Segments live video streams based on the Apple HTTP Live Streaming protocol and pushes the resulting files to various locations.
Ruby C
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iPhone HTTP Streaming Server

For a detailed overview see the http live video segmenter page.


This project is an attempt to make it easier to set up a live streaming server using Apple's HTTP streaming protocol.

The project includes a ruby script and a C program that use FFMpeg to encode and segment an input video stream in the correct format for use with the HTTP streaming protocol.


  • Creates both single and variable bitrate outputs
  • Transfer encoded segments via copy, FTP, SCP or transfer to AWS S3
  • Sending the INT signal to the segmenter process will cause it to terminate gracefully


FFMpeg is the primary external requirement for the ruby script. The segmenter needs libavformat to compile and that can be obtained by installing FFMpeg. The script also needs the following gems installed if you want to be able to use SCP or S3 as transfer options:


You will need to compile the segmenter first. Assuming that you have all the needed libraries installed this is as easy as doing a make in the root directory.

You may copy the script and the segmenter binary to any location you want. You will need to let the script know where to find the segmenter binary in the configuration file.


A quick overview of the configuration options:

  • temp_dir Where the script will put segments before they are transfered to their final destination
  • segment_prefix The prefix added to each stream segment
  • index_prefix The prefix added to the index
  • log_type The logging type to use. Options are: STDOUT, FILE
  • log_file If using the FILE logging type where to put the log file
  • log_level The level of logging to output. Options are: DEBUG, INFO, WARN, ERROR
  • input_location Where the origin video is coming from. This can be a file, a pipe, a device or any other media that is consumable by FFMpeg or the given source consumer. See the source_command option as well.
  • segment_length The video segment length in seconds
  • url_prefix This is the URL where the stream (ts) files will end up
  • index_segment_count How many segments to keep in the index
  • source_command The command used to push video the encoders
  • segmenter_binary The location of the segmenter
  • encoding_profile Specifies what encoding profile to use. It can be either a single entry, 'ep_128k', or an array, [ 'ep_128k', 'ep_386k', 'ep_512k' ], for multi-bitrate outputs.
  • transfer_profile The transfer profile to use after each segment is produced

Encoding profiles are given a name and have two options following that name:

  • ffmpeg_command The command to use for this encoding profile
  • bandwidth The amount of bandwidth required to transfer this encoding

Transfer profiles are given a name in the same way encoding profiles are and have various options following their name.

For S3 based transfers:

  • transfer_type Must be set to 's3'
  • bucket_name The S3 bucket to put the segments in
  • key_prefix A prefix to attach to the start of each segment stream0001
  • aws_api_key The AWS api key for S3
  • aws_api_secret The AWS api secret for S3

For FTP based transfers:

  • transfer_type Must be set to 'ftp'
  • remote_host The remote host to ftp the segments to
  • user_name The user to use to log into the ftp site
  • password The password to use to log into the ftp site
  • directory The directory to change to before starting the ftp upload

For SCP based transfers:

  • transfer_type Must be set to 'scp'
  • remote_host The host to scp to
  • user_name The user to use in the scp
  • password The password to use for scp. This is optional, if it isn't provided the scp will be done using a previously generated private key.
  • directory The directory to change to before uploading the segment

For copy based transfers:

  • transfer_type Must be set to 'copy'
  • directory The destination directory to copy the segment to


Copyright (c) 2009 Carson McDonald

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License version 2 as published by the Free Software Foundation.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, Inc., 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110-1301, USA.