External HDD with mac mini for streaming is buffering


Flandee

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Hello

I am trying to set up a home network; basically a 2018 mac mini with a bunch of HDDs attached (at this stage just using various HDDs that I already have).

I have connected a Toshiba HDD via USB to the mac mini and use my iPad with PlayerXtreme to play movies to Chromecast. The problem is that the movie continually buffers (sometimes I can watch 30 mins then it starts buffering; sometimes only 10mins; it's very inconsistent). When I play the movie from the mac mini, I don't have any buffering problems. I suspect that the HDD is spinning down after a while.

How do I confirm that this is the problem? And what can I do to stop it happening?
 
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Cory Cooper

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Hello and welcome.

-Which version of OS X/macOS?
-Go to  > System Preferences... > Energy Saver > and uncheck Put hard disks to sleep when possible

See if that fixes the issue.

C
 
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Flandee

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Hi Cory

I have now updated my system specs (sorry but I didn't realise they were blank).

I also thought that I had already set 'Put hard disks to sleep when possible' to be unchecked but alas no; it's now unchecked so I will test again.

I don't really understand this setting. Does it affect the mac mini SSD and any attached storage? If yes, why does the movie stream OK from the mini but not the attached HDD ie - what is keeping the mac mini from sleeping while streaming, but not the HDD?

I assume that not sleeping hard disks will also affect the mac mini SSD. What is the impact of not allowing it to sleep? I was planning to leave the mac mini on permanently so will this cause high energy usage or any other issues?

Is there any other way to set up the system so that whatever is needed stays awake otherwise everything sleeps?

Sorry for all the questions but I'm looking ofr the best way to set this up ....
 

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