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I intend to build a web project we came up with a friend. It's really a budget thing. I'm inexperienced in building web applications and not even sure I can make it all by myself. Nonetheless I'm going to put the effort in and in case of success we will get serious about it.

I'm in the phase of preparations pretty much and I'm struggling a bit with technical concept. Basically it will be a gamified video sharing private page, if that's a thing.

To elaborate on that... private as in registration and login only. The users will upload videos and pictures (90% video), so the content would be pretty much video. The gaminfication part is not important.

What I'm struggling with is how to deal with the video hosting. I've researched something about hosting videos yourself and also about using third party hosts, but I'm still not sure what is optimal solution for me and that is the point of my question.

I would like to find a solution, which would be good in the begginning and would work also later (with minimal changes) with the high traffic in case of success.

My requirements for the solution:

  • users can directly upload videos through my site (to 1 common account in case of external hosting service)
  • the videos will be shorter, probably less than 15 minutes
  • content could be sometimes on the edge of rules (like maybe little nudity, light drugs,etc)
  • videos should be viewable only through my site
  • videos shouldn't get posted to the site unless moderator approved, but that will be done on the front-end probably
  • page loading times, good performance

I was thinking about using youtube and it's APIs to do the job, but I'm afraid about the content thing. Some reported video could easily bring down the whole channel - whole site. And not sure if it's efficient to run multiple youtube accounts for one website and how it is with data backup.

I know I get most control when I host myself, but the proper VPS or dedicated hosting is really expensive where I live and I want the page to be fast, even when multiple people will upload videos at the same time, so I'm seeking really the most efficient solution in the long term.

I also looked at some cloud services and CDN, but not much familiar with it and not really sure how much it is suitable for a website of my intentions.

Since I like to build my custom sites on Wordpress + boostrap + js, it will be probably build on this too. As I said, it's budget thing, so I'd like to start on cheap shared webhosting and in case of need due the traffic upgrade a bit.

I want a SaaS.

migrated from webapps.stackexchange.com Jan 10 '17 at 18:53

This question came from our site for power users of web applications.

  • Thanks for migration of topic, Little update: youtube API is no longer in play, because of the upload limits + content restriction, now I'm looking into AWS, but seems complicated so far. – Davesky Jan 11 '17 at 11:12
  • Do you want software-as-a-service (you pay every month) or do you want to host yourself (install available software on your own server)? Please choose one otherwise the question is too broad, thanks! – Nicolas Raoul Jan 12 '17 at 2:35
  • With YouTube the videos would be visible outside of your website, I guess you don't want that, right? – Nicolas Raoul Jan 12 '17 at 2:37
  • Well, now I do think I want a SaaS. Sorry once again for too broad of a question in first place. As I said, YT is out of question already, because I need multiple users uploading to same account (or service) through my website and YT API, which allows that, is limitting the number of files to like a 4 per hour. Plus also I think there would be problem due to the nature of content. Currently VIMEO is my favorite option, yet I'm not still 100% sure everything will work as I intend to. Have to try I guess. – Davesky Jan 13 '17 at 12:19
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If you choose to host the videos yourself, I recommend checking out the LEADTOOLS Media Streaming Server SDK. This SDK provide support for hosting MP4 files that can be played from any device. It includes support for converting non-MP4 files to MP4 so they can be streamed which would help with user uploaded content. This SDK also provides a sample JavaScript page which determines which video player would be best to use on the device and starts streaming content with that player. In essense, this illustrates the ability for the media streaming server to work with any device.

Disclaimer: I am an employee of the company that wrote this library.

  • I'm actually leaning more towards not hosting videos myself so far, but I will check that out. Thanks – Davesky Jan 11 '17 at 17:53
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Ok, so you really have a few things, lets try to cover them.

1) Storage of video files. How much? 20gb? 200gb? 2tb?

2) Serving of said video files, via a website. This means you'll need some way of generating an on-demand stream that can be integrated into your resulting HTML+css+js code and viewed in a browser or system default media player.

Solutions -

1) At "lets test this with a few 30 second videos to do a proof of concept" I have to recommend linode.com . $10 per month gets you 30gb of storage on SSD, 2 gigs of ram, and 2 terabytes of transfer. More than enough to set up your proof of concept and do service. Beyond your development/alpha/beta work, depending on storage needs linode may continue to suffice. If you are successful, you setup more linodes and spread the load, and perhaps move storage off to amazon or one of the other mass storage providers.

2) Ok, you've got your video files... how to serve them up? Lots of ways - while I'm a duct-taping kinda guy and have done it with shell scripts and VLC and other command line heroics, using Wowza will probably make your life a lot easier. Not sure but I think they still allow a free developer license (a couple of client limit max) and the price wasn't too unreasonable. Wowza does offer CDN services, but the prices are higher than what you get for $10/mo at linode, and with linode you have 100% full control.

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