Plex Media Server on Mac Mini connected to NAS - Connection issues

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by MattiasN, May 4, 2014.

  1. MattiasN macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2009
    Location:
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    #1
    I use Plex Media Server and Plex Home Theater client on a Mac Mini Mid 2011 (OSX Mavericks) connected to a Synology 213j. I keep the Mac mini turned ON all the time in order to access the Plex library from remote locations via the Plex smartphone app.

    However, I experience a few issues that makes it impossible to use Plex "on the road":

    - The connection between the Mac Mini (OSX Mavericks) and the Synology NAS is disconnected after a while, often like 6-18 hours. I have to open the Finder and manually go to the media folders on the NAS to "activate" the connection.

    Do you have a suggestion on an "easy" way to keep the connection to the NAS alive? I've tried to enable "Wake for network access" and "Wake on LAN" on the router, but the connection isn't established when accessing Plex neither via PHT nor via the Plex smartphone app.

    - Sometimes when I haven't used Plex for a day or two and turning on the TV, the TV screen is black. The power light on the Mac mini indicate that it's ON. I need to do a hard-reboot by press-and-hold the power button on the Mac mini in order to use it.

    Do you have any idea what may cause this issue or how to find out what's causing it? I've disabled the screensaver and the computer/display sleep and also disabled the option "Put hard disk to to sleep when possible".

    I'm thankful for any suggestions that can help me solve the issues!
     
  2. Dameatball macrumors member

    Dameatball

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #2
    Hey have the same setup (except I have the 1813). The mini is wired correct? Couple things- if you have the energy settings setup properly in the mini (screensaver shouldn't have an impact) then something's wrong as it shouldn't shut down or go into a permanent sleep. I haven't run into this before but try running disk utility. Also make sure there's nothing running in the background that takes causes the CPU to run hot/freeze. As far as the NAS connection, you need to mount the server connections. from finder go to- connect to server- type the ip of the syn nas (using smb, cifs or afp- ie smb://192.108.1.12). Once that's done, you'll see the ip in your finder as connected. Go into your login items and make sure this connection is added to your start-up items. Sorry about the short-hand, I'm otp.
     
  3. MattiasN thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2009
    Location:
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    #3
    Thanks for the answer! I'm not sure what you mean by "wired correct"? That it got enough power supply? It's hard to say but I haven't experienced any obvious power related issues while using the Mini for the year I've owned it.

    Today when I got home the TV screen was black but the Mini's power light was ON, so I decided to look into it a bit further. I also own an old iMac and have previously connected the iMac to the Mini via the Finder's "Share Screen" feature. When trying the screen sharing today I was able to see the Mini's screen, and even though the TV showed a black screen, I could see the OSX login screen on the Mini and login sucessfully. This means that the Mini might have restarted sometime since yesterday. I'm not sure how to go further with this finding though. Disk Utility Verify disk showed that the HD is OK.

    Regarding keeping the Mini-NAS connection alive. I've previously added the media folder of the NAS to "Login items", but not after connecting the Mini to the server the way you describes, ie via "Finder-Connect to Server...". I doubt that it should make any difference, since the issue is not the connection after restarting the Mini, it's for the connection to be kept active for a long time. Do you also use OSX Mavericks? I've read that others have had similar kinds of issues to keep the connection between Mavericks and their NAS alive, so I was afraid that it was a general Maverics issue.
     
  4. i1100 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2012
    #4
    I used to have this issue a few years ago, after fighting with some other methods I settled on using a software solution. There is a program, mountwatcher by plum amazing. You add the connection details and it will constantly monitor the mount and keep it mounted. Since using this I have not had an issue with a dropped connection, my mini and NAS are on 24/7.
     
  5. nebo1ss macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    #5
    I have a very similar configuration to yours and do not experience the same problem. I also have the connection made in the start up folder of the Mac Mini.

    I originally had a power off routine on the NAS where it switched off at night and back on in the morning and at that time I did experience a similar problem but I stopped powering off the NAS to prevent it.

    I cannot offer you a solution but I can tell you it is not normal.
     
