When YouTube just won’t do!

After yet another looooong session spent perfecting a tiny video for a client who needs to host it himself, I’ve decide to share my notes and resources.

It is still ridiculous what you have to go through to optimize and host a video on the web these days, due to browser compatibility issues.  Presently, you have to serve 3 different file formats AND a Flash fallback for Internet Explorer!  Hopefully that will change soon, and this post will become obsolete.  In the meantime, I’m using it as a reference for myself, and perhaps an educational tool to help my clients understand why I have to charge extra for this service!

Not many people know how complicated serving video is, because YouTube and Vimeo have made it so very easy to upload and embed videos.  And that’s a good thing!  By all means, if you can possibly use one of these terrific services to host and share your video, then do it the easy way!

But what if you require private sharing – say – on a password protected page?  Or your client doesn’t want the YouTube logo and links all over the place?  Then you’re back to square one, and my page may be helpful:  http://www.beaucreations.biz/video-how-to.shtml


Notes & Caveats

  • This assumes that you are a web designer or webmaster (professional or hobbyist).  You need working knowledge of HTML / CSS, browser compatibility issues, and modifying .htaccess files 
  • There are many fine explanations and  resources out there.  Here is a very good explanation of the process by someone who knows a lot more than me:  http://diveintohtml5.info/video.html.  I’ve just simplified things a bit, and added some software resources for file conversions.  The real credit for making this possible goes to flowplayer, which is a great service that actually creates the Flash part for you – a huge time saver and an important peice.  Again, I’m just simplifying….

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