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OFF TOPIC: HELP! Need advice on Sonos/Ubiquiti setup

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  • #16
    I've tried 1 wire with Sonos Net, multiple wires with Sonos Net (STP MUST be enabled) and pure WiFi. With a single wired connection and Sonos Net, STP is not an issue. My Sonos system is pure WiFi, no wired connection. I have three APs, each on their own channel (1, 6 and 11), sharing the same SSID. All of my APs are set for medium power. My system is stone reliable, no dropouts, no missed announcements and can simultaneously stream local FLAC content to all 15 clients without issue.each of the other methods above were troublesome in one way or another. We had problems with HomeSeer announcements when using a Play 1 as a source, much less when using a Connect:AMP and none using one of the new Amps.
    Randy Prade
    Aurora, CO
    Prades.net

    PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

    Comment


    • #17
      Originally posted by rprade View Post
      I've tried 1 wire with Sonos Net, multiple wires with Sonos Net (STP MUST be enabled) and pure WiFi. With a single wired connection and Sonos Net, STP is not an issue. My Sonos system is pure WiFi, no wired connection. I have three APs, each on their own channel (1, 6 and 11), sharing the same SSID. All of my APs are set for medium power. My system is stone reliable, no dropouts, no missed announcements and can simultaneously stream local FLAC content to all 15 clients without issue.each of the other methods above were troublesome in one way or another. We had problems with HomeSeer announcements when using a Play 1 as a source, much less when using a Connect:AMP and none using one of the new Amps.
      Interesting... so you are using wifi and not sonosnet.

      Funny how opinions vary so much on this. I'll try your way next if this doesn't pan out. I have 2 AP (lites), both set to medium for 2.4, one on channel 1, the other on 11. Sonos net is on 6.

      Comment


      • #18
        We all know what opinions are like

        My experience is the result of many different tries at configurations. Every setup except what I settled on have had problems.

        Before Ubiquiti, only Sonos Net would stream FLAC to the entire network without problems. That required Sonos Net on channel 1, 6 or 11, with my APs on a different channel. Announcements through the plug-in in were 90% reliable, but would frequently fail. On WiFi FLAC would frequently fail. Most normal lower bitrate streaming was never a problem, no matter what configuration.

        Since changing to Ubiquiti and configuring my APs as described above, moving all Sonos it WiFi give me perfectly reliable streaming, whether FLAC from local servers or any streaming services (including premium high bitrate). Avoiding Play 1s (as well as gen 1 play 5s when I had them) make announcements 99.9% reliable. On very rare occasions an announcement will start late or be truncated, but I cannot remember the last time that happened.

        One other thing that is different about my system is Sonos Power management. We have
        • 3 ZP-120s ~ 6.5 watts standby
        • 4 S16 (new amp) - ~6.7 watts standby
        • 5 S12 (2nd gen Play 1) - ~2.1 watts standby
        • 5 S1 (1st gen Play 1) - ~3.5 watts standby
        This adds up to about 75 watts of parasitic power consumption. Certainly not a huge amount, but 1 watt is $1 over a year at current rates. When we are asleep, at work or away from home they are all Off. We have a “Household” group which are On whenever we are home and awake. We have an “All” group (adding deck, front porch, garage”, “workshop” and ”shed”) that can be turned on when we are wanting music outside. The shed has my woodworking, electronics bench and other tools and the workshop is where I work on motorcycles, outdoor power tools, etc. I want announcements and music when I am working in either of those or the garage.

        This saves a little energy and also resets the Sonos system nightly. While it is a small amount of energy, it could save $25-30 over the course of a year. I do not personally believe power cycling the Sonos units is hard on them. My Sonos announcement script accounts for whether any client is online or not and will not send announcements to any offline clients. In the case of an alert during the night, the Sonos system is turned on and the alert is issued after a 90 second delay. Smoke, CO, fire and security alerts are handled by their own systems. Sonos will alert to a water leak event (the water is shut off automatically), a refrigerator above 45 degrees or a freezer above 20 degrees.

