Adobe Media Server Updates

We are glad to share the below updates.

Support for WebVTT Captions in HLS Streams ( Video On Demand workflows )

AMS 5.0.7 provides capability to stream captions available in WebVTT files. WebVTT files provide captions or subtitles for video content, and also text video descriptions, chapters for content navigation, and more generally any form of metadata that is time-aligned with audio or video content.

Timed Metadata in RTMP Streams available in output HLS Streams as ID3 tags

Now you can provide additional metadata with the video streams and it will be available to your player applications as ID3 tags. ID3 is a metadata container most often used in conjunction with the MP3 audio file format. It allows information such as the title, artist, album, track number, and other information about the file to be stored in the file itself.

Fixes for Security Vulnerabilities including Shell Shock Vulnerability (CVE-2014-6271 and CVE-2014-7169) and POODLE (CVE-2014-3566).

We have updated the version of OpenSSL to 1.0.1j to patch the severe security vulnerabilities recently reported. We have disabled SSL 3.0 on the server. The successor protocols to SSL3.0- TLS 1.0,1.1 and 1.2 can be used for secure communication.

We would recommend to update to AMS 5.0.7 to prevent attacks leveraging these vulnerabilities.

Update for certificates for Protected Streaming workflows – PHDS/PHLS/PRTMP

Adobe Media Servers comes with certificates to support Protected Streaming workflows with various protocols. These certificates are available under <AMS_INSTALLATION_DIRECTORY>/creds/static

The certificates in the earlier versions are due to expire on 5:30 AM April 6 2015. The refreshed certificates in this version have an expiry date of 5:30 AM September 24 2016.

Availability of New Generation instances on Amazon Web Services Marketplace

The AMS AMI on the Amazon Web Services Marketplace now supports a few Current generation instances (m3.large and m3.xlarge). We plan to add support for more current generation instances in the coming quarter.

Availability of Annual Pricing option for Adobe Media Server on Amazon Web Services

Customers using AMS on Amazon Web Services can get additional savings by subscribing to an Annual software pricing.

We are also discontinuing the support for Adobe Media Gateway and it is no longer available with the AMS package. Adobe Media Gateway was used to connect Flash based applications to SIP enabled devices (telephones).


Team AMS

Adobe Media Server on Amazon Web Services Marketplace

We are glad to announce the availability of Adobe Media Server on Amazon Web Services Marketplace. This launch enables our customers to use marketplace features like

With Reserve instances you  can save up to 65% of your EC2 usage cost.  The availability of EBS volumes for booting would provide additional agility to applications to store their data and configurations. It also provides low latency and scalable storage required for video streaming applications. You can also add additional layers of security by hosting your applications in an Amazon VPC.

The AMS 5.0.3 AMI available on CentOS 6.3 can be searched on the Amazon marketplace or launched directly from here . The underlying software remains the same allowing you to do HTTP Streaming for your Live and Video On Demand events. You can also use the server for P2P communication using the RTMFP protocol.  Different Amazon EC2 instances come with pre-configured RTMFP connections as detailed here.

Adobe Media Server on Amazon Web Services Marketplace


Older Versions

The AMIs for older version like FMS 4.0 will not be available as these versions have reached the End of their official support timeline.

AMS 5 offers features like Protected Streaming, Closed Captioning and Support for Multiple Language Streams besides several enhancements in HTTP Streaming and P2P communication workflows.

All new AMIs for Adobe Media Server will be made available only on the Amazon Marketplace platform.

The Devpay AMIs are also available currently and we invite our Amazon Devpay customers to take the benefits of Amazon Marketplace.


Adobe Media Server on AWS Marketplace Subscription

Getting Started Guide for Amazon Marketplace

Old Devpay Subscription Link

AMS 5.0.3 availability and Refresh of PHDS/PHLS/PRTMP certificates

We are glad to announce the availability of AMS 5.0.3 .

