Author Topic: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)  (Read 25610 times)

Offline JacobKlein

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #15 on: January 03, 2007, 07:38:54 PM »
Do you like Lucky Charm Bugs?  They're magically delicious!  AKA: No luck here either.

Here's what I tried (using v4.7.925 Beta):

  • Set "avast! Antivirus" and "avast! iAVS4 Control Service (aswUpdSv)" services to MANUAL
  • Used msconfig to disable the automatic startup of ashDisp.exe
  • Changed: aswMonFlt         from 2(Auto)   to 3(Manual)
  • Changed: aswTdi         from 1(System)   to 3(Manual)
  • Changed: aswRdr         from 1(System)   to 3(Manual)
  • Restarted, verified no gui, verified 4 standard services set on Manual and stopped.
  • T360 magically fails.

There must be something else down this rabbit hole that's being missed.

PS:  You said 0x03 was Disabled, but actually 0x03 is Manual and 0x04 is Disabled I believe (Researched: http://www.jsifaq.com/SF/Tips/Tip.aspx?id=0324)...  Do I need to test that as well?

Kind regards,
  Jacob W. Klein

OK, let's go even one step further.

Try disabling the following drivers

aswMonFlt
aswTdi
aswRdr

To do this, open RegEdit, go to HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\<driver-name>

and change the value Start to 3 (which means Disabled). Then restart the machine.

If that doesn't solve the problem either, it must be some kind of magic ;D

Thanks
Vlk

Offline Vlk

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #16 on: January 03, 2007, 08:16:41 PM »
You're right 3 is Manual 4 is disabled - but still, there shouldn't be much difference here (even though you could try using 4 to make absolutely sure it's not the drivers' fault).

Hmm, so, what now? :)

So, no, there's no ash* or asw* processes running, right? (you can use the Processes tab in the Task Manager to verify).

BTW are you using avast Home or Professional?
BTW2 do you have (full) MS Outlook installed on your machine? Which mail client are you using?

Thanks
vlk
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Offline JacobKlein

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #17 on: January 03, 2007, 09:15:55 PM »
OK, so the rule goes, if you can't solve the problem after disabling some top layers, see if the problem still exists with all layers disabled, right? :)

Here's what I tried (using v4.7.925 Beta):

  • Set "avast! Antivirus" and "avast! iAVS4 Control Service (aswUpdSv)" services to DISABLED
  • Also set "avast! Mail Scanner" and "avast! Web Scanner" services to DISABLED
  • Used msconfig to disable the automatic startup of ashDisp.exe
  • Changed: aswMonFlt         from 2(Auto)   to 4(DISABLED)
  • Changed: aswTdi         from 1(System)   to 4(DISABLED)
  • Changed: aswRdr         from 1(System)   to 4(DISABLED)
  • Restarted, verified no gui, verified 4 standard services set to DISABLED and stopped.
  • T360 works!

This leads me to conclude that I could conceivably figure out exactly which service or device driver is causing the problem.  That being said, I need a break for now, so I'll look deeper at this hopefully later today.

We haven't found the problem, but we can find out what service or device driver is causing it, I believe.  If I am able to narrow it down that far, will you continue to work (edit code, fix, etc) so that the Transcode 360 community can use your wonderful AV program?

Here are some A's to your Q's:
- During previous testing, I was checking task manager also to verify no ash* or asw* processes, even though we both know that those lower level services won't show up here.
- I am using the Home version on this machine
- I am using Outlook 2007, as part of the Office 2007 System Professional package.  I have it set to automatically start via my (local user's) "Start Menu\Programs\Startup" folder.

More info later...  This is encouraging news, no?
Thanks,
  Jacob W. Klein

You're right 3 is Manual 4 is disabled - but still, there shouldn't be much difference here (even though you could try using 4 to make absolutely sure it's not the drivers' fault).

Hmm, so, what now? :)

So, no, there's no ash* or asw* processes running, right? (you can use the Processes tab in the Task Manager to verify).

BTW are you using avast Home or Professional?
BTW2 do you have (full) MS Outlook installed on your machine? Which mail client are you using?

Thanks
vlk

Offline Vlk

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #18 on: January 03, 2007, 09:43:22 PM »
Yes, very interesting indeed...

