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Polycom Streaming

Posted on 2006-11-09
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How do I view the stream from a Polycom over the internet?
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Question by:marcjjrd
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by:foobar_666uk
ID: 17928670
Is the system set to Unicast streaming? or Multicast streaming?
What Polycom system do you have? (i.e. Viewstation FX? VSX 7000? etc)

How many hops are set on the streaming page? (if left at the default of 1, the stream wont be allowed onto the internet)

But if you have it setup correctly, simple web browse into the IP address of the Polycom system, and select the button that says "View a Meeting" or "View a Presentation"
If setup correctly you should have the option to view the stream from the Polycom system.

Please let me know what you see and give more details where you can.

Thanks,
Dave.
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by:marcjjrd
ID: 17933465
The unit is a Polycom VSX 8000, hops set to 127, and as far as I can tell it's set to Multicast, but I'm not certain of this. If I'm connected to the local network I can indeed browse to the Polycom and select "view a meeting" and watch the stream, however if I'm off-site, quicktime simply says "connecting" and then "ready" and never displays anything. When I asked Polycom tech support about it they said that, essentially, there's nothing I can do about it. Their response was:

"Even if you have everything properly
configured on your end, there is no way to be absolutely sure that
streaming will work. The reason for this is inherent to the way traffic
is routed over the Internet. For every router or equivalent network
hardware that the traffic passes over (many of which you have no control
over), Multicast must be enabled; if Multicast is disabled on any of
these devices along the path from the codec to the PC trying to see the
streaming, it will not work."

Since Quicktime streams are prevalent enough on the internet, it seems to me there should be some way of getting it to work. One idea I've been toying with is to forward the stream...basically serve a quicktime stream to the internet that uses the first stream as a source...I think that would work, but I haven't figured all of the details out yet.

I hope this gives you a better idea what I'm dealing with, and thank you for the comments.

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foobar_666uk earned 500 total points
ID: 17937046
Polycom are correct - if you are using Multicast then EVERY router between you and the VSX8000 must be configured to suppoort this - and the chances of this are very  very slim, hence why it wont work.
Polycom VSX products are designed to utilise Multicast, but then the Public Internet is not suitable for this, so is really designed only for viewers in the same IP network subnet.

If you use Unicast, it sends the stream direct to you instead of broadcasting the stream as in Multicast. This 'should' work over the internet, but you can only stream to one person (you do this by specifiying the IP address of the viewer in the Multicast Address field) The downside to this is that only 1 person can view the stream :(

You can cheat a bit like you said above, there are several tools which can capture and rebroadcast the stream so you can view on the public internet. One such tool is rtpdump (http://www.cs.columbia.edu/~hgs/rtp/

Another method is to direct the video stream to a Streaming server that captures the stream and then re-broadcasts it over the internet by ways of multiple Unicast streams.

I hope this helps! Good Luck!

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