I was humming along fine with MCEBuddy and comskip removing commercials from half-hour shows. Then I added a one hour show and started to get failures of that new show. MCEBuddy would report “comskip failed” and cancel the conversion.
If I manually dragged the .ts file to comskip.exe it worked fine and completed without errors.
It turns out that MCEBuddy was killing the comskip process after it took too long to complete. I watched it manually and the commercial detection process APPEARED to freeze with 10 seconds remaining. During that time the comskip log grew and grew. MCEBuddy would eventually kill the process – I assume there is a fixed wait time – and report failure.
It turns out that the log on this particular show got HUGE. The default comskip setting for “verbose” is 5, and it was writing a TON of log data to the log file. Even though the work folder was on a SSD with a fast XEON processor, once the log file got really big it took a very long time to write each new line. I think that the comskip logging routine needs to be optimized.
Anyway, I changed verbose to 0 and it worked perfectly and really fast. MCEBuddy stopped killing it and completed the conversion.
I think MCEBuddy should either extend the timeout on the comskip process or make this a configuration option. But editing the comskip settings to set verbose=0 did the trick, even if it does mean no comskip details log.