So, effectively, when the 3 drivers were set to MANUAL it did not work but when you changed them to DISABLED it worked? Hmmm...

I agree that it would be very helpful to find out which of the 3 drivers is responsible for this... My bet would be aswTdi.sys (that's the "Network Shield" provider in avast) - but only further experiments can tell for sure...


Thanks very much for your help so far,
Vlk
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Offline JacobKlein

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #19 on: January 03, 2007, 10:50:08 PM »
Further experiments INDEED.  Belated Christmas-colored experiments!  Copy/paste to notepad if the color is bothersome or irritating :)

Services:  0=Boot 1=System 2=Auto 3=Manual 4=Disabled
Defaults for low-level-services:  aswMonFlt=2, aswRdr=1, aswTdi=1


Here's what I tried (using v4.7.925 Beta):
Note: The first 8 tests have UI and main services disabled, so just look at the low-driver-level start-numbers
Note: But the 9th test is tricked out for avast! and T360 to work together (ie: temporary workaround fix)
------------------------------------

UI Disabled, 4 main services DISABLED, aswMonFlt=4, aswRdr=4, aswTdi=4
T360 works!


UI Disabled, 4 main services DISABLED, aswMonFlt=2, aswRdr=1, aswTdi=1
T360 fails.





UI Disabled, 4 main services DISABLED, aswMonFlt=2, aswRdr=4, aswTdi=4
T360 works!


UI Disabled, 4 main services DISABLED, aswMonFlt=2, aswRdr=1, aswTdi=4
T360 fails.


UI Disabled, 4 main services DISABLED, aswMonFlt=2, aswRdr=4, aswTdi=1
T360 fails.





UI Disabled, 4 main services DISABLED, aswMonFlt=4, aswRdr=1, aswTdi=1
T360 fails.


UI Disabled, 4 main services DISABLED, aswMonFlt=4, aswRdr=1, aswTdi=4
T360 fails.


UI Disabled, 4 main services DISABLED, aswMonFlt=4, aswRdr=4, aswTdi=1
T360 fails.





UI ENABLED, 4 main services DEFAULT (auto-auto-man-man startedx4), aswMonFlt=2, aswRdr=4, aswTdi=4
T360 works!   (mouseover UI shows 6/6 running)




I guess my conclusion is that there are problems in BOTH:
- "aswTdi.sys (avast! Network Shield Support, avast! TDI Filter Driver)" and
- "aswRdr.sys (avast! TDI RDR Driver)"

Where do we go from here?
« Last Edit: January 03, 2007, 10:52:14 PM by JacobKlein »

Offline Vlk

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #20 on: January 04, 2007, 06:40:32 AM »
OK, I think that the next logical step is to pass this info to our developers who're responsible for the TDI filter code.

BTW am I right that Transcode 360 is a free download? And that the version you're testing is the "Transcode 360 Vista Beta" linked from http://runtime360.com/blog (second item in the Downloads section on the right)?

Again - thank you very much for going through all these experiments. They were very helpful.


Thanks
Vlk
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Offline Vlk

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #21 on: January 04, 2007, 10:57:43 AM »
So, we installed Transcode 360 on a Vista machine, it started OK - but no what? How do we tell it to "transcode" something for us (hence triggeting the error)?

Thanks :)
Vlk
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Offline JacobKlein

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #22 on: January 04, 2007, 02:51:55 PM »
  • Transcode 360 is indeed a free (open-source I think) download.
    • I have been using T360 for Vista v1.6.1 Beta...
    • You can find the latest version at http://runtime360.com/forums/ -> "Transcode 360" -> "**Download**"
    • I installed using the tray-tool option.
    • Make sure "Transcode360Tray.exe" is compatibly-set to run as admin
    • Make sure after restart that the tray tool is visible. (Windows will try to block admin-access apps from startup)
    • There's no need to change any settings within this tray-tool
    • ...Actually, you might have to change settings if you are not using an Xbox360, not sure
  • What you need....
    • To do testing on Vista, you will need a DivX-encoded file, and xVid codecs installed (since DivX has a massive dllhost problem in Vista)
    • Latest is xVid Codecs v1.1.2
    • Latest stable Windows binary can be found here: http://www.koepi.org/xvid.shtml
    • You'll also need a version of Vista RTM that has Media Center, connected to a Media Center Extender (was: with an Xbox360 set as an extender)
    • Make sure the Vista Sample Videos play just fine using your extender (was: XBox360)
  • To test: T360 vs. Avast:
    • Set Avast to whatever settings you'd like (start off with Avast uninstalled as a test, maybe)
    • The following instructions assume you're using an Xbox360
    • On the Xbox360, when you have a DivX movie/show highlighted....  hit "X" --> "More"
    • You should then see "Transcode" highlighted...  click "A" and wait patiently
    • After about 10 seconds, your DivX vid should be playing on your XBox360, unless Avast is interfering
    • Note: If you're watching a longer vid and notice any skips, that's a separate bug.  Our bug here deals with "Video Error"

