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back to article World Cup streaming to choke corporate networks, doomsayers predict

Every World Cup and major sporting event since France 98, if not before, has come accompanied by dire predictions of networking doom. This time around Nigel Hawthorn, EMEA VP Marketing at security appliance firm Blue Coat, was the prime source of an article FIFA World Cup: the world’s biggest ever DoS?. Hawthorn predicted: " …

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Anonymous Coward

Why is it

That everyone comes out saying how networks will be overloaded and that servers wont cope with demand, yet no one from, lets say, the BBC comes on and tells us what they've done to cope with the obvious demand they will have on their streaming service?

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@Micky 1

I may be wrong, but I don't think the BBC will have to do anything to cope with the demand -- they'll just broadcast over the internet live in a similar way to over the airways. Yes, OK, that's a slightly simplistic way of putting it but the congesting this will cause will be at the various routers between the BBC's network and the viewers.

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Boffin

It's the end of the world as we know it... NOT!

- The World Cup will not air during office hours for 33% of the world (raw estimate that everyone has an 8 hours work day and a day consists of 24 hours)

- Corporate networks often block streaming video anyway

- For those who don't block streaming video, multicast protocols (i.e. RTSP over UDP) mitigate chokes (BUT... given how the world has stopped using dedicated media players to watch streaming videos...)

- Not everyone is interested in The World Cup or football/soccer in general

- Most offices are more than likely to have a telly in the pantry anyway, or will have someone bring in a TV through the duration of the game...

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Alert

Prophet of doom etc etc

He's right. I successfully brought down a huge company's network - or reduced it to a dribble anyway - just by hosting a 256kbps video that they all wanted to watch and had paid me to host on the big internet. (I know, that's what intranets are for).

10 people sneaking a peak at the association football tournament is going to clog up most office's networks.

The Internet itself probably won't notice though.

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FAIL

The Lack...

...of efficient multicasting implementation will doubtless choke some networks. It's just not something many IT managers have thought about.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IP_multicast

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Anonymous Coward

Actually.

There was a large sporting event last year that did in the NHS's N3. Our helldesk was flooded by people complaining that apps requiring external internet access were running so slowly to be timing out, and therefore unusable. (with N3, every NHS PCT shares one singular access pipe to the outside world)

A uncharacteristically useful BT tech said off the record that the problem would vanish at the end of the event. Apparently some NHS trusts don't see the need to do web filtering!

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Thumb Down

Riiiiiiiiiiight...

So what he's saying is that at some point, during the next month, at least one corporate network, /somewhere in the world/ is going to suffer connectivity issues.

Well fuck me, what a leap of deductive reasoning.

In other news, popes shit in the woods, bears are catholic, etc. ad infinitum.

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Pint

Network Restrictions

I received a nice email when I got into work this morning regarding this from our IT dept.

"In order to avoid the network congestion and impact to Carillion’s Internet and email facilities, that we experienced during the Olympics in 2008, it will be necessary during the period of the World Cup (11th June to 12th July 2010), to restrict access during business hours (8am to 6pm) to the following internet site categories:-

Sport

Internet Radio

TV

Special Events

News.

Should you require valid business access to any of these categories please can you log a request with the IT Service Desk outlining the business reason and together with authorisation from a senior manager to provide access. The restriction will be lifted on an individual basis."

Hope this doesn't affect my ability to read El Reg. AC incase we have any sane IT engineers with some actual intelligence who come here for there news.

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WTF?

Yeah

Cos streaming video protocols are so commonly allowed on corporate networks.

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Stop

FFS....

..we bar streaming video for 99.99% of users. So what's the issue?

Me..I'm not blocked, but don't give a shit about over piad actors, chasing a ball round a field and then hoping into a bath together for a nice kiss and cuddle.

Now the beach volleyball world championships :-)

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Not far from the truth

We monitor bandwidth usage for a government department. Everyday the bandwidth is maxed between 11:30am and 2:30pm all due to streaming.... at other times its less than 40% and this is even before the World Cup.....

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FAIL

To which gloomy prediction...

...sensible companies say "Meh" and jerk a thumb toward the shiny new HD tellybox that they've put in for such eventualities, as well as the streaming video ban on their firewall...

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A massive strain on corporate networks

which need lots of filtering kit, or plan B use a tv\projector in a meeting room\canteen and allow a little communal slacking off.

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Thank goodness for traffic-shaping.

If anything goes wrong, it's okay your ISP can just shape your traffic and ruin your enjoyment of the game.

They should have embraced the BitTorrent protocol years ago and saved themselves millions in bandwidth costs, but no.

