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Stream Anywhere is Mydeo’s solution to mobile streaming and since we launched it last year, we’ve received very positive feedback. You can read our initial post on Stream Anywhere by clicking here.  We’re very happy to tell you that Stream Anywhere has just been upgraded. This post will talk you through some of the major updates included in V.2.1

DVR

A feature that’s been requested many times since Mydeo released Stream Anywhere is DVR functionality. If you didn’t already know, DVR is Digital Video Recording and it grants the viewer a number of benefits. Firstly, using the player controls, the viewer can rewind the live feed.  Imagine you’re watching a football game and you missed the match winning goal. Using DVR functionality, you’d be able to rewind the stream back to the point of the goal and continue watching from that point. Afterwards, you could always fast forward back to the point where you left off.

The second great feature of DVR is the ability to pause the live feed, much like most modern set top boxes. The DVR functionality is preconfigured to allow the viewer to pause the live feed up to a certain amount of time before continuing the stream.

Lastly DVR functionality enables you to make the live stream available for On-demand delivery up to 24 hours after the live feed has finished publishing. The on-demand file is made available through the same publishing URL as the live feed so will work seamlessly within your player. This is great because once a live event has finished,  it’s not uncommon for an on-demand version of the video to be put up in its place. By making the original stream available for on-demand play gives the production team a window to edit the original footage and replace the live feed with a permanent on-demand file. This means zero downtime and a much better experience for your audience.

Apple AES encryption

Until know, the only security option for Stream Anywhere was Media Vault which uses MD5 hashing to encrypt the playback URLs to only work when pre-defined parameters are met. For example you could configure the stream so it only works on a particular page of a particular website. In addition to this, we can now offer Apple AES encryption for the HLS playback URLs. This functionality can be added upon direct request to your Mydeo Account Manager. Along with AES, we can also now block streams to geographical locations so if you only want your stream to work in the US, we can now do that for you.

Self provisioning

You can now self provision your own event streams. This means you can log into the control panel and create any number of streams without ever having to contact your Account Manager. Benefits of self provisioning include: Being able to set your own event expiry options, set your own DVR windows (see above), apply levels of security at your own leisure and update your ingest points.

As ever, if you have any questions about Stream Anywhere or any of our other fantastic CDN solutions, please do not hesitate to contact us by email: help@mydeo.com or by phone: +44 208 540 2300.

So you already know that you require a CDN to deliver your web assets but now you need to know how to get your content ready for delivery. Here at Mydeo, we offer two methods for uploading your content to the CDN for superfast global distribution.

 

FTP 

 

If your plan is to offload your content library onto Mydeo, then FTP is definitely the best way moving forward. The process is very simple and only requires the user to have an FTP client installed on their local machine. There are many decent FTP clients out there and the majority of the best ones are completely free. If you need a free, easy to use FTP client, then Mydeo suggests FileZilla. You can download FileZilla FTP Client here: https://filezilla-project.org/download.php. Do make sure you download the client version and not the server edition…

Once you have your FTP client installed, you will need three things to connect to the network and these are: Host address, Username and Password. If you’re using FileZilla, these fields are located near the top of the window. If you’re using another FTP client, the process is usually the same and very straight forward.

Once you’ve logged into your FTP folder, if it’s a new set up, there probably won’t be much going on but the best way to think about it is simply your new empty folder that’s located on the CDN. From here you’re able to upload directly to your route directory (main folder) or you can create a folder structure very similar to that of your local ‘My Documents’ folder found on every PC. At Mydeo, we find that our customers enjoy having the ability to completely define their directory layout within the FTP folder as it makes it very easy for them to manage.

As soon as content has been uploaded, it is immediately available for delivery over the CDN using a predefined URL called a publishing URL. The publishing URL is directly linked to your route FTP folder with a predefined path such as ‘http://llnw.mydeo.com/ftpFolder’. From there, you only need to add the file name plus extension and you’re ready to go (http://llnw.mydeo.com/ftpFolder/file.ext). If your file is within a directory you created, you also need to reference the folder name within the URL (http://llnw.mydeo.com/ftpFolder/directory/file.ext). We supply you with a publishing URL when you sign up.

To add a personal touch to your publishing URL, you can request a CNAME to be set up in its place. As long as you own the domain, we can set up your content so it delivers from a sub-domain created on your DNS. This is very quick and simple to configure and the majority of our clients go for this option.

 

Customer Origin (Origin Pull)

 

Mydeo also offers Customer Origin which is mainly for those who already have a large established library of content sitting on their existing servers. Customer Origin is great because technically, you never have to upload a single file. To configure Customer Origin, you will need to provide us with a source address to your servers. This can either be a top-level domain, sub-domain or even an IP address. Once configured, your server in essence becomes part of the CDN and your content can be pulled straight from your own origin. To deliver your content over the CDN, you’re given a unique publishing URL (again this can be a CNAME). When the published URL is requested, that file is pulled from your servers, delivered to the user and then cached on the network. The next time that file is requested; it then delivers straight from the CDN cache rather than your servers.

