Downstream SetTop Box Crashing when switching streams using ABR
I am running a system where content is sent to Wowza server as H.264 stream and then Wowza is transcoding it for delivery to my CDN, Akamai. Akamai is receiving all streams properly, so push publish map is working, and translate.xml is working fine.
The problem is that for set-top boxes and sticks, specifically the FireStick from Amazon, the player is crashing when switching streams. Here is the funny part, when I stream directly from Wowza and set the stream name order from highest to lowest, it works. When I switch from lowest to highest, the FireStick crashes. So if I modify the playlist order in the m3u8 file directly, I can replicate this behavior.
We have run tests against other content and m3u8 orderings, and it seems that the FireStick is not failing in the same manner. So since I can not control the m3u8 file from Akamai, I am left with a workaround of hosting an intermediary m3u8 to serve up the individual bitrates (served by Akamai) in an order that can be consumed by the FireStick.
This is just a workaround, and since I am seeing a FireStick consume other media and not crash, there is something weird about how the translate encoding is happening that is causing the FireStick to crash when it tries to switch streams. So when slowest bit rate is first in the playlist, it automatically passes over that trying to get the better stream. When the best stream is first, it doesn't do anything.
Has anyone seen this behavior and is there something under the covers on the Wowza server that I can muck with to stop this behavior and solve this. It has to be in how the streams are encoded such that when the set-top box switches, it chokes, and dies.
We are running the latest version, 4.1.2, on Ubuntu 14.04.