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GenieGo Curiosity?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Connected Home' started by HoTat2, Aug 16, 2013.

  1. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    Say folks;

    Anyone have any idea why it is whenever the GenieGo is preparing a program for download, out of curiosity I sometimes try to check the IP traffic going in/out from the GG with the IP traffic monitor built into my Tomato router firmware, but always see little to no data flow during this process?

    Just very tiny infrequent pulses of IP packet flow at peaks of around 23.5 kps for an HD program I'm preparing right now for instance.

    I was always under the impression that when the GG is preparing a show it streams the program to it from a DVR in real time like a standard MRV session and then internally transcodes it?
     
  2. Go Beavs

    Go Beavs Hall Of Fame

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    I think you're correct in that the DVRs are streaming the full show to the GenieGo and it transcodes it. The traffic should be much higher than that.

    Is it possible that the traffic isn't going through the router? For example, is there a separate switch that is connected to the DVR and GenieGo? If that's the case, the router would be unable to see any of that and would only report traffic going through it and out to connected devices and the internet.
     
  3. Stuart Sweet

    Stuart Sweet The Shadow Knows!

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    I'm not sure of the magic involved in transcoding a GenieGo program. What I do tend to think though, is that there is not enough RAM or temporary storage in a GenieGo to stream an entire HD program of 2+ hours in length and then transcode it.

    On the other hand, I've heard that recordings are stored on the DVR in a series of fairly small files. I hypothesize and I stress I have no evidence for this, that what is happening is that one of these files gets transferred to GenieGo, significantly faster than real time (if you have a 100BaseT network it could be 15x real time) that small chunk is transcoded before another chunk is downloaded.

    I can't account for the fact that you're not seeing network traffic at all. While it's likely that you have some advanced skills in this area, I have to ask: How long did you monitor it? throughout the entire process? Are you certain you were monitoring LAN traffic and not WAN traffic? Is the GenieGo by any chance attached to a powered DECA rather than an ethernet line, or are the broadband DECA and the GenieGo on a switch that is external to the router? All these scenarios could lead to network traffic not being detected by the router.
     
  4. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    That's what I thought when I first got the GG and didn't have an available ethernet port on the router at the time, so I temporarily used the ethernet port on the back my Genie which was available just to get the unit hooked up and running, and of course felt the traffic monitor couldn't see anything there since it's taking place inside the DECA cloud which the CCK blocks from reaching the router.

    But now I've moved it out of the DECA cloud to the home network where it should be, and I still don't see much of any traffic flow to the GG during preparation. :confused:
     
  5. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    Thanks for the reply Stuart;

    Perhaps that's generally the way it functions, though I would expect to see at least some occasionally significant data spikes if this were the method instead of these very small infrequent ones. I'm using the IP traffic monitor incorporated into the Tomato router FW with the GG's IP address selected.

    GG is now connected directly to the router and I've monitored the entire process for a number of shows now. I get a significant, though brief, traffic reading when the actual download takes place the PC app (in this case), but just not much of anything during a program's preparation.
     
  6. Go Beavs

    Go Beavs Hall Of Fame

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    I wonder if the burst is too quick for the sampling window of the router's traffic monitor and is missing the peak? If it works the way Stuart describes, and sends short bursts of data, it may not detect the entire transfer... Just a WAG...
     
  7. harsh

    harsh Beware the Attack Basset

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    The router's traffic monitor is mostly useful for Internet traffic through the router. It won't typically see LAN traffic as that is handled by the Ethernet switch hardware of the router. If you connected everything via Wi-fi (which appears more like a hub or "cloud" where every node is presented with ALL traffic), the monitor might be able to monitor the traffic.
     
  8. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    That's my thinking as well;

    The IP monitor is set for a 10 min. wide window which samples (and thus updated) every 2 seconds. And even the duration period of the sample is unspecified, so may be too short to catch them as well.

    Therefore it could very well be missing these ultra-short pulses if Stuart's suggestion of how the GG operates is correct.

    I mean with that (comparatively) small amount of ram in the GG, I guess it can't reasonably handle a full WH MRV stream as Stuart observes.
     
  9. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    No, if you are familiar with the UI in Tomato it can monitor traffic flow at many points in the network as long as the data passes through the router at some point. Not just WAN.traffic.
     
  10. dennisj00

    dennisj00 Hall Of Fame

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    I'm not familiar with Tomato - does it show individual port traffic? DD-WRT has 4 bandwidth graphs, WAN, LAN, Wireless 0 (g in my case), Wireless 1 (n in my case).

    My GG is on a DECA in the basement at the Swim16 / splitters and is bridged to the LAN via the 34 back to the router, so without re-configuring, I can't see the DVR to GG traffic.

    But in downloading or streaming a program to my wireless Laptop (N-Band), I see the traffic on the W1 graph, but not on the LAN graph.