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Unhappy

Not again

A lot of the incoming streams to Oz are through Sydney, The last Olympics we had, bog the webz down that much it was a time for catching some sun. This will at least be shorter lived and foot ball soccer style is not that big a draw card except for ex-pats of the UK.

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Bronze badge
Go

School

My employers have asked me to look into this for them - they are a school and apparently one of the matches is shown at 3pm and they think teachers will be tempted to let kids watch it / watch it themselves online. The TV technology we have is old-hat, but the large-display data projectors in every classroom (and the large touchscreen display in the staffroom), coupled with an internet-connection and Internet-enabled-laptop for every staff member are certainly a temptation.

My employers are quite relaxed about the actual event happening (i.e. they aren't banning access to it, so long as it doesn't interfere with teaching) but they do want to make sure that the broadband doesn't fall over and interrupt other lessons. So I've been asked to look into things like VLC streaming of the match across the site and things like that.

In fact, VLC transcoding and simulcast seems to be the best option, really. There might be a slight lag but it means that the traffic is kept bouncing around the 1Gbps local links, not the pitiful outside connection. We think that even just three or more simultaneous streams would be enough to affect web / email access, and there's at least three members of staff who will be in seperate rooms who will want to watch it if they can. I have no interest in the footie, so I'm happy to worry about the streams, not the goals, if something isn't working properly.

We can even do DVB-T or DVB-S streaming with a bit of planning and not have to find a suitable re-streamable stream online. Though, I'm sure a bit of iPlayer / Sky Player hackery could be done if necessary. But if my school are seriously considering it, I don't see why other workplaces wouldn't be, unless they thought it was "inevitable" that their users would be streaming it, or that it would slow down, or that nobody gets any work done that afternoon anyway. Any ideas on helping me achieve this will be gratefully received.

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Boffin

simple VLC Multicast and SAP announce it all on your LAN

"Lee Dowling

School → Posted Friday 11th June 2010 11:03 GMT

In World Cup streaming to choke corporate networks, doomsayers predict

My employers have asked me to look into this for them - they are a school and apparently one of the matches is shown at 3pm and they think teachers will be tempted to let kids watch it / watch it themselves online. The TV technology we have is old-hat, but the large-display data projectors in every classroom

.... Any ideas on helping me achieve this will be gratefully received."

simple, just follow the old Documentation:Streaming HowTo/Command Line Examples - VideoLAN Wiki and replace the multicast dst=239.255.12.42 address with the 224.0.0.1, the SAP ANNOUNCE is interesting to you too as then you can have any VLC turn on that SAP announce option and see the name you gave on the cli line and connect directly to its underline IP and port with a simple click for the VLC viewer anywhere on the LAN

or use the VLC GUi wizard to start with setting the multicast address and SAP announce text etc until your happy with the cli...

if you want to use a digital DVB card of whatever make to get the best input quality for realtime x264 encoding and streaming then have a read of this page too Documentation:Streaming HowTo/Stream a DVB Channel - VideoLAN Wiki as it can get a little odd.

keep in mind there are several parts to any VLC line ,the input can be anything from a local ready made local AVC.H.264.AAC..mp4 file , a DVB card input, all the way to a remote URL file on some web server somewhere, then you have the streaming options totally separate, then you have the Codec Encoder option to tweak, stick to AVC/H.264/x264 options up to around 1.5Mbit/s bitrate should be fine for your normal HD content, AAC or mp3 audio options, and mp4/ts containers and you should be fine.

for instance here's a good example of how a DVB card, US HD in this case , their internal veetle browser plug-in , and a generic external current VLC using x264 realtime encoding to feed http://www.veetle.com/view/index.html#4b8e3c391e48b gives VERY good quality even for wasteful unicast streaming, swap that external Unicast out for internal LAN VLC multicast and your on a massive bandwidth winner all the way home.

OC if your feeding the local LAN from inside the network from a DVB-T card USB2 or whatever plug into a reasonable dual , quad Intel E4400 or better PC and VLC multicasting then you dont use ANY web/WAN bandwidth at all, and its all DVB+VLC multicast serving all your multicast SAP ANNOUNCE viewers No problem, you can even setup two or more and use them as backups or streaming other channels and content.... if you like .

start off with something simple like streaming a ready made video file , download this veetle test 500Kbit/s 16:9 ratio AVC/H.264 file will be fine for that http://www.megaupload.com/?d=7Z3I2XCA as your input and set multicast to all the PCs on the LAN and see them all tune into this ready made file stream first..to show you it really does work for the given group of PC's on your LAN without router or switch problems interfering with the multicast packets on the LAN from anywhere inside your LAN etc, enjoy and be happy.

