Windows Media Server (Community)

Windows Media Server // Community

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Jul 17, 2004, 11:26am
Hi everyone,

There's always people here posting about free world hosting or object path
hosting, so I'm wondering if someone is running a streaming media server and
would be willing to offer it for free or for pay.

If you just upload a movie to a website, then people who show up late will
be out of sync with everyone else. Furthermore, if someone crashes, the
movie will start over because there's no way to set the position within the
file through AW using the SDK. A streaming media server would ensure that
these problems are eliminated.

Can anyone help out?



Jul 17, 2004, 12:20pm
I was thinking about this the day 3.6 was released. I figured many
people will be interested in Windows Media and Shoutcast hosting since
the addition of the new media command.

Lots of people do Web site, world, and OP hosting in the AW community.
Few do bot hosting. Even less (if any) do Windows Media and Shoutcast

I was contemplating this issue last week. Shoutcast hosting can be done,
but it isn't that easy to monitor the bandwidth usage of each
customer/client/stream (whatever you want to call it). There are ways to
do it, but I haven't come across a very easy or "elegant" solution yet.

The two main issues with Shoutcast and Windows Media is bandwidth and
cost. I'll touch base on bandwidth first. If you are constantly
streaming data to multiple users (especially video), you need a lot of
bandwidth. You just can't get around that fact.

Not only that, but you need good quality of bandwidth and you need to be
on a network with very good latency. You don't want users complaining
the feed is buffering every ten seconds. Well, unfortunately, those
things don't come cheap. For streaming to work its best, you need to
have a server on a premium, tier 1 bandwidth backbone (which, again,
isn't the cheapest thing in the world).

Sure, you might be able to get by with a few streams if you have
broadband via your home via DSL, cable, etc. But you really need a
professional host or your own dedicated server in a good data center for
a lot of streams and/or users.

Yes, you can go out there and buy your own Windows Server for anywhere
from about $70 USD to $120 + USD at a decent data center. However, I
believe that you need to stream using the Standard version of Windows
Server 2003 (not the Web Edition), which can cost you some extra money.

For any host trying to stay in business and make a profit, you obviously
can't be charging $5.00 USD for a 20 user stream if it is costing you at
least $100 USD per month for the server unless you take some pre-orders
or know there will be many interested clients beforehand.

Yes, someone could be kind, buy their own server or have their own T1 or
SDSL line and do some small streaming hosting for free or for pay, but
like I said before, they will only be able to support a limited number
of streams or simultaneous users. For anything major, you really need to
have a burstable 100mbps port in a data center.

I'd love to be able to offer streaming Shoutcast and Windows Media, but
people need to realize that it will cost them on a per users basis. It
isn't unheard of to charge $1.00 USD or more per listener for a 128kbps
Shoucast stream.

For quality streaming to work, customers will most likely need to shell
out more than $10 a month for their streams. Everyone always wants cheap
prices, good quality, and good support. Well, that just doesn't happen.
You need to take your pick of two out of the three.

So, if the demand is there, I'm willing to research this some more and
possibly start offering streaming hosting. But people need to realize
that the costs involved will be higher than normal hosting such as bots,
Web sites, OPs, etc.

Finally, I'd like to see AWI add playlist support and (if possible) Real
Media support (ReadlAudio and RealVideo).


[View Quote]


Jul 17, 2004, 12:59pm
Hey builderz,

Well, I think the simpler solution to this problem is to simply include some
sort of command that allows a file to begin playing at a particular time. A
bot could easily update the sign object with the current time every second
or so without using the "set" command so that new users are in sync with
everyone else.

Let me know if and when you decide to offer this service.


[View Quote]


Jul 17, 2004, 1:16pm
If you can find at least six people that would be willing to pay $10 USD
or more for a five user WMV stream, tell me and I'll pursue things
further. If not, then the lack of demand won't allow me to cover costs.


[View Quote] > Let me know if and when you decide to offer this service.


Jul 17, 2004, 1:51pm
Well, will you offer different configurations? First, is the $10 per month?
Second, I would need a ten-user stream, not a five-user one.


[View Quote]


Jul 17, 2004, 6:15pm
The $10 USD price (yes, monthly) for five users was just an example,
nothing set in stone. My point was that if the demand isn't there, I
won't provide the service. I'm not going to setup a brand new server if
only three people would use it (common sense). But if twenty people
contact me tomorrow saying "I want WMV streaming NOW" then I know it is
in demand I should try to provide it. :)

Here are some WMV hosts I found while doing a quick search:


[View Quote] > Well, will you offer different configurations? First, is the $10 per month?
> Second, I would need a ten-user stream, not a five-user one.


