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Frequently Asked Questions

Feed updates and Downloads (8)

Feed update failures and download failure usually have different causes but you can use the same approach to do some general diagnosis on either.

You can also see all failures by pressing on 'Event Log' in the navigation drawer (press on hamburger at the top left). This will list all of the successes and failures for feed updates and downloads. Pressing on an event will display the details of the failure.

Alternatively, you can press on the context button for a feed/episode that is failing, and then press on 'Error'.

In the details, there are two parts to pay attention to:

1 - Details - this is the error message and will usually give a good indication of what the problem is
2 - Cause - this is DoggCatcher's guess at what the error was caused by based on past errors.

Common error messages

Illegal character in hostname at index...
The feed or media files are stored on a server with a hostname that is not allowed by the Android networking software.

Task killers
Some users have reported that task killers are killing DC and causing updates/downloads to fail.

Getting help

If you are unable to resolve the issue, please post in the support forum. Please include the RSS URL and a detailed description of what you are experiencing.

DoggCatcher will only auto-download the media for new episodes. So DoggCatcher thinks that the episode is new.

Sometimes, feed publishers change the title of the epsidoes. By default, DoggCatcher uses the identifier called GUID (which is provided by the publisher) to determine uniqueness for an episode. So if the publisher changes the GUID for an episode, DoggCatcher will remove the old episode (deleting the media) and add the new episode. In this case the media will be downloaded again.

You can tell this is happening if you have episodes that are marked as done and then after a feed update, they then re-appear new.

Most often this can be fixed by changing the 'episode identifier' feed option for the feed to one of the other values. The GUID option is the best choice to start with, but the one that works depends on the feed.

There are some things that can cause mobile traffic with this setting.

-Audio/Video streaming
-Browsing news articles in the app - DoggCatcher will load images in the news content over the mobile network.

Some feeds include invalid characters or are in an improper form. This can sometimes cause the feed parser to fail.

You can verify that your feed is in the proper form here - Feed Validator

Getting help
If you are unable to resolve the issue, please post in the support forum. Please include the RSS URL and a detailed description of what you are experiencing.

Some feeds publish items out of order. For these feeds, enabling the 'Full fetch' feed option resolves this problem.

You may also need to set the item sort order feed option to date (newest first).

Try running the feed diagnostics in the context menu for a feed. It will display a message if this type of feed is detected.

During normal usage, one would usually want to listen to older items first. DoggCatcher will download the oldest items that are flagged as 'New', up to the number configured in the 'Auto Download' feed option.

When creating new feeds, all items but the most recent are flagged as old so that the most recent will be the first available.

You can flag any items as 'Done' that you don't want to have downloaded.

On some networks, users need to authenticate from a browser on their device to allow the device to connect to the internet. If DoggCatcher tries to download a media file prior to the authentication and the authentication proxy does not return a proper response code indicating that it was unable to provide the file, DoggCatcher will save whatever the proxy responds with. In this case, there really isn't any way for DoggCatcher to easily distinguish between a real media file and a bogus HTML response.

There are some ideas in this post that we'll probably work into DoggCatcher to work around the problem.

Audio Playback (4)

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Most audio files are supported by Android, however occasionally there are factors that can cause an audio file to fail to play.

A problem with the audio file

The easiest way to determine if there is a problem with the audio file is to long press on the media file and 'launch in external player'. This will load the media file and the Android music player. If it fails to play, then the audio file will not play in DoggCatcher because DoggCatcher uses an embedded Android music player for media playback.

In the past, audio failure have been caused by:

-Invalid audio encoding parameters - In this case it has been useful to contact the publisher and let them know. They will often try to correct the problem.
-Corrupt SD cards.
-Failing Android media player (or sound drivers). Rebooting the devices fixes this.

Variable Speed

Some audio files are not encoded in a way that is compatible with variable speed. You can try disabling variable speed in the setting to determine if this is causing the problem. Note that setting the speed to 1.0x *is not* effective as testing for this problem.

Android media player dies

Occasionally the Android media player dies in a way that can only be resolved by rebooting the device. If you get errors trying to play a variety of different audio files of which you are confident should work properly, try rebooting your device. Rebooting normally resolves this problem.

