Discussion:
[slim] SlimServer - A pain in the ass...
Lost Viking
2006-12-30 02:40:56 UTC
Permalink
I just ordered Slim Device Transporter.

While waiting I decided to install and set up SlimServer software.

I have to say, the way it is operating is a bit disappointing :-(
I strongly hope, the device itself (Transporter) is better.

1)
It took more than 5 (!) hours to scan my music collection. This is
awful! I added a few files and performed the "look for new and changed
music" option. And it seems to take another 5 our scan to make it
available for Squeezebox/Transporter. So in future, if I rip a new CD,
place it on my file server, I can listen to it the next day, at the
earliest, after having performed an overnight 5 hour scan?? :-((

2)
Beside this, I donŽt even understand WHY and WHAT has to be
"scanned".... I am using my mp3 collection (RAID1 server) whithout any
scanning and other creepy stuff. I am simply using a network share,
double click the files & play them using Winamp. Now my music is
scanned and re-sorted using tag information. I thought I can use
Transporter the same way just as I did using winamp on my PC. I am
afraid, this will not be possible :-( (correct me if I am wrong...)

In other words: The by far most preferred and expected behaviour of
Transporter would have been to take me quickly through the folders (one
folder = one album) of my file system. After dealing with SlimServer, I
am afraid, I am forced to accomodate this new and (from my point of
view clumsy) way to handle music. (again, please correct me, if I am
wrong...)

3) Why is this software browser-based? It is laggy, takes more time to
load than the crappiest website at the end of the world...

Ok, for all of you having read until here: THANKS FOR LISTENING! At the
moment I am frustrated and have the strong feeling having made a 2k USD
bad buy :-((
--
Lost Viking
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snarlydwarf
2006-12-30 02:57:05 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
1)
It took more than 5 (!) hours to scan my music collection. This is
awful! I added a few files and performed the "look for new and changed
music" option. And it seems to take another 5 our scan to make it
available for Squeezebox/Transporter. So in future, if I rip a new CD,
place it on my file server, I can listen to it the next day, at the
earliest, after having performed an overnight 5 hour scan?? :-((
Something is wrong if it takes that long. I have a very underpowered
system (with 128M of RAM!) that works great as a server, and can do a
full scan of 17,000 tracks in less than 30 minutes....
Post by Lost Viking
Beside this, I donŽt even understand WHY and WHAT has to be
"scanned".... I am using my mp3 collection (RAID1 server) whithout any
scanning and other creepy stuff. I am simply using a network share,
double click the files & play them using Winamp. Now my music is
scanned and re-sorted using tag information. I thought I can use
Transporter the same way just as I did using winamp on my PC. I am
afraid, this will not be possible :-( (correct me if I am wrong...)
Tags are read, a large database is filled with album names, track
names, artists, genres... so I can play all the Christmas music, or for
the next 48 weeks or so, play none of it... Especially mixed with
some of the plugins like TrackStat and DynamicPlaylist you can do nifty
things. ("Play everything I haven't listened to in the last month as
long as it isnt Christmas music")

The value of that of course depends on how good your tags are: typos
and spelling errors and inconsistent artist names will make it suck.
(Is it "Dylan"? Or "Bob Dylan" or "Dylan, Bob" or "Bobby Zimmerman"?)
Post by Lost Viking
In other words: The by far most preferred and expected behaviour of
Transporter would have been to take me quickly through the folders (one
folder = one album) of my file system. After dealing with SlimServer, I
am afraid, I am forced to accomodate this new and (from my point of
view clumsy) way to handle music. (again, please correct me, if I am
wrong...)
You can use Browse Music Folder from the remote... I often play music
that way.
Post by Lost Viking
3) Why is this software browser-based? It is laggy, takes more time to
load than the crappiest website at the end of the world...
I go for days without touching a web browser and listen to music.

Under the Help menu is Softsqueeze... start that then kill the browser.
That will give you a fake Squeezebox (and if you change the skin, a
fake transporter) so you can see how the real one works (minus some
Java and emulation bugs anyway... but its close to the real one). No
web browser needed.

As for double clicking: you cant because why on Earth would you want to
be near a computer to listen to music. Use Winamp if you want that. If
you want to sit in a comfy chair far away from noisy fans of PCs and not
remove your ass from the chair just to change a song, then, a
Transporter or Squeezebox is what you want.

It works fine without using a web browser. Better, even, since all the
"convert this to HTML" can be pretty intensive: it is a ton of database
queries to make a web page.

How many tracks do you have? Are you using iTunes? Those can affect
scan time, as can Really Huge Directories (which are bad practice
anyway).

What parts of your network are wireless and what are wired? (Ie, it
would be very good if the connection between your server and the NAS
was wired... and very very slow if it was wireless... that is a ton of
disk accesses and network bandwidth to dump on a wireless link).
--
snarlydwarf
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Recoveryone
2006-12-30 03:21:01 UTC
Permalink
I too have had the same problem with the slim server software on my more
powerful system (P4 2.8 gighz with 2 gig of ram twin 80 gigHD) I also
installed the slim server on the kids system (P3 800mhz 1gig ram with
twin 20 gigHD) the slim server works like is says on the kids system,
but it has never work correctly on my system. Some times when it
works/pops up I try to have the slim ware scan my music files and it
never finish's other times I can't get the slim ware to pop up at all.
I have re-install it 10-12 times even deleting files from the reg to
make sure its a clean install. the only difference in these system on
the connection side is that my system is wireless and the kids is
hardwired to the router. which I dont see how that would effect the
slim server from working properly.

I should get my SB3 by the end of the week or tuesday at the latest and
I would like to solve this matter before it arrives.
--
Recoveryone

SqueezeBox 3 (comming soon)
Netgear Mp101 analog connected
Pioneer Elite VSX-81TX
Pioneer Elite DV-45A
Pioneer Elite M53 CD
Pioneer M66R Cassette
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snarlydwarf
2006-12-30 03:43:18 UTC
Permalink
Post by Recoveryone
I have re-install it 10-12 times even deleting files from the reg to
make sure its a clean install. the only difference in these system on
the connection side is that my system is wireless and the kids is
hardwired to the router. which I dont see how that would effect the
slim server from working properly.
I should get my SB3 by the end of the week or tuesday at the latest and
I would like to solve this matter before it arrives.
Is the music local to your system? (Ie, on your hard drive?)

