"This Broadcaster is Currently Offline" Troubleshooting

One of the most common issues that people experience when testing Livepeer is visting the web player hosted at media.livepeer.org, and expecting to see their stream, but instead they see:

The dreaded This broadcaster is currently offline message. You know you’re broadcasting, and you know you’re not offline, so this can be frustrating.

This could be related to a number of issues anywhere in the Livepeer stack. Here are good steps to try and identify what might be wrong, and determine if it has to do with your local setup, or with the hosted nodes that we’re running to serve content out of this gateway.

1. Test if you can consume your own stream locally

The best way to do this is to visit http://media.livepeer.org/player.html in your browser. This “older” player, unlike the one that we default to, will attempt to connect directly to your local node without going through the P2P network to pull and serve your stream. It asks you to provide your “streamID”. This is a little confusing, but you can find this listed as “ManifestID” in your node’s console output when you start your stream…

I0315 11:08:33.976741   15995 mediaserver.go:139] Current deposit is: 496969280000000
I0315 11:08:33.976802   15995 mediaserver.go:166] Cannot automatically detect the video profile - setting it to {P720p30fps16x9 4000k 30 1280x720 16:9}
I0315 11:08:33.976918   15995 mediaserver.go:267] 

ManifestID: 122048f79844e31901bf9bf2da23a839a2d8c32e96f6e9b07fe1723964b70b76b8312cc1a515997fb481a59c9da6ce1e8bf0caacadbcd8d5ff086634a03df8a0c950

Copy that manifest ID, paste it into the player, and click “Start”.

If you can see your stream here, then it’s likely the reason that you can’t see it in the old player served at media.livepeer.org has nothing to do with you. It’s a networking issue or operational issue in the hosted Livepeer nodes serving that gateway. In other words: “it’s not you, it’s us.”

This can be frustrating, but keep in mind that Livepeer is not intended to be a centralized service that hosts and serves video on user’s behalf. It’s meant to be a decentralized network where anyone can run nodes to push content into the network and request it from the network, wherever they’d like. As such, we’re not running super robust infrastructure with 24/7 uptime and reliability in order to host and serve other people’s live streams. We are running a couple nodes for demonstrational purposes so that people may be able to see their content easily through a web URL while they’re testing and building. When you encounter the “broadcaster is offline” issue, it’s likely one of these nodes just crashed, needs to be restarted, or there’s a bug. There are many bugs, we’re working through them all :slight_smile:

On the other hand: It’s also possible that the stream can not make it to the gateway because of a networking issue. If you’re behind a firewall, or you can’t connect to any other peers on the network due to certain ports being restricted, then it’s possible your video won’t be relayed across the network.

2. If you can not see your video locally using the old player

Then it’s likely that something else is wrong:

  • Did your broadcast job get created on chain? You’ll see console output on your node that says “Created broadcast job?”
  • Did you have test ETH in order to submit the transaction? Use livepeer_cli which will output your test ETH balance.
  • Are you broadcasting into your local node at rtmp://localhost:1935 (by deafult)? You can usually set this in the output settings of your broadcasting tool, like OBS or Manycam.
  • Do you see the ManifestID printed out in the console output of your node?
  • Are there any errors reported in the console output of your node? (Lines that start with E)

3. Getting help

As always, there are plenty of people hanging out in gitter happy to help debug. Feel free to pop in, introduce yourself, and ask any questions.

Hi All!

I can consume the broadcaster locally but it’s no possible through https://media.livepeer.org, probably because the firewall restrictions in my academical network, so I wonder how can I reach other broadcasters different than mine as a customer?

All the best!

@berioshka I encourage you to try and run a Livepeer node even behind the firewall. I’m happy to debug with you if you come find me in our Discord channel.

If you want to use another broadcasting node, you’d either have to host it on a publicly accessible platform like AWS, or know someone else’s Livepeer node IP/port so you can connect to it.

You can find us in Livepeer’s Discord at https://discord.gg/22N62qj

Thanks @ericxtang Actually I moved to Azure to avoid any filter.

Oh cool. Did it work after you moved to Azure? I’ve never used it before.