This hotfix release provides a refresh to the certificates used by PHDS, PHLS and PRTMP content protection. The certificates provided with the earlier releases will expire in August 2013. The refresh of the certificates can be done by simply replacing the older certificates with the new certificates.  The list of certificates that have been refreshed are –

  • creds/static/phds_license_server.der
  • creds/static/phds_production_transport.der
  • creds/static/phds_license_server.pfx
  • creds/static/phds_production_packager.pfx
  • creds/static/phds_data

You can see the expiry date by double clicking on a certificate in your Explorer window.

PHDS License Server Certificate with Expiry Date shown

PHDS License Server Certificate- Old Certificate With its Expiry Date Shown

This release also provides enhancements to PRTMP Streaming

  • PRTMP now supports Key rotation, which was earlier available for Protected HTTP streaming.
  •  The common-key file and whitelist file can now be updated at runtime, without requiring a server restart.
  • The common-key and whitelist access in the PRTMP on-demand workflow is now routed through the file adaptor, if present, and can be configured to handle requests of content-type “PRTMP”.
  • AMS access log now supports an additional column “x-sprotection-ver” that will be logged with application and stream events with a value of “1” if the stream is protected (PRTMP enabled)

The f4f packager has also been updated to support the generation of manifest lines with different license server URLS without doing the packaging multiple times. This is helpful when the workflows consists of different Test Servers and Production Servers.

The details of the Bugs fixed in this release are available in the Release Notes

On Premise users can download the update from AMS Updates Page . Amazon Web Services users can subscribe to the new AMIS here.  The details of Amazon AMI IDs can be accessed in the AMS Documentation.

If you face any issues, feel free to report to us on AMS Forums. 

Note: Please note that the PHDS, PHLS and PRTMP functionalities will require the new certificates to continue working after the expiry of your current certificates. Only the certificates need to be refreshed and a complete version upgrade is not required to have PHDS, PHLS and PRTMP functionalities working.

These certificates are also updated in any new downloads you do from Adobe Media Server Product page. The new certificates are valid from 5th April 2013 to 6th April 2015.


Team AMS

Happy 2013

2012 was a fantastic year as Adobe Media Server completed 10 years and our streaming technology powered key Live events across the world. We got a lot of fantastic clients across US, EU, Russia, APAC and Australia.

This year at Video Solutions in Adobe, we look forward to launch Primetime as our flagship product for Premium Broadcasters to monetize their content across devices with our proven publishing and content protection technologies.  You can read the latest update on Primetime player here

Adobe Media Server will continue to innovate and enable simplified Video Streaming workflows. Here are a few updates as we start rocking  2013.

  1. A product update  AMS 4.5.5 is available for the version 4.5. It provides key fixes elaborated in the Release documents 
  2. Amazon editions for AMS 4.5.5 and AMS 5.0.1 are available now. The list of AMI’s can be checked here . If you are a new user the details of our AWS edition can be read here and you can order a subscription here

( Note – These AMI’s are on CentOS 5.5 and we look to upgrade them to newer versions this year)

We are also excited to share the below contribution to the IETF community –

Michael Thornburgh, Sr. Computer Scientist at Adobe, has recently submitted a specification for Adobe’s Secure Real-Time Media Flow Protocol (RTMFP) to the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) Internet-Drafts repository ( ) along with a disclosure of and grant of essential intellectual property rights under royalty-free terms ( ).

RTMFP is a low-level endpoint-to-endpoint data transport protocol designed for real-time and peer-to-peer (P2P) communication. It presents a unified and holistic solution to a number of Internet communication problems, including security, NAT traversal, congestion control and prioritization of parallel media and data flows, variable transmission reliability for messages, and IP address mobility.

We look forward that we continue to delight you in 2013.

Announcing Adobe Media Server 5.0.1

Today, we announce the launch of Adobe Media Server 5.0.1 – a product that has completed a successful decade in the Video Streaming industry. Adobe Media Server is  targeted for Broadcasters, Enterprises and Governments across the world for their video on demand and live Streaming initiatives. It  enables adaptive bit rate streaming to desktop and mobile devices along with content protection. It has features to enable DVR, IP multicast, Application multicast, Media origin configurations that are useful in global video streaming workflows.

