Best Practices publishing mp4/video embedded in a presentation to Connect meeting

There are a couple of things we should be careful about if we are looking for embedding a video(for ex mp4) file in a PowerPoint presentation and then sharing within an Adobe Connect meeting room.

First most important thing is, the supported video formats that should be used in the powerpoint file so that they are supported in Connect meeting. The video formats supported in Connect are listed here : https://helpx.adobe.com/adobe-connect/kb/content-uploading-issues.html

Next most important thing is, Connect does not directly recognize multimedia objects that are embedded in PowerPoint. If you would like to embed a video inside a slide, we recommend using Adobe Presenter to do this, and then publish to the Connect server from Presenter. Otherwise, the video file can be directly shared in a separate Share pod and played directly in the meeting.

 

video1

Video10

 

Here’s a very good video as well that demonstrates how the above can be achieved via Adobe Presenter.

Once the video is imported, save the PPTX file and the file is ready to be published.

 

Following are some recommended options for publishing this file to Connect :

Make sure the below Output options in Presenter are checked for both audio and video. You can also publish the video locally to your Desktop and then share the zip file directly in the meeting room.

video3

 

Then click on Settings on right and goto Quality and make sure Control Preloading is unchecked as highlighted below, else the video might start playing even before the slide gets loaded :

video4

 

This gets published to Adobe Connect content library, then you should be good to browse this published file in the Adobe Connect meeting room share pod.

 

Make sure the below options are checked after the pptx file is uploaded to the meeting room. You need to “Show Presentation Playbar” from the Share pod menu.

video5

That will reveal the ‘Play button’ that you can then use to start the MP4 playback.

video6

You shouldn’t need to touch the ‘Sync button’ unless you want to allow everyone to do their own playback – just leave it in Sync mode.

If you’d like even greater control, you can click the ‘Toggle playbar’ icon to reveal an even larger playbar with a scrubber.

video7

The playbar lets you scrub to any point in the video and play from there for everyone, or to rewind, etc.

  video8

 

It is also very important to keep in mind the properties of the video file which is being imported into Connect to make sure it works as expected. Below are couple of recommendations that are recommended for the video properties :

Video11

If you are using a non-supported video file such as WMV or WAV and would like to convert to a supported format for Connect meeting like flv, mp4 etc, you can use a few tools which are available for free as well, like , Riva , Super, FFMPEGAX etc.

 

I hope this information is helpful for some of you trying to upload embedded video files into Adobe Connect meeting.

Feel free to contact Support for any additional question or information.

 

CSO – DATE (25 APRIL 2016) – Meetings on NA1 and NA2 Not Launching

1:15pm EDT – NA2 appears to be back up and running.  Issue is being marked as closed for now and a full RCA will be delivered after the analysis is complete.

1:10pm EDT – NA1 appears to be back up and running.  Team is working on NA2 right now.

11:35am EDT – The operations team has been working on the issue and the problem still persists.  Currently the NA1 and NA2 environments are unavailable.

11:05am EDT – The operations team has had to perform a service restart on the NA1 and NA2 environments to alleviate the issue.  Connected users would have been disconnected and new users would have been unable to reach the environment briefly during the service restart.

10:30am EDT – Some customers on NA2 hosted cluster are also reporting issues with opening Meetings and/or Content.  This is being investigated now as an issue in our storage environment.  NA1 and NA2 cluster customers are the only ones reporting issues at this time.

10:20am EDT – Some customers are reporting they cannot login to their Connect meetings hosted on the NA1 cluster in the Adobe Connect Hosted environment..  We are currently working with our Operations team to resolve the issue.  This issue is intermittent and is only affecting some customers that have their account hosted on our NA1 cluster. You can get full updates on our Adobe Connect Status Page here: https://status.acrobat.com.

Error creating or editing a UV profile

This article is applicable only to customers using Universal Voice telephony profiles and running into a very specific error in the user interface.  If you are not experiencing the exact problem below, you do not need to worry about this article.

Update: 5/23 – We are fixing this issue in our hosted environment as part of the 9.5.3 upgrade which is currently being rolled out across the various clusters  over the next month.

For licensed (on premise) customers (this includes customers in the ACMS program and customers hosted by other Connect hosting partners other than Adobe), we will be releasing a patch in early June, 2016 for the Connect 8.x and Connect 9.x environments.

