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672 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 67


Topic # 146618 23-May-2014 20:10
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For the last two nights I've been unable to watch anything on Netflix. I can access Netflix, browse the catalogue at good speed, but as soon as I select Play on any title, all I get is the endless spinning wheel of death. I've rebooted every single piece of equipment I have but still the same result. 

I use Getflix for DNS services, but since I can access Netflix fine I don't think it's related to them. 

Any ideas?!





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52 posts

Master Geek
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Unotelly

  Reply # 1054692 28-May-2014 00:31
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Hi all,

We suspect the root cause is transparent proxy and caching requests/responses.


Pre-NZ-Netflix-Issue:
1. NZ ISPs running transparent proxy and cache (Let's call it ISPv1)
2. Netflix Streaming Auth/Checksum (Let's call it NFv1)
3. Streaming works fine

Now:
1. NZ ISPs running transparent proxy and cache (ISPv1) (no specific changes at ISPs)
2. Netflix updated Streaming Auth/Checksum(NFv2)
3. Broken streaming

It seems to be an unintended consequence of some update at Netflix's end. 

@Slingshot users, please try this:

1. Go to Slingshot control panel
2. Turn off the caching
3. Try US Netflix
4. Turn back on
5. Try US Netflix
6. Report your result here




http://www.unotelly.com

 

Unlock Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and more in New Zealand!

14 posts

Geek
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Unblock-US

  Reply # 1054700 28-May-2014 03:49
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Another update from us, we've investigated the issue and here is what we've found:

1. Netflix recently changed the format of URLs for US and Canadian CDN used for video streaming

2. The affected NZ providers are using transparent caching proxies for the Netflix CDN range of IP addresses.

They are NOT using these for other IP ranges we tested.

3. The affected NZ providers are using transparent caching proxies that are set up incorrectly:

- They cache content with "no cache" directive in HTTP header (Pragma: no-cache & Cache-Control: no-store)

- They ignore query string part of the URL for caching

The combination of 1, 2 and 3 has resulted in the Netflix streaming issue. Netflix has started using query string part of the URL to request the movie pieces.

Since the content is cached incorrectly, the Netflix player tries to get a fragment of the movie but gets a completely different movie piece from the proxy and shows the error message.

Affected ISPs have to reconfigure their proxies to:

 

  • Take query string into account OR 
  • Respect "no cache" directive OR 
  • Turn them off for Netflix CDN IP range as caching Netflix streaming does not work anymore.

We encourage you to send the above to your ISP - as this is how they can fix the issue. If enough of you speak - then your ISP might do something about it.

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