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28 July 2010 @ 11:20 am
iTunes blues  
My sister turned me on to Mad Men (the TV show) awhile back. I've enjoyed the first 3 seasons using DVDs and thought I'd try downloading the new season via iTunes. I bought a season pass for $30.

The first episode took 26 hours to download on my creaky satellite-based internet connection.

That was bad enough, but now I find I cannot play it smoothly. It proceeds in fits and starts, especially the video.

It is unwatchable right now on my PC. I admit I didn't read the fine print when I bought my pass. Could my processor speed be too low? It SHOULD pass muster. Ran a diagnostic that clocked it at 2065+ MHz.
Lindsey Kuperlindseykuper on July 28th, 2010 11:39 pm (UTC)
That doesn't seem right! Just out of curiosity, I wonder what your internet connection speed is? You can use a speed test like this one to check.

Do you know how big of a file it was that you downloaded? (I'm not exactly sure how the PC version of iTunes works, but you ought to be able to right-click on the episode and "Get Info", or something like that.) From that and the speed test you should be able to get a rough idea of whether 26 hours was a sane amount of time to download the thing. Maybe there are multiple versions and you got the uber-high-quality one. You could see if iTunes tech support helps, too. There's a lot of information here.
deepdistractiondeepdistraction on July 30th, 2010 10:49 pm (UTC)
There were actually 4 files. The big one was 1.41 GB. The others totaled 836 MB. You're right, these are high-quality--I can choose to view them in either high-def or standard. But so far, running EITHER version maxes out my CPU usage. In fact, just running iTunes alone seems to require at least 50% of my CPU's capacity. Which is why watching them has turned out to be next to impossible.

The speed test was still running an hour after I started it. I'll try again later.

One big problem with satellite internet is that atmospheric conditions can really mess things up. Today is very overcast and humid. I'm sure that's at least part of the problem. We can't connect at all in rainy or snowy weather.

We're part of the 'last mile' problem out here. It's very frustrating.
deepdistractiondeepdistraction on July 31st, 2010 04:15 pm (UTC)
I switched to another test. Download speed this morning is 128 kbps (an improvement! from K's check yesterday of 114). Upload speed is a hefty 39 kbps.

It appears I need updates for some drivers, too; thanks for the links! Too bad the updates must also be downloaded.

We lurch along!