 

The error: ‘This field only accepts valid DTMF commands and phone numbers (+,0-9,*,#,-,space,A,B,C,D).

uv.jpg

Issue: Recently an issue has cropped up with editing existing (or creating new) Universal Voice (UV) profiles.  This is directly related to a required change that was introduced in the latest version of the Adobe Flash Player.  The behavior is that if you try to go into My ProfileMy Audio Profiles > and click the ‘New Profile’ button  or  My Profile > My Audio Profiles > and select an existing UV profile and click the ‘Edit‘ button, you will get this error (above) when trying to SAVE the profile.

This issue is resolved in the upcoming Adobe Connect release (9.5.3).  In the interim (for Adobe Hosted customers while they wait to be upgraded) or for Licensed (on-premise) customers who may be on an older version of the application and not able to upgrade to 9.5.3 right away when it comes out, there are basically 3 ways around this problem…

    • [1] Downgrade Flash player to a version prior to version 21 or use a browser or machine that has an older version of the Flash Player (prior to 21).  This would require you to uninstall the Adobe Flash player in a browser where it is not embedded as part of the actual browser, and install an older version from the archived versions here.
    • [2] Create (or just edit an existing) mms.cfg file on the system and add the following flag (line) in the file (this will ONLY work for the next 3 months approximately).  This is only a temporary solution and the Flash Player team plans to remove support for this flag in upcoming updates but for now, it can be used until we deliver possible patches for older Connect versions and fix this in the upcoming 9.5.3 release.


      enablePCRE2=0

This mms.cfg file can be created on your system in a simple text editor if it doesn’t already exist on your computer.  First do a search for it.  If it doesn’t exist, simply create a new file in Textpad or Notepad or Textedit or whatever you use for a simple text file editor.  Add the one line above and save the new or existing mms.cfg file (with that line as either the only line in the file or added to the bottom of whatever else is in that file).

On Windows systems, the mms.cfg file would be (or needs to be) placed in:

C:/Windows/system32/Macromed/Flash (32-bit Windows) and C:/Windows/SysWOW64/Macromed/Flash (64-bit Windows).

On Mac systems, the mms.cfg file would be (or needs to be) placed in:

 MainDisk:Library:Application Support:Macromedia

    • [3] Use the XML API.  As this is only a Flash Player issue and only affects users who are using the UI in Adobe Connect, if you are familiar with the XML API, you can use the ‘telephony-profile-update‘ API as a workaround. If you are not familiar with the XML API, the documentation for the API is here.  If this is still confusing for you and you are not quite sure how to execute XML API calls, the steps below will not be for you.  If you need clarity on the below, please contact Adobe Connect support as you normally would.

The workflow is as follows for the API (again if you are not familiar with the API, you need to either familiarize yourself with the product documentation, ask and admin for assistance, or use one of the other workflows above to work around this issue):

For existing profile updates:

1) Find the profile-id by making this API call in the browser once you’ve logged into your Adobe Connect account: https://{yourConnectURL}/api/xml?action=telephony-profile-list

It will list out all your profiles.  Search for the one you want to edit and make note of the ‘profile-id‘ value (numeric) and the ‘provider-id‘ value (also numeric).

2) Get the field-ids by running this API: https://{yourConnectURL}/api/xml?action=telephony-profile-info&profile-id=xxxxxxxx  (where the profile-id = the numeric value of the profile from call 1 above).

This will show you an XML response with telephony-profile-fields listed.  You may have a field for a certain moderator pin or other value you need to edit.  The field will be listed as an ‘x-tel‘ field.  It will be in a format that looks like this: ‘x-tel-123456789‘ or something similar with numbers after the ‘x-tel’.

You can also get the fields for the provider by taking the provider-id and running this API: https://{yourConnectURL}/api/xml?action=telephony-provider-field-list&provider-id=xxxxxxxx

This will show you all the ‘x-tel-xxxxxxx’ values you need to use.

3) To update that field, you would make this API call:  https://{yourConnectURL}/api/xml?action=telephony-profile-update&profile-id=xxxxxxxx&provider-id=xxxxxxxx&field-id=x-tel-123456789&value=xxxxxxx&profile-status=enabled   (where profile-id, provider-id both equal their corresponding numeric values from the first API call above…and where the field-id= the x-tel value from call 2…. and where value= the new value you need to edit)…

For creating NEW profiles:

1) Find the provider ID you want to create a new UV profile from with this API call: https://{yourConnectURL}/api/xml?action=telephony-provider-list .   The provider-id value gets returned in this result.

