Today I'm pleased to announce the launch of Windows Media Services 2008. Windows Media Services, like all of Windows Server 2008, is significantly more secure, reliable and robust - and it is already considered by many customers to be the best in the market for live and streaming delivery, and the latest improvements provide 2x scalability over Windows Media Services 9.0.
In addition to its proven scalability and reliability, Windows Media Services now supports a Server Core installation, enabling reduced footprints for fixed-function streaming server scenarios, offering embedded appliance-like performance. Additionally, a cache/proxy plug-in is built in, making it easier to configure WMS for edge network enterprise and Internet topologies. Many features of Windows Media Services that were previously available only on Windows Server Enterprise and Datacenter are now available on Windows Server Standard, and all Standard features are now also available on Windows Web Server 2008. This makes the power of Windows Media Services 2008 available to a broader set of users at a lower cost.
Key benefits of Windows Media Services (WMS) 2008 include:
Industrial Strength. Global Scale.
- Proven Reliability. Windows Server 2008 improves on the five nines reliability of Windows Server 2003 to deliver a rock solid server platform that companies bet their businesses on.
- Native 64-bit OS Support. Windows Media Services 2008 provides 2x the industry-leading scalability of WMS 9.0 thanks to native 64-bit operating system support and new networking technologies built into Windows Server 2008.
- Scalable Live Streaming. The combination of massive scalability and proven reliability make Windows Media Services 2008 the right choice for delivering large-scale live events to a global audience.
- Fast Streaming. Windows Media Services 2008 can deliver instant-on/always-on streaming for broadband users and dramatic improvements in the streaming experience for all users. Fast Start and the newer Advanced Fast Start for WMS significantly reduce streaming buffering times to deliver near-television-like experiences when playing back content or switching between sources. For on-demand content, Advanced Fast Start also enables quick seeking within a WMS stream, allowing users to "seek" forward or backward instantly.
- New Cache/Proxy Server plug-in. Included with Windows Media Services 2008, this plug-in allows a Windows Media server in a branch office or other remote location to easily split a single broadcast stream from the home office into multiple streams for local end users, reducing WAN traffic. Similarly, the caching functionality caches on-demand content streamed to the remote location (e.g., training videos) the first time it is viewed, and subsequent requests for that content are served from the local cache/proxy server.
Monetize Content. Cut Costs.
- Streaming for Windows Web Server 2008. With the launch of Windows Server 2008, Windows Media Services 2008 is now available for the very affordable Windows Web Server 2008, which has a suggested retail price of $469.
- Advertising for Streaming Content. A variety of advertising types, including bumpers, trailers, and interstitial ads, can be dynamic and personalized via integration with ASP.NET servers, WMS server-side playlists (.WSX), and client side playlists (.ASX). Windows Media Services 2008 provides the advanced usage logging necessary to ensure broadcasters can accurately and effectively track and report on advertisement reach.
- Server Core installation. Windows Server 2008 provides a componentized installation option for Windows Media Services 2008. All unneeded components and services except for the components used for streaming are removed. This results in a minimized attack surface, more efficient use of system resources, and substantially reduced servicing for headless, dedicated streaming servers, giving them appliance-like performance and reliability.
- Server Manager. Windows Server 2008 provides a one-stop interface for server configuration and monitoring. Server Manager is an addition to familiar options including Microsoft Management Console (MMC), Web, script, and command-line control; it allows general IT professionals to administer Web and streaming servers with a higher-level console consistent with other Windows server roles.
- Scenario-based Wizards and Help. Windows Media Services 2008 makes it easy for non-media professionals to integrate streaming servers into their existing network.
- HTTP protocol support. Windows Media Services 2008 provides consistent streaming across Internet- and intranet- based routers, switches, and firewalls.
- Powerful Object Model and Event Mechanism. Developers can choose from over 1,000 methods, interfaces, and properties for rich customization of the server. Combined with support for DCOM/WBEM/WMI and an extensive object model, Windows Media Services 2008 provides the most powerful platform for the development of customized streaming solutions.
- Broad programming language support including .NET 2.0. Create plug-ins and custom server-based applications for event management, logging, authentication and more.
Please click on the following links to learn more:
- WMS 2008 homepage
- Download Location
- Instructions for Download and Installation
- WMS Newsgroup
- Caching and Proxying Overview
If you have any feedback, please let us know on the WMS Newsgroup, or comment on this post.