Customer origin gives you all the benefits of CDN caching and delivery but you retain complete control over your content as it’s stored on your own servers. It can also prove much more cost effective because you won’t be paying for CDN storage fees.

So there you have it, two very functional ways of having the CDN deliver your content. Both options have their plus points but really it’s down to your circumstances as to which method you choose to go with.

For more information on FTP, Customer Origin or any of our other services, you can contact us by email: m3@mydeo.com or by phone: +44 208 540 2300. We’re always happy to help.

We talk a lot about players here in the Mydeo blog but this due to the fact that we get a lot of questions from our customers about what players to use for their content. Unfortunately, there’s never usually a one-stop solution when looking into players but that may be about to change… JW 6 player is the latest offering in the JW player series and it’s packed full of features which we all should be very excited about.

One feature in particular that’s extremely useful is the HLS plugin. As you may already know, Mydeo offers full HLS support and is mainly used for reaching those all-important iOS devices. HLS itself isn’t supported natively within some of the more popular web browsers such as Chrome, IE and Firefox. Customers wanting to reach both desktop and iOS devices will generally stream with both a HLS feed and an RTMP feed. This however, could now be a thing of the past because JW 6 has the functionality to reach all desktop browsers and iOS devices with just a single HLS feed. When JW 6 detects a desktop browser, it uses a functionality called ‘flash mode’ and the HLS feed plays seamlessly within the browser. When it detects an iOS device, it then reverts back to HTML5 mode to play the same stream.

We had customer recently who needed this exact functionality and they utilised JW6 along with Mydeo’s HLS streaming accounts to pull off a very successful live event. This made things much easier for them because they only had to worry about the single feed and the built-in customisation options meant getting the player on their website was a breeze.

The HLS plug-in is only available through the JW 6 premium version but with this you get multi-end device functionality for both your live and on-demand content along with countless other customisation options. Using the built-in skins, you’re also able to integrate the player in a way that matches your existing website styling to achieve an overall professional look.

To find out more about the latest JW player, you can visit their website: http://www.longtailvideo.com/. To find out more about Mydeo’s HLS services, you can call us on: +44 208 540 2300 or email us at: m3@mydeo.com.

Flash video player generator

In this article I want to show you how you can quickly create the embed code for a Flash video player. In a previous article, we looked at HTML5 and the <video> tag. We saw that it’s very easy to create a player in HTML5 and the upshot of using it means we get to reach those all important iOS devices. There is a downside however by just using pure HTML5 and this was also mentioned in the previous article. Audiences who are using older systems with out of date browsers might not be able to view your videos if you’re only using HTML5. To prevent this, it’s suggested that you also include a Flash player in your fall back code so that these older systems have something to ‘fall back’ on.

Creating a Flash player from scratch is much harder than creating a HTML5 player so to keep things simple, I want to point you in the direction of the Open Source Media Framework site. They have a neat web application that allows you to create the embed code for your Flash video. You’re able to adjust the height and width along with other standard settings. I can’t begin to tell you how much time this saves and is especially useful when you need to get your videos up on your site quickly. To make use of the generator, click here.

OSMFpic

You should find the generator fairly easy to use, just click the preview button once you’ve entered your URL and settings and the embed code appears under the preview player. This code can be inserted into your HTML5 player from the previous article to enable that all important fall back feature.

One more thing I need to highlight about this application is the fact that it also works with live RTMP publishing URLs. This means that if you need a player for your live Flash event, you can quickly create one here. Remember that Mydeo offers world class live and on-demand video delivery (HTML5 and Flash compatible) at low entry level pricing. For more information about our products and how Mydeo can help you with online video, feel free to contact us by email: m3@mydeo.com or by phone: +44 208 540 2300.

Mydeo is an award-winning web-based software company that provides small and medium-sized enterprises with a seamless way of accelerating their web content. Through Mydeo’s custom-built, self-service portal, Mydeo Media Manager, businesses can instantly upload their site content, including videos, images, and downloads for immediate delivery over a global CDN. Businesses can leverage the power of the high speed CDN to deliver whole sites, rich media like Flash®, streaming or progressive video, or to support campaigns with high peaks and performance requirements – all at a fraction of the price it would cost to buy from a CDN directly.

The ideal candidate for this contract will possess strong .NET C# experience, along with a working knowledge of SQL Server 2005 and SQL Server 2008. Additionally, you will be able to comfortably work with and maintain Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2008 servers, running IIS 6 and 7. Experience working with the Windows Azure platform is desirable, but a broad understanding of the challenges of developing for cloud platforms is required. Candidates must be competent front-end and back-end developers, with a firm understanding of web principles, including API design, Javascript, CSS and support for a range of clients. Strong communication skills, together with a logical approach to problem solving are essential.

