Information Technology Division

Streaming Services Policy

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MTSU's Information Technology Division (ITD) strives to enable Internet activity that provides the best possible service for all users while managing usage and traffic. To manage the resources needed to provide live and archived streaming media, the following policy will be used.

Network streaming media can consume inordinate amounts of bandwidth and is very susceptible to delays caused by network contention and congestion. Streams are time sensitive and network delays manifest themselves as jitter. By allowing one server only to stream from MTSU to the Internet, that server's streaming traffic may be prioritized by the traffic shaper so as to reduce or eliminate jitter. Such Quality of Service maintenance could not be possible if multiple unidentified servers continued to stream content. In this manner, number of users and bandwidth allocated per stream can be centrally managed by ITD. To provide for the best service, a tiered approach, as shown below will be used.

Policy:

  • This policy addresses stored (archived) streaming media files as well as the production and distribution of live streaming media events.
  • The ITD Streaming Server will be the single point of media streaming from MTSU to the Internet / Internet2. Streaming will not be allowed through the Internet firewall from a departmental server. The bandwidth allocation will be as follows:
    • Total bandwidth available for streaming across the Internet will not exceed 7.5 Mbps.
    • Individual streams can not exceed 150 Kbps.
    • The total Real Server output cannot exceed 10 Mbps.
    • If more bandwidth is needed for an event, the department will be responsible for investigating outsourcing options.
  • Department / Individuals must request accounts on the ITD streaming server for stored (archived) or live streaming media files.
  • Departments / Individuals wishing to stream a live event will produce the initial stream on their departmental server. The server must be approved by ITD in order to ensure compatibility with the network design. The departmental server will code the video and/or audio signals and send a single stream to an account on the ITD server. ITD will not be involved in the production of the initial live stream.
  • ITD will not accept streams from off-campus unless approved by the Vice President for Information Technology and CIO.
  • All streaming media files are expected to abide by the Information Technology Resources Policy including copyright regulations.
  • ITD reserves that right to limit the number of streams per user if necessary during times of multiple streaming events.

Procedure:

  1. Stored (archived) streaming media files.
    1. Request an account on the Real server.
    2. Create the files in the appropriate format. Support in creating these files is available for the Faculty Instructional Technology Center (FITC).
    3. Upload the streaming media file to the account and create a link to launch that file
  2. "Live" event streaming
    1. Request a live casting account on the Real server (this account is not the same as the account in #1 above).
    2. Produce, capture and code the video and/or audio signals and send a single stream to an account on the ITD server.