Or is it on a USB or NAS device?

If it's USB, make sure it is USB2 and that your computer really
supports USB2... USB1 is painfully slow. (Slow enough that was
actually the reason for my last server upgrade... USB1 backups took
days...) If it is a NAS device, try to have it wired to the server,
not on a wireless link. For a file-here-or-there sorts of access,
sure, wireless would work. For "please open a few thousand files and
read a few hundred bytes from each" sorts of access, that will really
kill a wireless connection quickly... and thats the sort of activity a
scan would do.

I think it may be possible that other things can interfere: notably
virus scanners. Some like to monitor every file opened and scan it
just to make sure nothing is bad in an mp3... adding a virus scan to
each of the thousands of files would be... painful. Are you running
the same antivirus software on both machines with the same settings?

The noisiest, er, most verbose posters here have huge collections
(actually someone posted over the summer that they are close to 100,000
tracks.... more of a packrat than I am...) and you can bet they would be
screaming if it was normal for a rescan to take too long, so whatever
the hangup on your setup is there is a fix.

(Okay, you -could- confiscate the kids machine... but that would
probably create a revolution, so we'll hold that for a last ditch
thing...)
--
snarlydwarf
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Jack Coates
2006-12-30 03:53:13 UTC
Permalink
On 12/29/06, Recoveryone
Post by Recoveryone
I too have had the same problem with the slim server software on my more
powerful system (P4 2.8 gighz with 2 gig of ram twin 80 gigHD) I also
installed the slim server on the kids system (P3 800mhz 1gig ram with
twin 20 gigHD) the slim server works like is says on the kids system,
but it has never work correctly on my system. Some times when it
works/pops up I try to have the slim ware scan my music files and it
never finish's other times I can't get the slim ware to pop up at all.
I have re-install it 10-12 times even deleting files from the reg to
make sure its a clean install. the only difference in these system on
the connection side is that my system is wireless and the kids is
hardwired to the router. which I dont see how that would effect the
Um, if it works fine on your kid's system but goes slow on your system
with faster hardware, you're probably not going to like the answer...

a) it's security software on your system which isn't on your kid's
system or is configured differently, so that your system goes slower.
b) it's lack of security software, and your system is infested with no
end of spyware which makes it go slow.

Could be something more innocuous like wireless versus wired, but my
bet's on spyware.
--
"I spent all me tin with the ladies drinking gin,
So across the Western ocean I must wander" -- traditional
Lost Viking
2006-12-30 10:04:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by snarlydwarf
Something is wrong if it takes that long. I have a very underpowered
system (with 128M of RAM!) that works great as a server, and can do a
full scan of 17,000 tracks in less than 30 minutes....
Tags are read, a large database is filled with album names, track
names, artists, genres... so I can play all the Christmas music, or for
the next 48 weeks or so, play none of it... Especially mixed with
some of the plugins like TrackStat and DynamicPlaylist you can do nifty
things. ("Play everything I haven't listened to in the last month as
long as it isnt Christmas music")
The value of that of course depends on how good your tags are: typos
and spelling errors and inconsistent artist names will make it suck.
(Is it "Dylan"? Or "Bob Dylan" or "Dylan, Bob" or "Bobby Zimmerman"?)
You can use Browse Music Folder from the remote... I often play music
that way.
I go for days without touching a web browser and listen to music.
Under the Help menu is Softsqueeze... start that then kill the browser.
That will give you a fake Squeezebox (and if you change the skin, a
fake transporter) so you can see how the real one works (minus some
Java and emulation bugs anyway... but its close to the real one). No
web browser needed.
As for double clicking: you cant because why on Earth would you want to
be near a computer to listen to music. Use Winamp if you want that. If
you want to sit in a comfy chair far away from noisy fans of PCs and not
remove your ass from the chair just to change a song, then, a
Transporter or Squeezebox is what you want.
It works fine without using a web browser. Better, even, since all the
"convert this to HTML" can be pretty intensive: it is a ton of database
queries to make a web page.
How many tracks do you have? Are you using iTunes? Those can affect
scan time, as can Really Huge Directories (which are bad practice
anyway).
What parts of your network are wireless and what are wired? (Ie, it
would be very good if the connection between your server and the NAS
was wired... and very very slow if it was wireless... that is a ton of
disk accesses and network bandwidth to dump on a wireless link).
first of all I want to thank you for reading and dealing with my
problems. I appreciate very much!

I will give here some detailed information (as partly requested) on my
system:

* MS Win XP Prof SP2
* Celeron 900MHz (admittedly not exactly a rocket to the moon)
* Mainboard Intel S815EBM1
* SATA Seagate Barracuda 320GB (latest model)
* onboard graphics
* 512MB RAM

* Promise TX2300 RAID1
* NO iTunes!!!
* NO personal firewall
* Avira Antivir Personal Edition
* 1401 albums/18032 songs/750 artist (I would call it "midsized", at
best ;-)
* NO wLAN, all 100MBit wired ethernet
* realVNC remote access
* D-Link DI-604 wired broadband router, 5MBit/512kBit cable internet

coming soon:
* Slim Transporter
* B&W 802D Speaker
* Arcam FMJ C31 pre amp
* Arcam FMJ P1 amp
Post by snarlydwarf
"You can use Browse Music Folder from the remote... I often play music
that way."
could you please elaborate this a bit?
Post by snarlydwarf
"I go for days without touching a web browser and listen to music."
that's exactly why I bought the Slim thing :-)
Post by snarlydwarf
"How many tracks do you have? Are you using iTunes? Those can affect
scan time, as can Really Huge Directories (which are bad practice
anyway)."
1401/18032/750. is is organized as follows: one directory (i.e.
"Tiefenspeicher", for each album one separate sub directory:
\\Server1\tiefenspeicher\Bob Dylan - Another Side Of Bob Dylan
Post by snarlydwarf
"The value of that of course depends on how good your tags are: typos
and spelling errors and inconsistent artist names will make it suck.
(Is it "Dylan"? Or "Bob Dylan" or "Dylan, Bob" or "Bobby Zimmerman"?)"
yeah, this is part of my problem. using EAC and its freeDB access I
didn't pay as much attention to correct and consistent naming schemes
as I should have (now ripping for 4 years..). Repairing this will be a
huge effort... however, most of it is correct. but the "dylan, bob"
thing instead of "bob dylan" did happen from time to time...