Location: UK – Wimbledon, London SW19 (District line, SouthWest Trains, ThamesLink) or remote based.

To apply please send your CV, together with a covering letter outlining your daily rates and any notice period to cm@mydeo.com. On-going contract may be available to the right candidate.

How to make a HTML5 player

HTML5 has been a hot topic for some time now but in many ways it’s becoming more of a norm. At Mydeo, I’m seeing more and more of our customers jumping on the <video> tag bandwagon and for good reason too. The use of Flash is slowing down mainly due to the lack of support in iOS devices but it’s also interesting to add that the latest versions of Android are also dropping support. Android and iOS are the market leaders for smartphones and tablets and together control over 85% of the overall pie. Consumers demand their videos on the go and if you’re still using the ye old ways of Flash then you could be losing a sizeable chunk of your audience to your competitor who has already utilised a solution for reaching these devices.

I’m here to tell you that you don’t need to spend the whole of your quarterly budget  on a video platform just to reach smart devices. This post will show you how to embed videos on your site using the <video> tag. It will also show you how to reach multiple browsers and devices because not all end users have the same equipment/software. I will use video files that have already been uploaded to the Mydeo servers to test with.

In the example below you’ll see a standard  HTML page but with the addition of the video tag that’s referencing a file on the Mydeo servers. If you copy this code and paste it into notepad and save the file as a .htm or .html, the file will open as a web page containing the video. This, in its current format will also play on iOS devices.

<html>
<head>
<title>My HTML5 Video</title>
</head>
<body>
<video src="http://mydeo.vo.llnwd.net/o1/u/m3/64de828ce3264daf912aa3493414a30d.mp4" controls="controls" height="480" width="620"></video>
</body>
</html>

If the video is not playing for you, there’s a good chance that the browser you’re using doesn’t support .mp4 or HTML5 at all. To reach almost every browser/device, we need to do a few more things.

The example below has a few additions: firstly, I have moved the source tag onto a different line and added support for three different file types: mp4, ogv (ogg) and webm. These three files types are the video formats excepted by HTML5 so by referencing all of them, you’ll reach a better percentage of end users. All the files referenced here are the same video but I’ve just converted them into the separate file types (information on how to convert you videos for free is mentioned later in the article). Secondly, if you want to be able to reach users using older operating systems with older browsers, you can also add a traditional Flash player (see the code example on how to add a Flash player). The player below is coded so if the first option doesn’t work, the browser will seamlessly attempt to play the second option and then the third and so on. This process is called a ‘fall back’, the browser falls back until it finds a compatible version to play.

<html>
<head>
<title>My HTML5 Video</title>
</head>
<body>
<video controls="controls" height="480" width="620">
<source src="http://mydeo.vo.llnwd.net/o1/u/m3/64de828ce3264daf912aa3493414a30d.mp4" type="video/mp4" />
<source src="http://mydeo.vo.llnwd.net/o1/u/m3/59243cfe69c74f3ebc26d14cb29e9b96.webm" type="video/webm" />
<source src="http://mydeo.vo.llnwd.net/o1/u/m3/160a3cd44c074efcae8b1fbb784aca9f.ogv" type="video/ogg" />
<--! Here is where you add code for a traditional flash player, you can use the mp4 URL above and generate yourself a player by navigating here: http://blog.mydeo.com/2013/01/25/flash-video-player-generator/ -->
</video>
</body>
</html>

And that’s it! You can use the code above to create your own HTML5 player, all you need to do is replace the source URLs with your own. There are many different options for customising your player so be sure to have a play around with the code. If you need to convert your files into mp4, ogg or webm then there is a fantastic video converter which is 100% free and can be downloaded here: http://www.mirovideoconverter.com/.

Remember that these test files are utilising Mydeo’s servers so if you need a hosting provider to deliver your HTML5 videos over a super fast global network, then do not hesitate to contact us. You can do so by email: m3@mydeo.com or by phone: +44 208 540 2300.

British Rally driver Louise Cook from Maidstone has set the goal to be the first female World Rally Champion. Louise started a sponsorship campaign called ‘Promotion50’ to raise the money needed to get her started on her road to glory. The idea was to get as many companies to donate just £50 to run her mk6 Ford Fiesta ST Rally car for a whole season. With the backing of Mydeo and various other companies, Louise has already boasts a multitude of achievements, including: British Rally Championship Ladies Campion 2011, Fiesta Sport Trophy Vice Champion 2011, BRCC RC4 Champion 2012 and more. Louise still has to complete her ultimate goal of being World Champion but with the on-going support from Mydeo and other sponsors, we believe this is just around the corner.

Louise races towards the finish line!

Mydeo are a content delivery company utilising the Limelight CDN. For more information about our services, please visit www.mydeo.com. You can also call us on: +44 208 540 2300 or email: m3@mydeo.com.

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