        I get a little grief from my brother about chasing wasted energy, but we have eliminated a fair amount of wasted energy, by controlling heating, air conditioning and power through automation. While not a huge amount, it is easily $300-500 per year. We also have reduced our 24/7 server/network energy load by more than 300 watts, through consolidation and more efficient devices from what it was in 2014, while adding more cameras.
        Randy Prade
        Aurora, CO
        Prades.net

        PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

        Comment


        • #19
          Wow...thanks for sharing as always.

          I have several of the first generation play 1's, which could also account for the problems I saw. Placing boosts nearby seems to be working, but I don't do that many announcements.

          funny about power consumption.... I'm trying to tackle reliability first, then head down that route later. I'm finding the ubiquiti learning curve steeper than I anticipated ...

          speaking of which, I assume you are using vlans with you HA and Sonos gear? How did you find configuring that...as its next on my list.

          Comment


          • #20
            Ok, I am deeply familiar with your issue. I spent over a YEAR with Sonos on this years ago, up to the CEO level engagement. One of my places actually has more two sonos nets because I have more than 32 devices in the first one. I had HORRENDOUS networking issues until I got a handle on all of this.

            Short version is this; Sonos uses a very old STP cost settings in their configuration. This means, by default, Ubiquiti and other switches give preference to SonosNet routes which move your gigabyte wired traffic over a 801.11.g 54mb connection instead. It creates fantastic loops on your network (over the Sonos net IPV6 mesh) where packet storms effectively cease the ability of your network to work in any rational way. And to you it will appear random, e.g. your network is fine for a week then suddenly it takes seconds to ping a local device that should take <1ms, you unplug something and things are fine only for it to come back randomly days later.

            You CAN get this to work together. You need to do a few things. First, do you need wireless? If not its much simpler to wire every Sonos device and turn off wifi (permanently) in them. However if you (like me) need Sonos net, then you must properly set STP parameters in ALL of your switches (I have dozens of switches at one house, I manually have to configure them the first time). I also found a bug in the Toughlink switches from Unifi which didn't properly respect STP (to the point they just gave me credit on them to get Edgeswitch 8s instead). I don't believe the Unifi switches have the same bug (it manifested when management vlan was not 1, and then STP/RSTP and others did not work properly as they did not pick up the BPDU packets on vlan they were transmitted on like the spec said they should)

            Feel free to PM me and I'll give you my email and phone number, no one else should have to go through this hell again ,) and I will do whatever I can to help.

            Bill

            Comment


            • #21
              Originally posted by rprade View Post
              I've tried 1 wire with Sonos Net, multiple wires with Sonos Net (STP MUST be enabled) and pure WiFi. With a single wired connection and Sonos Net, STP is not an issue. My Sonos system is pure WiFi, no wired connection. I have three APs, each on their own channel (1, 6 and 11), sharing the same SSID. All of my APs are set for medium power. My system is stone reliable, no dropouts, no missed announcements and can simultaneously stream local FLAC content to all 15 clients without issue.each of the other methods above were troublesome in one way or another. We had problems with HomeSeer announcements when using a Play 1 as a source, much less when using a Connect:AMP and none using one of the new Amps.
              Do you use Zigbee as well in your house? If so ideally you'll leave one of the 3 2.4ghz ranges available to it, usually by reusing one of the channels in the AP that can't overlap. E.g if you have 3 ap's as you do, if the one furthers from the other can both use say channel 1, use channel 11 in the middle, then leave 6 for Zigbee or other 2.4ghz needs yo may have. If you don't you may see some intermittent issues that is actually Zigbee/Wifi contention on band.

              Comment


              • #22
                Originally posted by bsobel View Post

                Do you use Zigbee as well in your house? If so ideally you'll leave one of the 3 2.4ghz ranges available to it, usually by reusing one of the channels in the AP that can't overlap. E.g if you have 3 ap's as you do, if the one furthers from the other can both use say channel 1, use channel 11 in the middle, then leave 6 for Zigbee or other 2.4ghz needs yo may have. If you don't you may see some intermittent issues that is actually Zigbee/Wifi contention on band.
                Thank you for the suggestions. I do use Zigbee, and what you say makes sense. I will likely try it out, though I have zero issues with network or Zigbee. Halloween and christmas are coming, so my Hue animations will be used, which does make a lot Zigbee traffic on the hub nearest my garage AP which is currently on channel 1. My primary household AP is on 6 and my third AP is on 11. All three are close to equidistant and in a straight line. There is a Hue hub in the garage and one in the basement directly under the primary AP mounted to the ceiling in the hall on the ground floor. Here is my current layout.

