Peer-to-peer Airplay suddenly a lot worse?

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In our large school, we always use peer-to-peer Airplay to mirror the screen of iPads to an Apple TV. The iPads and Apple TV's are on the same SSID, but all in different VLAN's. The P2P discovery over bluetooth works perfect and the screen mirroring has always been good ... untill recently. Airplay mirroring to Apple TV's of the 3rd generation has become much worse (stuttering video and audio) since the last couple of weeks. In that periode, we did two changes: the clients were updated to iOS/iPadOS 13.2.x and the Zonedirector and AP's were updated from 10.0.2.x to 10.3.1.0. We don't know if those software updates caused peer-to-peer Airplay to be much worse. On the Apple TV's of the 4th generation, peer-to-peer Airplay is smooth like it was before.
If anyone has the same experience or knows if this has something to do with a bug in iOS 13 or a setting in the latest ZD firmware, any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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Pieter Schepens

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Posted 7 months ago

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David Saez, Employee

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Hi Pieter,
I have seen a couple issues with iOS 13.2 devices recently, most of them related with Apple bugs in latest versions. 
- could you elaborate more on the issue, I mean, It is just stuttering video and audio or is the client connection being broken?
- could you narrow down issue depending device type, like iPhone X, iPAD, etc.?
- are you using dynamic VLAN on the WLAN?
- could you share a support info file of one of the APs just after this is happening?


Thanks.
David.
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Pieter Schepens

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Some more information about the P2P Airplay issue (with Apple TV 3 and iOS 13):
  • Connecting with Apple TV's (control panel > screen mirroring > the list appears > selecting > entering the four digit on screen code) is slower than it used to be.
  • Even without playing video or audio, there is a slight and noticable lag between the iPad/iPhone and the Apple TV.
  • When playing video or audio, sometimes you hear cracks and the video is not 100% smooth, sometimes you can't listen at all because of stuttering every second.
  • Most of the time, the connection is not broken, that's not the problem.
  • We tried it with iPhones (8 and 11) and iPads (Pro 10.5, Air 2, 2017): they all had the same problem.
  • Older iPads with iOS 12 didn't have the problem at all.
  • We used to use VLAN-pooling to distribute all the clients and Apple TV's accross 16 VLAN's, but because of the new Airplay problem, we stopped using VLAN-pooling and now use a VLAN override per AP group, in order to limit the chances that client and Apple TV are on different VLAN's. Both of those setups, VLAN-pooling and VLAN override, used to work perfect for Airplay mirroring until recently.
I can share a support file of one of those AP's, next Monday.

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David Saez, Employee

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Hi Pieter,
thanks for the good information shared. From what you tell me It looks like an issue with iOS 13.2 (we already have some cases opened internally), but this would require a further investigation inside a support case. I will wait for the support info from your side but I would suggest you to open a case and we will work on the issue.

Thanks.
David.
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Michael Brado, Official Rep

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Hi Pieter,
    It may be a radical suggestion, but if you saved a backup before you upgraded the ZD, could you schedule
another maintenance period and revert back to the previous ZD version (at least temporarily, if you upgraded
to support new AP models)?Then, only the Apple TV and client OS would be different, to compare against the
observed list of issues?
(Edited)
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Pieter Schepens

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Hi Michael, I also thought about that interesting experiment. I have a backup of the configuration, from right before the upgrade. The reason why I didn’t do it yet, is that I don’t have experience with downgrades of a ZoneDirector. If you upload an older firmware version, isn’t there a possibility that you loose all the settings and that you have to upload your (older) config again (making the ZD unreachable for a while)? Or can I just restore the older backup config, and that’s it?
I’m definitely willing to give this a try, if all the steps are clear.
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Michael Brado, Official Rep

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Hi Pieter,
    The ZD upgrade process will strongly suggest that you save a backup file before proceeding, and if you did, rolling back ('upgrade' to an earlier version) that you just came from, *should* have your backup in memory, and use it to restore IP, logins, WLANs, etc. on the earlier version again.
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hayk

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Hi Pieter 

       I suggest that you rollback to  10.0.2.x  firmware since the newest ZD firmware 10.3.x might have Wifi speed issues with iOS devices while using encryption on downloads. Apparently,  the newest unleashed firmware 200.7.x  has this speed issue on downloads with iOS devices.
(Edited)
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EightOhTwoEleven

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We rolled back our vSZ firmware to 5.1.0 ... no issues since this was done.

(Edited)
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Pieter Schepens

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I *just* downgraded the ZD 1200 from 10.3.1.0 to 10.1.2.0 build 270: everything went perfectly fine. It took some time for the AP's to come up, but even the five new AP's that were joined after the upgrade (and were not present at the time I made the last backup before upgrading) all connected without issues. That's part one, so far so good. Tomorrow morning, we'll test the Airplay issues (cross-VLAN, P2P, ...).

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Michael Brado, Official Rep

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Hi Pieter,

   I just posted a new maintenance release today (b275) ...

ZoneDirector10.1.2 (MR2 Refresh4) Release Notes:

https://support.ruckuswireless.com/documents/3107-zonedirector-10-1-2-mr2-refresh4-release-notes

 

ZD120010.1.2.0.275 (MR2 Refresh4) Software Release:

https://support.ruckuswireless.com/software/2279-zd1200-10-1-2-0-275-mr2-refresh4-software-release
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Pieter Schepens

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Update: after the downgrade from 10.3.1.0 to 10.1.2.0 build 270: the issue is not resolved, video/audio stuttering when using Airplay to Apple TV keeps occurring frequently.
Would you recommend to install the freshly released maintenance release (10.1.2.0 b275), or upgrade to 10.2, or upgrade again to 10.3?

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Pieter Schepens

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Update: we installed the latest maintenance release (10.1.2.0 build 275). The situation is definitely a lot better. I'm not sure if the issue is resolved: after the Christmas holiday break, we'll do some more testing and evaluate the situation in the classroom.

Another thing we observed: the very bad quallity only happens during screen mirroring (mirroring the total screen and everything you do), not when you use Airplay inside an app (e.g. using Safari or Music to watch a video and then mirror that video with the Airplay button inside the app). (but most of the third party apps have no such Airplay button, so that's not a temporary solution)
FYI: Apple TV 4e generation still has no issues at all, with or without that latest firmware update.


Will there also be a maintenace release 10.3.1.0, similar to the one for 10.1.2.0?
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Pieter Schepens

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Update: after a couple of days testing and using Airplay screen mirroring in every day school life, the issue is not resolved. Screen mirroring to an Apple TV 3 from iOS 13 remains somehow problematic: sometimes it's more or less OK, with nothing more than some small glitches in video quality, sometimes audio and video stutter really bad. Meanwhile, screen mirroring from iOS 12 is working fine, as is screen mirroring to an Apple TV 4 (regardless of the platform you're streaming from).

Our ZoneDirector is on 10.1.2.0 build 275: I don't know if upgrading to 10.2 or 10.3 would benefit the situation.