 Mbit/s and 270 Mbit/s. The older Mac with an 802.11B only card reads 56 Mbit/s to the 802.11B/G router. I have not had trouble running two separate networks within my home. For those of you with newer Airport Extreme Base Stations with the abilty to set up two networks from one router should find this even easier to set up.

     

    I'm not a network engineer, but I do understand this stuff pretty well. It amazes me, that there is no place in the Apple literature or somewhere telling folks about the limitations of these routers and how the dynamically set up connection speeds based on the lowest common devices capabilities. This literally took me about 6 months to figure out through scouring the web. The biggest piece to figuring out this puzzle was getting a reading on my wireless router and my computers' uplink speeds to that device. Since I had the necessary hardware, it only took a little bit of time to segragate my wireless Internet connections into fast-and-slow. Now, my Apple TV (Netflix) runs and two newer Macs run on the fast wireless network, everything else gets dump onto the slow wireless network.

     

    Hopefully, this will help many of you. Sorry for the lengthy post, I tried to write it in a way that made sense and that all of you could follow. Good Luck!

  • nadeama Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I've also had this same problem since the last firmware update. I used to have no issue at all streaming Netflix, but now it pauses several times during a one hour television episode. I also used to be able to watch all Netflix content at the highest quality setting (I have a 50 megabit/sec connection), but now I regularly get my streams at a lower quality, often for the entire duration of the show. The image also gets choppy for several seconds every once in a while; this actually looks more like a video decoding problem on the Apple TV's part than a streaming issue, but I can't be certain.

     

    I've thoroughly tested my network and everything is fine. I've tried manually setting the Apple TV's IP address and changing the DNS server (after testing with Namebench) and unfortunately it didn't help at all.

     

    This is either a problem with the latest Apple TV firmware or with Netflix using subpar servers to stream to the Apple TV. However, it seems somewhat of an unlikely coincidence that Netflix would have started using those bad servers at around the same time as the last Apple TV firmware came out, but I guess it's possible. Either way, one or both companies need to fix this ASAP.

  • David Bentz Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    P.S. Also remember two things:

     

    1) Your ability to connect and to receive from the Internet if you chose to connect via WiFi is dictated by how fast your WiFi router can connect. That is, your gateway is limited by the routing devices capabilities not by how fast of a connection you have purchased to run to your home. Once you connect an in home router, that is your speed limit.

     

    2) If you choose to try and solve the Netflix buffering issue by connecting directly to your router your Apple TV via an ethernet cable, your maximum speed will be 100 Mbit/s as the hardware in the Apple TV cannot go any faster than this. (In my case using my Apple Airport Extreme (N) Base Station is the fastest means by which I can connect at 300 Mbit/s).

  • nmballa Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    David, I have my ATV2 jacked directly into my belkin router.  Assuming that I do have an older device linked to the router would I still see a drop in speed?  I would assume that since I am going directly in to the router I would circumvent any drop in speed due to slower WIFI signal, correct?  If that is the case then this fix won't help my streaming issue.  I guess I could actually try jacking directly into the modem but I am concerned this would create a vulnearbility in my network.

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