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Headset buttons
Android allows one application at a time to respond to headset buttons. The application that most recently requested to be the sole receiver of headset button events, will receive all headset button events.

You can see this demonstrated by following these steps:

-Start DoggCatcher and press play in the DoggCatcher UI
-Press a headset button (wired or BT) a few times, DoggCatcher will responds to the button presses
-Start a main stream audio application (like Google Play Music or Spotify) and press play in the music app UI
-Press a headset button (wired or BT) a few times, the music app will responds to the button presses

We've followed the development guidelines and reproduced the intended behavior, and also the behavior of the Android music player.

DoggCatcher will begin responding to the headset buttons when the following happens, and will continue to respond to headset button events until another app requests to be the sole received of headset button events.

-DoggCatcher is launched
-The play button in the DoggCatcher UI is pressed

Headset button developer guidelines
The coding details can be found here -

Bluetooth metadata
Some devices support the display of Bluetooth meta data, like artist name, track name, etc, on the display of the Bluetooth device.

This works on most devices regardless of DoggCatcher's configuration, however some devices require that the this DoggCatcher setting be enabled:
Settings / Headset/Lockscreen / Lock screen buttons

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Audio stops and displays a notification mentioning audio focus

DoggCatcher displays a notification when another app has requested audio focus and Android revokes the audio focus from DoggCatcher. At this point, DoggCatcher must stop audio playback.

Audio Focus is something that is managed by Android to allow only one app to play audio at a time. When an audio app (such as DoggCatcher) plays audio, it first requests audio focus.

Audio apps should only do this when they are responding to user input, like pressing on a media button in the app. But sometimes apps do this at other times, some seeming completely random.

Unfortunately, there is no easy way to tell which app is taking audio focus away from DoggCatcher aside from closely monitoring what apps are installed or updated when this behavior starts.

Audio stops with no notification

This means that Android has killed DoggCatcher. Android will do this when there isn't enough available memory for DoggCatcher to continue to operate. This can be usually remedied by uninstalling applications that run in the background. Some devices running Android 5.0 can leak memory that can only be recovered by rebooting your device.

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There can be different causes for this, both of which can be confirmed by viewing the DoggCatcher event log. This log can be seen in the menu opened by clicking on the hamburger at the top left.

A headset play/pause event has been received
Some car audio systems automatically send a play event to your mobile device right after connecting via bluetooth. This has been observed with Ford Sync and some other aftermarket headunuts like the Pioneer NEX-4100.

Faulty wired headset
After a wired headset device has been used for a while, it can begin to send faulty signals to the mobile device which are interpreted as play/pause events.

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Video Playback (2)

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DoggCatcher is able to play video files in the formats that are supported by your Android version and/or device.

The first step in troubleshooting is to determine if the video can be played by your device. Try launching the video in the Android video player. You can do this by temporarily setting your video player DoggCatcher preference to external and then try to play the video again. If it still fails, then the video isn't able to be played on your device.

Feed publishers sometimes change encoding parameters that cause the video to fail to play on Android. In the past, users have contacted the publishers and they have corrected the encoding to make the videos compatible with Android.

If the video can be played in the Android player but fails to play in the DoggCatcher integrated player, please post in the support forum and I'll check it out.

Common error messages
Cannot play video - Sorry, but this video cannot be played

If you see this message, then the video you are trying to play is not supported by your version of Android and/or device.

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DoggCatcher supports the video formats supported by your device and Android version, which can vary. Please consult the Android video formats for details.

Stores - Google/Amazon (5)

Follow these steps

We are going to backup your DoggCatcher Lite settings and restore them into DoggCatcher

  • In the DoggCatcher Light menu, click Settings > Backup/Restore/Export > Backup > Yes
  • Purchase and install DoggCatcher
  • Open DoggCatcher (it will be the second DoggCatcher icon in your applications list)
  • In the DoggCatcher menu, click Settings > Backup/Restore/Export > Restore > Yes
  • Confirm that your list of feeds is what you had in DoggCatcher Light
  • Uninstall DoggCatcher Lite from your applications (it will be the first DoggCatcher icon in your applications list)
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Unfortunately developers do not have access to any billing related functions in the Amazon store. You will need to contact Amazon directly. Here is the contact information -

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Google Play Store Support
You can contact Google Play Store support at this site -

They have feature called "Talk to a specialist" fill in the fields with your name, phone number, product (Apps) & the issue you're having with your account or app you've purchased.