If you have further questions, Vlk, I will edit THIS post to add/edit steps.  This should be a pretty quick-and-dirty guide to discovering the "bug" however.

Kind regards,
Looking forward to a fix,
  Jacob W. Klein




So, we installed Transcode 360 on a Vista machine, it started OK - but no what? How do we tell it to "transcode" something for us (hence triggeting the error)?

Thanks :)
Vlk
« Last Edit: January 04, 2007, 04:16:17 PM by JacobKlein »

Offline Vlk

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #23 on: January 04, 2007, 03:28:56 PM »
Wait a moment, your saying I need to an Xbox to do this?
Hmmmm... sounds like a good reason to get one ;D But really, can't this be done software-only?


Thanks
Vlk
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Offline JacobKlein

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #24 on: January 04, 2007, 04:10:38 PM »
Well...  Maybe not an Xbox360, but some sort of Media Center Extender is necessary.

Windows Vista Media Center can play DivX files just fine (assuming you have xVid codecs installed) and other codec-related-media just fine, because the codecs are on the Windows Vista PC.

The whole point of the Transcode 360 project is to play those same encoded codec'd files on a Media Center Extender.  See, most of the extenders only play mpeg2-encoded files, which is not suitable for all the DivX-encoded media that people have.  Also, at this time, the Xbox360 is the chief Media Center Extender that Microsoft targets for home entertainment.  That being said, I would say the primary use case for this project is playing DivX files on your Xbox360, transcoded from DivX to Mpeg2 by Transcode 360.

This should give you insight as to why this project exists.  Xbox360 does not have DivX codecs (or any other non-Mpeg2-codecs for that matter, to my knowledge), so T360 encodes to Mpeg2 on-the-fly whenever you select "Transcode" on your Xbox360.

I know it's a mouthful, but when this project works, it's AWESOME.  I will update the "steps" to indicate that any Media Center Extender can be used.  But if you use a non-Xbox360 extender, you might have to edit the tray-tool settings, I'm not sure.

Regards,
Jacob W. Klein

Wait a moment, your saying I need to an Xbox to do this?
Hmmmm... sounds like a good reason to get one ;D But really, can't this be done software-only?


Thanks
Vlk
« Last Edit: January 04, 2007, 04:15:14 PM by JacobKlein »

Offline Vlk

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #25 on: January 04, 2007, 04:35:23 PM »
Great, except that I don't have any Media Center Extenders (I assume this is a piece of hardware, right?)

Sorry I'm not too familiar with these Home entertainment goodies -- gimme a command line and I'm happy ;D
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Offline JacobKlein

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #26 on: January 04, 2007, 04:36:48 PM »
I'm not mailing you my Xbox360 :)
I don't know how to help you... maybe you can rent one?  Or buy one?  Or find a dev that owns one, so you can borrow it?

Offline james194zt

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #27 on: January 04, 2007, 05:15:27 PM »
Hi Guys,

I am the main developer in charge of Transcode 360 for Windows Vista, I see you are struggling for an Xbox 360 (no i am not offering to lend you mine), I do a lot of my testing on my development machine before it hits my life media center.

One way you could try this is if it is a network driver issue, install Transcode 360 on to 2 PCs on 1 of the PCs set it up as a media server (this must be a normal RTM copy of Windows Vista and not Media Center) and configure the distributed file options in the GUI and on the other which is a Media Center version of Vista set it up as the client and point it to your other PC. If you then treat the media center like an extender and do the more information | Transcode button it should request the other PC to transcode the media and then send it down the line to the Media Center which is near enough a full test.