Jul 18, 2004, 3:04am
Maybe I could do it... Do you know of any software for streaming windows
media files from linux?


Jeremy Booker - Owner / Webmaster
JTech Web Systems
"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about
itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." -Mathew 5:34

[View Quote]


Jul 18, 2004, 3:26am
I was doing some more testing today and have some good news and some bad
news about Windows Media.

Good news: You can stream Windows Media files with just a normal Web
server (via HTTP). So no expensive Windows Media Services or Windows
2003 Server is needed. I was talking to Chrispeg and he informed me that
while AW doesn't support playlists, it does support a modified version
of .ASX files.

So if you have a single WMV or WMA file that is encoded for dial-up or
broadband, you can upload it to your Web host (Web server), make a one
line .ASX file that points to the WMV or WMA file, and it should stream!

Here is an example:

ASX File:

WMV File:

Action syntax: create sign;activate media

If you make a sign object, have at least 512kbps broadband, and use the
action syntax with AW 3.6 (and the WMP 9 codecs), you should be able to
see a video I made for Proxima world. It should stream and you shouldn't
have to wait to download the entire file.

Bad news: Unfortunately, you won't be able to use the above method to do
live streaming. It only works for stand alone or "static" files. So AW
TV stations or radio stations won't be able to use the above method if
they want to do live shows.

Also, you will only be able to stream one file and one file only since
this is handled with playlists (which AW doesn't fully support). To get
around this, I'm sure you could use a bot with a timer or a script.

Another possible downside (I didn't test this but I'm pretty sure it
doesn't work) is that you can only stream at one set bitrate. So you
can't have one file that is encoded for both dial-up and broadband users
and expect it to figure out how fast your connection is and stream at
the right bitrate. I'm fairly certain you need the full blown Windows
Media Services for this type of streaming.

So, there you have it, folks. If you just want to be able to stream a
file or two and already have a Web site or access to a Web server, you
can do it pretty easily. If you want to do more advanced stuff like live
shows and multi-bitrate streaming, you'll need to find a Windows Media
host. Hope this is a help.



Jul 18, 2004, 3:50am
For those of you that don't know, JerMe has hosted some very popular
worlds in the past and has a server in a good data center located in
Texas. He is a good host in my book. ;)

I wish I knew of a piece of software that would allow Windows Media
streaming under Linux, but alas, I don't think it exists (or at a
reasonable price at least).

To be able to fully support Windows Media streams, you need to get a
server with Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition (or better) that has
Windows Media Services installed. Go to for
more information.

The only program that I could find that *may* be able to do streaming
under Linux is VLC. Go to for the


[View Quote] > Maybe I could do it... Do you know of any software for streaming windows
> media files from linux?


Jul 18, 2004, 8:49am
[View Quote] Neat, so could just hash together some pictures
into a video with Windows Movie Maker, and then
put the link into asx file and it streams. Thanks :)



Jul 18, 2004, 3:21pm
Hey builderz,

I was going to try to test this out, but I get a 404 error for the ASX file.


[View Quote]


Jul 18, 2004, 10:44pm
[View Quote] Have a look to this:
It's a live streaming.



Jul 19, 2004, 2:04am
Are you using as the URL? It
works for me...


[View Quote] > Hey builderz,
> I was going to try to test this out, but I get a 404 error for the ASX file.


Jul 20, 2004, 3:40pm
I looked at the file and it reads:


So yes, you can do live streaming with one line .ASX files. What I
meant, however, is that you can't do live streaming via HTTP (using a
standard Web server). The mms:// means that it is streaming via Windows
Media Services.


[View Quote] [View Quote]


Jul 29, 2004, 3:00pm
Just a few quick notes...

1) Only one person has contacted me expressing their interest in Windows
Media streaming so far.

2) The 3D Host hosting information page
( has been updated. All Web
hosting/OP accounts now support Windows Media and MP3 streaming via
HTTP. I still need to test RealMedia (which I don't believe AW supports).

3) I have allowed UberMonkey (the creator of Proxima) the use of the domain (which I bought for him a while ago).
So the new URL to the Proxima teaser video is at


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