Amazon customer service
You can contact Amazon customer service at this site -

Please choose a different order, select my order is not shown, then enter your receipt number, select more order issues, select phone, enter your phone number, select call me now or in 5 minutes, then explain the problem you're experiencing.

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Developers don't have the ability to manage Google accounts (or move licenses from one account to another).

I would suggest placing a new order and emailing both the old and new order number indicating which one is which. I will cancel the older order.

Please include your full name and the general timeframe when the purchase was made.

Don't forget to do a backup in the DoggCatcher menu so you can restore all your feeds and configuration.

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Developers don't have the ability to manage Google accounts. I would suggest contacting Google or your carrier to see if they can help. If they are unable to assist, place a new order and email both the old and new order number indicating which one is which. I will cancel the older order.

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Device specific issues (3)

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When applications ask a device for the location to the external storage (where we want to place the backup), some devices respond with the location of the internal storage. In this case, DoggCatcher will perform backups/restores from the internal storage. This is not useful when you want to migrate your configuration from one device to another.

Here are the steps to use DoggCatcher's backup/restore to migrate your configuration from one device to another using the SD card.

-In the DoggCatcher menu, press on Backup/Restore
-Press on the backup button, then press yes
-Notice the backup location displayed on the backup/restore screen.
-Use a file manager to move the Export folder from the backup location to your SD card.
-Move the SD card to the new device
-In the DoggCatcher menu, press on Backup/Restore
-Notice the backup location displayed on the backup/restore screen.
-Use a file manager to move the Export folder from your SD card to the location displayed.
-Do a restore

This is a problem that we have been unable to track down. The only known solution is to reboot your handset (not Wear device).

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We have been receiving reports from multiple users about problems relating to pausing audio files.

Pausing an episode stops audio playback but the episode continues to play silently. DC's media player controls will update the current position as time passes even though nothing can be heard.

Then one of two things can happen:
-If the episode is resuming before the end is reached, playback resumes where the episode was paused
-If the end of the silently playing episode is reached, DC will select the next episode to play and delete the completed episode if auto-delete is configured

This isn't occurring for everyone and no one has been able to identify any repeatable steps to reliably re-create the problem. If you can, please contact support so we can try to come up with a workaround until the problem is fixed in a future release of Lollipop.

Confirmed on Nexus 5 build LRX21O
Zoho 19527

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Other (18)

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Android applications should not have the authority to cause the types of problems required to crash a device. At worst, the application can crash, but there shouldn't be any collateral damage to the operating system.

Operating system crashes can be by faulty network drivers (crash during download), audio drivers (crash during playback, or other hardware problems.

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Out of memory errors usually are caused by one of the following:

1 - There are more feeds/items than can be stored in memory. The number of feeds you have and the number of items per feed in large part determines the amount of memory used by DoggCatcher. Try lowering the max items, especially if you have a large number set for the global preference for max items.

2 - A feed with a large feed thumbnail. Occasionally feed publishers will include a feed thumbnail that is larger than the amount of available memory for the application. DoggCatcher tries to protect against this, but it's not always possible.

This also varies a bit by device. The earlier Android devices made 16 MB available to each application. Newer devices made 24 MB available. I believe the Honeycomb tablets support even more.

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Yes, follow these steps:

  • Backup your DoggCatcher configuration by doing a Backup in the DoggCatcher menu
  • If you are changing phones, move the DoggCatcher directory from the old phone's sd card (in /sdcard) to the same location on the new phone.
  • Re-download DoggCatcher from the Google Market app (in the downloads section)
  • Restore your DoggCatcher configuration to the new phone by doing a Restore in the DoggCatcher menu

The ability to download the application from the Google Market is dependent on moving your google account from the old phone to the new phone.

