Posts in Category "General"

Adobe Presenter Version Compatibility with Adobe Connect

Problem Description : Is Adobe Presenter old and new versions compatible with Adobe Connect 9.2 ?

Answer:

All versions of Presenter should work with the Web Application (e.g Content, Courses, Curriculum’s, etc ). However the issue is with Meeting as Connect version 6 and version 7 are AS2- based(Action Script 2)  Meetings, thus content will launch in Connect 6/7 Meetings only. Similarly, AS3 based content will work with Connect version 8 and 9 Meetings.

Action Script version comparison :

•    C6 & C7 = Presenter up to 7.0.6. AS2
•    C8 &C9 = Presenter 7.0.7 and higher.  AS3

Hope this helps in understanding some concepts, relates to Presentations published using Presenter on connect.

Thanks,

 

 

 

Ensuring that Email Generated by Adobe Connect Servers is Received

There have been more than a few incidents reported on the topic of email messages from Adobe Connect servers not getting delivered. These include messages generated by the Adobe Connect Events module as well as system email messages such as that generated by changing a password.

The first thing to avoid to prevent this problem is that of using special characters in the host’s name. This is scheduled to be fixed in Connect 9.3, but currently, in 9.2, if you place a comma in the Event host’s name such as Frank D., El Presidente’  it will cause an error identified in our server logs by a messaging exception.

The second thing to avoid is inviting over 20,000 participants to an Event. This generates an operation size error and causes problems with email messages being sent out. We also plan to address this ceiling tentatively in Connect 9.3.

With specific reference to Adobe Connect Hosted accounts, we just made the following change to ameliorate email problems: As of April 28th, 2014, administrative email notifications sent from Adobe Connect servers will now be coming from admin@adobeconnect.com instead of admin@acrobat.com This will help by disassociating Connect-generated email from that of the Acrobat domain which could be potentially blocked by virtue of its identification with document storage. We also made some internal changes to the way the Connect servers handle email and we worked with our Web infrastructure partners to insure that Connect generated email was not being treated as SPAM on the Web.

There is a bit of a conundrum here. If Adobe Connect Events email invitations are sent out in massive mailings to those who perceive the email as SPAM, then the Adobe Connect servers could be tagged as producing SPAM by those end-user recipients. An overzealous Events manager may cause Gmail and other providers to treat Adobe Connect email as SPAM. When an Event that is capped at 500 participants sends out 5000 email invitations, it is expected that many recipients will at best ignore the inbound email traffic and many more may consider the traffic to be a nuisance. We are investigating possible approaches to ameliorate this problem and plan in 9.3  to add an opt-out option for Events invitations that will offer a convenient alternative to any SPAM reply option for recipients to invoke.

We love large Events and Adobe Connect handles them very well; this is a case when our success can potentially lead to some problems. Currently the Adobe Hosted Service is green for SPF record checks.  We pass all major email providers and are not blacklisted according to common checker tools on the internet.  This should resolve the lion’s share of current email issues and the upcoming changes in 9.3 will serve to harden this capability for future Events.

How to make Connect use a browser-based email client to send Meeting invitations

When invoking a browser-based email client to invite participants to a Connect Meeting from within a Connect Meeting you will see this error message unless you first make the browser-based email your default email service:

 

bb-email.fw

 

Sending a browser-based email invitation from within a Connect Meeting is possible if you first make the browser-based email option your default email program. As an example, you can use the instructions at the following links to make Gmail your default email program :

http://email.about.com/od/gmailtips/qt/et_default_prog.htm

http://www.pcdailytips.com/set-gmail-as-default-email-using-chrome-or-firefox/

Note that once you enable a browser-based email client and invoke it from within a Connect Meeting, the behavior will be different based on whether the host issuing the invitation is using the Connect Meeting addin or the Flash Player. In the addin it will look like this:

Using the Connect Meeting addin, invoke the invitation: Meeting> Manage Access & Entry > Invite Participants

bb-email-1.fw

bb-email-2.fw

See how the invitation is fully populated with important details:

bb-email-3.fw

Following the same procedure using the Flash Player instead of the addin (?launcher=false) also works, but with an abbreviated invitation message:

bb-email-4.fw

 

Specifications for MP4 Conversion for Connect Recordings

Here are the specifications for the MP4 conversion; they are similar to our FLV specifications albeit with better compression:

  • Resolution: 1024X768
  • Frames Per Second: 8 FPS
  • Video Bitrate: 1024kbps
  • Audio:
    • Codec – AAC (Advanced Audio Codec)
    • Profile – Main@3.1
    • Bit Rate – ~55Kbps (VBR)
    • Channels – 1 (Mono)
    • Sampling rate – 44.1Khz

Enable Video Vs Enable Webcam for Participants

In Connect 9.2, there are two ways you can allow a ‘participant’ to turn their camera on – but each has slightly different results.

Enable Video – this option gives full rights to the video pod, same as a host. Or in other words, if you enable Video for any participant, that particular participant will get presenter rights over the Camera pod just like in case of Enhanced rights over any pod.

