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Streaming Server Deployment

Posted by md on November 15, 2006


We will stream the upcoming Webmontag in Kaiserslautern live. I work hard on it – here are the lessons I’ve learned so far.

  1. There are lots of streaming servers available – but if you want to avoid the WMV file format and still want to have professional tools, you end up with the Quicktime Streaming Server. There is an open source version called Darwin Streaming Server which I use now.
  2. It is easy to create a video and upload it to Youtube or whatever service you like. But streaming live video requires a lot more hard- and software. We will use a DV camera and the Quicktime Broadcaster (free download) in order to stream the Webmontag.
  3. If you go for live streaming, you’ll have to use the RTSP protocol. Beware: You definitely need a server running over HTTP. The default UDP crap doesn’t work in usual settings. This is a big thing since you need to have a public IP with port 80 free. I am lucky to have some spare IPs with our shiny new rootserver.
  4. Don’t use Quicktime for movie encoding – you end up with trouble if someone doesn’t use Quicktime (e.g. Linux people). Instead, stick to plain MP4. You can use Quicktime for playback, but VLC also works.
  5. You need to hint the movie – add some tags to it to allow jumping around in the movie. Your Mac tooling will do that if you check the options.
  6. If you want to embed your movie into a web page, use the javascript provided by Apple to create the HTML. Otherwise, you’ll be in browser compatibility hell.
  7. If you embed the movie in a wordpress blog: make sure to install the TextControl plugin and disable the text mangling functionality of wordpress. Otherwise, the script tags will get destroyed and you see nothing.
  8. This is my first experiment with video streaming – anything may go wrong. Stay tuned.

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