AND Most of all, telling and actually Showing other people and students how its actually done and to start them using this VLC HD multicast everywhere you go, help spread the simple x264 AVC high quality encoding + VLC multicast streaming word.

oh and you might want to look at these 16:9 ratios for downscaling your input feeds to a generic screen size to save CPU cycles if your connected PC is not so beefy http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_common_resolutions

downscaling real 1920×1080 16:9 content to 1024×576 16:9 1.778 589,824 is a good compromise if you cant get your real-time encoding quality quite right to start with.

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Go

Exactly

My company, facing the fact that most employees would use streaming in some form (and we have to face the fact that a lot of alternatives will be available during the World Cup and it might be overkill to block them all) or just skip work alltogether, came up with the idea of internally hosted streaming. Two cheap computers and an encoding pci card later, and we are now all enjoyin all matches live over the corporate network.

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Go

Quality of Service

I think a lot of corporate networks will have QOS anyway so critical services such as VoIP or VPN can be prioritised over web streaming anyway but I guess it will still affect web browsing.

If you are lucky enough like me to have access to the firewall configuration, you could look to set your connection to have highest priority for 'research purposes' during this fine sporting event.

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FAIL

looks like tvcatchup just bit the dust

so thats one, probably not quite what he had in mind.

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Anonymous Coward

Multicast

"ooks like tvcatchup just bit the dust #

Posted Friday 11th June 2010 15:01 GMT

so thats one, probably not quite what he had in mind."

well that's what you get for using wasteful external WAN Unicast instead of setting up a simple LAN VLC + x264 Multicast Streamed DVB input.

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Anonymous Coward

Bandwidth

I've been monitoring bandwidth all day, and it looks like normal consumption... I know there are a few people watching, but it's not the end of the world... Chart - http://www.ttiwwop.net/files/1/Random/Chart.png

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world_cup_netmaggedon an Elreg modding super slow

well theres clearly something to this world_cup_netmaggedon as its taking forever for Elreg modding to take place, so No effective near real-time feedback chat

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Anonymous Coward

re: simple VLC Multicast and SAP announce it all on your LAN

those pissing urls

just follow the old Documentation:Streaming HowTo/Command Line Examples - VideoLAN Wiki

http://wiki.videolan.org/Documentation:Streaming_HowTo/Command_Line_Examples#RTSP_live_streaming

then have a read of this page too Documentation:Streaming HowTo/Stream a DVB Channel - VideoLAN Wiki

http://wiki.videolan.org/Documentation:Streaming_HowTo/Stream_a_DVB_Channel

http://www.veetle.com/view/index.html#4b8e3c391e48b

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Alert

Please please please...

...if you know of the source of this alleged free video streaming of the live world cup performances, other than over iPhone, please could you post the link, as all I can find is dodgy paysites offering same.

Oh, and I don't believe this free live TV streaming will clog up any intranets because I don't believe it exists. Please prove me wrong!!

Many thanks

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Boffin

Oh, and I don't believe this free live TV streaming exists

your kidding right ?

given this is a UK news site and so we assume you too are there as you don't state or hint otherwise then

http://tvcatchup.com/guide.html?hour=18

and many more, using some goggle fu is your friend

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Stop

multicast

we had 1242 users on our network watching the match on friday - impact on our wan? 2mbit - isp and gov networks need to sort out theit tech and deploy multicast - meanwhile sites can use eg vlc to make a local stream

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re:multicast ISP and gov networks need to ....

"Anonymous Coward

multicast #

Posted Monday 14th June 2010 08:31 GMT

we had 1242 users on our network watching the match on friday - impact on our wan? 2mbit - isp and gov networks need to sort out theit tech and deploy multicast - meanwhile sites can use eg vlc to make a local stream"

you and I are right OC, ISP and gov networks need to ....stop fucking about , and simply STOP Filtering Multicast packets off the last mile End user cable and related kit end of story....

they actually go to the trouble right now of needing to re-configure the industrial KIT to filter this generic Multicast packet data, as this kit comes from the manufacturer with Multicast capability fully enabled and functional.

even the world generic cable docsis standard (DS 1,2,and 3)chipsets are required to function with Multicast packets and don't pass DS certification if they don't.

the lack of end user ISP Multicast is ALL the worlds ISP's choice to filter it rather than just simply allow it to pass through in both upload and download directions for those that wish to try and innovate with it, the wired ISP's wont turn off the Multicast filtering as they cant figure out way to charge you for saving masses of bandwidth in streaming video the multicast way instead of the wasteful Unicast way....

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