Streaming media on my site

Posted on 2007-08-09
Last Modified: 2013-11-05
We have need to add streaming media (video for now) to our web site, and I'd like to poll opinions on the best way to do it.  The site is database-driven, and the database actually drives several client sites.  Until now, all the content has been stored in the database as large object fields.  Can this be done with streaming media?  

Or is it better to use the local filesystem with pointers stored in the db?

We're on ASP.Net, if it makes a difference.
Question by:roblinx
    LVL 4

    Accepted Solution

    This article had a few good points ( ... pasted below).  I've always tended to use Filesystem rather than BLOB for much the same reason as below:

    Blob PROS:
    1) At least you need to maintain only a single I/O path to data.  This can be especially useful in distributed environments.  It also addresses file system access issues driven by differing OS's
    2) If transaction processing that mixes video and regular data is a requirement, then a DBMS is going to give it to you.  

    Blob CONS/ Filesystem PROS:
    1) Blobs elevate you to an entirely different level in terms of managing database sizes, backups, restores, recoveries and replication.
    2) Blob data types and functionality is, IMHO, an area that is not handled consistently across most available products.  You risk tying yourself to a specific product.  In our case, maintaining openness and flexibility is important.
    3) Allowing filesystem access to images/documents can give very simple benefit to users without inflicting the overhead of program.  If you know how to find the image you are looking forward, you can very easily insert it into a word document or email it to a co-worker.

    Overall, I'd say there is no single answer to this question.  It depends on your situation and specific requirements.  It's all a matter of the types of slings and arrows your dealing with and just how outrageous your fortune.

    Author Comment

    Thanks, Chad, for the good advice and tips!

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