 

 

Untitled

Enable Webcam For Participants – this doesn’t give overall video pod rights (the participants can’t Force Presenter View, or choose who is in the main Filmstrip, etc.), but it allows them to turn their camera on. However you cannot be selective with this option – everyone will be able to turn on their camera.

Untitled1

FYI, If you “enable video” for a participant and then “enable webcam for participants” you lose the ability to “disable video” for any already enabled participant until you first “Disable Webcam for participants”

Be Aware of the Closed Captioning Pod Defaults

Last week we found out that Caption Colorado changed their IP address and port number for the Closed Captioning pod downloadable from the Connect Exchange Website. Here is the direct link to the Connect version 9 Closed Captioning Pod

The new Caption Colorado information includes:

If you are experiencing any trouble with the Closed Captioning pod while using it in a Connect Meeting with Caption Colorado, please set your host to “captionedtext.com” and to port 11100 in the adobe pod. Note that the new IP, 54.193.31.11, depending on your infrastructure’s network security settings, may need to be white-listed.

For an updated user’s guide referencing the Closed Caption Pod, see this PDF: http://platinum.adobeconnect.com/cc/

 

 

Estimating the Size of Archive Meeting Recordings

I was recently asked if I had any test data showing how big a recording becomes based on the use case during the Connect Meeting being recorded. While plenty of anecdotal information exists,  I thought it prudent to begin a list of use cases and show what the size was after five minutes of each use case. This article will be a work in progress as I add different use cases in order to offer various concrete examples to use as a basis to estimate recording size based on what is being recorded, whether multiple Video pod camera feeds or screen-sharing or VoIP, etc. Among its purposes, this exercise will help meeting hosts to avoid exceeding the 2GB limit on Adobe hosted clusters for recording size.

Most relevant among the variables considered is the notion that recording size is affected by the streams present in the meeting being recorded. Typically a Video pod with VoIP (640X480) shared per hour will result in an FLV of around 200MB. Sharing a screen in a meeting (1680X1050) will result in an FLV size of around 150 MB. PPT/PPTX files uploaded to a meeting room and displayed while recording will not play a significant part in recording size because the recordings link to external content rather than contain that content intrinsically. For example,  a meeting with two Video pod streams could have recording size of around 400MB and a meeting having a single Video pod stream with VoIP and screen-sharing could end up around 350MB. The actual results may differ as the screen resolution of the publisher, the type of sharing and the amount of movement are all variables that can affect recording size: If there is little movement on screen or in the Video pod stream, the recording size will be less than it would be with a lot of movement.

Here are some concrete examples to use for planning; each recording is approximately five minutes in length:

A meeting with a single video feed for the Presenter to display and scroll through an uploaded PowerPoint file while using integrated telephony:Title: Recording Size Test_0
Type: Recording
Duration: 00:05:31
Disk usage: 8335.3 KB

rec-size1.fw

 

A recording of a meeting with six video feeds and an uploaded PowerPoint file
Title: Planning Troubleshooting and Support Meeting Room _15
Type: Recording
Duration: 00:05:48
Disk usage: 13873.8 KB

rec-size2.fw

 

A recording of a meeting with four video feeds and screen sharing an application with normal activity
Title: Planning Troubleshooting and Support Meeting Room _16
Type: Recording
Duration: 00:05:56
Disk usage: 21660.8 KB

rec-size3.fw

More examples to follow.

How Meeting Folder Permissions Affect Access to a Meeting Room

The question keeps coming up, what happens to Meeting accessibility and permissions if I move a Meeting room from the a User Meeting folder to the Shared Meetings folder?

Let’s look at it from multiple angles beginning with the permissions on Shared Meeting folder itself and then moving to the Meeting room access options and then to the Meeting roles.

1. The Shared Meeting folder itself has two permissions options: Manage and Denied:

sharedfolderperm.fw

If a registered user is granted Manage permission over the Shared Meeting folder by an Administrator, then that registered user can gain (at a minimum), participant access to every meeting in the Shared Meetings folder. Of course, a participant can do very little within a room:

sharedfoldermeeting.fw

Manage permissions on the Shared Meetings folder does not, by itself, allow the power to change room settings. The settings will be viewable but cannot be changed:

editinfo.fw

Clicking save will quickly manifest insufficient permissions:

notauth.fw

Manage permissions on the Shared Meeting folder allows for deletion of  a meeting in the Shared Meetings folder:

delemeet.fw

delemeet1.fw

2. Separate from the Shared Folder permissions, are the room access options under Connect Central for any Meeting Room:

editinfoopt.fw

These Meeting access options do not override the folder options. While a user with Manage permissions over the Shared Meetings folder will still need to enter a passcode if one is set, the manage permissions allow the passcode to be viewed in Connect Central :

passcd.fw

 

passcdview.fw

3, Meeting roles set will not be affected by folder permissions even if the Denied Access is chosen at the Shared Meeting folder level:

denied.fw

A user who has Denied access to the Shared Meetings folder cannot view the the folder Connect Central:

notauth.fw

Meeting access permissions and roles apply however when directly hitting the Meeting URL even if the user is denied access to the Shared Meetings folder:

notstart.fw

in.fw

 

How to Find and Administer a Meeting by Searching on its URL

Problem: Sometimes the meeting library in Connect become quite large and it may be difficult for an administrator to find a Meeting room that has been created by a host.