In the communication space, Adobe Media Server supports scalable P2P communication like in Online Games, many to many Video Chats on Social networks and in Collaborative Web Conferencing.

Our recent success stories include Streaming of BBC Olympics and landing of NASA Mars Rover Curiosity.

Adobe Media Server Logo

Adobe Media Server Logo

Adobe Media Server 5.0.1 brings to you – Closed Captioning compliance, DRM protection for millions of iOS Devices and Playback Support for Multiple Language Audio Tracks. Before we detail these features – let us tell you about a few goodies.

There is a Starter edition that is free for you to try out the various features. Adobe Media Server 5.0.1 comes bundled with Adobe Media Gateway – a powerful technology to connect SIP telephony devices to flash based applications.  The Sample Player that gets in the bundle and the Flash Media Live Encoder together provides a comprehensive suite of technologies to jump start your Video Streaming initiatives. There is a Closed captioning plug-in which helps you to play HDS and RTMP closed captions. And there is Adobe Access iOS library written in Objective C for your HLS DRM players.

We have simplified the product upgrades pricing from the earlier versions.  The product has also been re-branded to reflect our reach beyond Flash devices.  We would explain the features now.

Closed Captioning

Closed captioning allows the content provider to display text overlayed on the video content thus providing

Adobe Media Server enables Closed captions compliance as per FCC regulations

Adobe Media Server enables Closed captions compliance as per FCC regulations

additional information about the video content to the consumers. The term “closed” in closed captioning indicates that the captions are not made part of the video by default. Hence, the captions have to be decoded/extracted by an external tool.  Adobe Media Server supports  CEA-608 (also called Line 21) and CEA -708 closed captions in video files containing H264 video codecs. This plays in HLS, HDS and RTMP Streaming protocols.

Additionally, the timed text track defined by Apple for Quicktime movie files is also supported. AMS provides a tool to convert videos with timed text tracks to videos with captions embedded in H264 video codecs.

Adobe Media Server 5.0.1 also provides support to embed your content programmatically while encoding the content via an AMF message. This works for RTMP and HDS techniques. More details can be read in our User Guide. The Closed Captioning  feature provided by Adobe Media Server will help the US broadcasters achieve FCC compliance.

AMS Player playing a video with Closed captions

AMS Player playing a video with Closed captions

Support for Multi Language tracks

Adobe Media Server 5.0.1 has support for including multiple language tracks for HTTP video streams, without requiring duplication and repackaging of the video for each audio track. This feature, called as “late” binding of audio tracks allow content providers to easily provide multiple language tracks for a given video asset, at any time before or after the asset’s initial packaging. The initial packaging of the video asset can include an audio track, and the publisher can still choose to provide one or more additional audio tracks for the video. The OSMF framework based Strobe Media player provides support for allowing the viewers to switch between audio tracks either before or during playback. Read Details here.

Content  Protection for HLS Streams

Adobe Media Server offers both stream and content protection across HLS, HDS and RTMP protocols. It also enables DRM protection using the Adobe Access DRM license server.

In this release, we added the ability to provide Adobe Access DRM protection to HLS streams. Now, Adobe Media Server can dynamically segment, encrypt, and deliver standard MP4 assets using the HLS format with Adobe Access DRM policies on native Apple iOS applications (using the Adobe Access Objective-C library for iOS). This would enable broadcasters using our Adobe Access DRM  to secure their streams to millions of iOS devices

Adobe Media Server 5 also supports a light weight content protection of HLS video streams using Adobe Access protection but without requiring a separate license server. This technique is called PHLS ( Protected HLS). Here  the content encryption key is sent via a metadata that has the license files and the access rights are negotiated between the player and the Adobe Media Server instead of a license server.

Please check out the Release notes for the  list of bugs that have been fixed. There are new documents being made available on Developer Centre. So check that out as well. Product Features, Pricing and Edition comparison can be done on the Product pages. If there are any queries – you can always reach us out on our Forums.

If you are new to Adobe Media Server – we hope you get started using the Free Starter edition.

