Flash Media Server 4: First Thoughts

Writing on Streamingmedia.com, Tim Siglin reviews the recently released Flash Media Server 4 and discusses some its newer features, including support for multicasting and HTTP streaming:

Adobe’s Flash Media Servers have undergone a radical set of changes in the past few revisions. FMS version 2 offered numerous iterations. But Adobe slimmed down the product line to just two for FMS 3: FMSS and FMIS.  The price points between FMS 2 and FMS 3 also dropped, in part due to competition, to a base $995 for FMSS and $4,995 for FMIS. In FMS 4, the price points are the same for the two lower-end servers. But Adobe adds a third server, FMES, at a cost many times the FMSS price point; a spokesperson for Adobe says customers should contact the company for quotes.  So what do you get for all that extra money? In a word, multicast. But this is not just traditional IP multicasting, which is also available in version 4 of FMIS, but a combination of IP multicasting and what Adobe is calling application multicasting.  Adobe calls this combination Fusion, while others call it peer-to-peer multicasting. Regardless of what it’s called, it’s a key element of FMES. Other features available in FMIS and FMES include the integration of HTTP streaming, for both live and on-demand content delivery, and Fast Switching.” [Read More]

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