Video: Scaling Live OTT with DASH

MPEG DASH is a standard for streaming which provides a stable, open chain for distribution detailing aspects like packaging and DRM as well as being the basis for low-latency CMAF streaming.

DASH Manifest files, text files which list the many small files which make up the stream, can be complicated, long and take a long time to parse, demonstrates Hulu’s Zachary Cava. As the live event continues, the number of chunks to describe increases and so manifest files can easily grow to hundred of KB and eventually to megabytes meaning the standard way of producing these .mpd files will end up slowing the player down to the point it can’t keep up with the stream.

Zachary goes over some initial optimisations which help a lot in reducing the size o the manifests before introducing a method of solving the scalability issue. He explains that patching the mid file is the way to go meaning you can reference just the updated values in the latest .mpd.

With on-secreen examples of manifest files, we clearly see how this works and we see that this method is still compatible with branching of the playback e.g. for regionalisation of advertising or programming.

Zachary finishes by explaining that this technique is arriving in the 4th edition of MPEG-DASH and by answering questions from the audience.

Watch now!


Zachary Cava Zachary Cava
Video Platform Architect.