In just a few weeks, NASA/JPL was able to design, build, test, and deploy their web hosting and live video streaming solutions that were built using a variety of services on AWS. NASA/JPL’s live video streaming architecture was developed on a combination of Adobe Flash Media Server, Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instances running the popular nginx caching tier, Elastic Load Balancing, Amazon Route 53 for DNS management, and Amazon CloudFront for content delivery. AWS CloudFormation automates the deployment of live video streaming infrastructure stacks across multiple AWS Availability Zones (AZ) and regions.
At The Cable Show, Adobe introduces Adobe Media Server 5 (formerly Flash Media Server) and Adobe Access 4. Both include support for native Apple iOS apps.
Adobe chose The Cable Show, currently underway in Boston, Massachusetts, as the setting to make three significant announcements. First, it's adding a component to Project Primetime for seamless ad integration. Announced in late February of this year, Project Primetime is a platform that lets media companies stream video to a landscape of devices, and includes content protection, ad insertion, and analytics. The new component, Primetime Simulcast, lets media companies replace broadcast ads with ads sold for the online market.
The latest version of FMS brings some significant feature upgrades, including Apple HLS live and on-demand streaming to Apple iOS devices, live HTTP streaming on Amazon CloudFront CDN, protected HTTP Dynamic Streaming for Flash, Dynamic stream packaging for single source video output to Adobe HTTP Dynamic Streaming and Apple HLS, and video origin hosting.
SIP and IP Multicast aren't yet available with Amazon Web Services.
New version of Flash Media Server offers expanded, dynamic protocol support, including HTTP Live Streaming to iDevices, as well as DRM enhancements.
FMS 4.5's primary intent is to leave the heavy lifting of choosing which protocol to deliver in (RTMP, HTTP Dynamic Streaming, HLS, etc) to the server. FMS 4.5 can generate real-time repackaging of an mp4 file for both HTTP Dynamic Streaming and HLS, including automated segmentation of mp4 files into the specific fragmented mp4 (fMP4) segmentation required by various Android, iOS and other mobile devices.
In addition to single stream repackaging, FMS 4.5 will also automatically create multiple bitrate segmentations, for adaptive streaming, as well as manifest files in Apple's m3u8 format. Instead of the previous manual process of rewrapping, segmentation creation, and manifest files, FMS 4.5 promises the ability to automate these basic processes.
With a nod to digital rights management, FMS 4.5 will also include DRM based on the Flash Access DRM scheme. Rather than requiring a broadcaster to buy a full-blown Flash Access 3.0 server, however, there will be a limited version of Flash Access baked into FMS 4.5 to cover RMTPe (encrypted) and segment-level DRM (a key feature of fMP4, which separates the header information from each fragment). Adobe claims it is also enhancing DRM to cover iOS devices to a limited degree--a claim we'll explore when we get a chance to review Flash Access 3.0 and FMS 4.5 , as HLS is based on MPEG-2 Transport Stream, which has no inherent capacity for DRM within each packet.
RTMFP will be available on the FMIS, a change from Adobe's previous scenario of only allowing RTMFP on the Enterprise Server version.
In this article, we will discuss how you can use the FMS Access plugin for load balancing among all of its FMS fmscore processes. Also, we will brief you on how to apply the Access plugin to balance VoD content load over multiple FMS servers.
Access plugin is another level of FMS security, which allows you to perform lightweight authorization of incoming connections before they reach the level of SSAS applications in the fmsedge process.
The Access plugin provides the following features:
Analyze the properties of a client connectionAnalyze server statisticsAnalyze server statisticsSend requests to the external systems
Once a client connection arrives to the fmsedge process, fmsedge passes connection control to the Access plugin (if installed). The Access plugin business logic can now decide on how to handle this connection: accept, reject or forward it to another FMS.
One of the most fascinating features offered by the Access plugin is the ability to make a dynamic selection of fmscore process to forward a connection, right at the moment when the inbound connection arrives to fmsedge. This helps to more or less flexibly manage client connections at the FMS level, according to your system architecture and your resources. For example, this way you can guarantee the quality of service to certain groups of customers.
Here is a How to, the objective is to demonstrate the setup of a PHLS live stream. PHLS means Protected HLS : the custom format of HLS by Adobe. The protection is realized with a AES-128 encryption on the content. To make this configuration, you need a streaming server which will push content via RTMP. Some live transcoders are available from ElementalLive to ffmpeg. And you need too a Adobe Media Server installed to complete this how to. All I write in this post is available via the AMS documentation.