We are committed to deliver awesome features that simplify your Video Streaming flows. So stay connected and  expect more action from us in the coming months.


Team AMS

Success Story: Adobe Media Sever and Monterey Bay Aquarium

Today – We are super-excited to share Adobe Media Server and Adobe Access success story with Monterey Bay Aquarium with all of you.

Adobe has partnered ( and licensed rights) to broadcast a 24×7 live and on demand video stream to bring the Open Sea exhibit at Monterey Bay to your living room. 

The Monterey Bay Aquarium is one of the world’s leading ocean conservation organizations and consistently ranked top in the United States for its innovative exhibits and unsurpassed visitor experience. The Open Sea is the Aquarium’s largest exhibit (one million gallon), a place where tunas and sharks speed past, sardines swarm in huge, glittering schools, and sea turtles swim lazily across the 90-foot window.

The Live and VOD streams are powered and protected using Adobe video publishing technologies (Adobe Media Server and Adobe Access).  At the Aquarium, inside the exhibit there is a full HD camera sunk underwater. We encode the stream live at the aquarium, and push using RTMP to Adobe Media Server running on Amazon Web Services where it is converted to HLS and encrypted then its delivered to the iPad through Amazon CloudFront CDN (the same technology that powered the London Games for BBC and the Mars Rover mission). 

You can check this out with the Ipad App called SeaTV.  The iPad app is a native IOS app developed using the new Adobe Access client library for IOS. What is special about this app is that it has been build using Adobe IOS DRM client library and the very first app to be on the app store with our DRM operating on it – the VOD video is protected with Adobe Access and the Live stream is packaged and encrypted using Adobe Media Server with  AES128 bit encryption, but will soon be moving towards PHLS. When you start it up, you will notice how fast both the live and VOD streams begin – this is a great example how fast our HLS and DRM technologies operate to produce a great experience for the end user.  

We are happy to bring this learning experience to your home. Enjoy and we are sure that you will love the turtles and the tunas.

Team AMS

Adobe Media Server Blog

You have heard about Adobe Media Server on the super awesome  Kevin Towes Blog. You would have also been a part of our uber popular Digital Media blog that talks on our initiatives in the  industry. Kevin continues to be an experienced voice in the exciting Video Streaming industry as he takes on Adobe’s new and awesome product offering Project Primetime

Today, we introduce another address to hear detailed updates from the Adobe Media Server Team. This  team based out of California and India has been delivering cutting edge features over the last ten years to make Adobe Media Server as the most reliable product for Video Streaming.

Stay tuned and add the RSS feed to your Reader to get the latest updates.

Team AMS

Flash Access powers the first-ever UltraViolet release by Warner Bros

This week marks a major milestone in the development of UltraViolet, the cloud-based system for delivering premium video across multiple devices and platforms. Earlier this week, Warner Bros released the first-ever UltraViolet title — protected with Flash Access and playing on a Flash-based app powered by AIR.

To put this in a historical context, a lot of work from many companies went into making this possible. Adobe is a founding member company of DECE, or Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem, an industry consortium representing more than 75 leaders from the content, consumer electronics and technology worlds including Microsoft, Intel, Netflix, VUDU, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros, Comcast, Best Buy and others. Almost 2 years ago, we announced that DECE had adopted Flash Access as one of the approved content protection solutions for the emerging format and system for premium video. A bit later, the consumer site was launched under the brand name UltraViolet. And then at the beginning of this year UltraViolet was declared “open for business”. Rolling thunder, but still no content.

This all changed with the release earlier this week of “Horrible Bosses” and “Green Lantern”, available today on Blu-ray and DVD. In addition to playing the disc at home, consumers will now have the ability to access the movie digitally from the cloud. More titles from Warner Bros and other studios will be coming soon. This is made possible through the groundbreaking Flixster Collections app, which helps users manage and view their video collections whether it’s files on their hard drive, UV rights in the cloud, or titles watched on multiple streaming services. This Flash based app is delivered as an AIR app, allowing for multi-platform portability. And now it can also stream Flash Access protected UltraViolet content to Flash runtimes, the number one platform for premium video online.