2) Obtain a list of all the applicable provider fields by running this API call: https://{yourConnectURL}/api/xml?action=telephony-provider-field-list&provider-id=xxxxxxx (where the provider-id = the numeric provider-id for that UV provider).

3) Run this API to create a new UV profile: https://{yourConnectURL}/api/xml?action=telephony-profile-update&provider-id=xxxxxxxx&profile-name=xxxxxxx&field-id=x-tel-xxxxxxxxx&value=xxxxxxx&profile-status=enabled  (where the provider-id= the numeric provider-id for that UV provider… field-id= the x-tel field you want to populate …. value = the value (numeric) of that field…. profile-name = the name of your new profile …. profile-status=enabled ).

Of course, you could have more than one field to populate as everyone’s UV providers/profiles could be custom and unique to a requirement.

If you are unsure, you need to talk to your Connect admin or contact Adobe support of course for any questions regarding the above profile creation or update steps.  A support agent can assist you with identifying values and creating / updating profiles if needed.

Resolved: CSO: DATE (04-06-2016) – Adobe Connect NA9 Events Module Templates

At approximately 3PM EST to 3:50PM EST, 04-06-2016, some customers on NA9 reported that they could create Events Templates. The issue is resolved and was very limited in scope – customers not using the AEM Events module in Connect were unaffected and only NA9 was affected.

RCA to follow through normal channels.

 

Please see the Status Page for more information.

Resolved: CSO: DATE (04-05-2016) – Adobe Connect NA7 Seminar & Meeting “Request not Processed”

Issue is resolved as of 2:57 EST; RCA to follow. Meetings and Seminars are now accessible.

Seminars (both large and small) and Meetings no longer trigger the error: “Request not Processed”

This is incident affected accounts on NA7 only

This appeared to have started about 1:45 ET.

 

Please see the Status Page for more information.

Adobe Connect SSL guide

Here’s a new SSL configuration guide (PDF) aimed at Connect 9 and higher. It should help you get SSL working in most environments with and without Events module (CQ).

Connect SSL Guide

Please contact support via the usual channels should you feel you need additional help with SSL.

 

Connect On-premise Server Upgrade Fails because of Encrypted SQL Connection

On-premise Connect server upgrades will fail when SQL is using a secure encrypted connection between Connect and the SQL database.

Most on-premise Connect deployments do not use encrypted SQL conenctions, instead access is restricted to the DB layer/SQL via partitioning and firewalls. This tech-note only applies to encrypted SQL connections; this upgrade tech-note applies to you if you have installed Connect and then set up SQL encryption according to this tech-note:

Configuring Secure SQL with Connect

In order to upgrade Connect running with an encrypted SQL connection, you will need to remove SQL encryption until the upgrade is complete and then you may reapply SQL connection encryption. Minor Connect dot updates and patches may not appear to fail, but they will be unable to update the Connect database as long as encryption is in place. For example if you apply the 9.2.1 update to a 9.2.0 server, the following will result:

The version.txt file will read mssql=9.2.1.0, while the Database_Version table from the SQL DB will read 9.2.0.0.

Full installer upgrades will fail with more server log errors, among them you will see this:

java.sql.SQLNonTransientConnectionException: [Macromedia][SQLServer JDBC Driver]The SQL Server login requires an SSL connection.

And an option on this theme in the installation GUI will manifest where, in this case pictured, the 9.5 installer fails in an attempt to upgrade a 9.2 Connect server:

Upgrade not supported

The following steps are required to remove SQL encryption to facilitate upgrading:

  1. Open SQL Server Configuration Manager

Update Connect With Secure SQL

2. Open the Protocols for MSSQL Server Properties

Update Connect With Secure SQL1

3. Under the Flags tab, change Force Encryption to No

Update Connect With Secure SQL2

4. Under the Certificates tab, clear the certificates and click OK.

5. Restart SQL.

6. On the Connect application server, edit the ConnectProSvc.conf file in the appserv directory; remove the following entries in the list of JAVA arguments (If they exist):

wrapper.java.additional.28=-Djavax.net.ssl.trustStore= <path of Trust Store file created >
wrapper.java.additional.29=-Djavax.net.ssl.trustStorePassword=<Truststore Password >

