Build a VOD Pipeline in AWS - A Simple Video On Demand Solution Designed For Rapid Deployment
The Growing Need For A Simple VOD Solution
At TrackIt, we have experienced a growing number of content creators looking for an easy to use and simple VOD solution they can implement to start sharing their content with users.
As of September 2019, there was no offering currently available in the AWS marketplace that serves as a full-package plug-and-play VOD solution. Recognizing the need, TrackIt has developed and shared a clean and simple VOD workflow that can be quickly deployed on AWS with minimal technical expertise.
Challenges For Content Creators
1. Limited Control Over Video Content
When using AWS, content creators typically choose to store their video content in S3 buckets. Unfortunately this provides very little control over the content related to the video. For example, a content creator can easily add tags but cannot add more (video metadata) information about the video such as location, name of the video creator, etc.
2. Potential Security Risks
In order to allow viewers to access the videos from a website, content creators will often implement one of two scenarios:
Make the S3 bucket public: In this case everyone can access all of the content - including private videos.
Add specific policies to the bucket: This approach is prone to mistakes in configuration that expose the content creators to possible security breaches.
As a result, using these approaches for a website to provide viewers with access to video content risks opening backdoor access into their AWS accounts.
3. Issues With Video Quality/Resolution
In the absence of a purpose-built VOD solution, content creators generally only provide their viewers with videos of a single quality - the original quality of the uploaded video. Thus viewers with low bandwidth connections might have trouble buffering the content, and those with high bandwidth don’t have the option of experiencing higher-quality video.
The VOD Workflow
TrackIt’s workflow has been designed to be an easy to implement and elegant VOD solution. Our workflow implements only the minimum services required.
An API gateway is used to make requests, S3 buckets are used to store video content, and AWS Elemental MediaConvert transcodes content and manages format resolutions.
AWS Elemental MediaConvert
AWS Elemental MediaConvert is a file-based video transcoding service that allows users to easily create video-on-demand (VOD) content for broadcast and multiscreen delivery at scale. Using MediaConvert allows content creators to provide users with multiple resolutions for each of the videos.
How it works
MediaConvert is used for video transcoding. The source video is converted into two different kinds of output: MP4 and HLS (allowing users access to multiple resolutions they can switch between during playback). MediaConvert also generates thumbnails by extracting multiple evenly distributed frames in the video to provide a preview capability.
Amazon CloudFront is AWS’ content delivery network (CDN). CloudFront provides content creators a simple and straightforward solution for video delivery with in-built caching mechanisms. A content creator simply needs to create a new distribution and select the right S3 buckets as targets, and CloudFront does the rest of the work.
TrackIt is an Amazon Web Services Advanced Consulting Partner specializing in cloud management, consulting, and software development solutions based in Marina del Rey, CA.
TrackIt specializes in Modern Software Development, DevOps, Infrastructure-As-Code, Serverless, CI/CD, and Containerization with specialized expertise in Media & Entertainment workflows, High-Performance Computing environments, and data storage.
TrackIt’s forté is cutting-edge software design with deep expertise in containerization, serverless architectures, and innovative pipeline development. The TrackIt team can help you architect, design, build and deploy a customized solution tailored to your exact requirements.
In addition to providing cloud management, consulting, and modern software development services, TrackIt also provides an open-source AWS cost management tool that allows users to optimize their costs and resources on AWS.
If you want to read the full White Paper, download it below!