                Garage (1) -------------------- House (6) -------------------- Shed (11)
                Zigbee (11) -------------------- Zigbee (15)

                While we can get by on a single AP for almost everything, I foolishly like to stream music while I am mowing or other yard work. With a single AP, it wont reach well to the corners of the property, with 3 I am covered everywhere.

                I certainly welcome any suggestions, but all I can say is assigning the channels i have and setting the power at medium on all APs has made everything "just work", from Sonos to phone/tablet handoffs.


                Randy Prade
                Aurora, CO
                Prades.net

                PHLocation - Pushover - EasyTrigger - UltraECM3 - Ultra1Wire3 - Arduino

                Comment


                • #23
                  Originally posted by rprade View Post
                  Thank you for the suggestions. I do use Zigbee, and what you say makes sense. I will likely try it out, though I have zero issues with network or Zigbee. Halloween and christmas are coming, so my Hue animations will be used, which does make a lot Zigbee traffic on the hub nearest my garage AP which is currently on channel 1. My primary household AP is on 6 and my third AP is on 11. All three are close to equidistant and in a straight line. There is a Hue hub in the garage and one in the basement directly under the primary AP mounted to the ceiling in the hall on the ground floor. Here is my current layout.

                  Garage (1) -------------------- House (6) -------------------- Shed (11)
                  Zigbee (11) -------------------- Zigbee (15)

                  While we can get by on a single AP for almost everything, I foolishly like to stream music while I am mowing or other yard work. With a single AP, it wont reach well to the corners of the property, with 3 I am covered everywhere.

                  I certainly welcome any suggestions, but all I can say is assigning the channels i have and setting the power at medium on all APs has made everything "just work", from Sonos to phone/tablet handoffs.
                  From the description you gave, I wouldn't change anything. If the shed needed Zigbee as well, I would. But in your current config you've separated the channels nicely, so what I thought could be occurring sounds like it isn't. In my case I honestly sorta forgot about Zigbee then realized it was channel hopping since I was using 1, 6, and 11 in a pattern trying to not overlap as much as possible (there are 17 access points currently at that place, with a few more planned for later expansions, one of the side effects of having a house with 3 foot thick stone walls, wifi does not penetrate great!) When I moved ZigBee to basically channel 6 and lets the AP's use 1 or 11 (and then moved as much traffic to 5ghz where I could have lost more channel choices) overall reliability shot up leaving just the Sonos mess I had to clean up.

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Originally posted by bsobel View Post
                    Ok, I am deeply familiar with your issue. I spent over a YEAR with Sonos on this years ago, up to the CEO level engagement. One of my places actually has more two sonos nets because I have more than 32 devices in the first one. I had HORRENDOUS networking issues until I got a handle on all of this.

                    Short version is this; Sonos uses a very old STP cost settings in their configuration. This means, by default, Ubiquiti and other switches give preference to SonosNet routes which move your gigabyte wired traffic over a 801.11.g 54mb connection instead. It creates fantastic loops on your network (over the Sonos net IPV6 mesh) where packet storms effectively cease the ability of your network to work in any rational way. And to you it will appear random, e.g. your network is fine for a week then suddenly it takes seconds to ping a local device that should take <1ms, you unplug something and things are fine only for it to come back randomly days later.

                    You CAN get this to work together. You need to do a few things. First, do you need wireless? If not its much simpler to wire every Sonos device and turn off wifi (permanently) in them. However if you (like me) need Sonos net, then you must properly set STP parameters in ALL of your switches (I have dozens of switches at one house, I manually have to configure them the first time). I also found a bug in the Toughlink switches from Unifi which didn't properly respect STP (to the point they just gave me credit on them to get Edgeswitch 8s instead). I don't believe the Unifi switches have the same bug (it manifested when management vlan was not 1, and then STP/RSTP and others did not work properly as they did not pick up the BPDU packets on vlan they were transmitted on like the spec said they should)

                    Feel free to PM me and I'll give you my email and phone number, no one else should have to go through this hell again ,) and I will do whatever I can to help.