Solution: Generally a meeting created by a host will be under the user directory of that host (My Meetings for that particular Host), but not always. The User Meeting folder can contain hundreds of different meeting folders and scrolling through them page by page by page in the Connect Central GUI can be laborious.

usermeetings.fw

Next Page…. Next Page…. Next Page…..

nextpage.fw

One simple search trick is to place a number directly in the start parameter of the URL to skip to subsequent pages and user meeting folders. Here I have replaced the starting number of “0″ with the number “500″ and when I refresh the screen it will skip folders and accelerate my search:

start.fw

start500.fw

Note: You may also adjust the rows URL parameter as well: rows=1000

When you want to find a specific meeting to administer and you know the URL, a quick way to find the meeting folder in Connect Central is to use the Custom URL Report under the Administration Tab>Reports>View Custom URL:

customurl.fw

Our labeling of  this search option, “View Custom URL” is really is a bit of a misnomer because you can search for any meeting by its URL whether the URL is custom or automatically generated by Connect in Connect Central; all URLs are obviously unique. Here I search for a meeting URL with the suffix “es” on the platinum domain and it shows me the meeting information which gives me a hook that makes it very easy to find that meeting folder to administer:

searchedge.fw

Now simply take the title of the meeting and place it into the Connect Central search parameter to find the meeting folder:

searchtitle.fw

Connect Central has some great tools even if the possibilities they offer are not always intuitive.

Connect on-premise Server: Configure additional ports for RTMP traffic

By default the meeting server (FMS) in Connect binds to port 1935.  Here’s how to add additional ports like port 80 for use with the meeting server.

This should work with all versions of Connect.  I am assuming you would like to use port 80 and 443 in addition to 1935  (all in rtmp, no encryption).
As Connect consists of two servers, the application server (Tomcat) and the meeting server (FMS) you need to configure a second IP address and FQDN in order to bind two services to port 80.  Make sure your new FQDN resolves to the new second IP address. The second IP and FQDN will be used for the meeting traffic.

I am using these values in my setup:

Application Server: connect912.adobe.com – IP 10.1.1.1
Meeting Server: connect912meeting.adobe.com – IP 10.1.1.2

So here we go:

  • Make sure you can ping both names and they resolve to the correct IP addresses.
  • Open the server console and set the new meeting server FQDN in the “external name” field and save your changes.

In my setup this is connect912meeting.adobe.com:

consoleExternalName

 

  • Configure the meeting server to listen on the new IP:Port.

In my setup I am adding port 80 and 443 in addition to the default port 1935.

Open the custom.ini (by deault  in C:\Connect\9.1.1\ if running Connect 9.1.x) and add these lines:

DEFAULT_FCS_HOSTPORT=10.1.1.2:80,443,1935
RTMP_SEQUENCE= rtmp://external-host:1935/?rtmp://localhost:8506/,rtmp://external-host:80/?rtmp://localhost:8506/,rtmp://external-host:443/?rtmp://localhost:8506/

Replace 10.1.1.2 with your meeting server IP address and also make sure the RTMP_SEQUENCE is in one line. Save the changes.

  • Restart the services, FMS and Adobe Connect service.

Once the services are back up and running you should be able to start a new meeting.  If there are no firewall restrictions a meeting should connect on the first port listed in the RTMP_SEQUENCE. In this example port 1935.
To test the connection on the other ports, block outgoing connections to port 1935 on your client firewall.  If the meeting is still open on your client it should briefly disconnect and reconnect on the next available port. In my setup this would be port 80.

You can check which port you are connected to in a meeting by holding down the shift key and clicking “About Adobe Connect” from the help menu (top right in your meeting).

AboutAdobeConnect_RTMPSequence

 

 

update (03/04/2014): 

It appears that with version 9.2 you also need to specify the IP address the application server binds to. By default it binds on 0.0.0.0:80, so on all available IPs on port 80.With Connect 9.2 I have come across an issue where the application server does not properly create a listener when port 80 is used for the meeting server as well.
The easiest way around this problem is to specify the IP in the application server config so it starts a listener on this one IP only.

In the server.xml in \appserv\conf\ find this section:

    <Connector port=”80″ protocol=”HTTP/1.1″
            executor=”httpThreadPool”    
           enableLookups=”false”
               acceptCount=”250″
               connectionTimeout=”20000″
               redirectPort=”443″
               URIEncoding=”utf-8″/>

And add your application server IP address:

    <Connector port=”80″ protocol=”HTTP/1.1″
            address=”10.1.1.1″
           executor=”httpThreadPool”    
           enableLookups=”false”
               acceptCount=”250″
               connectionTimeout=”20000″
               redirectPort=”443″
               URIEncoding=”utf-8″/>

Save the change and restart your services once again.