I will do the following now:
First get a state of the art server. I don't want this bottleneck any
longer... This additional ~500USD won't make the difference.
(However, I read here some folks have even older machines and complete
the scan thing within a few minutes...)
--
Lost Viking
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Marc Sherman
2006-12-30 14:50:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
* MS Win XP Prof SP2
* Celeron 900MHz (admittedly not exactly a rocket to the moon)
* Mainboard Intel S815EBM1
* SATA Seagate Barracuda 320GB (latest model)
* onboard graphics
* 512MB RAM
* Promise TX2300 RAID1
* NO iTunes!!!
* NO personal firewall
* Avira Antivir Personal Edition
* 1401 albums/18032 songs/750 artist (I would call it "midsized", at
best ;-)
* NO wLAN, all 100MBit wired ethernet
* realVNC remote access
* D-Link DI-604 wired broadband router, 5MBit/512kBit cable internet
If all your music is on that local seagate drive (though you say it's
RAID 1, so presumably you have 2 of them?) then there's no reason
scanning 18000 files should take 5 hours, even on a 900MHz celeron.

You didn't mention MusicMagic/MusicIP. That can slow down scans in the
same way as iTunes. If you're running it, try disabling it and rescanning.

My only other guess would be your antivirus, which I've never heard of.
It could be scanning every MP3 that slimserver opens during the library
scan. That would certainly slow things down. Try disabling it and see if
a library scan goes faster. If it does, then try re-enabling it and
explicitly excluding all music file extensions (mp3, flac, ogg, aac,
wav, m3u, and whatever else you have in your collection) and see if that
helps.

- Marc
Lost Viking
2006-12-30 16:53:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by Marc Sherman
Post by Lost Viking
* MS Win XP Prof SP2
* Celeron 900MHz (admittedly not exactly a rocket to the moon)
* Mainboard Intel S815EBM1
* SATA Seagate Barracuda 320GB (latest model)
* onboard graphics
* 512MB RAM
* Promise TX2300 RAID1
* NO iTunes!!!
* NO personal firewall
* Avira Antivir Personal Edition
* 1401 albums/18032 songs/750 artist (I would call it "midsized", at
best ;-)
* NO wLAN, all 100MBit wired ethernet
* realVNC remote access
* D-Link DI-604 wired broadband router, 5MBit/512kBit cable internet
If all your music is on that local seagate drive (though you say it's
RAID 1, so presumably you have 2 of them?) then there's no reason
scanning 18000 files should take 5 hours, even on a 900MHz celeron.
You didn't mention MusicMagic/MusicIP. That can slow down scans in the
same way as iTunes. If you're running it, try disabling it and
rescanning.
My only other guess would be your antivirus, which I've never heard of.
It could be scanning every MP3 that slimserver opens during the library
scan. That would certainly slow things down. Try disabling it and see if
a library scan goes faster. If it does, then try re-enabling it and
explicitly excluding all music file extensions (mp3, flac, ogg, aac,
wav, m3u, and whatever else you have in your collection) and see if that
helps.
- Marc
I would like to state here again my gratitude for all of you, dealing
with my problems!

I will give it a try, setting the virus scan accordingly. However, I
bought a Intel Dual Core Core 2,4GHz 1GB RAM ASUS P5B in the meantime
;-) I hope, this is sufficient, if the virus scanner is NOT the reason
for slowdown...
--
Lost Viking
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Lost Viking
2006-12-30 22:52:25 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
I would like to state here again my gratitude for all of you, dealing
with my problems!
I will give it a try, setting the virus scan accordingly. However, I
bought a Intel Dual Core Core 2,4GHz 1GB RAM ASUS P5B in the meantime
;-) I hope, this is sufficient, if the virus scanner is NOT the reason
for slowdown...
Update:

Diabling the virus scanner didn't help. mp3 wasn't scanned anyway.
(exception already set). Canceled after two houers of scanning...

So now setting up new server (Dual Core, 2GB RAM, etc...)
I won't install any utilities and try scanning my HDD. I'll keep you
updated...
--
Lost Viking
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erland
2006-12-31 09:19:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
Diabling the virus scanner didn't help. mp3 wasn't scanned anyway.
(exception already set). Canceled after two houers of scanning...Do you have any playlist files in the directories that are scanned ?
I think I have heard people having performance problem if playlist
files exists and they contains references to non existing tracks. There
are also people that have had problems with some sort of circular
dependences with incorrect playlist files.

You might want to try to point the "Music Folder" setting to a sub
directory of your library which doesn't contain any playlist files and
check if that seems to work a lot faster when scanning.
--
erland

Erland Isaksson
'My homepage' (http://erland.homeip.net) 'My download page'
(http://erland.homeip.net/download)
(Developer of 'TrackStat'
(http://erland.homeip.net/download/do/viewapplication?name=slimserver-trackstat)
, 'SQLPlayList'
(http://erland.homeip.net/download/do/viewapplication?name=slimserver-sqlplaylist)
, 'DynamicPlayList'
(http://erland.homeip.net/download/do/viewapplication?name=slimserver-dynamicplaylist),
'Custom Browse'
(http://erland.homeip.net/download/do/viewapplication?name=slimserver-custombrowse),'Custom
Scan'
(http://erland.homeip.net/download/do/viewapplication?name=slimserver-customscan)
and 'RandomPlayList'
(http://erland.homeip.net/download/do/viewapplication?name=slimserver-randomplaylist)
plugins)
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shabbs
2006-12-30 17:49:06 UTC
Permalink
I have a very underpowered system (with 128M of RAM!) that works great
as a server, and can do a full scan of 17,000 tracks in less than 30
minutes....
Wow. How do you achieve this? What format is your music in? Do you have
album art? My full scan takes several hours (12,000 mp3 tracks). My
music is on a NAS device and everything has album art so I'm sure that
adds a bit, but still, 17K track in less than 30 mins... wow.

