I am looking for a Live Video Streaming solution.

The clients will be able to watch the video with a plugin (Flash or Silverlight), or a standalone application (Windows Media Player, FLV, etc).

But I can't choose between Microsoft Solution (Windows Media Server (MMS, RTSP) + Silverlight as client) or the Adobe solution (Flash Media Server (RTMP) + Flash/Flex).

The streaming is for short duration cast and will not be online 24/24h.

I tried both, and I found the cheaper version of FMS don't provide security to prevent users to register as published (you have to write custom module...), Windows Media Server provides this function.

We already have Windows Server licences. (So Windows Media Server will be "free" for us.)

What do you recommend? What is the best between Flash or Silverlight for Live Video Streaming?

Thank you!

4 Answers 4


We went with FMS because of its built in fuctionality with flash clients, and was still pretty cheap (in context) to license. It also came with some demo apps that almost perfectly suited our needs. In fact if it's <= 5 users then the demo license will be fine.

That said, we didn't look into the Windows Media Server much because we didn't have any developers with experience in it, so I can't provide a fair comparison.

One thing we really liked was the ability in FMS to publish at multiple bit levels, because we were streaming to churches in remote locations they could only handle say 256kbps, whereas those in the city or at home could handle 1500kbps, and FMS let the user switch on the fly without a dropout in stream. It would even automatically switch down a bitrate if the local connection couldn't keep up.

  • You can also publish at multiple bitrate on Windows using IIS Live Smooth Streaming (But Microsoft don't have any compatible encoder, you have to buy one from Envivio), The FMS admin area is great, FMS looks really good, but the impossibility to protect the publisher access (connection as broadcaster) is strange (As I know it's only possible in the Interactive edition that is more expensive, via server side scripting).
    – Kedare
    Mar 14, 2010 at 23:33
  • @Kedare, What do you mean by "proect publisher access"? You can use RMTPE, which is the encrypted version, or do you mean you want to do server-side validation of a cookie/session ID before initiating the streaming? Mar 15, 2010 at 2:19
  • I just want to prevent the connection as broadcaster, to be sure that only our staff can send a video stream to the servers/users
    – Kedare
    Mar 15, 2010 at 10:37

I'd go with Flash, but there are other solutions other than FMS to stream with, such as Wowza Media Server 2 (http://www.wowzamedia.com/products.html).


I would say use flash. Go with wowza media server 2, try using http dynamic streaming for live playback, using osmf player.

If requirements are small and not 24/7, you might want to use Wowza for ec2, for hourly basis setup :-)


Adobe FMS does have a free authentication add-on, which can be download from here; https://www.adobe.com/cfusion/entitlement/index.cfm?e=fmle3

The add-on uses a text file stored on the server, which could be easily scripted.

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