[MPlayer-users] How do I debug this one? mplayer ftp problem

Dave Saville dave at deezee.org
Mon Sep 30 19:23:07 CEST 2013

A little background. I have a Topfield 5800 PVR. It is front ended by an  
Asus NSLU2 which makes the Topfield accessible from the LAN via FTP. The  
Topfield's files are ".rec" but are actually a transport stream. Mplayer  
has no problem playing them thus:

mplayer ftp://foo:bar@slug/DataFiles/some_recording.rec

I recently bought a Raspberry Pi and tried to do the same. The Pi has the  
latest Raspbian OS and the latest mplayer for that platform. MPlayer svn  
r34540 (Debian), built with gcc-4.6 (C) 2000-2012 MPlayer Team

The exact same invocation as above puts mplayer into a semi hung state - it  
plays nothing and keeps throwing ftp timeout errors. Moreover, the Topfield  
now has got itself in a know and any further attempts to FTP to it work as  
far as logging in but then anything else, like "ls" hangs. It is not a  
problem with the interface on the Asus as rebooting that makes no  
difference. The only recourse is to reboot the Topfield (But see later).

I posted the problem both to the Pi mailing list * and* the Topfield one. I  
got a response on the Topfield list from a guy who said he has exactly the  
same problem with mplayer on a linux platform talking to his Topfield.

It looks to my simple mind that there must be some sort of problem with  
mplayer in ftp mode but I have no idea what to do next in order to trouble  
shoot it. Note that I can FTP the file from the Topfield to the Pi and  
mplayer will play it OK apart from jitters - which is almost certainly that  
the SD card is not fast enough to stream video off - only a class 4 card.

Recompiling mplayer on the Pi is going to be a non starter and my Ubuntu  
system is a T42 Thinkpad that Mplayer will not play video on - driver  
problem. VLC OTOH *does* play a video via FTP from the Topfield.

The system where mplayer *does* work in ftp mode is ECS aka IBM's OS/2 :-)  
That has MPlayer 1.1.1-4.4.6 (C) 2000-2013 MPlayer Team


Kind regards

Dave Saville

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