Cheers.
--
shabbs

[shabbs]

*MP3s:* 71.6 GB / 10,221 songs and growing!
*Rip/encode:* 'EAC' (http://www.exactaudiocopy.de/) 0.95b4 [secure] w/
'Lame' (http://www.rarewares.org/mp3.html) v3.97 [-V 0]
*Audio:* 'SB1' (http://www.slimdevices.com/pi_squeezebox.html) -->
boombox; 'SB3' (http://www.slimdevices.com/pi_squeezebox.html) -->
Technics SA-DX1040 --> JBL E30's
*Storage:* 'Linksys NSLU2'
(http://www.linksys.com/servlet/Satellite?c=L_Product_C2&childpagename=US%2FLayout&cid=1118334819312&pagename=Linksys%2FCommon%2FVisitorWrapper),
'WDG1U5000 500GB External USB Drive'
(http://www.westerndigital.com/en/products/products.asp?driveid=232&language=en)
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snarlydwarf
2006-12-30 17:57:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by shabbs
Wow. How do you achieve this? What format is your music in? Do you have
album art? My full scan takes several hours (12,000 mp3 tracks). My
music is on a NAS device and everything has album art so I'm sure that
adds a bit, but still, 17K track in less than 30 mins... wow.
Cheers.
Just a plain old cheap linux box: a $200 Dell (with a drive I stole
from another machine). 2.4G celeron, but only 128M.

Of course nothing else runs on the box.

And, yes, I have album art (and am actually pretty anal about it,
resorting at time to just taking a picture of the cover myself).
Album art is in cover.jpg and a scaled 150x150 thumb.jpg (a silly
script makes those so I always have a prescaled version).

The NAS drive probably adds a bunch of latency... all my files are
local.

Files are a mix of mp3 and flac, depending on how much I think quality
matters.

If I undo a hack with MusicMagic that I am playing with, it takes about
an hour to do a full scan... but then, that's why I fiddled with
MusicMagic's importer... I am not sure it is entirely correct what I
did so I wont say that it is a fix.... but it seems to be: i havent
found anything I broke terribly.
--
snarlydwarf
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Pale Blue Ego
2006-12-30 03:37:39 UTC
Permalink
It shouldn't take 5 hours to scan your music, unless you have a huge
library, like 50,000 tracks or more - or, unless you're running
slimserver on very underpowered hardware. Also in some cases, the scan
process can get in a loop due to broken shortcut links. You can log
errors during the scan process by checking the "d_scan" setting in the
slimserver web interface (Home / Server Settings / Debugging)

As far as why the scan process has to happen, it's because slimserver
is building a database. It pulls information out of each file and
holds it in large tables that are easy to search. Slimserver can't
give instant access to your collection until it knows what's IN your
collection.

There's an easy way to add new music to slimserver without having to do
a complete rescan. Use "Browse Music Folder", either from the remote
control or the web interface. You just navigate to the folder where
the newly added music is, and slimserver will add those tracks to the
database. You can also play the new tracks now.

Hang in there and we'll help you get straightened out. Slimserver does
have its quirks, but it is generally solid and quite flexible once you
get used to it. Tell us about your server hardware, server operating
system, size of your music collection, which version of Slimserver are
you using, stuff like that.
--
Pale Blue Ego
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Lost Viking
2006-12-30 10:07:44 UTC
Permalink
Post by Pale Blue Ego
It shouldn't take 5 hours to scan your music, unless you have a huge
library, like 50,000 tracks or more - or, unless you're running
slimserver on very underpowered hardware. Also in some cases, the scan
process can get in a loop due to broken shortcut links. You can log
errors during the scan process by checking the "d_scan" setting in the
slimserver web interface (Home / Server Settings / Debugging)
As far as why the scan process has to happen, it's because slimserver
is building a database. It pulls information out of each file and
holds it in large tables that are easy to search. Slimserver can't
give instant access to your collection until it knows what's IN your
collection.
There's an easy way to add new music to slimserver without having to do
a complete rescan. Use "Browse Music Folder", either from the remote
control or the web interface. You just navigate to the folder where
the newly added music is, and slimserver will add those tracks to the
database. You can also play the new tracks now.
Hang in there and we'll help you get straightened out. Slimserver does
have its quirks, but it is generally solid and quite flexible once you
get used to it. Tell us about your server hardware, server operating
system, size of your music collection, which version of Slimserver are
you using, stuff like that.
thank you for your reply!
please find the requested details here:

* MS Win XP Prof SP2
* Celeron 900MHz (admittedly not exactly a rocket to the moon)
* Mainboard Intel S815EBM1
* SATA Seagate Barracuda 320GB (latest model)
* onboard graphics
* 512MB RAM