Adobe Media Server 5.0.1 brings to you – Closed Captioning compliance, DRM protection for millions of iOS Devices and Playback Support for Multiple Language Audio Tracks.
Adobe Media Server 5.0.1 comes bundled with Adobe Media Gateway – a powerful technology to connect SIP telephony devices to flash based applications.
Closed Captioning :
Adobe Media Server supports CEA-608 (also called Line 21) and CEA -708 closed captions in video files containing H264 video codecs. This plays in HLS, HDS and RTMP Streaming protocols. Additionally, the timed text track defined by Apple for Quicktime movie files is also supported. Adobe Media Server 5.0.1 also provides support to embed your content programmatically while encoding the content via an AMF message. This works for RTMP and HDS techniques.
Support for Multi Language tracks :
Adobe Media Server 5.0.1 has support for including multiple language tracks for HTTP video streams, without requiring duplication and repackaging of the video for each audio track. This feature, called as “late” binding of audio tracks allow content providers to easily provide multiple language tracks for a given video asset, at any time before or after the asset’s initial packaging. The OSMF framework based Strobe Media player provides support for allowing the viewers to switch between audio tracks either before or during playback.
Content Protection for HLS Streams :
Adobe Media Server offers both stream and content protection across HLS, HDS and RTMP protocols. It also enables DRM protection using the Adobe Access DRM license server. Now, Adobe Media Server can dynamically segment, encrypt, and deliver standard MP4 assets using the HLS format with Adobe Access DRM policies on native Apple iOS applications (using the Adobe Access Objective-C library for iOS).
Adobe's updated media server takes the focus off Flash and offers enhanced HLS support. But what about DASH?
With the ship date just around the corner, what features will make AMS 5 different from FMS 4.5 for Adobe's target customer base? Towes provided a list that highlights Adobe's continued support for Apple's HTTP Live Streaming (HLS) for iOS devices:
- Protected HLS support via a content license technology embedded in AMS
- Additional digital rights management support for HLS using Adobe Access 4 licensing server (a separate purchase)
- The ability to segment HLS content for on-demand playback, using an offline HLS segmenting tool, which also supports encryption via Adobe Access 4
- Improvements for HTTP streaming failover and fault toleranceEIA-608 (line 21) closed caption support that will meet FCC requirements
Finally, what about MPEG-DASH support?
"Adobe is committed to supporting DASH in AMS in the future," says Towes. "Adobe has committed that our video streaming products will support MPEG-DASH, and we were one of the first companies to publicly demo DASH support at NAB this year, but we have not announced a timeline.
Version-to-version, fans of any software product expect innovations or even dramatic improvements from their favorite package. No doubt this applies to content delivery servers. Well, what users expect from a streaming server today? They want it “to be quick, safe, easy and stream to all devices at once”. In fact, those were the criteria used by Adobe in developing the new version of Flash Media Server 4.5. In this post, we’ll review the main innovations and improvements of the new media server announced a few hours before.
Media server is a dedicated server to deliver audio / video content to users. Explosive growth of online video views has led to a substantial growth of the media server market and sharpening of competitive conditions (Adobe sued Wowza). Adobe Flash Media Server and Wowza Media Server are the main players on this market. Both products are actively developing. Their already impressive feature set is continuously enhanced with new fascinating functionalities. Earlier this year, Wowza announced its new release, Wowza Media Server 3. Wowza and Adobe are moving in the direction of cross-platform video content availability to all user screens. In this post, we’ll share our hands-on experience in testing Wowza 3 and give you an idea of its major functional innovations. First of all, in the new release, Wowza began to introduce new features as add-ons to the basic server. They plan to implement three add-ons: DRM, Transcoding and nDVR. DRM and Transcoding signify an obvious shift in favor of collateral products, and DVR is quite a long expected functionality.
It was only five months ago that Amazon added an SLA and more edge locations to their CDN offering CloudFront, and last night Amazon took the service a step further with the announcement that CloudFront now supports live streaming of Flash video. Content owners can now use Amazon CloudFront with Amazon EC2 running Adobe's Flash Media Server and Amazon Route 53 (AWS's DNS service) to deliver live video via AWS.