Client troubleshooting guide

Troubleshooting

DON’T FORGET TO CHECK THAT YOU ARE USING THE LATEST VERSION OF SYNCPLAY!

After specifying media folder, Syncplay spends so long looking for files that it times out

  • don’t select any folder with hundreds of sub-folders because Syncplay looks through sub-folders of directories recursively.

Known OS X issues and workarounds

  • Closing VLC does not always close Syncplay – Close Syncplay first, and this will close CLS
  • Erroneous slow downs / rewinds – Under “Sync” options disable “Fast-forward if lagging behind”, “slow down on minor desync” and “rewind on major desync”. Also try running in –no-gui mode and/or trying the other media player and see if it runs better..
  • Erroneous seeks – Try running in –no-gui mode and/or trying the other media player and see if it runs better.
  • If problems persist then try running Syncplay via Wine or some other Windows emulation solution

I keep getting slowed down / rewinded, even though we’re all actually in sync

  • This can happen if one of the users has an unstable Internet connection.
  • If they have an unstable connection they may also be disconnected frequently disconnected for short periods, which is a result of Syncplay being quick to disconnect people if they go too long without sending a message to the server.
  • To get to the ‘Sync’ tab enable “Show more settings” in the Syncplay Configuration GUI and select the ‘Sync’ tab.
  • In the ‘Sync’ tab you can disable the slowdown and rewind features altogether. This can cause desyncs if someone has a slow computer, but avoids problems for people with unstable connections.
  • In the ‘Sync’ tab you can also try out the “Never slow down or rewind” others option if you are the one with the laggy connection, but it will cause problems if everyone in the room has that option enabled.
  • More information on the above features are contained within the guide on using the client, under the ‘Synchronisation Settings’ sub-section of ‘Configuration Window’.
  • This can also happen if someone changes their system time. Please don’t do that while Syncplay is open.

Video playback issues

  • Check whether the problem still occurs without use of Syncplay, as it could be caused by your media player rather than Syncplay itself. You may need a lower resolution version of a file.
  • Try toggling the ‘Slow down on minor desync’ or ‘Rewind on major desync’ options under ‘Sync’ settings (check ‘Show more settings’ in Syncplay configuration window). If you are using mpv then it is recommended that you don’t enable ‘rewind on major desync’ without also enabling ‘slow down on minor desync’.

On MPC-HC, pauses are ignored

  • If you are have set the video filter to madVR then you will need to revert to the default filter or disable the ‘delay playback start until render queue is full’ option within madVR.

“VLC has reported that the syncplay.lua interface script has not been installed” / Want to update to the newest version of syncplay.lua

  • The installer may not install the Syncplay Interface Lua Script to the right VLC directory, might not be able to install it at all if the anticipated registry key is not found, or would not have installed if you asked it not to be installed. However, this file needs to be in the right folder if you want to use Syncplay with VLC.
  • Furthermore, sometimes a version of ‘syncplay.lua’ exists which is newer than the one that comes with the Syncplay installer, e.g to fix a bug.
  • In Linux, it might have installed to the wrong directory.
  • To install, place the ‘syncplay.lua’ file in the relevant sub-directory:
    • Windows: %ProgramFiles%\VideoLAN\VLC\lua\intf\
    • Linux: /usr/lib/vlc/lua/intf/ or /usr/lib64/vlc/lua/intf/ on some systems (look for where the .luac files are)
    • Mac OS X: /Applications/VLC.app/Contents/MacOS/share/lua/intf/
  • In some circumstances a copy of ‘syncplay.lua’ is available in the \Syncplay\resources\lua\intf\ folder.
  • You can get the latest version from: https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Uriziel/syncplay/master/resources/lua/intf/syncplay.lua 

Can’t load a bookmark in MPC-HC

  • Syncplay typically ignores seeks made when a file is first opened. As such, the MPC-HC’s ‘Remember File position’ and Favorites features will not usually work as expected if you are using Syncplay. However, when loading a bookmark for a file that is already open in MPC-HC 1.7.0+ the player seeks to the position rather than re-loading the file, so it can work if you load the file first.