                    Bill
                    Thanks Bill... much appreciated.

                    I do have several play:1's and a couple play:3's that I need to use wirelessly, so have sonosnet setup. I have two boosts, but are hardwired to my LAN.

                    I have 1 USW-16 with STP set, priority 4096. I have 3 USW-8's each with STP set, priority 8192

                    I tried all sonosnet ( per some reco's on the Sonos forum), but I have quite a bit of interference in some areas that were causing issues. I was able to move my boosts around, but one of my connect:amps needs to be in a closet that has a ton of other stuff. Ultimately I hardwired that back in.

                    So far so good... but i'll stay in touch for sure!

                    Per my question to Randy, did you setup VLANs as well? I want everything working stably before I venture down that path and mess it all up again.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Tomgru View Post
                      Thanks Bill... much appreciated.
                      I do have several play:1's and a couple play:3's that I need to use wirelessly, so have sonosnet setup. I have two boosts, but are hardwired to my LAN.
                      I have 1 USW-16 with STP set, priority 4096. I have 3 USW-8's each with STP set, priority 8192
                      I tried all sonosnet ( per some reco's on the Sonos forum), but I have quite a bit of interference in some areas that were causing issues. I was able to move my boosts around, but one of my connect:amps needs to be in a closet that has a ton of other stuff. Ultimately I hardwired that back in.
                      So far so good... but i'll stay in touch for sure!
                      Per my question to Randy, did you setup VLANs as well? I want everything working stably before I venture down that path and mess it all up again.
                      Yes, have 6 vlans total running. And you are talking about the switch priority above, which is important to set and I assume the USW-16 is the highest in your pyramid and the 3 USW-8s are directly connected to it. If so those priorities are fine, but would need to set is PER PORT priorities.

                      Make ALL of your trunks explicit, path cost 4, priority 16. (4/32 for backup links if you have dual ethernet and run backups). On all your other ports set a priority to a cost of 10 and priority of 128.. The reason for this is the Sonos does not use the same values as RSTP does, Sonos uses STP short values while your hardware defaults to long values (see https://www.cisco.com/c/m/en_us/tech...tree-cost.html ). When your switch needs to send data, it will choose the lowest cost route that is connected to basically where it wants the data to go. These values can be played with the only rule is the uplink ports MUST have a value lower than the 19 that the Sonos devices will self report.

                      In general doing this with switch priorities should be sufficient, but Ubnt has had bugs with this, and that is why it took me so long to get to the root cause. By forcing the port priorities, you take it out of the Unifi firmware. I know for sure that the ToughSwitch8 specifically has a bug in this regard (after deploying about a dozen of them!)

                      If you do this everywhere you will have no problems. What happens otherwise is your uplink port from your USW8 to your USW16 gets a RSTP (which you need for VLANS over STP) path cost of 20,000 or 200,000 depending if its a 100mb or gigabit port. The Sonos will report 19 for the same link. Your switch will then say, hey it costs 20,000 to route this traffic over my wired ethernet cable but only costs 19 to send it to this device. It then uses your Sonos net as a bridge (which may already be happening). Then depending on your physical layout, you might wind up creating a loop where you send a packet, it goes to your AP gets sent out over the sonos net, back on ethernet, and back out on sonos net again. So even if you don't have the loops, you may well have a 54gb wireless link in your topology you are not aware of. That would occur if you had a sonos device plugged into the USW-16 and it was in radio range of a Sonos device plugged into any of the USW-8s.

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        bsobel Nice explanations. Thanks.

                        I originally had set my priorities for STP as, if I recall, out of the box UniFi defaults to RSTP. I have two downstream switches that were set at 8192 and 12,288.

                        This has helped my Sonos announcements but still had drops.

                        I found some information on the Internet suggesting wiring one play:1 and disabling STP which I did and it made my Sonos announcements nearly 100% reliable.

