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Author Topic: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"  (Read 897 times)

PhDSM

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Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« on: March 27, 2023, 04:32:31 am »

For several years, which means several versions of MC,  I face a problem with the list of DLNA renderers in Playing Now.
I have 3 DNLA renderers running on Raspberries Pi with upmdcli as client.
My issue is the following :
When I restart windows and then autostart Media server and Media Center, most of the time no DNLA renderer shows  on the "Playing Now" list (even if I press Refresh Dynamic Entries). I have to exit MC and start again  and then they are all there.
Sometimes also, one of them disapear. If I check on windows explorer, it appears as media device but not on the MC Playing Now list (even if I use Refresh Dynamic Entries), again I have to exit and restart MC to find it.
How to investigate and fix such problem ?

Regards
Philippe
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markf2748

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2023, 01:17:40 am »

First WAG:  some issue with MC's Discovery Server on your system.  Here's an investigation to try:

(1) Open a tab showing (Left panel tree) > Services & Plug-ins > Media Network > Server > Device Discovery Server (SSDP)

(2) Look at the Port which MC lists right there for the Discovery Server.  Usually it is Port 1900 (UDP), which of course must be open in your LAN firewall.

(3) Look for events where your MC server does UDP polls asking for other network devices to identify themselves.  These have:
"Source" = your MC Server's IP Address
"Resource" = M-SEARCH: http://. . . . . :1900

(4) Now press "Refresh Dynamic Entries" as you described.

(5) On my system that press results in an immediate group of events of type (3) above.

Is that happening on your system after restart?

BTW, the rightmost button (just below the tabs) SSDP (Device Discovery) handily gives you discovered IP information, and also contains a rescan button.

It would take an auto-started Wireshark session to get all the response details, but maybe this little investigation can tell you something.

Another thing (Startup settings):

Under Windows Services, look for JRiver Media Center 30 ServiceRMB > Properties > Start up type > Manual
Seems counter-intuitive, but Manual startup currently works for me in conjunction with:

MC Options > Startup > Windows Startup > Run on Windows startup:  Media Center and Media Server.

At least for me on a simple Wi-Fi LAN, this combination apparently results in correct timing for the initial UDP polls.

I also have Media Center 30 set to "On" in Windows > Settings > Apps > Startup

Windows 11 Pro (64-bit)  JRiver MC 30.0.87
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JimH

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2023, 07:50:11 am »

PhDSM, it's DLNA, not DNLA.  I changed your subject.

What is the full version of MC that you're running?
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PhDSM

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #3 on: March 28, 2023, 10:40:19 am »

I'm currently running MC30.0.82 on Windows 10 pro version 21H2.
However I've faced this problem for many years (at least since MC28)
I didn't report before because the work around was easy as I need just to restart MC again to fix it, but after few years of restart MC at reboot, it starts to be annoying especialy when I use MC as remote media server and I'm away with no direct access to the interface to restart MC remotely.

System infos:
Processor I56500
Mother board ASUS H270-Pro
Link to internet via on board Ethernet 1G Adapter

Do you need more config info ?
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JimH

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2023, 11:01:48 am »

Something is different about your setup.  Two network segments?

What does the PC Ethernet connect to?  A cable modem/router?

Try running Media Server on Windows startup.
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PhDSM

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2023, 01:04:34 pm »

PC is connected to a switch, Pi's are connected either direct or via a Wifi AP , there are a total of 4 switches and 3 Wifi AP (and 4 raspberry Pi's) All are on the same Local network 192.168.1.xx.
When they are not found by MC  they are still visible in windows  explorer.

What do you mean by "Try running Media Server on Windows startup."  .
Currently both MC and MS are running on startup.  do you mean starting only MS  and then starting MC manualy ?
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JimH

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2023, 01:24:06 pm »

Can you move things to eliminate switches?  Just to test?  Simplifying the setup might give you a clue about what's wrong. 

Why so complex? 

If you have set MC to start Media Server on Windows Startup in MC's Startup options, that's all I meant.  It's a small footprint version of MC.  I'm thinking that something is slow and doing that should help.
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JimH

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2023, 01:44:23 pm »

I don't use switches but I believe you have multiple network segments and the traffic you want isn't getting there.

I realize that Windows sees things differently, but we really don't know how.

This has some basic information:  https://netcert.tripod.com/ccna/internetworking/lanseg.html

Unless you have to have them (a lot of devices), I would try building a network without them.
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JimH

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2023, 01:50:49 pm »

MC uses SSDP to discover UPnP devices.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simple_Service_Discovery_Protocol

Mark's description above is excellent.