7. In the custom.ini file in the connect (or breeze) installation root directory, comment the following entries:

DB_ENCRYPTION_METHOD=SSL
DB_VALIDATE_SERVER_CERTIFICATE=true

8. Restart the Adobe Connect and AMS/FMS Services

logssvcs4.fw

At this point you are ready to run the Connect updates or upgrade. After you have successfully run the upgrade and performed a full function check, you may reapply the encryption to the Connect SQL database connection by reversing the steps above. Abbreviated they are:

  1. Open SQL Server Configuration Manager
  2. Open the Protocols for MSSQL server Properties
  3. Under the Flags tab, change Force Encryption to Yes

Update Connect With Secure SQL4

4. Under the Certificates tab select certificate created previously and click OK.

5. Restart SQL services

6. In the ConnectProSvc.conf file in the appserv directory, add the following entries in the list of JAVA args:

wrapper.java.additional.28=-Djavax.net.ssl.trustStore= <path of Trust Store file created >
wrapper.java.additional.29=-Djavax.net.ssl.trustStorePassword=<Truststore Password >

7. In the custom.ini file in the connect (or breeze) installation root directory, uncomment or add the following entries:

DB_ENCRYPTION_METHOD=SSL
DB_VALIDATE_SERVER_CERTIFICATE=true

8. Restart the Adobe Connect and AMS/FMS Services.

Note: For greater detail refer to the original tech-note on encrypting the SQL connection:  Configuring Secure SQL with Connect

Connect Meeting and Client-side Speaker Audio Output Control

There is a Connect feature request from various customers in place asking for the Connect Meeting GUI to offer an option to choose audio output devices. The request is a complex one because the audio output control options are opaque to Flash; the settings for audio output are in the various operating systems (OS) of the many possible clients. Connect uses what is chosen as the OS default as depicted in our help documents:

Set up audio broadcasting

The feature request number is: CONN-4082570; one customer recently suggested that we add expanded functionality for client speaker audio output control roughly similar to what we already have in Adobe Connect for Microphone and Webcam selection.  A speaker drop-down menu for sound output is desirable for obvious reasons.

There is no set date for implementation of this enhancement in Connect and I will update this blog entry if that changes. In the meantime, if the default client OS audio output option is not the option desired for use with Connect Meeting, the following example may help: I will show how to add a Bluetooth speaker to a Windows client and toggle the audio output in Connect from the built-in laptop Realtek speaker to a new iHome Bluetooth speaker. While audio output options may vary, by showing how it is done with this common example of a Bluetooth output device, it will hopefully help to show how other optional client-side speaker output devices may also be managed in kind.

To see the enabled audio output options on a Windows client, look at the Device Manager under the Control Panel:

sound-dev-mgr.fw

Here we see a Realtek device and this corresponds with the option in the lower right of the desktop tray:

audiowzd-bt5b.fw

Opening the mixer shows more detail:

realtek.fw

If I play music by invoking the Audio Setup Wizard in Connect Meeting, the Realtek speaker will play:

asw.fw

conn-soundoutput.fw

Since our example will be to switch to a Bluetooth speaker, the first step will be to make certain that Bluetooth is enabled. On my Lenovo, that is done by pressing the keys FN>F5 simultaneously. Here we see Bluetooth is enabled:

sound-bt.fw

The next step is to follow the device instructions to pair the Bluetooth speaker with the client computer; these will vary.

See the Bluetooth icon enabled and  highlighted in my system tray:

sound-bt1.fw

After putting the iHome speaker in pairing mode, I am able to search for it from the client:

sound-bt2.fw

sound-bt2a.fw

sound-bt3a.fw

Now we have more than one speaker option to toggle as the Device Manager and the system tray attest:

sound-dev-mgr1.fw

sound-bt5.fw

In Connect we now see the option to use the new audio output device:

sound-fin.fw

Note: The iHome Bluetooth speaker also has a built-in Microphone so the Connect Audio Setup Wizard will see it in the Microphone drop down menu.

Without audio output controls built into Connect, adding and/or changing the default audio output device in the client OS is the way to toggle the audio output option in Connect. The key thing to be aware us is the danger of audio feedback loops. When separate speakers feed back into a microphone and cause echoing in a Connect Meeting. On a mobile device such as an iPAD, without a headset the speaker audio will feed right back in the microphone; it is best practice to use a headset with iPad to prevent audio loop/echos.