Can’t connect to server

  • Connecting to port 8999 might be disallowed in some firewall configurations. Check your firewall settings if you are experiencing problems connecting to a server.
  • If the public servers are down then run your own server.

The media duration is not accurate

  • Media duration reporting is not always consistent between media players and set-ups. As such, in some cases Syncplay will warn about duration mismatches even when people are playing the same file. In many cases duration warnings can be ignored, but in some circumstances it helpfully indicates that a player is handling segment linking for multi-part files differently (and so may require configuration changes in the player or the use of offsets in Syncplay).

Trouble if someone’s file is shorter

  • If people are playing media of different lengths at the same time in the same room then the first person getting to the end of their file stops playback for all (except in some usages of the ‘offset’ facility detailed above). This cannot be fixed, although if you use controlled rooms then only the length of the room controllers’ files will matter.

Problems syncing DVD playback

  • This feature is only supported with VLC. If you are watching a DVD then your Syncplay mileage may vary. The various media player implementations have been developed to work with files and in some cases streams, but not with discs.

Problems syncing video streams (e.g. YouTube videos)

  • Generally speaking Syncplay does better with mpv for video streams than VLC.
  • Try decreasing the video quality:
    • In VLC, you can do this via Tools ->Preferences-> Show all options -> Inputs/Codecs -> ‘Preferred video resolution’.
    • In mpv it is probably achieved via ‐‐ytdl-format=worst command line option or similar (see mpv manual).
  • Make sure you are using the latest version of your media player
  • If you’re using mpv then ensure you’re using the latest version of YTDL
  • If you are trying to play further into the video than has loaded then the media player may force you to an earlier position, causing sync problems – it may be best to wait a bit for the video to cache a bit before starting playback.

Sync not quite accurate enough

  • Syncplay is not designed to have millisecond-level precision as this is not necessary for users to have a shared viewing experience.

Syncplay closes / crashes without a proper error message

  • On Windows open the syncplay.log file in %APPDATA% in a text editor to see see debug information.

–no-gui does not work on the Windows executable

  • That is because the client .exe is build as a ‘Windows’ application rather than a ‘Console’ application in py2exe. You’d have to run the Python version or build your own .exe (after first modifying buildPy2exe.py).

Error “ImportError: No module named zope.interface”, but zope is installed

  • “the trick is go to into the installed zope module and add an empty __init__.py file in the zope directory” (source)
  • For non-Windows users also ensure the directory that zope directory is covered within PYTHONPATH (see #72)
  • For non-Windows users zope should be installed with Twisted, so it might also be a sign that Twisted needs to be installed.

Manually setting the playback rate via the media player causes problems

  • Yes, manually setting the playback rate may cause problems. Syncplay generally assumes a playback rate of 1.0 and in some instances sets the playback rate to help get everyone more in sync.

Syncplay says it is up to date, but there is a newer version on the website

  • If this is in a week of release, it probably just means we’re waiting a week to ensure that no bugs are reported before pushing the update to the wider userbase.
  • If this is after a week of release, it probably means we forgot to update the version on the website and you should e-mail dev@syncplay.pl to remind us.

Syncplay says MPC-HC is an old version when it isn’t / problems with using SVP builds of media players

  • If a media player is running in administrator mode then Syncplay might also have to be running in administrator mode.

Why don’t you support MPC-BE, SMPlayer, PotPlayer or Kodi?

  • MPC-BE, SMPlayer and PotPlayer lack the APIs / API Features that Syncplay needs to synchronise playback.
  • Syncplay doesn’t have Kodi support, but you could develop it yourself.

How can I set-up Python on Windows so I can develop Syncplay

See http://syncplay.pl/about/development/ for details.

Still have problems with Syncplay?