[icecast] slow buffering?

Michael Smith msmith at xiph.org
Mon Jun 30 08:05:17 UTC 2003

On Monday 30 June 2003 17:46, Remco B. Brink wrote:
> Hi,
> I am running the latest CVS version of Icecast2, updated as of this
> moment.
> One thing I've noticed since I've started using Icecast2, is that
> Icecast2 is quite slow with its pre-buffering - even with only 1 or 2
> users connected to a 24Kbps relayed MP3 stream.

Icecast2 doesn't (like some servers) send an initial fast burst. It sends in 
real time. This drastically reduces latency, at the cost of slow starts if 
the client does too much pre-buffering (most clients do on low-bitrate 

Fast-start will probably be added eventually, for those that really want it, 
but it'll be off by default. The right way to fix this 'problem' is to 
convince client authors that pre-buffering a fixed number of bytes (rather 
than a length of time) is the wrong thing to do, since it typically means 
you're buffering too little on high-bitrate streams, and too much on 
low-bitrate streams.

> The load on the p2-233 server (128mb RAM) is minimal, it usually
> stays below 0.08. I first thought this was related to my <queue-size>
> setting, but lowering that from 102400 to 51200 doesn't make things much
> faster.

Yes, this will reduce the peak latency, but not the typical case.


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