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Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:42 pm
by timjackson
I just reached out to the Netflix NOC about this.

Netflix traffic over the past 7 days doesn't seem to have any abnormalities to it.. The one PCAP that was posted seems to not be coming from our openconnect appliances, but a Los Angeles IP that reaches us via Transit.

Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Sun Jul 19, 2015 8:18 pm
by drudiak
Just put this up on the Roku forum about this problem in hopes that maybe it will help Sonic people figure out what's going on. In particular, some shows stream (older, less popular ones), but most do not (new programs and older more popular ones).

Re: Netflix Connection Issues - July 2015

Previously reported problem,, Albany, CA, Roku 3, and noted some programs on Netflix still stream OK, but most don't. What I've found is that older, less popular programs tend to stream OK (Leave It To Beaver, Adam 12, Rockford Files, Emergency, McMillan and Wife, Quincy), but older, more popular TV shows, almost "cultish" (Twilight Zone, Andy Griffith Show, Columbo, MASH) do not. New (2012), but probably not-watched-much show Rita (Dutch) streams OK. Does Netflix have multiple pipes for different shows, newer more popular ones (don't stream), older, more popular ones (don't stream), and older/newer, less popular ones (usually stream)?

I can also tell which programs will work and which won't by watching how fast they buffer at the beginning. Shows that stream come up almost immediately; those that don't buffer a long time at 25% before starting (then kicking out at EXACTLY 2 minutes, perhaps indicating a possible Roku 3 watchdog timer is involved set at 2 minutes, that is triggered by a software/hardware problem involving affected shows.

Also problem seems to have started up about 2 weeks ago and seems to affect almost entirely, SF East Bay cities. Did Netflix or Sonic make a server software change about 2 weeks ago? My Roku 3 indicates last system update was June 2, so a month too early to have caused problem.

Seems like one place to start is Sonic is reviewing the servicing and seeing if something was changed in SF East Bay about 2 weeks ago. Or Sonic contacting Netflix and checking if they changed how they stream about 2 weeks ago.

I had perhaps a similar problem with my Roku 3 when I first got it, namely I couldn't get it to connect to my wireless network. Finally, after several days of frustration, I found a forum where they described Roku 3 using an internal router IP address that conflicted with mine. Resetting my router IP address solved the problem. Only a tiny percent of Roku 3's probably had this problem, since most routers would have been randomly set to some other internal IP address. I and few others just happened to win the loser's lottery. Ultimately it was an undocumented Roku 3 problem. Perhaps Roku 3 reserves some other address that is conflicting with Sonic or Netflix software. If it is some random address, it might make it hard for the engineers at Sonic to replicate the problem, just as only a few unlucky Roku 3 users couldn't connect to their routers, but most could.

The way to resolve this seems to be get Roku/Netflix/Sonic heads together since nobody is probably doing anything "wrong", but there is some incompatibility issue that can only be tracked down if there is some communication between companies.


Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jul 15, 2015 3:30 pm


Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Sun Jul 19, 2015 9:58 pm
by ptufts
Another roku-using sonic customer here. I'm on Fusion X2 with approx 8GB down. Netflix on the roku crashes a minute or so into episodes. I can use the Netflix app on my TV just fine, but the Roku one is kaput. Albany/Solano Ave CO I believe.

Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Mon Jul 20, 2015 8:43 am
To the post above about the PS3, that is the only other device besides my Roku 3 where I have the same issue (2 minute drop, or endless loading at 25%). Wii U, desktop, laptop, tablet and phone work flawlessly. Also Sonic in the Fairfield area. Someone on the Roku forums said that they were having trouble with their Roku 2 which had updated (white screen with red lettering). I still have the red screen with white lettering, and it works fine.

Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Tue Jul 21, 2015 10:41 am
by drudiak
Well we're posting. Is anybody listening? How about a progress report on resolving the problem?

Summary of user inputs: Sonic users in the SF East Bay (maybe elsewhere) lost their Netflix streaming early July when using Roku 2 & 3 boxes and maybe PS 3. Old Roku 1 boxes still work. Netflix programs affected (most) hang at 25% buffering for a long time, finally stream for EXACTLY 2 minutes, then go back to selection menu indicating entire program has streamed. System will indefinitely hang if try to fast forward past 2 minute mark. ONLY Netflix is affected. Netflix continues to stream OK on other devices (laptops, smartphones, etc.) All recommended fixes (resets, direct Ethernet connection to modem, disconnecting/reconnecting to Netflix, etc.) do NOT work. Some Netflix programs continue to stream (mostly less popular content such as some old movies and TV shows, documentaries), suggesting Netflix using at least two streams to deliver programs.

Best guess: Netflix did a software change to one of their streaming access points early July that somehow created an incompatibility problem (address? buffer size?) with sonic East Bay servers and Roku/PS3 boxes. Contact Netflix and see if a change was indeed made early July. Also check if change made to sonic East Bay servers early July. It may also be a problem with how newer Roku boxes access the internet.

Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Tue Jul 21, 2015 10:51 am
by timjackson
There's nothing on the Sonic side that can be seen about these issues and no network changes happened around the timeframe of this (or before). No network errors, buffer drops, or any other issues from our network edge down to the pop routers serving this.

Netflix is aware of the issue and are working on it, and as of right now we're waiting on Netflix/Roku to respond as the problem is outside of the control of Sonic.

Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 1:23 pm
by karenlynnc
Exact same Netflix problem reported here and on the Roku forum. Netflix "research team" said last night it's a Sonic problem. Have tried every fix suggested over the last week or two and nothing works. We also have this problem trying to stream Netflix on our xBox, which we used before we got the Roku3.

Weird, but we can stream Netflix on one iPad, but not our second one. And my 12 year old tried to use the iPad that we can stream on to connect to the TV (ok, I can't explain how he does this, but we're streaming on the iPad and he does something so what we're streaming on the iPad streams on the TV) and then the same old problem, it kicks us back out to the episode screen.

We're in Richmond / El Sobrante. I'm glad to know we're not the only one having this problem.

Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Wed Jul 22, 2015 11:05 pm
by amsluis
Just chiming in to add to the list. My issue is exactly as described by others: about a week ago, most shows would buffer slowly and then stop playing 2 minutes into it. I'm in Berkeley. Only my Roku 3 is affected, while other devices can stream just fine.

I've posted in the roku forums as well.

Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2015 3:22 pm
by In Albany
I've been a loyal customer for many, many years. While it seems that's ADSL configuration may well be revealing an unreasonable network incompatibility in Netflix code on the Roku 3, I'm not happy that appears uninterested in finding a solution for its customers. I think it very likely that does have the ability to address the issue. This has been going on for a couple of weeks, and I am sincerely thinking of going with another ISP. I'm paying a premium for ~7 Mbps and am losing patience. This experience is far from the that I knew in the past.

Re: Weird netflix connection issue

Posted: Thu Jul 23, 2015 3:53 pm
by kgc
As Tim stated earlier, it is our belief that this has absolutely nothing to do with our network or services and is completely beyond our control. We do host a Netflix Open Connect deployment in one of our data centers, but again, as Tim stated, nothing on on our side of it (the upstream port that it plugs into) show any anomalies or errors, nor are there any issues with any links or peers used to reach Netflix. Tim talked to their NOC and the implication was that they are aware that there are some problems and are working on it.