SSDP uses multicast and I don't believe it can transit segments. 
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markf2748

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2023, 01:58:37 pm »

it starts to be annoying especialy when I use MC as remote media server and I'm away with no direct access to the interface to restart MC remotely
Aside FYI:  Within my LAN, I sometimes need to wake up the MC Server from sleep "remotely", i.e. from a different room.  I use an Android Wake on Lan app to do that.  Once in a while I also restart the server PC "remotely" as well.  In both cases, I can then resume MC music play with the Android apps without ever walking over to the server i.e. without ever logging in to my Windows desktop.
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PhDSM

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #10 on: March 29, 2023, 04:19:49 am »

I did some tests with the different startup options:

If I use auto startup of MC+MS : (which is my normal settings)
  both MS & MC start normaly but no DLNA devices are shown
      after  5mn :   nothing
      after refresh dynamic entries : nothing
      after restarting MC only  : nothing
      again 5mn and refresh : nothing
      if I close MS and restart both  : all DLNA devices are found after 5s.  it works fine

If I use auto startup of MS :
  both MS  start normaly and no DLNA devices are shown
      after  5mn :   nothing
      after refresh dynamic entries in MS : nothing
      when  I start MC  : nothing
      again 5mn and refresh : nothing
      if I close MS and restart only MS all DLNA devices are found after 5s.
      then MC  works fine

If I do not use auto startup  :
  After system is completely started +1-2  minutes I start MS : all DLNA devices are found after 5s.
      then MC  works fine

If I use auto startup of MC :
   MC start normaly and all DLNA devices are shown after 8s
 
It seems the problems occurs only if MS is in auto-startup mode in such case It never finds DLNA devices until  the process is restarted.

I have a question on the exact role of Media Server vs MC when using network acces, in which case we need it ?
I have DLNA renderer devices, I use Gizmo and Web access, also remote from another instance of MC on another PC, also access files directly from my TV.
During these tests,  I noticed that all these remote access seems working without MS running
What is the role of MS ? I think I misunderstood it
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JimH

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PhDSM

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #12 on: March 29, 2023, 09:26:03 am »

Still confused between Media Server and Media Center.  Reading documentation seems that media server is running in order access media from the network or other devices, so that why I put both MS and MC as startup.

Based on my recent experience with the previous testing, now I run only MC (not MS) and all my remote access (From TV, other Computer, Gizmo or Web) are still working without needing Media Server.

So why we need MS  if all remote access works with MC ?
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markf2748

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #13 on: March 29, 2023, 09:59:57 am »

Here's my outsider's take:

If JRiver Media Center 30 Service (MS) starts up "independently" of the Media Center 30 Process (MC, the usual GUI), it seems that proper communication between the MS servers and MC is not guaranteed until MC is restarted, as you have reported.

If MC starts up first, it will subsequently start up MS (if set to do so).  Apparently in this case MC properly displays the responses to the MS UDP M-SEARCH blasts (device discovery).  That is why I set them both to start up with Windows in the MC settings, but set MS startup type to "Manual" in Windows Services. I think these settings effectively insure that MC starts up first, followed by it opening MS.  In this case the whole shebang works even without logging into your desktop.

MS must be running on the server computer for other networked devices (player phone apps, MC clients) to remotely access the MC libraries on the server computer using DLNA.  If you do not explicitly start up MS, then it can be started by MC on the server computer.  To confirm, have a look at Windows Services on the server PC - I'll bet a $ that you find MS running in the background, in addition to the usual MC process.

A pure MC client has no need for local MS.  You will not find MS running as a Service on the client computer and the client's Media Network display does not show any servers.  At least that is how it appears based on what is exposed to this Windows user.

3/30/2023 Corrections & clarifications.
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JimH

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #14 on: March 29, 2023, 11:09:37 am »

Media Server _is_ Media Center, but just uses less memory and has no user interface.  If it's running, the Media Center interface will open faster.

PhDSM,
I think your problem is your complex network configuration.  Why are you using switches?
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PhDSM

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #15 on: March 29, 2023, 11:41:51 am »

You know,  I have 8 Cam's, 4 PCs, 1 Printer, 1 connected TV, 1 connected Amplifier, 3 wifi Acess points, 2 Pi's on RJ45, Domotic apppliances  total about 40 ip devices (30 on RJ45) all that connected thru 4X  8 ports switches located at different places, so I understand it is complex but I have a big house  ....

Anyway as I know now that Media Server is a subset of Media center and I  only need to autostart Media Center, my problem is fixed.
The test you ask me to do show that when I auto start only Media center, DLNA are found so it is fine.
Thanks for yor help
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thecrow

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Re: Finding DLNA renderer in "Playing Now"
« Reply #16 on: March 30, 2023, 05:17:14 am »

If you continue to have problems, my suggestion would be to look at the local firewall on your Windows machine.
I have experienced similar frustration that turned out to be settings in McAfee firewall that came with the anti-virus service I was running at the time.
It would mostly block MC from broadcasting the UDP search, but occasionally let some through.
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