* Promise TX2300 RAID1
* NO iTunes!!!
* NO personal firewall
* Avira Antivir Personal Edition
* 1401 albums/18032 songs/750 artist (I would call it "midsized", at
best ;-)
* NO wLAN, all 100MBit wired ethernet
* realVNC remote access
* D-Link DI-604 wired broadband router, 5MBit/512kBit cable internet

coming soon:
* Slim Transporter
* B&W 802D Speaker
* Arcam FMJ C31 pre amp
* Arcam FMJ P1 amp
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Patrick Dixon
2006-12-30 10:23:29 UTC
Permalink
1) You need a faster server if you want better performance.
2) It will work better without SoftSqueeze
3) If it's a dedicated server, you could try a headless linux without
any GUI running, Clarkconnect works really well for me.
4) On the remote or Web UI, select Browse, then Music Folders and you
will see a directory type listing of all your music. Slimserver will
show you this even if it hasn't scanned it into it's library. As you
navigate down to track level, you can play music directly, and SS will
add the tracks to its library. So the quickest way to add a new CD, is
to navigate down to the tracks using Music Folder.
--
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www.at-tunes.co.uk
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Lost Viking
2006-12-30 10:33:12 UTC
Permalink
thanks for your reply!
Post by Patrick Dixon
1) You need a faster server if you want better performance.
2) It will work better without SoftSqueeze
3) If it's a dedicated server, you could try a headless linux without
any GUI running, Clarkconnect works really well for me.
I didn't go into the LINUX thing so far.. Maybe I should.
Post by Patrick Dixon
4) On the remote or Web UI, select Browse, then Music Folders and you
will see a directory type listing of all your music. Slimserver will
show you this even if it hasn't scanned it into it's library. As you
navigate down to track level, you can play music directly, and SS will
add the tracks to its library. So the quickest way to add a new CD, is
to navigate down to the tracks using Music Folder.
It takes ~45secs from clicking to diplaying the result page. Is this
normal? Will it be as slow using the Transporter (once I have it in my
hands, it is still on its way..)?? *shudder*
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Phil Karn
2006-12-31 08:05:14 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
It takes ~45secs from clicking to diplaying the result page. Is this
normal? Will it be as slow using the Transporter (once I have it in my
hands, it is still on its way..)?? *shudder*
No, that's definitely not normal. IMHO, the Slimserver web interface
could be a lot faster, but here it's still only a couple of seconds at most.

One of the recent Slimserver updates apparently added a lot of internal
threading. That noticeably sped up the web interface. Make sure you're
running recent code.

Let me add a hearty amen to the other suggestions to run Slimserver on
Linux, not Windows. Windows is a terrible server OS. Scratch that,
Windows is a terrible OS, period. Jettisoning all that virus scanning
cruft is just one of many reasons to dump it.

Here are some other suggestions to speed up a file server. First, avoid
external USB hard drives. In my experience, a USB 2.0 external drive is
less than half as fast as an internal drive.

Second, if you have the cabinet space and the budget, consider RAID.
Without RAID (or a current backup), a failed drive is a major disaster.
(Do you really want to re-rip a thousand CDs?) With RAID, a failed drive
is just a minor nuisance. RAID can also speed up read performance quite
noticeably. Linux has a very nice software RAID subsystem that avoids
having to spend money on hardware RAID controllers.

--Phil
ceejay
2006-12-31 09:02:42 UTC
Permalink
Just to chip in with a few assorted views...

- while I agree that Windows isn't much of an OS, please don't get the
idea that you can't run SS satisfactorily on it. You can. Scanning
doesn't take forever for everyone.

- if you're lucky, it may well be that simply building a new box will
avoid whatever nasty is lurking in your current one. For people who
have more time than money (perhaps not most transporter buyers!!) just
rebuilding might be worth a go

- if you're not so lucky, it may be something odd about your library in
which case you'll have exactly the same problem as before (well,
slightly quicker as you'll have a faster CPU).

- this has been discussed at length elsewhere - so I don't mean to open
up the question all over again but rather to point out that there is
another POV - but IMHO RAID is a really bad way to protect yourself
against music library data loss, as it offers no protection at all
against a whole class of likely problems including user error and rogue
software. While a good hardware RAID can speed things up, a poor one
(especially if its in software) can really slow things up, too.

- make sure you install a 6.5.1 nightly

- no-one seems to have mentioned this before ... please tell us you're
not really going to use a Transporter just to play mp3s!

Ceejay
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Lost Viking
2006-12-31 23:28:27 UTC
Permalink
Post by ceejay
Just to chip in with a few assorted views...
- while I agree that Windows isn't much of an OS, please don't get the
idea that you can't run SS satisfactorily on it. You can. Scanning
doesn't take forever for everyone.
Yes, I thought so. For now, it will be Windows. Maybe as part of my New
Year's resolutions I will try to get in touch with Linux :-)
Post by ceejay
- if you're lucky, it may well be that simply building a new box will
avoid whatever nasty is lurking in your current one. For people who
have more time than money (perhaps not most transporter buyers!!) just
rebuilding might be worth a go
Yes, this is exactly my intention. And the old server will be useful
anyway. Lot of stuff here to be safely stored using RAID (photos,
videos, documents, etc.)
Post by ceejay
- if you're not so lucky, it may be something odd about your library in
which case you'll have exactly the same problem as before (well,
slightly quicker as you'll have a faster CPU).
Correct. But in this case I can work on this specific problem and don't
have to bother with a million of other possible causes.

Maybe I should describe here at this point HOW I rip and store/manage
my music:

rip it (EAC, secure mode) & compress it (LAME 3.90.3, alt preset
standard)
this is my naming scheme: %A - %C\%N - %T - %C - %A
therefor: one CD = one folder
maybe worth mentioning: I tweak the permissions (is this the correct
translation? see attachment/screenshot) of my music folder to protect
myself from accidentially deleting files/folders, when manipulating
them. I strongly hope Slim Server makes no changes to my music files.
Therefor this limitation shouldn't affect SlimServer in a negative way,
I assume..
Post by ceejay
- this has been discussed at length elsewhere - so I don't mean to open
up the question all over again but rather to point out that there is
another POV - but IMHO RAID is a really bad way to protect yourself
against music library data loss, as it offers no protection at all
against a whole class of likely problems including user error and rogue
software. While a good hardware RAID can speed things up, a poor one
(especially if its in software) can really slow things up, too.
As mentioned above, I therefore take some precautions to avoid such:
Backup data, limited permissions.
Post by ceejay
- make sure you install a 6.5.1 nightly
ok
Post by ceejay
- no-one seems to have mentioned this before ... please tell us you're
not really going to use a Transporter just to play mp3s!
Ceejay
Meaning mp3 is a lossy format not living up to the expectations a
"true" (whatever this is..) audiophile listener should use?
Well, I did some testing (using a high qualitiy hifi set), comparing CD
to qualitiy mp3 using a blind testing setup and I have to say. Little
difference, if any..
Maybe I got you wrong in this point, but what else should I use
Transporter for but to listening to my music over the network.
What I do NOT do is downloading some crappy 128kBit mp3's at kazaa etc.
I only use my "home grown" stuff..

