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Bit Rate Throttling? – HELL YEAH!

Fact number one: If you have a streaming server, you must install this extension!

Great, now that we’ve got this fact covered, we can move on.

IIS site says:

Bit Rate Throttling, an IIS Media Services extension, saves money on network costs by metering the download speed of media and data files. For media, Bit Rate Throttling accomplishes this by automatically detecting the encoded bit rates of 11 common media formats, such as Windows Media Video (WMV), Flash Video (FLV), and MPEG 4 (MP4), and then throttling the response to the client. For any other file or MIME type, Bit Rate Throttling allows administrators to configure custom throttling rules.

Now, lets explain the same thing in a bit simpler way.

If you have a server which streams any kind of media files, Im sure you have noticed extremely high bandwidht usage on that machine. In my experience, over 40% of the bandwidth is wasted! WAIT! WHY, HOW?

Answer is simple!

Scenario 1 ( server without Bit Rate Throttling extension ):

Lets say that you have a 100 Mbit link on your machine. A visitor with a 20 Mbit link will come to your site and click “play” on the newest promo movie you have uploaded.  What will happen, the server will send the ENTIRE video to the visitor in couple of seconds ( buffering ) and on the half of the movie, the visitor will see that he doesnt like your movie and go away.

What happened here? Half of the downloaded movie is wasted. The visitor downloaded the entire movie, but only looked at half of it. Efectively, you’ve wasted 50% of that movies bandwidth ( in a 100 Mb file, thats 50 Mb of bandwidth wasted )

This is where Bit Rate Throttling jumps in and saves the day!

Scenario2 ( Server with Bit Rate Throttling Extension installed ) :

Lets say that you have a 100 Mbit link on your machine. A visitor with a 20 Mbit link will come to your site and click “play” on the newest promo movie you have uploaded.  What will happen, the server will see that the movie is encoded at 700 kbps ( example ) and reduce the speed its sending you the movie ( buffering )  to 800 kbps or 850 kbps ( depening on what setting you choose ) so that you still have a smooth playback and some buffer in reserve ).   In this case, amount of bandwidht that could potentially be wasted is a lot smaller than the amount of bandwidth that would be wasted without this extension.

As I said before, improvements in bandwidth costs can be improved up to 40%! Thats not a small amount!

Features of Bit Rate Throttling:

  • Seamless integration into IIS 7.x Manager
  • Out-of-the box compatibility for the following media types: .asf, .avi, .flv, .m4v, .mov, .mp3, .mp4, .rm, .rmvb, .wma and .wmv
  • Dynamic throttling adjustment based on:
    • The file types and their encoded bit rate
    • The available bandwidth of the connection
    • Default and maximum throttling rates
    • Concurrent connection limits
    • Target throughput rate for the site
  • Throttling rules configurable at various levels including server, site and virtual directory
  • Fast Start experience for optimal user experience
  • Extensibility to enable other media formats and file types
  • Better-together solution when combined with Web Playlists

Have a nice day! Alesandro

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