                        Are you you suggesting that if I turn on STP and set the priorities as 4096, 8192, 8192, 12,288 I might get better coverage? One of my guest room Sonos play:1’s is often brown or red when running Network Matrix.

                        Here is my infrastructure:

                        Click image for larger version  Name:	9F657F9A-E21E-4F5B-B931-C23A248CFFBB.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	10.5 KB ID:	1325013
                        Michael
                        Michael

                        HS3 Pro 3.0.0.470 | 849 devices | 349 events | OpenSprinkler | BLShutdown | EasyTrigger | NetCAM | Harmony Hub | Sonos | SDJ-Health | BLUPS | PHLocation | BLBackup | BLLock | Z-Wave 3.0.1.243 | weatherXML | Pushover 3P | Blue-Iris | AirPlaySpeak

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Rvtravlr View Post
                          bsobel Nice explanations. Thanks.

                          I originally had set my priorities for STP as, if I recall, out of the box UniFi defaults to RSTP. I have two downstream switches that were set at 8192 and 12,288.

                          This has helped my Sonos announcements but still had drops.

                          I found some information on the Internet suggesting wiring one play:1 and disabling STP which I did and it made my Sonos announcements nearly 100% reliable.

                          Are you you suggesting that if I turn on STP and set the priorities as 4096, 8192, 8192, 12,288 I might get better coverage? One of my guest room Sonos play:1’s is often brown or red when running Network Matrix.

                          Here is my infrastructure:

                          Click image for larger version Name:	9F657F9A-E21E-4F5B-B931-C23A248CFFBB.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	10.5 KB ID:	1325013
                          Michael
                          Those values sound right. Basically add 4096 decimal or 1000 hex to each lower level. Office switch 4096, Closet and Office Switch 2 should be 8192, and 12888 for the Garage Switch. Sonos defaults to 32k so they will fall in line. I use RSTP but be careful of also setting port costs, as Sonos dishes up short ones and you can wind up with unintentional bridging with them. If say Garage Switch has a sonos and Office Switch 1 does, and they can reach each other via Wifi they will create a bridge bypassing your wired segment unless you set the costs on your wired segments below 19 (I use 4 for all trunk ports and 10 for everything else)

                          My advice is if you set the costs manually, then run as many wired Sonos as you can and the rest SonosNet will manage fine.

                          Comment


                          • #28
                            Thanks.
                            Michael

                            HS3 Pro 3.0.0.470 | 849 devices | 349 events | OpenSprinkler | BLShutdown | EasyTrigger | NetCAM | Harmony Hub | Sonos | SDJ-Health | BLUPS | PHLocation | BLBackup | BLLock | Z-Wave 3.0.1.243 | weatherXML | Pushover 3P | Blue-Iris | AirPlaySpeak

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Rvtravlr View Post
                              bsobel Nice explanations. Thanks.

                              I originally had set my priorities for STP as, if I recall, out of the box UniFi defaults to RSTP. I have two downstream switches that were set at 8192 and 12,288.

                              This has helped my Sonos announcements but still had drops.

                              I found some information on the Internet suggesting wiring one play:1 and disabling STP which I did and it made my Sonos announcements nearly 100% reliable.

                              Are you you suggesting that if I turn on STP and set the priorities as 4096, 8192, 8192, 12,288 I might get better coverage? One of my guest room Sonos play:1’s is often brown or red when running Network Matrix.

                              Here is my infrastructure:

                              Click image for larger version Name:	9F657F9A-E21E-4F5B-B931-C23A248CFFBB.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	10.5 KB ID:	1325013
                              Michael
                              What did you use to draw that map?

                              Comment


                              • #30
                                The map function is a function of the UniFi CloudKey.
                                Michael

                                HS3 Pro 3.0.0.470 | 849 devices | 349 events | OpenSprinkler | BLShutdown | EasyTrigger | NetCAM | Harmony Hub | Sonos | SDJ-Health | BLUPS | PHLocation | BLBackup | BLLock | Z-Wave 3.0.1.243 | weatherXML | Pushover 3P | Blue-Iris | AirPlaySpeak

                                Comment

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