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Live Streaming Demand Impact

Posted on 2011-03-06
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My company is looking to expand the capability of our web server to provide live webcasting. They came to me asking what they would need to support it such as bandwidth and server load and what to expect on the network load. I was hoping that someone could share what to expect or has a model or specs. on supporting online live streaming video. As for the amount of people that would be accessing it would vary so I kinda need an idea for supporting 20 users, 100 users, 1000 users... etc... I'm not really worried about the software end of it, that is totally a differnet department than me. I was just approached asking what the demand for bandwidth would be and what it would take to handle the load. Obviously we want  to avoid from having the server to crash when it hits a certain limit. I really didn't have an answer so I was just seeing if anyone else has done this before who can give me some insight  on what to expect and how much bandwidth would be needed and what to expect the impact on the network would be (minimum - x users, medium - xusers, high end - x users) so I could pass some valuable information on. Thanks
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Question by:cmartineau
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bgoering earned 2000 total points
ID: 35056662
You say not to worry about the software but you will need some information on how the software will work in order to answer your query. Some questions to answer first are whether you will be streaming with unicast or multicast; what is the required bitrate; SD or HD, etc.?

Take a look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streaming_media for a high level overview of how to do the calculations. One hint - if your platform will support multicast your bandwidth requirements will be much lower than unicast and the number of end users won't make a big difference.

Good Luck
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