Generating Server-side Logs to Troubleshoot On-premise Connect Deployments

In order to diagnose unexpected behavior within Adobe Connect, it may be necessary for the Adobe Connect Support team to examine server-side logs from an on-premise Connect deployment. The logs directory is located in the Connect (or Breeze – it is not uncommon for Connect upgrades to reside in legacy Breeze directories) directory:

logsdir.fw

Within the logs directory there are sub-directories containing various logs:

logsdir1.fw

The most commonly requested log by the support team, is the debug.log. It can be found in the logs>support directory. With the services running, the current debug log will appear without a date at the top of the debug.log file list. The default rollover is 12 hours generating AM and PM logs each day:

logsdir2.fw

In order to make the debug.log file more useful for purposes of diagnosis, you can enable verbose logging by adding entries to the custom.ini file located in the Connect or Breeze version sub-directory. Here you see it located in a 9.3.1 directory under the Breeze root installation/upgrade directory:

logscustomini3.fw

Before editing the custom.ini file, be sure to create a backup copy of it. Add the following lines in order to enable verbose logging:

HTTP_TRACE=true
DB_LOG_ALL_QUERIES=true

Note that for versions of Connect 9.2 and prior, use yes instead of true:

HTTP_TRACE=yes
DB_LOG_ALL_QUERIES=yes

Save the custom.ini file (be careful not to accidentally change the file type to .txt) and during a scheduled maintenance window, cycle the Connect and AMS/FMS services in order to load the changes and begin verbose logging (note this will bring Connect down while the services cycle):

logssvcs4.fw

There are occasions when it may be prudent to provide more than one log for a more complete diagnosis. To provide a full sample of the various Connect logs without sending a massive historical sample of log files, you may simply stop the Connect services (during scheduled downtime as this will bring down Connect) and rename the entire log directory to log.old. Then upon starting the services back up, recreate the issue being diagnosed and then stop the services.

This activity will generate a new small log directory isolating the issue under scrutiny that you just reproduced in Connect: Zip/compress this new abbreviated log directory with all its fresh abbreviated sub-directories and provide it to the the Adobe Connect Support team to help expedite more exhaustive server-side log analysis. This option is particularly helpful when examining a cluster as each server will have a set of logs. When providing cluster logs, always label each compressed log folder to easily identify the server from which it came.

Note that often when diagnosing unexpected behavior in Adobe Connect Meetings, it may also be prudent to enable client-side Connect addin verbose logging as well.  The relevant client-side logging tech-notes are here:

Enable logging | Meeting Add-in

Troubleshooting Verbose Meeting Addin Logging

Connect on-premise: Event Emails may fail to be sent.

This is specific to Connect on-premise installations with Events and with SSL configured for the Event service.

 

When you create a new Event there are a bunch of different email notifications available, including confirmation of new registrations, event reminders, thank you notes etc.
These emails are created from email templates that the Connect application server needs to download from the CQ publish server before they’re sent out.

If you have the CQ service configured with SSL the Connect server needs to trust the certificates you configured on the remote CQ publish host, otherwise it will fail on the template download and you will get a log message as below written in the debug.log on your Connect server:

 
[…]
[03-21 08:37:52,983] cqEmailer0 (INFO) 1ms spid:197 fetch com.macromedia.breeze.model.CQTemplate(“84457”)
[03-21 08:37:52,990] cqEmailer0 (INFO) Error while fetching template from CQ: sun.security.validator.ValidatorException: PKIX path building
failed: sun.security.provider.certpath.SunCertPathBuilderException: unable to find valid certification path to requested target
[03-21 08:37:52,990] cqEmailer0 (ERROR) Exception thrown
javax.net.ssl.SSLHandshakeException: sun.security.validator.ValidatorException: PKIX path building failed:
sun.security.provider.certpath.SunCertPathBuilderException: unable to find valid certification path to requested target
[…]

 
To fix this, import the SSL certificate of your CQ publish server to the Connect server keystore.

On the Connect server, open a command line and change to this directory:   <drive>:\Connect\9.x\jre\bin\

The command to import the certificate is as follows (of course replace c:\pathToCertFile\cert.crt with your own path and filename). Also, make sure the path to the keystore is correct for your environment and version of Connect.

keytool -importcert -trustcacerts -alias connectcerts -file c:\pathToCertFile\cert.crt -keystore c:\Connect\9.x\jre\lib\security\cacerts

 

(If you are using intermediate certificates, you can import the whole chain as one single .crt file).