Search Support

Avoid support scams. We will never ask you to call or text a phone number or share personal information. Please report suspicious activity using the “Report Abuse” option.

Learn More

Youtube videos stutter and won't load fully

  • 17 replies
  • 135 have this problem
  • Last reply by Ronz8in

more options

Whenever I try to watch any video on youtube, it will not load more than a few seconds at a time. It will stop and stutter and lag for several minutes before it continues to load. This was not the case as little as 3 months ago. I have update flash and my computer and internet speeds have not changed. Even pausing the video and waiting will not usually allow it to load past about 3 to 10 seconds.

Whenever I try to watch any video on youtube, it will not load more than a few seconds at a time. It will stop and stutter and lag for several minutes before it continues to load. This was not the case as little as 3 months ago. I have update flash and my computer and internet speeds have not changed. Even pausing the video and waiting will not usually allow it to load past about 3 to 10 seconds.

All Replies (17)

more options


Try Firefox Safe Mode to see if the problem goes away. Safe Mode is a troubleshooting mode, which disables most add-ons.

(If you're not using it, switch to the Default theme.)

  • You can open Firefox 4.0+ in Safe Mode by holding the Shift key when you open the Firefox desktop or Start menu shortcut.
  • Or open the Help menu and click on the Restart with Add-ons Disabled... menu item while Firefox is running.

Once you get the pop-up, just select "'Start in Safe Mode"

If the issue is not present in Firefox Safe Mode, your problem is probably caused by an extension, and you need to figure out which one. Please follow the Troubleshoot extensions, themes and hardware acceleration issues to solve common Firefox problems article for that.

To exit the Firefox Safe Mode, just close Firefox and wait a few seconds before opening Firefox for normal use again. ___________________________________________________________________

You can also check out these articles for extra troubleshooting.

Other, more technical information about these issues can be found under these Links:

Please tell us if this helped!

more options

You can check for problems with current Flash plugin versions and try these:

  • disable a possible RealPlayer Browser Record Plugin extension for Firefox and update the RealPlayer if installed
  • disable protected mode in the Flash plugin (Flash 11.3+ on Windows Vista and later)
  • disable hardware acceleration in the Flash plugin

Boot the computer in Windows Safe mode with network support (press F8 on the boot screen) as a test to see if that helps.

more options

I don't have anything realplayer related on my firefox.

And I'm afraid the rest of what you both have said is a bit above my computer knowledge. I'm not really sure how to do those things or what I'd be looking for if I did. I was just hoping it was a simple fix and that I was not the only one suffering the problem.

That being said, I downloaded and installed the latest flashplayer version (which I had done last night as well). This time I right-clicked and ran the installer as Administrator. It seems to be working, but I'm not entirely positive yet. I thank you both for your timely responses and I did end up booting both in safe mode AND with all add-ons disabled.

UPDATE: Nope, still happening.

Modified by xXWeaponPrimeXx

more options

Try disabling graphics hardware acceleration. Since this feature was added to Firefox, it has gradually improved, but there still are a few glitches.

You might need to restart Firefox in order for this to take effect, so save all work first (e.g., mail you are composing, online documents you're editing, etc.).

Then perform these steps:

  • Click the orange Firefox button at the top left, then select the "Options" button, or, if there is no Firefox button at the top, go to Tools > Options.
  • In the Firefox options window click the Advanced tab, then select "General".
  • In the settings list, you should find the Use hardware acceleration when available checkbox. Uncheck this checkbox.
  • Now, restart Firefox and see if the problems persist.

Additionally, please check for updates for your graphics driver by following the steps mentioned in the following Knowledge base articles:

Turn off Flash hardware Acceleration

Did this fix your problems? Please report back to us!

Thank you.

more options


I also have this problem, and none of the solutions above have helped it. Internet Explorer loads videos smoothly, however.

Flash, Firefox, and video drivers are all up to date.

more options

Disabling the hardware acceleration did not affect it.

more options

The best way and complete solutions to remove the above said error is precisely mentioned in a video tutorial, you can access that tutorial from here

Best wishes

more options

That link did not open.

more options

The link opens if you copy/paste it. I did what it suggested, using the software, but it didn't help. Funnily enough after uninstalling flash via official utility, it still played youtube videos, albeit showing that "additional plugins may be required" and requesting an update. After updating, still no changes.

more options


It seemed to correct itself earlier this week, but today, every video loads in about two second increments.

more options

Ha, I found out what my problem was! First, disabling linkscanner surf shield in AVG antivirus helped a bit, but the problem still occurred sometimes. Then I found out that K9 web protections was at fault, it has "youtube security mode" that messes things up. So it was other programs that were to blame, try to go through what's installed/running in the background for you!

more options

I do not have AVG. And I'm not quite sure what K9 is.

more options

Try running YouTube in the Feather Beta mode.

You can do so by joining the Feather Beta here:

Try Something New!

You will loose some of YouTube's visual appeal, but you may be able to play videos.

To exit YouTube Feather Beta, go back to the link above and click Unjoin.

more options

K9 was causing me problems with YouTube playback. It also seems to cause problems with making the Safety mode of YouTube stay in the On position and there is a way to fix that in this place:!topic/youtube/EOuQPfRHWOQ

Also I placed a post in that thread (look to post by PixelOz) explaining how this program was causing me serious problems with YouTube playback altogether.

There are several different things that seem to cause problems with YouTube. It seems that quite a few people out there are having issues with it. Some people have had success with using YouTube with the new HTML5 mode, others by turning the hardware acceleration of Flash off, other seem to have had success with blocking some IP addresses ranges and there is a post about that here:

In my case the playback of YouTube in all browsers (not just Firefox) was that it was making crazy pauses all the time and in some of those pauses the video would go to the end abruptly and that was it. It was really very hard to be able to finish viewing any video at all.