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Step 1 Determine the directory where you need to place a file

From the Feeds Screen, Long Press on a particular feed/podcast> press feed options>
scroll down to "Custom thumbnail filename" for the location (Example SDCard/DoggCatcher/Podcastimages/72) >press cancel

Step 2 Place a file at the location specified

Using a file manager put the jpg image named "custom.jpg" at the location

For devices DC media is stored on a external SD card

(Example SDCard1/DoggCatcher/Podcastimages/72)
(Example exSdCard/DoggCatcher/Podcastimages/72)

For devices DC media is stored on a internal SD card

(Example SDCard0/DoggCatcher/Podcastimages/72)

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We are always looking for folks that are interesting in testing the latest features and actively report back to us with comments, success, or problems. If you are interested, just follow these steps:

This does require that you have purchased the application (requirement of distributing the beta through the google play store).

Step 1 - Click here to apply to the google group - please use the same google account that you use in the google market

Step 2 - Wait until you have been accepted into the group (you'll get an email)

Step 3 - Click here and then click on the button 'become a tester'

Step 4 - Click here to update DoggCatcher to the beta

Please use the google forums mentioned above for announcements about any releases and reporting problems.

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Some of the permissions below are required only for optional features within the application. The Android framework does allow for conditionally requiring these permissions based on usage of features.

  • BLUETOOTH - to detect when a bluetooth device is connected to start playing audio
  • INTERNET - to update feeds and download media files from the internet
  • WAKE_LOCK - to keep device awake when updating feeds or downloading media files
  • ACCESS_NETWORK_STATE - to check if wifi is connected to enable download conditions
  • RECEIVE_BOOT_COMPLETED - to start the application upon boot (if configured)
  • READ_PHONE_STATE - detect when calls are being made so audio can be paused
  • WRITE_EXTERNAL_STORAGE - to save media files to the SD card
  • GET_TASKS - some devices require this to launch DoggCatcher in response to headset connect events
  • CHECK_LICENSE - validates the license with the google market app
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DoggCatcher supports ChromeCast playback with the following limitations:

  • Virtual feeds
  • Feeds that require authentication
  • Pinned episodes
  • Autoplay
  • Variable speed
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Some Podcast feeds include characters that are not supported by the XML parser built into Android. We replace those characters with "?".

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Install the log collector application called 'aLogCat' from the Google Market and email the log file to support at

Code name Android version DoggCatcher version
All more recent Changes regularly
Ice Cream Sandwich 14+ 4115
Gingerbread MR1 10+ 4078
Froyo 8+ 4005
Eclair MR1 7+ 3372
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If you landed here because of a "Storage Problem" notification in DoggCatcher, skip down to KitKat Storage Directory Configuration


You can configure DoggCatcher's storage directory to be any directory on your device that applications have write access to. In this directory, DoggCatcher will store media files, feed thumbnail images, and backups.

The setting is managed in DoggCatcher's Settings/Miscellaneous/Storage Directory.

KitKat Storage Directory Configuration

Prior to Android 4.4 (KitKat), you could select just about any directory on your SD card or large built-in storage device if you have one. Starting with Android 4.4, on some devices, the locations that applications can write to have been restricted.

If DoggCatcher is displaying a notification labeled 'Storage Problem' and your device was recently updated to Android 4.4, it is likely that this is affecting you.

Steps to correct configuration

  • Open DoggCatcher menu (... at the top right)
  • Press Settings > Miscellaneous > Storage Directory
  • Press on one of the orange entries, then confirm by pressing "Yes"
  • Press "Ok" to restart Doggcatcher

This will auto-configure DoggCatcher to use the directory that Android determines that we should store data.

Steps to correct configuration - if only some feeds are failing

If you have any feeds which have been configured with a custom storage directory, they will need to be reset to the default setting

  • Open the feed options for each feed
  • Scroll down to feed storage directory and press the 'default' button

Copying previously downloaded media files from the old storage location

This is optional but avoids re-downloading all of your media files.