Maybe I would consider FLAC if I would start today building a music
collection. When I begun, 4 years ago, HDD storage wasn't as cheap as
today. Besides, I was a student at this time, with all the negative
side effects, such as a limited budget, etc.

Please elaborate, if you meant something different. Any advice welcome!


+-------------------------------------------------------------------+
|Filename: rechte.JPG |
|Download: http://forums.slimdevices.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=2207|
+-------------------------------------------------------------------+
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ceejay
2007-01-01 01:03:21 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
Meaning mp3 is a lossy format not living up to the expectations a
"true" (whatever this is..) audiophile listener should use?
Well, I did some testing (using a high qualitiy hifi set), comparing CD
to qualitiy mp3 using a blind testing setup and I have to say. Little
difference, if any..
Maybe I got you wrong in this point, but what else should I use
Transporter for but to listening to my music over the network.
What I do NOT do is downloading some crappy 128kBit mp3's at kazaa etc.
I only use my "home grown" stuff..
Maybe I would consider FLAC if I would start today building a music
collection. When I begun, 4 years ago, HDD storage wasn't as cheap as
today. Besides, I was a student at this time, with all the negative
side effects, such as a limited budget, etc.
Please elaborate, if you meant something different. Any advice welcome!
What I meant was... if you're listening to mp3's, I would be gobsmacked
if you can tell the difference between a transporter and an unmodified
Squeezebox at one eighth the price... An SB3 is pretty good, you
know!

As for the mp3 vs FLAC thing - yes, time changes all things especially
related to technology. And if your MP3's sound good to you, there's no
need to re-rip them. However it would be prudent, now that disc space is
so cheap, to rip new music in FLAC now, just in case you find that you
can tell the difference in the future.

Ceejay
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Peter
2007-01-01 10:08:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
Yes, this is exactly my intention. And the old server will be useful
anyway. Lot of stuff here to be safely stored using RAID (photos,
videos, documents, etc.)
RAID doesn't protect against a lot of things. In domestic situations
you're usually better off with some kind of (daily) mirror or snapshot
(rsnapshot) system.

I run an rsnapshot backup of all my important files (documents, photo's,
personal video's, music) every night. The disadvantage of this approach
is that any files changed during a day may be lost if a disk fails
between the change and the time the snapshot is taken. For me this is a
small but acceptable risk.

When someone or someone wipes your disk clean with a badly placed 'rm
-rf' your RAID won't save you. I maybe particularly clumsy, but I've
lost more files to human error than to failing hard disks.

My snapshots are stored on a colo server in a different city so my
backup solution should be nuke-proof, even if I'm not :(

http://www.rsnapshot.org/

Regards,
Peter
Lost Viking
2007-01-01 12:05:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by Peter
Post by Lost Viking
Yes, this is exactly my intention. And the old server will be useful
anyway. Lot of stuff here to be safely stored using RAID (photos,
videos, documents, etc.)
RAID doesn't protect against a lot of things. In domestic situations
you're usually better off with some kind of (daily) mirror or snapshot
(rsnapshot) system.
I run an rsnapshot backup of all my important files (documents, photo's,
personal video's, music) every night. The disadvantage of this approach
is that any files changed during a day may be lost if a disk fails
between the change and the time the snapshot is taken. For me this is a
small but acceptable risk.
When someone or someone wipes your disk clean with a badly placed 'rm
-rf' your RAID won't save you. I maybe particularly clumsy, but I've
lost more files to human error than to failing hard disks.
My snapshots are stored on a colo server in a different city so my
backup solution should be nuke-proof, even if I'm not :(
http://www.rsnapshot.org/
Regards,
Peter
Thank you for your thoughts/ideas.

I do not rely on RAID only. In additon I am snapshotting my data once
in a while. What I haven't implemented so far is an automation of this
procedure. Maybe the program you mentioned is the missing link, I will
have a close look on it.
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ceejay
2007-01-01 13:23:05 UTC
Permalink
If I am not wrong, this is a LINUX only program. Whack me, but I am not
(yet) using Linux. Is there an alternative available for Windows?
I use Microsoft's SyncToy (free download). But I prefer to have my
library backup initiated manually - sod's law states that any automated
backup always kicks in just before you realise that you've just messed
up your data...

This is as opposed to my file system backup which is automated because
it's small enough that I can afford to keep several rolling copies.

Ceejay
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Peter
2007-01-01 14:24:43 UTC
Permalink
Post by ceejay
If I am not wrong, this is a LINUX only program. Whack me, but I am not
(yet) using Linux. Is there an alternative available for Windows?
I use Microsoft's SyncToy (free download). But I prefer to have my
library backup initiated manually - sod's law states that any automated
backup always kicks in just before you realise that you've just messed
up your data...
This is as opposed to my file system backup which is automated because
it's small enough that I can afford to keep several rolling copies.
The rsnapshot script is Linux only because it uses hard links (a Unix
feature) to keep the snapshot sizes as small as possible. Each snapshot
is a complete copy of the filesystem when it was backupped, but the
files that haven't changed since the previous snapshot are just hard
links that don't take up any space.

I keep 7 daily and 8 weekly snapshots of (currently) 121GB in
photos/music/movies & documents and it takes up only 128GB on the
snapshot drive.

That gives me 2 months to realize that I messed up my data. I know that
even that may not always be enough.

Manual backups are no good for me. I often forget them and they give me
this semi permanent nagging feeling that I'll pay for to avoid.