This was happening in one single HP laptop PC only (an HP Pavillion G6 laptop with an A6 CPU and Win 7 64 bit), all other PCs at home were playing YouTube fine and I found that the culprit in that laptop was as I explained in the post I made in the other forum that I had installed K9 software in that laptop only because of my little niece and when I removed it the YouTube playback problems never came back on it.

Before that problem another problem that I had with YouTube was also on that laptop which was that the Safety mode was stuck in the on position and if I tried to change it on this particular machine YouTube only displayed an error page saying "An error occurred message blah, blah that is all we know wait 30 seconds" but I tried several times to reset it back to Off but I only got that message over and over (no matter if I waited the 30 seconds or more).

The other thing that started to happen was that I got the write captcha letters page all the time with this message: "We have received a large number of requests etc. blah, blah from your location" or something like that but I tried to input the catcha and it would only display the same error page as with the Safety On feature and would not allow me to watch any videos whatsoever.

These 2 other issues seem to have been related to an IP address problem and was solved by turning the cable modem off for about 5 minutes and turning it back on. That way I got a new IP address cause of the Dynamic IP assignment that is very common with many ISPs today.

After that the Safety appeared back in the Off setting in this laptop PC and the capcha page stopped appearing too in all browsers and I could access the Safety page and turn the Safety On and Off at will like in my other PCs.

This Safety On problem in this case didn't seem to be related to the K9 software like it seems to happen with other people because when I did that cable modem thing it went away but it seems that some people have the issue with that software but my problem with that software was a very different one which was the playback problem.

So you see there seems to be different things and problems related to YouTube playback, it could be that in some cases it could be related to the ISPs and maybe in others with YouTube itself but don't rush to those conclusions only cause it is not always the case and I heard of some people having problems with that in Firefox with the Ad Blocker plugin too so this is not necessary a problem with Firefox or any other browser for that matter cause as you can see in my case it happened with all browsers (including IE, Chrome and Opera).

In my case in particular I have the Ad Blocker plugin in several PCs and I have not have YouTube playback issues with it.

In one place on the web I read about some people having YouTube playback problems at their office and it turned out to be their hardware firewall that was causing problems with YouTube addresses and when they made some exceptions in their firewall their problem went away.

Try to find out if your problem is local or exterior. Try to use another computer at home (like a friend's laptop) to see if that other computer plays YouTube fine.

You may try with a smartphone or an IPad (and IPads & IPhones do not use Flash for YouTube playback and that removes Flash player problems from the equation for testing purposes). If you have a laptop try to take it to another access point like Starbucks or a friend's house to see if you still have YouTube problems there.

See that in my case it was ONLY happening in one PC so it was a very localized problem. If you have a desktop PC I know that it is more difficult to move it then try to see if a friend of you or family member that has Internet connection allows you to test your desktop there for a while or try at your workplace (with permission from your boss of course) for a little while after hours to see if the problem goes away.

If the problem goes away at another Internet location then it could be a problem with your ISP or your home network. If with another PC (or PCs, smartphones, tablets) at your home it disappears then it could be located in that particular computer and that way you would know that it is not ISP or home network related.

And for those people that say that they have YouTube playback problems because they have ONLY connections speeds of 10 mbps or 20 mbps that is not the issue cause I have a 5 mbps connection speed here in Puerto Rico which is provided by Liberty Cablevision and all my YouTube videos playback smoothly on all my PCs even at 1080p.

Run Internet connection speed tests just in case to see if it is not a speed issue with the connection itself, there are several Internet pages that allow you to do that. That way you see if your ISP connection is performing as it its supposed or at its intended speed.

If you think that your provider is trottling YouTube playback try the other PC trick and if in that other PC or tablet YouTube plays back right then it is not your ISP. If you have a laptop for example and take it to a different place that have a different ISP and the video plays right then it may be. But if possible try also to test your laptop in another place that have the same ISP that you have to see what happens. Ask to see if any of your neighbors have Internet connection provided by your same ISP and ask them if they are having YouTube playback problems.

A while ago here in my house we started to have progressively bad and serious Internet connection issues and I found out that it was a stupid old dirty coaxial cable splitter causing it and when I cleaned it with a little bit of fine grained sand paper the connection problems disappeared.

Nevertheless the ISP personnel came home and when I told them what happened they replaced the splitter and the adjacent coaxial cable connectors with new ones just in case. The connection problems have not come back after that.

I hope this little bit of info helps others with their YouTube playback problems. Maybe other tips from other persons could help people fix their particular YouTube problem. I hopes this is useful to somebody.

more options

I am getting this problem too when playing flash game. Tried disabling addons, disabled hardware acceleration, all drivers and flash plugin up to date, none works. Strange that the flash content works flawlessly on other browsers

However, when I disabled the NVIDIA plugins ( Addons -> Plugins ) the stutter seems to reduced, at least to a playable state.

more options

Well this problem appears to have resolved for the most part, due to nothing I did. But just this evening (10-3-13) the volume on youtube videos starts muted. I have to manually slide the bar back up. Once done, this fixes the issue until I close the browser, then it resets back to muted. Any suggestions?

more options


There is obviously something wrong with FF + Flash because videos play absolutely smoothly in Chrome and IE. ABSOLUTELY smoothly without ANY programmer-level tweaking.

WHY oh WHY can't Firefox and Adobe get this fixed? This has been a problem for YEARS and THOUSANDS of posts and complains without any meaningful resolution.

Truly, we are in the Dark Ages of Software.

Modified by Ronz8in