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Railfan Technology > watching videos on TO

Date: 11/17/18 17:35
watching videos on TO
Author: MEKoch

Watching videos:  I have an HP laptop about two years old.  When I watch videos on TO, they frequently halt and resume and halt and resume, etc.   Do I need updated software on my laptop?   Or is TO too busy?   Or?

Thanks for your help, as I am old and am technically challenged.  

Date: 11/17/18 18:18
Re: watching videos on TO
Author: BRAtkinson

Depending on whether you bought a low-price laptop or something over $400 or so can make the difference.  So can your internet service provider (ISP).

Videos consume a tremendous amount of bandwidth.  Even transmitting still pictures takes a while.  Part of the reason is that the resolution of the images and videos has increased, meaning there's more bits/bytes/KB/MB/GB being transmitted.  Your internet company, like Kommie Kast (it's a long story) may be slow to upgrade equipment to handle ever increasing numbers of users streaming data.  HULU, NETFLIX, SLING, etc serve an ever growing number of 'cable cutters' thereby increasing usage of the very same cables, etc. Almost forgot...the 'cloud' is ever growing and also consuming cable company resources as well.

It could also be that the router in your house is slow!  If there's multiple people concurrently watching videos at your house, everyone will have periods of 'stop and go' activity.  Remember, cell phones will use the WiFi in your house if it's available...all coming through your router. 

Lower end laptops, as well as lower end 'bargain priced' desktop computers have 'cut corners' in terms of speed.  Whether it's slower processors (a necessity on a laptop due to temperature control), processors with a reduced set of internal instructions (including video processors), and even insufficient RAM can cause slow downs and start-stop operation.

As you indicated it's videos on Trainorders, it could also be you're simply hitting TO at 'busier times' (like Saturday nights) and as business grows for TO, there isn't enough 'horsepower' to handle peak traffic times with several thousand users simultaneously accessing the site.  

For what it's worth, I build my own computers and currently have a liquid-cooled 'screamer'.  Even my computer runs into start-stop videos on Youtube as well as TO, so it isn't just a TO problem, but could be a problem anywhere on the web between your house and the TO server system.  And I have a 'good' cable company...Charter Cable.  But there's talk that some communities including mine may be switched over to 'the dark side' as part of the Time Warner/AOL deal and other deals as well.

Date: 11/19/18 00:06
Re: watching videos on TO
Author: cchan006

MEKoch Wrote:
> Watching videos:  I have an HP laptop about two
> years old.  When I watch videos on TO, they
> frequently halt and resume and halt and resume,
> etc.   Do I need updated software on my laptop?
>   Or is TO too busy?   Or?
> Thanks for your help, as I am old and am
> technically challenged. 

You'll need to provide more info, EVEN if it's obvious. Windows? Linux? Which version of Windows?

First thing - do not update your software because of video playback issues, at least not until you have more clues.

Also the days of "clean install" to fix your OS is over (since Windows 98), and while you're unlike to do so, don't listen to anyone who suggests doing that, because many old time PC users did that to fix the unfixable, and that only wastes time, and no longer works.

Halt and resume is usually a symptom of network bandwidth, or lack there of. 2 year old PC should be able to handle almost all videos on TO with sufficient network bandwidth, unless someone uploaded it in 60 fps (frames per second), which will eat up a lot of your PC's CPU/GPU power. Most videos should be in 30 fps.

So keep your 2 year old HP. I've been watching videos here on TO successfully with a 10 year old PC.

Try watching different videos on TO, to see if you experience similar symptoms. That'll help narrow it down (network vs. uploaded video).

Date: 11/23/18 12:01
Re: watching videos on TO
Author: TCnR

Select the video, let it get started, then pause it and watch the grey bar at the bottom accumulate to about half way across the screen then resume the video. If the two two bars acrss the bottom catch up with each other either pause or re-select the progress bar near the beginning.

If that works and the video looks decent then you probably have a Network bandwidth issue, but you can watch a few videos.

Consider looking at the Task manager and the various tabs inside it. That may give a clue to something clogging the computer or some priority issue. That's where the techy side comes in, like not enough RAM or somebodies software hogging the machine. Often the browser is loading software to determine if an update is needed, or automatically loading an update. Maybe checking error files or other maintainance, sometimes a utility like CCleaner or turning off updates will help. But that part usually doesn't provide a simple 'big fix'.

Let us know how it works out..

Date: 11/24/18 09:44
Re: watching videos on TO
Author: SP4360

 We have 20meg DSL up in the mountains at Fubar Flats. Sometimes it catches up to itself and stalls, so it's easier and less frustating to just download and then watch.

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