Regards,
Peter
Michael Herger
2007-01-01 16:38:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by Peter
The rsnapshot script is Linux only because it uses hard links (a Unix
feature) to keep the snapshot sizes as small as possible.
There's a similar feature in recent Windows versions, it's called
"junction" or something. I've seen at least one script similar to
rsnapshot using this on Windows (but the link is German only - the script
probably not):

http://www.heise.de/ct/ftp/06/09/126/

I haven't used this as I'm a happy rsnapshot user on Linux :-)
--
Michael

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Lost Viking
2006-12-31 16:52:25 UTC
Permalink
Post by Phil Karn
Post by Lost Viking
It takes ~45secs from clicking to diplaying the result page. Is this
normal? Will it be as slow using the Transporter (once I have it in
my
Post by Lost Viking
hands, it is still on its way..)?? *shudder*
No, that's definitely not normal. IMHO, the Slimserver web interface
could be a lot faster, but here it's still only a couple of seconds at most.
Ok, this is definitely the case here, with or without virus scanners
etc. active... Keeping fingers crossed for my new server
Post by Phil Karn
Windows is a terrible OS, period. Jettisoning all that virus scanning
cruft is just one of many reasons to dump it.+
Ok, I will go into Linux, not now, but I will, promised :-) The IT
professionals in my company use almost exclusively freeBSD for any kind
of server.
Post by Phil Karn
Here are some other suggestions to speed up a file server. First, avoid
external USB hard drives. In my experience, a USB 2.0 external drive is
less than half as fast as an internal drive.
Second, if you have the cabinet space and the budget, consider RAID.
Without RAID (or a current backup), a failed drive is a major disaster.
(Do you really want to re-rip a thousand CDs?) With RAID, a failed drive
is just a minor nuisance. RAID can also speed up read performance quite
noticeably. Linux has a very nice software RAID subsystem that avoids
having to spend money on hardware RAID controllers.
--Phil
* No external drives in use here for this purpose.
* Although I have no spare room I use RAID, notably RAID1, which saved
my data a couple of times. In addition once in a while (i.e. after each
update of my music archive) I manually copy all files to an external
drive which is stored in a separate place.
--
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JJZolx
2006-12-30 04:46:06 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
1)
It took more than 5 (!) hours to scan my music collection. This is
awful! I added a few files and performed the "look for new and changed
music" option. And it seems to take another 5 our scan to make it
available for Squeezebox/Transporter. So in future, if I rip a new CD,
place it on my file server, I can listen to it the next day, at the
earliest, after having performed an overnight 5 hour scan?? :-((
If you want faster scan times, you'll probably need a faster server.
My library of 14,000 tracks takes less than 15 minutes to scan on a
not-particularly-fast P4 server. If you're going to invest $2000 in a
computer audio device, another couple hundred may not be unreasonable
for the computer that feeds it.
Post by Lost Viking
2)
Beside this, I donŽt even understand WHY and WHAT has to be
"scanned".... I am using my mp3 collection (RAID1 server) whithout any
scanning and other creepy stuff. I am simply using a network share,
double click the files & play them using Winamp. Now my music is
scanned and re-sorted using tag information. I thought I can use
Transporter the same way just as I did using winamp on my PC. I am
afraid, this will not be possible :-( (correct me if I am wrong...)
No, it doesn't work the same as Winamp or other PC-based music software
in which you're browsing in Windows Explorer and clicking on files.
Post by Lost Viking
In other words: The by far most preferred and expected behaviour of
Transporter would have been to take me quickly through the folders (one
folder = one album) of my file system. After dealing with SlimServer, I
am afraid, I am forced to accomodate this new and (from my point of
view clumsy) way to handle music. (again, please correct me, if I am
wrong...)
There is a Browse Music Folder browse mode, but it can be a little
slower than the other browse modes. Yes, SlimServer will be new. I
used Winamp for years before using SlimServer and I must say that I
love the browse modes that SlimServer presents. Browse by Genre (How
do you do that in Explorer?) or browse by Artist, Album Year, etc. If
you're like most people, then you organize your library by artist.
Browsing by Artist will be very similar to browsing artist and album
folders in Explorer, with some added benefits. First, album art can be
displayed. Second, you can easily include among the artist's albums,
those where the artist is only a guest or has just one or two tracks.
Post by Lost Viking
3)
Why is this software browser-based? It is laggy, takes more time to
load than the crappiest website at the end of the world...
Several reasons. Cross-platform compatibility is one - the server can
be run on a number of different operating systems. Centralized
management is a more important reason, IMO. You can have several
Squeezeboxes running in your home and you can control them from any
computer or PDA on your home network.

I would suggest that if it's too slow, you may need a faster server.
The thing about the Squeezebox and Transporter is that the SlimServer
computer is a very large part of the "brain" that runs the device. If
you skimp on the computer, you can end up with a device that functions
poorly.

One thing I found out about using a network share for the music file
storage is that it can have a very large impact on SlimServer's
scanning performance. I'm not quite sure why that is (other than being
an enormous amount of data to pull across the network to be analyzed)
but moving the music to a local hard disk on the SlimServer itself
improved scan times by a factor of three.
Post by Lost Viking
Ok, for all of you having read until here: THANKS FOR LISTENING! At the
moment I am frustrated and have the strong feeling having made a 2k USD
bad buy :-((
That's a lot of cash to plunk down before you know how a device is
going to operate.
--
JJZolx

Jim
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SuperQ
2006-12-30 06:02:46 UTC
Permalink
Post by JJZolx
Several reasons. Cross-platform compatibility is one - the server can
be run on a number of different operating systems. Centralized
management is a more important reason, IMO. You can have several
Squeezeboxes running in your home and you can control them from any
computer or PDA on your home network.
Yea, we use a slimserver at work to play music in our cube.. having
access to the web interface is great for everyone to be able to cue up
tracks.

We even tried running our slimserver under a Xen instance on a test
server in our datacenter just for fun. 256mb of ram for the Xen
virtual machine, didn't seem slow at all.