The above is the ultimate test of the network side, the other thing you could try which is far easier... on the PC you already have it set up on already just try to transcode Media on the PC i.e. click more info | Transcode on a video if it has the same issue users experience on the Xbox your on to a winner if not you might try the above suggestion, this 2nd way is how I test the add in and back end on my development PC the only thing is it might not hit your network driver in the same way the 360 does but it is worth a try.

If you have any questions drop me an email I would love to get this issue resolved and add Avast to the supported AV list! You would be the first non Microsoft solution to work, might even get people flocking to you as nobody likes supporting Microsoft!

Cheers

James

Offline Vlk

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #28 on: January 04, 2007, 08:03:06 PM »
James, thanks a lot for jumping in! BTW how did you find this post? Did Jacob contact you re this?

Glad to hear the functionality of T360 can be verified even without the physical XBox device. We will try your tips tomorrow (right now, I'm having some difficulties connecting to the Vista test machine (from home)).

Anyway, the thing that fascinates me is that the problem happens even if the main functionality of our network filters is not yet enabled. That is, the mere existence of the filter driver on the stack seems to be enough for the problem to occur.

This leads me to this question: does T360 also include a kernel-mode component? Or maybe - does it use WFP (Windows Filtering Platform) in Vista to do some network filtering? You, as the author of the code probably know best what could  be the root cause of the problem.

I know that our implementation is not ideal (we still use TDI filters even though Microsoft made it quite clear that this is NOT the way network filtering should be done in Vista) but the code works so we didn't really find it necessary to reprogram the whole thing... The same thinking probably had other AV vendors as well - and that's why T360's having problems with most AV's.


Thanks
Vlk
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Offline james194zt

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Re: Avast! interferes with Transcode360 (Transcode 360)
« Reply #29 on: January 04, 2007, 08:53:55 PM »
Hello,

Jacob placed his work around on the forum with a link to here so I thought I would jump over and take a look!

The issue is extremely strange, I actually used Avast on my test machine to experiment with the issue 2 weeks ago when it was reported over on the T360 forum. The program is quite simple in operation basically a front end picks up the details of the video you want to play and passes the request using .net remoting over to the back end job on the users PC, the request then causes a block on the front end for a user conditioned time (by default 6 seconds) whilst it creates and buffers enough content before then requesting a media center playmedia command to play the buffered content.

From what I can see when I debugged the application is that all the communication between the front and back end appears to run fine the whole process works and Media Center is given the file to process BUT then returns that the file is an incorrect codec, which in the world of Media Center is a catch all for the media is defective or an incorrect format. So at this point T360 from a program point of view has done everything it is required to do and all it does on the back end is manage a copy of Mencoder from start to completion which is actually transcoding the file from the original format in to MPEG2, the Mencoder process is being managed by T360 so that further requests from the front end can be managed by the back end.

With regards to Kernel functions etc... this solution is completely managed code using .net 3 it uses nothing as far as I am aware within the core application that isn't called directly through the framework, I have been extremely tight on this to ensure that the application obeys Microsoft guidelines to ensure maximum compatibility with Vista which has paid off in respect to the core application.

From what I tested it appears the stream is somehow malformed when it goes through the networking stack as it leaves the PC, I did a simple test on my laptop whilst transcoding with Avast enabled and although the stream is being created as you can see the file is slowly growing Media Player 11 in Vista was unable to play the stream, in fact the only player that seemed to remotely show any content was VLC which played the audio track but no video. The odd thing was that once the stream had completed transcoding and the Mencoder process was completed and it terminated I was able to play the stream fine on my laptop in VLC and Media Player so whatever is affecting the stream only happens when you attempt to read the file across the LAN whilst it is being transcoded.

Just to give you a bit of information on the basic principal on the Xbox 360 Media Center Extender and how it works, basically the Xbox 360 connects to the PC using a modified encrypted remote desktop connection, due to the restrictions on video playback within remote desktop the media is sent as a separate stream to the xbox as an encrypted file and decoded on the Xbox itself. There is unfortunately a purpose built file restrictions laid down by Microsoft that only allow Windows Media Video and MPEG2 to be sent down to the console.

Hope that gives you some insight but any questions just ask.

Cheers

James

 

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