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Streaming server providers

Posted on 2006-11-15
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I am putting together a quote for a new client, which will require streaming video and audio. The content is pretty benign (medical education), but the files are large and there will be simultaneous connections (perhaps up to 5-10 at a time).

Initially, we're looking at one site, but I need to find a hosting company which will allow us to grow from shared hosting to a dedicated server with easy transition and/or transition support over the next year as they get off the ground.

Any recommendations (or "stay away froms")? I am not interested in google results, only in personal experiences.

Thanks!
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Question by:lherrou
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humeniuk earned 250 total points
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My first comment would be that in my experience, the best dedicated server providers don't offer shared hosting.  If you are starting with shared hosting, but will end up with a dedicated server (or servers) in the long run, your best route may be to switch hosts along the way.

Also, when it comes to shared hosting and streaming video/audio, you have a pretty dangerous mix there.  You would do well to consider hosting your streaming media separate from your website.  The media streams can still be integrated with your site, they will just come from different sources.

The best shared hosts I have used - www.hostway.com, www.verio.com, www.hostony.com.
The best dedicated server providers - www.rackspace.com (the best, but very expensive), and www.servermatrix.com/www.theplanet.com (top quality, competitive prices).

As for the "stay away from" list, well ... that would be far too long to post here :)

Unfortunately, it's been about a year since I had to host any streaming media anywhere other than one of my own servers.  Since then, there has been an influx of new providers, so I can't provide a reliable recommendation of any specific company.
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by:lherrou
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Thanks, Humeniuk. Generally, I would stay away from shared hosting all together in a case like this, but my client has only one contract to date, and while they have reasonable expectations for expansion, they are reluctant to spend much until they can see results.
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by:humeniuk
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That is certainly reasonable and likely the best approach.  Given that, an anticipated change of hosts (when the time comes to move to a dedicated server) may also be the best approach, even if it does not seem ideal.  Done correctly, it need not even cause a small headache.
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