Slimserver doesn't need that much power.. My parrents run it on a
P2-300 with 256MB.. it's a dedicated slimserver and ripping/encoding
machine.
--
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Siduhe
2006-12-30 04:55:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
3) Why is this software browser-based? It is laggy, takes more time to
load than the crappiest website at the end of the world...
I would second what JJZ says about giving it a bit of time. The sheer
ease and breadth of the functionality gets hidden behind the look of
the interface on my first viewing too. However, everything I've ever
needed Slimserver to do, it's done (or someone here's been able to make
up a way for it to do it) and it's opened up parts of my music
collection I forgot existed.

On the software point - if you don't like the Web UI, there are other
options. Moose is a good example:
http://www.rusticrhino.com/drlovegrove/

Doesn't replace Slimserver, but does a grand job of improving the front
end.
--
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Recoveryone
2006-12-30 06:11:47 UTC
Permalink
I went and look at my browsers settings that was mention early in
another post to make sure my content was not messing up the SS, that
was ok (marked off) what I did notice that my security level was a bit
high. I turned it down all the way and also D/L the 6.5.1. patch off
the nightly site and install it. after loading it all and re-booting it
worked fine.
--
Recoveryone

SqueezeBox 3 (comming soon)
Netgear Mp101 analog connected
Pioneer Elite VSX-81TX
Pioneer Elite DV-45A
Pioneer Elite M53 CD
Pioneer M66R Cassette
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Lost Viking
2006-12-30 10:23:54 UTC
Permalink
Post by Siduhe
I would second what JJZ says about giving it a bit of time. The sheer
ease and breadth of the functionality gets hidden behind the look of
the interface on my first viewing too. However, everything I've ever
needed Slimserver to do, it's done (or someone here's been able to make
up a way for it to do it) and it's opened up parts of my music
collection I forgot existed.
On the software point - if you don't like the Web UI, there are other
http://www.rusticrhino.com/drlovegrove/
Doesn't replace Slimserver, but does a grand job of improving the front
end.
thanks for your reply! I will try out the things you outlined.
--
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Michael Herger
2006-12-30 07:32:10 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
And it seems to take another 5 our scan to make it
available for Squeezebox/Transporter. So in future, if I rip a new CD,
place it on my file server, I can listen to it the next day, at the
earliest, after having performed an overnight 5 hour scan?? :-((
Something nobody mentioned: you can use Browse Music Folder to go to that
folder. It will be indexed in a few seconds.
--
Michael

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Lost Viking
2006-12-30 10:56:47 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
I just ordered Slim Device Transporter.
While waiting I decided to install and set up SlimServer software.
I have to say, the way it is operating is a bit disappointing :-(
I strongly hope, the device itself (Transporter) is better.
1)
It took more than 5 (!) hours to scan my music collection. This is
awful! I added a few files and performed the "look for new and changed
music" option. And it seems to take another 5 our scan to make it
available for Squeezebox/Transporter. So in future, if I rip a new CD,
place it on my file server, I can listen to it the next day, at the
earliest, after having performed an overnight 5 hour scan?? :-((
2)
Beside this, I donŽt even understand WHY and WHAT has to be
"scanned".... I am using my mp3 collection (RAID1 server) whithout any
scanning and other creepy stuff. I am simply using a network share,
double click the files & play them using Winamp. Now my music is
scanned and re-sorted using tag information. I thought I can use
Transporter the same way just as I did using winamp on my PC. I am
afraid, this will not be possible :-( (correct me if I am wrong...)
In other words: The by far most preferred and expected behaviour of
Transporter would have been to take me quickly through the folders (one
folder = one album) of my file system. After dealing with SlimServer, I
am afraid, I am forced to accomodate this new and (from my point of
view clumsy) way to handle music. (again, please correct me, if I am
wrong...)
3) Why is this software browser-based? It is laggy, takes more time to
load than the crappiest website at the end of the world...
Ok, for all of you having read until here: THANKS FOR LISTENING! At the
moment I am frustrated and have the strong feeling having made a 2k USD
bad buy :-((
Maybe this is an important information: During installation this error
occured (see attachment).


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Lost Viking
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Lost Viking's Profile: http://forums.slimdevices.com/member.php?userid=9290
View this thread: http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=31095
NewBuyer
2006-12-30 11:24:56 UTC
Permalink
Post by Lost Viking
Maybe this is an important information: During installation this error
occured (see attachment).
I post this quote from another thread, which helped me with my new
SlimServer install.
Post by Lost Viking
The solution was easy enough: I uninstalled Slimserver; searched for
perl58.dll and found it in the Windows Temp folder, copied it to
Windows/System, reinstalled Slimserver and this time got no error
message.
After uninstalling SlimServer, doing the above advice from vdorta, and
reinstalling SlimServer, the error and problem went away and install
was clean.

Should probably be addressed by SlimDevices ASAP. I see from a search
that this problem has been around for quite a while, with no fix (?)
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NewBuyer
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Pale Blue Ego
2006-12-30 14:32:37 UTC
Permalink
Lost Viking, you might want to look at your Avira settings. The
anti-virus application might be inspecting each music file as
slimserver opens it. If that's the case, your scan will take forever.
You should be able to tell the anti-virus program to ignore mp3 files
and other music filetypes.
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Pale Blue Ego
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Lost Viking
2007-01-01 03:10:37 UTC
Permalink
I am now ready with my 2.4GHz Dual as my new music server.

What I did so far:

Installing Windows XP, incl. servicepack & updates
Installing the appropriate drivers
Installing the latest nighty version of SlimServer
Setting the permissions (see above)
nothing else (esp. no anti virus progs, etc.)

Tried to scan my library:
start at 03:33
finished 03:50
"Your music library contains 1407 albums with 18083 songs by 751
artists."

Pretty happy here!! Happy new year everybody! :-))

(What I learned out of this: Get a state of the art PC as your backend!
PII 900MHz probably won't be sufficient, esp. if you run WinXP as OS)
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Lost Viking
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