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RealAudio and RealVideo Streaming How-To

Streaming files means that the RealAudio and RealVideo files begin playing before the entire file is downloaded. RealAudio and RealVideo files can be quite large and many people surfing the web would not wait to see the entire file download before it started playing.

A RealAudio/Video server allows you to offer these streamed files. However, you can also stream these files without the RealAudio/Video server. It isn't quite as nice as using the server, but it will cost you no money. It is known as HTTP Streaming.

To stream RealAudio and RealVideo content using HTTP from your account:

  1. First, copy your encoded RealAudio and RealVideo files (files with the .rm and .ra extensions) to your Virtual Server using FTP. Be sure to FTP these files in Binary mode.

  2. Second, create a metafile (ASCII text file) containing a RealAudio or RealVideo URL. For example, the contents of your file should be in the following form:

    http://hostname/path/filename

    where hostname is the name of your World Wide Web server. For example:

    http://www.drwebhosting.com/1st-million/call.ra

  3. Third, save the above metafile as a text file with the .ram extension. For example:

    example.ram

    Then FTP this file to your virtual server in ASCII mode (because it is a text file).

  4. Fourth, in your HTML document, reference the metafile in a hyperlink. For example:

    <A HREF="example.ram">Click here to listen</A>

    You can use relative or complete paths. If you use complete paths, you must include both the hostname and the complete path. For example:

    <A HREF="http://www.drwebhosting.com/1st-million/call.ram">Click here to listen</A>

  5. Last, when a user clicks on the link, the audio/video file(s) begin to download. The RealPlayer begins playing after a few seconds; it does not need to wait for the entire file to be downloaded.

    For more information see Progressive Networks' site at http://www.real.com

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