Fortunately, this is only the beginning for Warner Bros and for the industry. In the past month, Adobe has released Flash Access 3.0, Flash Player 11 and AIR 3, which together enable the creation of UltraViolet-compatible apps and websites, including distribution of content in the UVVU Common File Format to desktop, mobile and TV devices. Expect to hear much more about UltraViolet as the Hollywood marketing machine kicks into high gear and the broader ecosystem of retailers, service providers, device manufacturers and content owners continues to roll out innovative solutions around this new format.

Florian Pestoni

Flash Access 3.0 Launching Today at IBC

I just arrived in Amsterdam to help with the launch of Flash Access 3.0, the evolution of Adobe’s premium content protection solution. For those of you who read this blog, you’ll know that Flash Access is a studio-approved content protection and monetization solution used by many of the leading content providers. With this new version, we are dramatically expanding the device reach and introducing features to enable emerging use cases. Let’s walk through some of these changes.

As we had anticipated, Flash Access will now be supported on mobile devices, including a number Android tablets and smartphones as well as other devices such as RIM’s Playbook device. While the commercial availability of the client runtimes will need to wait until the upcoming release of Flash Player 11 and AIR 3, we have been in prerelease for a while and working closely with a number of customers on this. With the immediate availability of Flash Access 3.0, customers can begin deployment and be ready by the time the clients ship later this year.

With Flash Access 2.0, our primary focus was on video-on-demand use cases. Now with 3.0, we are extending this to linear content, in a model that we refer to as TVoIP. This will enable both established MVPDs/PayTV operators as well as programmers looking to “go direct” to consumer devices with the equivalent of TV channels. This gets extra interesting as we introduce this capability in the upcoming AIR 3 for TV — customers can now offer a TV-like experience, on a big-screen TV, going over IP either in a managed network or over the open Internet.

Another key forward-looking enhancement is that Flash Access 3.0 will allow content retailers and service provider to create UltraViolet experiences. If you’re not familiar with UltraViolet, it is a cloud-based solution for content distribution that helps remove many of the barriers that exist for great digital content experiences by improving compatibility between devices and content retailers. Adobe is a founder in DECE, the entity that is creating UltraViolet, and Flash Access had previously received the nod from the studios as one of the approved technologies.

With Flash Access 3.0 and the upcoming Flash runtimes, it will be possible to offer a full UltraViolet experience, including support for centralized device domains and playback of content in the UVVU Common File Format, on the vast number of devices that support our platform, while also offering premium features such as rich interactivity.

There’s a lot more than I can cover in this blog post. If you’re at IBC, stop by the Adobe booth and somebody will walk you through a demonstration. Tell them you read about it on the Flash Media blog!


IPTV is dead, long live TVoIP

For more than a decade, we’ve been hearing about the impending replacement of traditional video distribution methods with a new, better system called IPTV, for Internet Protocol Television. This was supposed to bring a large number of new features to the managed networks and associated set-top boxes used by telcos and pay TV operators. There have been several successful deployments, notably AT&T’s U-verse, but the promise has been largely unfulfilled: we haven’t seen the innovation that was supposed to be brought about by this technological change.

In the meantime, innovation has been on overdrive on the open Internet, both in terms of technical advancements and business model developments. The last few years have seen the emergence of large-scale streaming from companies like Hulu and Netflix, “catch up” services such as the BBC’s iPlayer, indie movies from new sites like SundanceNow, access to long-tail content via YouTube and others. The range of devices used to access this content over the Internet have also expanded to include PC/Mac, smartphones/tablets, and even TV sets, BluRay players and set-top boxes. In this space, Flash is the #1 platform for online video, enabling unparalleled reach and interactivity.

