Any Success Stories with Playon?

Any Success Stories with Playon?

Post#1 » Tue Apr 18, 2017 2:42 am

I recently loaded the Playon Desktop (Playon.tv) on my Media Center box.

I am curious as to what a successful setup looks like using Playon coexisting with Media Center if anyone has had luck.

Despite my efforts certain networks seem to have guide issues caused by live sporting events delaying programming with no guide updates (CBS, CBS, CBS, and you guessed it CBS). And that time the sky was falling during primetime and a meteorologist had to give us the blow by blow.

But I digress. Since loading I have had trouble with an error regarding audio playback and another regarding/ Windows Media center has lost its connection to Windows Media Player.

These occur separately and effectively kill Media Center requiring Media Center to be . Just a mention in case it gives someone an idea, I have had streaming trouble within the Playon application on the Yahoo View Channel, Netflix and Tubi. The "TIme Warner Cable" (Spectrum) channel did seem to work. I wanted to try out streaming before dropping coin on the version that supports recording.

When recordings finish, I intend to restart. Failing success; a restore point rollback ... barring that I see a Media Center uninstall and reinstall in my future. I already uninstalled Playon but it did not help.
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Post#2 » Tue Apr 18, 2017 1:06 pm

Have you looked at epg123 as an alternative to the MS guide? If your having guide issues maybe you can consider that instead of ROVI. If there is a problem with guide providers getting bad guide data then that won't fix your problems but it is something to consider. For audio, do you have any codec packs installed, and do you have your PC hooked up to a reciever? Have you tried changing any settings within the windows audio settings or WMC? I have found that making changes to audio gets me a better overall experience in WMC but my audio is routed through my TV so I can't say my setup will be the same.
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Post#3 » Wed Apr 19, 2017 4:27 am

I use EPG123. It greatly improved many issues. CBS airs live sports that do not stop on time and if you go to they're own listings on their website, they not update them when programming is delayed. They do seem to announce the delay on Facebook. But since that is nonstandard no guide service can pick it up. Even EPG123 would need a facelift to check guide information that updates intra-day as it is scheduled to run once a day.

Back to topic, Playon caused several Media Center instability issues for me and uninstalling seems to have fixed the issues. I think Playon integrates too closely to things like Media Player. I was hoping someone had tested and gotten it to work and that would either be insightful or we could start a differential diagnosis. The worst is it seems to cause recording issues. Then again I had a large number of concurrent recordings that may have contributed as well. I may load test later to see if I can cause recording problems under load.
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Post#4 » Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:44 am

Looking back, I should clarify that a reboot for the uninstall to clean up was necessary to restore Media Center.
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Post#5 » Thu Apr 20, 2017 3:13 am

Hello SciFiGeek,

I have had great success with running both PlayOn, & Windows Media Center simultaneously on both Windows 7 & Windows 8.1 without issue. It might be a sound/graphics card driver issue. From my understanding Playon doesn't interface with WMP it uses Silverlight and/or Flash based on what the websites allow and then opens an invisible internet explorer window to record your show. I hope that helps.

Thanks,
-Sharks
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Post#6 » Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:48 am

Sharks,

Good to know. What tuners and do you use?

I have a Ceton Infinitv 6 PCIE- for cablecard
SD Homerun - 2 OTA
Hauppauge 1609 Quad - 4 OTA (2 tuners wasn't enough and there seems to be reception magic on the Homerun for one channel VHF channel which probably has more to do with it being external and orientation than anything else).

I am curious if you have an internal network adapter type tuner like the Ceton Infinitv 6 PCIE. Mine has a different non-routable IP range than my bridged IP network so I do not expect problems there.

Anyway I am running behind getting to work now so I'll try and check on drivers later... I might even be able to try a Playon install again. Doubt it drivers is probably far enough.
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Post#7 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 5:03 am

Hello SciFiGeek,

Sorry for the slow reply, I'm using a Ceton Infinitv 6 PCIe for cable. I've used it in both a network tuner configuration and a regular configuration setup with PlayOn. With it working both times. If running in the network configuration I do however have 2 network adapters one dedicated to the bridge with Infinitv and one that isn't. Intel(R) 82567V-2 Gigabit & a Intel(R) Gigabit CT. I've recently added a Hauppauge WinTV-HVR-1150 for FM radio and haven't seen adverse effects once that was set up.