  6. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #6
    Just curious about a scenario (not a challenge by my actual case) I use my Mini and have 2 NAS units. The NAS units are scheduled to sleep and wake at given times and more often than not, I put my Mini to sleep at night. Will my scenario cause any impact on that app working?
     
  7. Dameatball macrumors member

    Dameatball

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #7
    Yes I have mavericks and haven't heard of this issue occurring with it. Don't think it's an issue with the OS X. Confused, you see the mini through another Mac but your tv is black? That's a tv connection issue not the mini. I'm not really sure what this has to do with the nas connection. You're losing nas connection because it's not mounted.
     
  8. i1100 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2012
    #8
    I have never tried with 2 NAS units, but i assume that it will work the same as when i restart my NAS, it just has a connection error listed in the app and continues to try and mount it until it has returned. As you list each NAS/Volume separately in the app, it doesn't matter how many you have.
     
  9. Dameatball macrumors member

    Dameatball

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #9
    hey sorry, I missed the first part of your question. By 'wired' I meant your connected to the internet via ethernet (not by wifi). Doesn't sound like this is an issue as it's the connection to the TV, but wanted to clarify. Hopefully you got your issue resolved. The Mini is fantastic as an HTPC (love mine).
     
  10. AuroraProject macrumors 65816

    AuroraProject

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    Right there
    #10
    I have a similar setup, Mac Mini 2011 and a Synology 412+. Running Mavericks I have had zero connection problems with the nas, it hasn't ever disconnected on me. Do you have the nas set to hibernate? If so try disabling that, and as mentioned, set the Mini so it doesn't sleep either.
     
  11. MattiasN, May 18, 2014
    Last edited: May 18, 2014

    MattiasN thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2009
    Location:
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    #11
    Thanks to everyone for your thoughts and answers! Since my last answer I've actually not experienced that the Mini loose connection to the NAS. Great!

    However, the black-TV-screen-behaviour has appeared several times and my initial thought was that it was caused by untriggered restarts due to some kind of hardware failure and that the TV isn't recognized by the Mini (SystemPreferences/Display) after the restart which result in a black TV screen at the OSX login screen.

    But I'm not sure anymore that the unwanted restarts is causing the black-TV-screen issue since I manually restarted the Mini with the TV turned off and when turning on the TV, the OSX login screen appeared on the TV. And I've also shut down the Mini and booted it with the TV turned off and when turning on the TV, the login screen also appeared in this scenario.

    Therefore, Dameatball's suggestion seems likely, ie that the issue is caused by the connection between the TV and the Mini. Meaning, the connection is disconnected/reset for some reason other than an untriggered restart. For what it's worth, I have a quite old Panasonic 42" plasma TV connected to the Mini via HDMI.

    Any idea how to troubleshoot the connection between Mini/OSX and the TV?
     
  12. Dameatball macrumors member

    Dameatball

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2014
    Location:
    San Francisco
    #12
    Oddly enough I also have a Panasonic- but it's only a couple years old. Can't be that old with a hdmi port? Curious, sounds silly but have you tried another hdmi cord? I bought one for the mini-tv connection that did not work. Most of hdmi cables are the same, just enhanced marketing but it's definitely worth trying.
     
  13. satcomer macrumors 603

    satcomer

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    The Finger Lakes Region
    #13
    When you are away then use the Synology software to make a VPN server and VPN back into it when you want to use Plex on the road.
     
  14. MattiasN thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2009
    Location:
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    #14
    I think the issues with Plex and the Mac Mini-to-TV connection has been solved.

    I've added the NAS IP-number to the Finder's "Go-Connect to Server..." and now the connection is kept alive as long as the Mini is turned on.

    The issue with the strange OSX restarts seems to have been caused by a setting in my Logitech Harmony remote control that - when I pressed the OFF button on the remote to turn off all devices - sent some kind of sleep-mode signal to the Mini. After I removed this signal from the remote via the Harmony remote application, I haven't experienced the restart/sleep-mode issue.

    Again - thanks for all your ideas and suggestions!
     

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