Fastly’s Streaming Delivery
Last updated 2022-10-21
Fastly's Streaming Delivery allows you to scale the delivery of your streaming content independently of any other HTTP content delivery supported by Fastly’s Full Site Delivery. You can also configure and control live and video on demand (VOD) caching using full site delivery, but there are advantages to using streaming delivery, such as more favorable streaming-specific pricing and a lower traffic load on your full site delivery service. Additionally, all of the features available to full site delivery services are available to streaming delivery services.
Fastly's Streaming Delivery is a subset of Fastly's Full Site Delivery and it must be configured in an account separate from other Fastly accounts to allow for separate billing plans and invoices.
If you have your own video packaging infrastructure, Fastly can act as a globally distributed HTTP streaming network to improve quality of service and increase viewer capacity for both your live and VOD content. When a manifest or video segment is requested by an end user's player, your Fastly Streaming Delivery will pull the requested content from your origin media servers and subsequent requests for that stream will be served from Fastly's points of presence (POPs) instead of your origin servers.
If many users request the same content at the same time and that content is not cached in Fastly's POPs, your origin will have to serve that content. It doesn't, however, need to know about every individual user request made to Fastly's POPs and it would be inefficient to send the same content out many times. So, Fastly will only request the in-demand content from your origin once, essentially collapsing all of the user requests into a single request to your origin. Then we'll respond to each user individually.
Read more about request collapsing.
When Fastly needs to fetch content from your origin to serve a user request, we minimize the time until that user receives the first response (also called first-byte latency), by sending pieces of your origin's response to the user as soon as Fastly receives them, instead of first buffering the response from your origin, caching the data, and then streaming the data back to the user.
Read more about Streaming Miss.
You can designate a Fastly POP to serve as a shield for your origin servers, intercepting user requests on behalf of your origins to protect them from spikes in request traffic and also potentially increasing your overall cache hit rates. You can optimize this shielding geographically by configuring different shield POPs for different origin servers.
Origin shielding is not enabled by default. To use it, you must specifically enable it.
Read more about origin shielding.
Real-time log streaming
To help you tune the performance of your Fastly services, we support real-time log streaming to a variety of locations, including third-party services, for storage and analysis. You can find our supported logging endpoints in our list of streaming log guides. We limit real-time log usage to a monthly average of two log statements per request, per service. If you require a higher volume of logs, Fastly offers High Volume Logging.
Supported streaming protocols
Fastly's Streaming Delivery supports the following HTTP-based media streaming protocols:
- Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP (MPEG-DASH)
- High Efficiency Streaming Protocol (HESP)
- HTTP Dynamic Streaming (HDS)
- HTTP Live Streaming (HLS)
- HTTP Smooth Streaming (HSS)
- Low-Latency HTTP Live Streaming (LL-HLS)
Fastly maintains partnerships with Google and Microsoft that may provide discounts on outbound data transfer traffic to customers who qualify and configure their Fastly services correctly. See our integrations guides for additional details.
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