Today, this “over the top” distribution is primarily about video-on-demand. This meets consumers’ desire for time- and place-shifting, with the convenience of watching a movie or program on each viewer’s own schedule and on the device of their choice. However, the underlying technology has now evolved to the point where “linear content”,  the industry term for TV channels that play 24×7, can also be delivered in real time over the top, opening drastically more flexibility for consumption. We anticipate that over the next few years, there will be a major shift from traditional television delivery over managed networks to distribution over the open Internet. And with Internet-connected TV sets getting smarter and more powerful every year, such as those running Adobe’s Flash/AIR runtimes for Digital Home consumer electronics products, consumers will be able to “watch TV” with radically more options for content sources and with a richer user experience.

We call this TVoIP or TV over Internet Protocol. This is meant to be much more than a mere transposition of the IPTV acronym; it is an intentional reference to VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), which we believe is a very good analogy of the changes that are underway in the video space. In the case of VoIP, which reached mainstream availability over the last decade, at a bare minimum it had to offer the equivalent level of service to the technology it was attempting trying to displace. For telephony, the legacy technology was switched voice, where bandwidth was allocated to each phone call; while this continues to be in use, VoIP is now widely available worldwide from a large number of service providers. However, replacing one transport technology with another is only the beginning; VoIP has made possible significant business model innovation, additional services such as speech-to-text and text-to-speech, and expansion to new points of consumption.

TVoIP will allow pay TV operators who are still using “traditional” technologies such as DVB or QAM for switched digital video distribution to leapfrog over companies that have adopted IPTV. On the other hand, IPTV providers can leverage their investment and extend that to open Internet delivery. But that, again, is just the beginning.

With TVoIP, distribution is largely decoupled from the actual delivery infrastructure, so we can expect to see an explosion in the sources for TV-like experiences. Any content aggregator with access to premium content can offer TV programming directly to consumers, under a variety of business models including advertising, subscription, and surely others that have yet to be invented. If the introduction of cable and satellite made it possible to go from four networks to hundreds of TV channels by changing the economics of content distribution, TVoIP will usher the era of tens of thousands of channels that can be arbitrarily “niche” — think of it as the long tail of television.

The user experience is also guaranteed to be very different from the traditional “switched” experience. For starters, consumers will have greater choice over which devices they use to “watch TV”; these devices are likely to be purchased at retail stores, offering an alternative to leased set-top-boxes. Interactivity will go well beyond channel up/down or the EPG grid, enabling rich interactions with content as well as with other users. Content and advertising can be personalized to a degree that neither switched nor IPTV delivery can support today.

There still remain some significant technical and business challenges to make this a reality. The current network infrastructure for consumer Internet delivery may not be capable of carrying this amount of content economically without some significant changes in business model. For instance, today Netflix’s VOD distribution accounts for around one third of all Internet traffic at peak time, according to some measurements. However, online video watching accounts for only about 5 hours a month for the average consumer, compared to close to 5 hours a day for “traditional” TV. There is a 30X gap between the two, and TVoIP aims to close that gap, which will only exacerbate bandwidth requirements. Telcos are already looking at models to monetize this increase in bandwidth requirement, which will be necessary in order to fund the network expansion required.

Another significant aspect has to do with content rights and the technologies used to manage and enforce those rights. Traditionally, rights for linear delivery have been negotiated separately from rights for Internet delivery, but that model is already being tested by a number of companies willing to push the envelope … and ruffle some feathers in the process. On the technology side, traditional “conditional access” providers have dominated the protection of content distribution over managed networks, but have not been able to make serious inroads into protection for Internet delivery.

Technologies such as Flash Access, which already meet stringent studio requirements for premium content, are achieving incredible reach on consumer-owned devices (and, increasingly, over operator-owned equipment such as set-top boxes). The upcoming version of Flash Access will incorporate significant new features to enable large scale protection for linear content, greatly expanding the type of experiences and business models that can be offered over the top.

The roll out of TVoIP will not happen overnight, and we don’t anticipate that traditional distribution technologies will be turned off any time soon, but the evolution to this model seems inevitable. Adobe’s Flash Platform is well positioned to help accelerate this transition and we are already working closely with early adopters to make TVoIP more than just a soon-to-be catchphrase.


Florian Pestoni
Media & New Technologies
Twitter: @florianatadobe