  • Determine the old location of the media files - usually "/storage/extSdCard/DoggCatcher", but sometimes "extSdCard" is replaced with something similar
  • Determine the new location of the media files - re-open the Storage Directory in the settings and take a look at the text box at the bottom - usually something like - "/storage/extSdCard/Android/Data/"
  • Use an Android file manager to copy the media files from the old location to the new location - E.g. - /storage/extSdCard/Android/Data/ We recommend - ES File Explorer File Manager Available at Google Play Store
  • Open DoggCatcher and press on the Audio tab to verify that your previously downloaded media files are available
  • If all is OK delete DoggCatcher directory located at (/storage/extSdCard/DoggCatcher)

Details about the problem and its cause

Android 4.4 places new restrictions on applications that limit their access to only directories like this:
/[whatever your device's path is]/Android/Data/ - Paid version
/[whatever your device's path is]/Android/Data/ - Lite/Premium version

If you had DoggCatcher configured to use your removable SD and then received an Android OS update that seems to have broken DoggCatcher's ability to download and playback media, then you are likely being affected by this change in Android. In that cause, you'll need to reconfigure DoggCatcher to use the new directory mentioned above.

DoggCatcher will attempt to detect the best locations for your storage directory but devices vary quite a bit, so if you run into problems, please let us know so we can update DoggCatcher to better support your device.

Another important change in the Android OS update is that if you use one of the storage directories that contain "Android/Data", when the application is uninstalled, all of your media files, feed thumbnails, and backups will be DELETED.

There is some very interesting reading on this topic here -

Maybe not so interesting for most, but here are the tech details -

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-Confirm that all devices are sharing the same cloud key
-Confirm on all devices that on the Feeds tab, in the header, you do not see a "Partial cloud sync" message. If you see this, then some of your feeds failed to update. Cloud syncs won't occur until all of your feeds can update successfully
-Confirm that you are not expecting pinned episodes to be synced. Syncing of pinned episodes is not supported.
-Try to reproduce the problem and then send logs from both devices to support
-Please indicate whether syncing has completely stopped working OR if it only occurs sometimes, include notes about which episodes you modified when reproducing the problem.

We'll check out the logs and get back to you.

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Cloud sync is currently in a limited beta.

Cloud sync allows DoggCatcher to be run on multiple devices whose feeds and episodes are synchronized. This works by generating a cloud key on one device and then linking other devices with that cloud key. Changes made on any linked device will be synced up to the cloud, and then down to all devices that share the cloud key.

As you make changes on a device that is linked, those changes are synced to the cloud within a few seconds. Other devices receive those changes on feeds updates. That includes both automatic and manual feed updates, so if you are using a device that hasn't yet synced the latest info from the cloud, you can refresh the feeds and a sync will occur.

Synchronization occurs for most aspects of your feed configurations and some of your global settings.

What IS synced:

The feeds that you are subscribed to

Global feed options
-Auto downloads
-Number of episodes/articles
-Auto delete policy
-Play order

Feed configuration
-Auto downloads
-Number of episodes/articles
-Auto delete policy
-Play order
-Episode identifier
-Pin expired
-Make filenames unique
-Full fetch
-Is Virtual
-Custom enclosure directory

-Play position
-Episode state (new/in progress/done)
-Play local or stream

What is NOT synced:
Virtual feed media files
Expired episodes

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If you have the Lite version, it is identical to the Paid version both during the trial period and after the Premium upgrade has been purchased. After the trial period has expired (and no premium upgrade has been purchased), the following features will be disabled:

-Automatic scheduled feed updates
-Updating all feeds at once
-Adding more than 10 feeds

Both versions are nearly always released with the same functionality at the same. The exception would be if there were some bugs in the trial related functionality that we were working on.

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This is useful when you switch from a device that has no internal storage to a device with external storage (or a device with a different location configured as its external storage location.

When DoggCatcher does a backup, it place a directory called Export in the DoggCatcher directory on your SD card. The Export directory has all of the backup files except for media files.

1 - Use a file manager (like Astro free) to copy the Export directory from the old location to the new location. It should be placed into an existing directory called "DoggCatcher" that DoggCatcher created when it was installed.
2 - Start DoggCatcher and do a restore (in the menu)
3 - If that did not work then your device may have a different path to its SD card. If that is the case, configure the storage directory in the DoggCatcher preferences with the path to your SD card.

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No, Google outlines a list of features that are not compatible with installing applications to the SD card. DoggCatcher uses numerous features on this list (services/alarms/widgets/broadcast receivers).

