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View Full Version : Streaming video seizes up



05-01-2002, 03:51 PM
I have accessed one particular set of streaming video feeds now through FOUR separate referring websites, and on every occasion, for between a few hours and a few weeks, it has performed perfectly - full motion video and sound with only the occasional hiccup. Then suddenly, without warning, it begins to degrade; the full motion becomes a series of still frames, or a brief full motion lead-in giving place after a few seconds to still frames at about one per second. Then, a few hours/days later, it becomes totally unavailable, and remains permanently so. The window says 'Loading...' and never loads.

Yet if I find another route to the same feeds, they behave fine again, for a few hours or days before they degrade through that route too.

With previous episodes, the feed has also become unavailable through other machines I have access to.

But puzzlingly, with the latest incidence of this, the feeds are still accessible through DIAL-UP 56 Kbps connections on my partner's desktop and our shared laptop, and actually go better on these machines than they do on mine through 128 Kbps cable!

(The site has alternative links for 'fast' and 'slow' connections, but even when I take the slow connection, and even when I use the dial-up modem on my PC, I get the 1 fps treatment (even one frame every two seconds), when the speed on the other, much lower-specced machine is at least 3-5 fps!)

So we're talking two PCs using the same phone line at the same speed from adjacent rooms through the same ISP to the same site, with the same browser. One gets the feed passably; one gets it at 1 fps or less, or not at all.

Even more puzzlingly, I recently upgraded from Windows ME to XP, and the feed responded excellently again at first, immediately after the upgrade. I thought XP had solved the problem, but no; again the feed downgraded to still frames then total non-availability, in the space of three hours.

Being dissatisfied with some instability in XP, possibly due to ME remnants, I did a 'clean' install of XP this morning. Again the video feeds in question perked up. Now, about five hours later, we're back to 1 fps with a brief full motion lead-in.

Needless to say, the US-based providers of the feed and the various referring websites (also in the US) are mystified; I am the ONLY person EVER to have reported this problem to them...etc.

It is NOT apparently, a transmission problem, as I receive every other kind of streaming and live video satisfactorily.

My cable ISP has checked out the feeds, and says they're OK from their end - but they haven't, I assumed, kept on at them for a few days.

Any ideas why this ONE set of streaming video feeds behaves the way it does on MY machine and no other?

(It's like that one CD you have in your collection that plays perfectly on everyone's player but your own!)

More important, how do I fix it!?

And before anyone says so; yes, I HAVE thought to try clearning my browser cache. No improvement.

Any thoughts?

Argus