What is your storage setup like? I think if you are trying to record too much on magnetic disk hard drive that might be doing you in? (My Storage has been in various forms of RAID.)
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Post#8 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 11:50 am

My boot OS drive is an SD... without looking I think 240 GB but I may have used an older 120GB.

My Media Center disk is hardware RAID 5 via my ASUS Z97 Deluxe Motherboard (3 x 3 TB SATA 3 drives). In hindsight I wish I had gone for a RAID 10. And yes I am feeling the pain of writes with multiple recordings... I find at about 8 simultaneous recordings my playback is slow from the same RAID 5 volume. I was thinking about starting to record to SD drive and move the files through some magic software I've yet to research. OTH I was thinking to buy more drives including external USB, move my recordings off and rebuild RAID 10. But that is the most expensive options and I am in much need of some ZWAVE devices for home automation so likely not in the very near future.

To be clear Windows sees my Ceton as a local network adapter, I am not accessing it via the network, only the SD homerun is over the LAN.

I was thinking that there may be some routing issue where playon is trying to access the ceton "network" card... I have a limited download speed test that I was blaming on the router but may be this desktop. Off to work now but I will wire a laptop up later and run a speed test through the router again and dig around for Ceton routing related issues later. My Lan is in the 10.x.x.x range and the Ceton is I somewhere in 192.168.x.x.
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Post#9 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 6:51 pm

I've been using Playon in Windows 7, MC works fine, mix of Ceton and HD Homerun now, past all different combinations of tuners.
More than a year ago I had issues with interference between MC and Playon, but they released a new version and no more issue. I don't remember the particulars.
Are you running the newest Playon release? ALSO; Playon uses a virtual audio device. I do recall at one point having to disable it, I don't remember why.
It was some type of audio trouble. I use the Playon app on my Rokus. Where, by the way, it works great, with a short delay.
My main system that runs it all is an 8 core amd with 16 gb of ram and a GT 740 2 GB graphics card, so that helps
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Post#10 » Sat Apr 22, 2017 3:46 am

SciFiGeek wrote:
To be clear Windows sees my Ceton as a local network adapter, I am not accessing it via the network

My Lan is in the 10.x.x.x range and the Ceton is I somewhere in 192.168.x.x.


My InfiniTV4 's IP is 192.168.200.1 same as yours, and everyone else.

You should be able to see the Ceton as a local network adapter on the PC that has the card installed (aka the Host). If you can see the card the routing is fine.

The Ceton InfiniTV4 or 6 have their own DHCP server and are quite capable to handle the routing from the tuner to the Host. I found that the Ceton needed a little help spreading itself around the network. What I did with mine was.....I installed ServerWMC and Emby, those two were able to share the Ceton anywhere on the LAN and as a big bonus, they also share the Ceton on the WAN. I watch my Ceton InfiniTV while I am driving down the freeway.
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Post#11 » Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:04 am

My system is 16 GB, 4 core / 8 threads 4 Ghz (Intel 4790k) and Geforce 210 1 GB, Asus Z97 deluxe MB. I originally was using the onboard Intel video but I discovered to cure screen flicker I needed a NVIDA chipset and bought a relatively cheap card. I was planning on doing more transcoding with the system so it is a bit of a beefcake for the processor for when it was built, not to mention RAM. I am a bit dumbfounded that anything outside of multiple transcoding sessions or drive I/O can hit it hard.

One reason I was curious about the Ceton is Playon support suggested disabling it... (that went over like a lead balloon)
"As a test, please disable the Ceton adapter found in Windows Control Panel network connections and try again for us."
And later after I uninstalled playon...
"This issue only occurs on Windows 7 or earlier machines, it's basically a quirk in older versions of Windows if a virtual adapter is present. Your Ceton adapter is considered a virtual adapter in Windows which is why we requested disabling the adapter."