Installing an app to the SD card moves only the application itself to the SD card, not the data and configuration. At the time of this post, that would save very little as DoggCatcher is about 1.5MB.

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To backup the database, please follow these steps.

1 - In the DC menu, choose backup, then press the backup button
2 - Grab these files from the SD card and email them to me at support at

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This used to be possible but Google has discontinued support for youtube channels as feeds (as needed by applications like DoggCatcher).

Here's a related post -

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Knowledgebase - less frequently asked (13)

This FAQ is meant to address the situation where audio becomes silent for a short period of time, so you miss some of the audio. It is not intended for the case where audio pauses and resumes (no audio is missed).

I have experienced it on an LG G2X (Gingerbread only) but it could occur on other devices as well. This is an Android problem that causes the audio to temporarily drop out and is limited to bluetooth. In the case of my G2X, the problem only occurs when WIFI is enabled. Turning off the WIFI resolves the issue.

This happens on some devices. I've researched quite a few users that have experienced this and each time, it has been the case that DoggCatcher has given a command to the android media player to seek to the correct position in the audio file but the media player does not seek, but starts the audio file from the beginning.

I have also tried a few different approaches to detect when this happens and retry the seek but I haven't been able to come up with anything that reliably works around the problem.

Why does my devices crash at the end of an episode when using variable speed and cyanogen ROM?

This is a known issue in cyanogen and has reported to have been fixed in CM11 M11

Many users have reported that their Nexus 7 performance has degraded over time. In this article, there is a suggestion to boot into recovery mode and clear the cache. This solution has resolved the problem for several people.

DoggCatcher uses an embedded Android media player for streaming audio.

When a streams fail because of a network connection problem, it will stop playing and the media player will sometimes send an erroneous message from the indicating that the audio file has completed.

Unfortunately, there isn't any way to distinguish between the 'false' completions and real completions, so DoggCatcher treats it as a completed audio file and move on to the next item in the playlist.

Create a virtual feed in the 'add feed' menu and drop all your music in the directory that DoggCatcher creates for the virtual feed. In the future DoggCatcher will allow you to point a virtual feed at an existing directory that already contains your music

Sometimes the Android media player, which DoggCatcher uses, fails when starting or during play of an audio file.

If this can only be resolved by rebooting the device, then it's very like to be a problem with the Android OS or a device driver.

There are two causes for this.

Faulty headset
When headsets start to flake out from wear, they start to send bogus signals to the device that makes it think that buttons are being pressed. If you have a headset plugged in and you are seeing audio files skip forward or backwards within the file or skipping to the next, it's possible your headset is near the end of its life. The distinguishing factor here is that the audio is still following the playlist in its natural order and it just seems like someone is pressing buttons

Faulty SD card
This one can be a little trickier to characterize but generally audio will play and seemingly jump to another audio file, then maybe back to the same audio file. The distinguishing factor is that the pattern does not follow the playlist but seems to randomly jump around to different audio files.

This is more common than you might think and I've had quite a few users that spend lots of time trying to diagnose this. A test with a backup SD card can be a big help.

Some feeds have dates for the items that are not in the proper format so they can be parsed. You can tell this is happening by pressing on the feed. You should see a date on each item. If there is no date displayed, then the date is not in the proper format required.

This can happen in the following circumstances:

Order authorization has failed
Please login to your Google checkout account and verify that the credit authorization has been accepted.

Order is in 'Customer review in progress' status
It seems that the order is getting flagged for investigation as potentially fraudulent order. Here's Google's description of this issue - Fraud protection. This document states that this is normally resolved in 4-6 hrs so I would suggest trying to re-download again after that period or contacting Google to get the order processed.

Mystery reason - lots of google posts for the following stuck positions




One user has reported this post as resolving the installing stuck position -


On the bottom right of the screen (Media Control Bar) press the context menu (3 Vertical Dots) Select “Hide Media Buttons”


On the bottom right of the screen, there there is a transparent context it and select "Show Media Buttons" and the media control bar will reappear

The problem could be the feed category filter is enabled on the feeds tab, for example the news feed category. Press the filter selector button on the header (“All Feeds” or this case “News feeds” if enabled (Top left of the feeds tab) select clear filter. Your feeds should be back.