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Video Streaming Problems on my Synology NAS

Posted on 2014-01-28
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Last Modified: 2014-02-02
I have a Synology DS211 dedicated to movies - all in mp4 format. Each file is approx. 5 Gb. I share with my family across the internet. The DS211 is a single core, 1.6Ghz processor with 256 mb RAM.

My Internet speed is fast i.e. 100 mb/s download, 10 mb/s upload.

The problem is I have family members on the West Coast (I'm on the East Coast) experiencing delays while watching a movie. It will play for 5 minutes, then wait a few minutes, then play again. To annoying to enjoy a movie that way. My Son was connected the other night experiencing this issue. He was the only one connected to my DS at the time. He measured his internet download speed at 18 mb/s.

I'm struggling to find a solution here - even considering buying a new DS. The frustration is there are so many to choose from and I hate to just pick one only to discover it doesn't solve the problem.

I'm looking at the DS414 which is a dual core with 1 Gb RAM but I don't know if these components come into play when it comes to video streaming. There is also a DS513+ which is Synology's top of the line, but again, not sure if it would solve the problem and pretty pricey.

Can someone educate me on this, perhaps recommend a solution?
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Question by:SpaceCoastLife
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4 Comments
 
LVL 26

Expert Comment

by:akahan
ID: 39821134
It's very unlikely it's your DS, or that using a different NAS would make any difference at all.

If you can play movies locally from the NAS without the delays, then it can't be the NAS; the NAS sends at exactly the same speeds whether the ultimate destination is local or on the internet.

Your problem is that the throughput between you and your family on the West coast is limited by the slowest link in the very long chain between you and them.  Every packet you send is going through perhaps a dozen or more routers and servers on its way from you to him.  If any of those are experiencing high demand, packets will be delayed at that point.  Your upload speed and his download speed are at that point irrelevant.  His 18mb download speed is useless if the packets you're sending him are getting slowed down along the way.

Only solution is to send less information, so you are not as susceptible to the fact that you are not sending your packets to your family over a dedicated line.

That means storing your MP4s at a much lower resolution, so you don't have to transmit as many bytes to get the picture across.  5GB for a movie is pretty big.  Compress one of your 5GB movies to under a gigabyte, and see if you still have the dropouts.

Yes, resolution will be lower, but that's life on the internet.

But replacing the NAS would be a total waste of time/money.
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Author Comment

by:SpaceCoastLife
ID: 39826266
You're probably correct about a new DS not helping resolve the problem. At the same time, how do the big guys do it? Company's like VUDU and Netflix? I read recently Netflix will soon make 4k resolution available. How do they get around packet delays?
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LVL 26

Accepted Solution

by:
akahan earned 1000 total points
ID: 39826444
They have servers all over the country and serve to you from whichever server is closest to you.  They also dynamically adjust the resolution constantly.   If the latency or throughput to you goes down, they adjust the resolution on your stream downward..."variable bit rate," or reduce the number of frames you're getting so that the video is (hopefully imperceptibly) jerkier.  As well, Netflix uses proprietary compression technologies that have been getting better over time.
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Author Closing Comment

by:SpaceCoastLife
ID: 39828656
Thanks for the input
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