To answer your question about version, I was using a fresh download for install, I would assume it was current. It is a free version for playing video streams.. or was now maybe a trial, they seem to be changing licensing frequently. I figured I needed to try out the streaming version before paying for the version to record.

As for virtual adapter, I did not follow as to me in device manager the Ceton does not look 'virtual' it looks like a lan card. I asked for MS KB reference for the virtual adapter isssue and was asked about my Media Center recording issue as a response... For some reason with Playon installed I had problems with new media center recordings. Granted it was 8 concurrent recordings but I have had that many prior and since playon was installed and had no issues... Playback becomes a problem from the recording disk as the disk I/O just is too much for the RAID 5 array.

What I forget is if I was streaming playon while trying to record... I can stream via a browser and record that many programs no problem, and have to avoid the playback problems from disk when recording a lot. It uses different HD for the OS which is SSD, so no problems with an internet stream / diskless playback. My guess, Playon probably has some horrible prioritization and transcoding going on that futz's with my bus throughput. As you can guess by the delays in my responses, I don't have the time to truly dig in and test out scenarios of my conjecture. If I am lucky, I will set up a new router this weekend, but looking for a virtual audio is something to be on the look out for.

Going off topic for a moment... I glanced at the ServerWMC. Wouldn't the recordings have to not be copy protected to use Kodi with them? My cable recordings outside of local broadcast channels are all copy once. That does leave quite a bit of broadcast recording choices for Kodi but my assumption is some playback is going to be Media Center. I am asking for that mythical time I would have to set it up.

Any chance anyone can hit a load test equal to or greater than 8 concurrent recordings, if I am remembering what I read correctly some only have 6? What about max tuners, playon stream recording and WMC recording playback? Ensure it is a test and not your series recordings you want to watch.
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Post#12 » Wed May 03, 2017 12:55 am

Maybe network....are you all GIG?

NIC, Switch, Etc

8 HD streams are about 13 mbps each. 8X13=104 If you have any 100 mbps equipment in the path, you would be 4 over.

EDIT...Looks like Sharks all ready suggested network. and pointed to his own setup using Dual Gig NIC's.

Here is something I use to test throughput...

viewtopic.php?p=90140#p90140

Here is a link to the utility

viewtopic.php?p=90141#p90141
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Post#13 » Wed May 03, 2017 7:13 pm

I have both a PlayOn Server and Emby Server on my WMC box without issue. I also have the PlayOn plugin in Emby but it is sort of rudimentary. I mostly use PlayOn to capture titles that are going away on Netflix if I already don't have them in Sonarr. They are mp4 and a little rough around the corners but the Emby Theater with madVR does a pretty good job smoothing that out. I got PlayOn on sale for $40 lifetime and while I don't use it much I don't feel that I wasted any money on it either.
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Post#14 » Sat May 06, 2017 6:38 pm

Of my 12 tuners only 2 of them are over ethernet. So that would not seem to be a hassel...
I found a program to do sequential read / write tests and my RAID 5 results...

Read: 190.62 MB/s (1524.96 Mb/s)
Write: 24.42 MB/s (195.35 Mb/s)

It seems like that should be good for 8 recordings. It is also a little cooler inside as it is cold outside today (68F instead of AC cooling to 71F)... I did a load test of 12 concurrent recordings and only one of those had any glitching and it was on my Ceton which I know to be thermal sensitive, hence the case fan blowing on it directly. So while I think I would still be better off going Raid 10 over 5 to enhance seeking for concurrent playback, I suspect the added processor load of the playon stream software was enough thermal energy from the processor to cause an issue since everyone is reporting success. Looks like I need to use that second case fan slot on the top of my case. Water cooling may not be over kill, especially if I can get the heat sink out of the case. Of course this related recording issue may not be thermal related and be Playon related yet.... I guess I could go with the old active cooling box fan with an open case load test. Maybe tomorrow, life and recording schedule making testing windows narrow.
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