Live Transcoding Made Simple and Easy

In today’s age of livestreaming events and concerts, the numerous and diverse amounts of mobile devices, desktops and TV’s pose a challenge for any content distribution creator.  Julien Lehmann, Product Manager for CDN and Cybersecurity at LeaseWeb previews the new service of live transcoding, a service that simplifies your workflow, that will be launched during IBC 2016 in Amsterdam.

Why we organize Hackathons at LeaseWeb

PrivateNetwork_2_ScaleLeaseWeb kicked off its sixth quarterly Hackathon on Thursday, July 21st. The Hackathons are a chance for employees to step outside the usual routine and allow them to get creative, work together in new ways, and have fun. Participants are given two full days and nights to work on any kind of project whether it’s to solve a work problem, learn a new skill, or try out a personal project they’ve had in mind. Whatever it is, they have the complete freedom to try something new with the goal being to present a functional demo at the end of the second day.

Hackathons begin with a presentation where all of the participants gather to kick things off. Everyone receives a Hackathon t-shirt designed specifically for the event and then they hunker down to start work on their projects. Hackathon isn’t just for the engineering department and individuals from all parts of the company are encouraged to participate.
image3Perhaps someone in marketing has been thinking about a new tool that could help them do their job better. They might team up with an engineer to try and create that tool. New ideas and collaborations that might not have otherwise fit into the usual busy schedule are given the opportunity to be developed and tested. Several projects and tools that have been created during Hackathons have been integrated into day to day operations.

After working hard all day Thursday, participants took a break to have dinner and some fun. A barbecue spread was set out and there was plenty of chicken, burgers, salad, and beer to go around. A 45 meter inflatable obstacle course was set up in the parking lot and participants competed with each other to see who could get the best time. The winner completed the course in just over 30 seconds. After a bit more relaxation everyone was ready to get back to working on their projects. Some stayed late into the night and crashed at the office, others went home to grab some sleep before coming back in the next morning to finish up before the afternoon presentations.

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LeaseWeb and Scopic: Building Virtual Bridges with Hybrid Cloud

scopicGuest blog written by Leon Horbach of high-end VR production company Scopic.

In a world that is more characterized by global connectivity than ever before, Cloud hosting providers such as LeaseWeb play vital roles. The seamless transportation of data, in combination with rock-solid security and innovative products, are key factors when making both the private and professional world working smoothly. It was therefore no coincidence that we (Scopic, a high-end virtual reality (VR) production company), teamed up with LeaseWeb in order to accomplish a riveting VR project.

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Harnessing Millions of CDN Statistics With Apollo

cdn graphAt LeaseWeb, our CDN team focuses on delivering ultra-high performance globally for any content while remaining the most competitive player in the field. We process and monitor millions of requests per minute and that level of traffic requires a robust and flexible statistics platform that provide us and our customers with real-time accurate information.

Our previous statistics platform had several issues that didn’t allow us to get the most accurate picture of what was happening. The data was analyzed on the content-serving edge nodes. In order to consume as little resources on these nodes as possible, the data was sampled instead of counting every hit. The result was an approximation rather than an exact number. Another issue was resilience: the old platform had stability issues that might result in inaccuracies. We needed something that was reliable, wouldn’t consume edge-node resources, would record every hit, and would provide instantly precise counts for us and our customers.

Our goals for the new platform were as follows:

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What does your cloud cost?

StartUps_01_CostThird-party cloud solutions offer a truly transformational cost advantages over traditional on-premise hosting – but you’re not going to capture most of them with a rudimentary, “back of the envelope” analysis. That’s the lesson of our latest white paper, “Developing a cloud sourcing strategy: Two steps to calculate the total cost of ownership of your cloud,” which lays out the key steps to take when considering the total cost of ownership (TCO) of a move to the cloud.

For starters, let’s assume your cloud strategy is properly conceived. (If not, contact us now to resolve your first issue.) Using a realistic example in the white paper, we make the case that moving to a cloud-based solution can result in a TCO reduction of between 30 and 60 percent, as long as the solution is focused on “enabling business velocity”:

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How DJ Hardwell uses cloud to get 22,000 fans on stage

AdServing_01_FlexibilityVR is hot hot hot! As the technology is becoming widely available, we see more and more customers picking it up. For example, LeaseWeb recently teamed up with Hardwell – the world’s #1 DJ – and technology partners Littlstar and VBR to pull off the first 360-degree, VR live stream of an EDM performance.

Using our private cloud, CDN, and datacenters in Europe, the U.S. and Asia, the world’s #1 DJ was able to broadcast his show to thousands of viewers in more than 25 countries. LeaseWeb served over 20 Terabytes of total traffic and accommodated 12 gigabit bandwidth spikes.

So we sent a camera team was on-site at the Miami Beach stop of Hardwell’s Revealed tour. Check out the video below to see how it all came together! And afterwards, check our 360-degree tour of one of our data centers!

Setting up Leaseweb CDN on WordPress

cdn graphSetting up WordPress on LeaseWeb CDN is very easy, as you’ll see. A couple of assumptions before we start:

  • WordPress is installed on the origin server
  • WP Super Cache or similar is installed within WordPress
  • An “Origin” that points to your WordPress installation is already defined within your LeaseWeb CDN control panel.

Configuring the zone itself

First thing you want to do is to configure a Pull Zone. Do this by going to “Manage Zones” -> “Pull Zones” and click the “Add” button.

 

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Security precaution: update your passwords

secureThe only way to stay safe on the internet is by helping each other minimize security risks. So as a precaution, I want to make you aware of a situation that could possibly affect you.

There are currently several databases available on the internet containing personal data such as e-mail addresses, user names and associated passwords. Lately, our security teams have noticed an increase in attacks attempted by unauthorized parties using this data.

In order to protect yourself, we recommend everyone to take the following actions if you haven’t done so already:

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LeaseWeb: A product portfolio that meets online gaming’s many different needs

AdServing_01_FlexibilityBecause gaming companies have so many different performance and scalability requirements for online games, it’s impossible to create a one-size-fits-all infrastructure for them. Different platforms (mobile/tablet, PC and console) and different business models (Pay-to-Play, Free-to-Play, etc) mean that every gaming company has different needs when it comes to technology, scalability and performance. This is why LeaseWeb has a targeted approach towards the gaming industry and offers a full portfolio of tailored solutions in datacenters around the globe to customers including Ubisoft, Capcom, Crytek, Hi-Rez Studios and Creative Assembly. Our approach helps gaming companies balance risks and costs in order to capitalize quickly on a successful game.

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Abstractions over Scale – interview with Docker

Aanand Prasad, an engineer from Docker, spoke about Abstractions Over Scale and Docker’s open-source software suite at LeaseWeb’s TechSummit in Amsterdam:

We wanted to get a little more insight into how tools like these are affecting the traditional ways of scaling technology:

LeaseWeb: A lot of times you see a gap between the engineers who manage servers and the developers who write the code. Why do you think this issue continues to exist and what are the common problems people face trying to fit two different environments?

Aanand: I think the reason it persists is two-fold: firstly they are dramatically different environments and there are very different problems with completely different concerns, at least underneath. My quixotic endeavor is to make the case that they don’t need to be. Which is an uphill struggle, because usually the job of getting something running in production and the job of getting something running in development are done by completely different people, completely different teams even who might not spend much time talking to each other. It’s nonetheless my hope that with tools like Docker and with abstractions like containers and networks and volumes, we can get to the point where the differences between those environments are minimized.

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