    The LAN graph pretty much tracks the WAN graph so I have to conclude the LAN graph is only showing routed traffic even though the download passes through the router.

    Can you identify other traffic (file transfer, video stream) on the LAN reporting?

    I'd guess that you should see MRV traffic just like a stream from the DVR to GG.
     
  11. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    Hey dennis;

    Tomato (ver. 1.28 by Shibby) has a real time "Bandwidth" graph similar to the one you describe for DD-WRT, but list the options as;

    vlan2 = WAN traffic (internet)

    eth 1 = 2.4 GHz WiFi traffic

    eth 2 = 5 GHz WiFi traffic (not being used on my network right now)

    br0 = LAN + all WiFi traffic from both radio bands

    eth0 = LAN + WAN traffic

    vlan 1 = LAN traffic

    NOTE: ("eth" means "ethernet," "br" for "bridge," "vlan" for "virtual local area network" of course)

    It also has an "IP Traffic" monitor which graphs the aggregate (from all ports I assume) data traffic rates to or from any IP host on the network.

    And this is the graph I was using to try and monitor the GG during a show's preparation stage and don't see much to speak of.

    However, as was pointed out originally be Stuart, as a consequence Tomato's IP TM simply may be missing these very narrow duration pulses of IP data sent at hi speed from the DVRs to the GG during the preparation phase of a program.

    .
     
  12. dennisj00

    dennisj00 Hall Of Fame

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    You've got my curiosity up! If I have time tomorrow, I'll put my GG on a 5GHz bridge that I have and see what dd-wrt shows when transcoding.

    Back to one of my questions, can you identify any particular traffic like MRV (although that's all on the DECA cloud), or Directv2PC - I just checked playback via wifi and it's about a 5-7 Mbps average.
     
  13. Steve

    Steve DIRECTV A-Team

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    When does the DVR to GenieGo traffic pass through the router? Isn't all DVR>GG traffic locally switched?
     
  14. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    Nah, all MRV clients are inside the DECA cloud and I don't have DIRECTV2PC installed on any PC outside the cloud at the moment since I got tired of every new version of it requiring a new activation key and exhausting all my e-mail addresses to get them.

    But since DIRECTV appears to be done with updating this app, I probably will install it so I can run the MRV stream through the router and check its IP traffic rate.

    I noticed though, Tomato measures my VOD download speed on a 12/1 TWC internet connection at between 6.5-9 mb/s at a 1:1 transfer rate for HD programs.
     
  15. dennisj00

    dennisj00 Hall Of Fame

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    I think that's our problem with interpretation of the LAN traffic on the router. . . it's not really showing the switched traffic.

    I'm moving GG tomorrow to a wifi bridge and will see what happens between the deca cloud and GG.
     
  16. Steve

    Steve DIRECTV A-Team

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    Bingo.
     
  17. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    No, by "though the router" I mean through some path within the typical SOHO router, whether it be LAN to LAN, LAN to WAN, WiFi to LAN, WiFi to WAN, or any of these paths vice-versa.

    Not just LAN to WAN or the reverse which is the actual "routing" function they perform.
     
  18. dennisj00

    dennisj00 Hall Of Fame

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    I moved my GenieGo to a 5Ghz bridge (WGA600N that I use to use for MRV from 2 bedroom DVRs).

    Started a transcode and the traffic looks exactly like MRV traffic or streaming from GG.

    I was able to have the transcode going, a Netflix on the wife's iPad and ESPN sportscenter on my iPad and a Directv2PC all going through the 5ghz band of my Linksys running dd-wrt. Only the Directv2PC program occasionally paused frames -- it's the highest quality and highest bandwidth. (and it could be this laptop- CPU was almost maxed).

    This configuration was :

    DECA Cloud > HR34 >>Cat5 to router >> 5GHz band to >> GG on WGA600N
    >> 2 iPads
    >> Laptop running Directv2PC
     
  19. HoTat2

    HoTat2 Hall Of Fame

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    Humm ... still trying to figure out Tomato's monitoring on this. its a head-scratcher. :scratch:

    I wonder since I also have other active IP host devices running through the DECA cloud (two PCs) while preparing a show on the GG, it's causing such an intermittent data flow that the IP traffic monitor is not able to capture much going to and from the GG?
     
  20. dennisj00

    dennisj00 Hall Of Fame

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    I think it's more that Tomato (and dd-wrt) are ignoring local LAN traffic in their 'LAN' designations. It's probably a limitation of the processor / memory capability and the fact that Tomato and dd-wrt are somewhat clones . . . not sure who cloned who, but they're both related to the open WRT project.

    In the experiment above, the LAN / WAN graphs showed the Netflix / ESPN streaming, but nothing of the internal GG >>DVR or Directv2PC from DVR to LAN. All showed on the 5GHz wifi graph as a consolidated graph.

    The LAN graph basically duplicated the WAN graph which is somewhat useless, but indicates they're only reporting 'routeable' packets on the LAN side.
     

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