Why is it that my video .iso files jitter and stutter?

The subject header really says it all.  I have been excited about this WD product because of its small form factor and that it plays .iso files.  But streaming has been a problem since day one.  I’ve tried using the PS3 server and I thought that would do it, but it hasn’t.  Now I find that I can stream my videos from my WHS 2011 server flawlessly (at least for the moment).  Does Windows 7 have a problem with streaming to the WD player?  I’ve read a lot on this forum, but I still don’t understand.  Would someone be good enough to help me understand?  Thanks in advance.

I admittedly don’t have very much information about your setup, but as far as I know it’s likely to either be an issue in your network as opposed to an issue with the WDTV or Win7, or an issue with the bitrate that the .iso contains.

I have noticed no issues with .iso files and Win7 32-bit, and I believe others have success with .iso files and Win7 64-bit, so it seems like Win7 and the WDTV can play nicely together.

I believe there is an issue with the overhead in the Samba file transfer, such that any streams with high bitrates can’t be sent fast enough, but I don’t have any high-bitrate .iso files to try myself.

I know my DVD .isos all stream fine, and .mkv files up to 25Mbit stream fine for me… I don’t really have anything over 25Mbit to know where I’d start running into a roadblock with the Samba limitations from the Win7 box.

I thank you for your quick reply. However, I don’t see how the culprit can be my network, because my WHS 2011 is on the same network and only a few feet from my Windows 7 PC. I rip my commercial Blu-ray disks with AnyDvd. I don’t have enough knowledge to know what bitrate they are, but I’m to understand that they are indentical to the original BD. If this is any help, I look forward to your reply.

Yes, if they’re BluRay .isos they could easily exceed the rate that Samba will send from PCs.

People will tell you that Microsoft has “crippled” Samba on the operating systems.  This would be why you hit the speed cap from Win7.  It’s not “crippled” to the same extent in the server editions because servers are expected to offer higher data throughputs.

As far as I know you have several options (whether any of them are appealing to you or not :wink:):

  • Attach USB drives with the .isos directly to the WDTV, instead of trying to share them from a PC
  • Continue serving them from WHS instead of Win7
  • If you could find a media server that will serve .iso (many of them won’t, to my knowledge) you could run it and serve the .isos as Media Server instead of Network Shares (the servers don’t use Samba)
  • Move to third-party firmware, which comes with its own ups and downs, and use NFS shares instead of SMB shares
  • re-encode the BluRays to .mkv with Handbrake… time-consuming to re-encode, but space-saving and visually identical
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You were right. I am using Handbrake now, and no jitters anymore. However, I have no subtitles and can’t find a way to include them. Can you help me with this? Thanks so much.

I did a quick run-through (with pretty pictures) of the steps I use with Handbrake here:


I know it works fine with DVD’s, but I’m not 100% sure with BluRays and their form of subtitles.  Perhaps someone else who makes BR rips with subs can hop in.