CourseSaver.com Server Status

Wowza Media Server Status: OK
Washington DC: OK
Salt Lake City: OK
San Jose: No Response
Miami: No Response
Amsterdam: No Response
Singapore: No Response
It's true, sometimes people have a hard time streaming videos. We have invested in some pretty robust servers and technology that should be able to support thousands of online users at one time to try to minimize the chance of it being a problem with our site. If your having problems there are some things you could try on your own before contacting us, or while you are waiting to hear back.

First you should understand a little bit about streaming video (if you don't care, you can skip this paragraph). We use the Softlayer network to deliver video. We have servers in Seattle, Dallas, and in Los Angeles though another provider. One the the most frequent things I hear while troubleshooting is that the person can stream youtube files without a problem. By looking at the map to the right, we can see that there are specific pathways to get information to different places in the US / world. While we have 3 servers currently, youtube has thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of servers in hundreds of locations. As information moves around on the internet, it is subject to some of the same types of delays you get when driving in LA during rush hour, without a close destination, or clear path, the speed can suffer. While we don't come even close to maxing out any of our servers (each of which could deliver to hundreds of users) some people still find their connection suffers which is why we have distributed servers around the US. I went into more of it on this thread.

Ok, so since we have multiple servers, you have several options to choose from and the closest server MAY NOT always be the fastest one for you. This website is hosted primarily in Seattle Washington. That includes the homepage, all the forums, everything you look at on the site with the exception of the videos which MAY be hosted by the Seattle server, but you may also choose to deliver content from another server when watching the videos. In order to find the fastest server for you, try connecting to http://www.speedtest.net and try connecting to the server in Washington State, Dallas or the one in Los Angeles. That will give you a general idea of your connection across the country / world to a server near ours, not just your connection to the internet around where you live which could be different). Test again with a server in your area. If the numbers are drastically different, there is a "road block" between you and us and it is typically resolved on it's own or by selecting a different server.

Try this link http://www.coursesaver.com/bwc/checkbandwidth.php and click start. This will give you specific numbers for our site. You can get current numbers on 3 servers.
I also just put together this page to give REAL TIME stats on the servers. The results being charted are ONLY those watching videos actively.
We stream in the following qualities:
320 pixels high at 400kbps
480 pixels high at 700kbps
720 pixels high at 1100kbps

We have some customers that come in from rural areas, outside the country that have numbers MUCH lower than these. I have chatted with people who had rates around 5kbps and the honest answer is they won't be able to stream ANY of our content. For comparison purposes, my connection from home with DSL is 38Mbps (38000kbps) Even if you didn't get the fastest one, you should be able to stream just fine if yours is around 1-5Mpbs or lower if you use the lower qualitiy videos.


That being said there are a few things you can do to improve your numbers.
  1. Scan for viruses and spyware. Microsoft has a great free antivirus software called Security Essentials. My favorite spyware program is Spybot Search and Destroy (http://www.spybot.info)
  2. Close extra programs on your computer.
  3. If your wireless, try using a wire to connect to your router or disabling encyption on the router as that can slow it down.
  4. Call your internet provider, if your on a $10 a month plan, you probably want to upgrade. If your internet is just generally slow, then they need to send out a tech to help you out.
  5. Try to give your modem the best signal you can. Use clean good wires to connect it to the wall (don't run over them with your chair).
Users getting the error "RTMP server not found" are typically tying in from a school or other public wifi location. These locations may have chosen to block RTMP traffic in order to dave money on bandwidth. In order to use it in these locations, choose port 443 on the video display page. This creates a "tunnel" that will allow you to watch them.
If I think of anything else, I will post it here. We love helping you out and know if you spend the time to watch the videos, do the problems you will do great.

Alan