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Using MediaDS to Stream to a Local Area Network

November 09, 2017 by Chuck Baker

Until now, delivering content to your viewers on your local network typically required you to send the content through a dedicated encoding device and out over the internet to a Content Delivery Network (CDN). You and your users would then stream the content back inside your firewall from the CDN. With very viewer receiving an independent stream, your incoming bandwidth can be chewed up pretty quickly. Content that you might want kept confidential had to be let out-of-house and at the mercy of the security of your chosen CDN.
MediaDS™ does away with all those steps and the issues that result from them. MediaDS replaces the encoding device with an appliance that encodes content for successful streaming, streams it across a local area network or across the internet as desired. A unit can host up to 500 connections on a 1Gb Ethernet network. Confidential internal content never goes outside your firewall. 

MediaDS web page with DVR controls

MediaDS has a trick or two up its sleeve that many CDNs do not. The stream is served via a link, and that link can use either a default page or you can create a custom page. For the viewer, the player presents DVR controls - if they join a stream late, they can still start at the beginning and watch the stream in its entirety, something not possible on some commercial streaming services.
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This tutorial assumes that you have already configured your channels and have sources active on them.

Connection menu in MediaDS

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To stream to the local network, first select the channel that you wish to stream, and open the Connection menu below the channel's viewport. MediaDS has a number of presets for popular streaming services and CDNs, which only need to be configured with your own account details to be ready for use. For local network streaming, select Wowza Streaming Engine. The preset is ready to go as is.

Streaming Profile menu from MediaDS UI

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Next, set your streaming profile - click on the gear icon to the right of the Stream button, and select the resolution/frames-per-second/bitrate that you wish to use for the stream.
That's it. That quick and that easy, you are ready to click on the Stream button for that channel and begin the stream.
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For your local network viewers to be able to watch the stream, you will simply need to send them a link. MediaDS is serving the content, just as a CDN would, from a web page that it is hosting. Click on the gear  icon on the right side of the  top bar, to open the MediaDS System Configuration panel. Next, click on the Edit MediaDS Webpages button.
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On the Web Page Editor, select the tab for the channel you wish to stream. On that tab, you can see the Page URL listed, and you have a button to copy the URL to the clipboard so that you can paste it into a message to the viewers that you wish to watch the stream.
We hope this video has been helpful for you. If you have suggestions for other topics you would like covered in a 2-Minute  or Facebook Live Tutorial, please send us a message. We will see you next time.
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