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    Creating a Cloud Playout Channel

    In this topic you will learn how a collection of VOD videos and live events can be streamed as a live linear channel.

    The Cloud Playout module enables broadcasters and media publishers to use a collection of VOD videos and live streams and then stream them as a linear channel. The channel can be streamed to Brightcove Live, Amazon S3 or a specified RTMP URL.

    To access the Cloud Playout module, click Cloud Playout in the navigation menu.

    Go to Cloud Playout
    Creating a Cloud Playout Channel

    A list of all Cloud Playout channels that have been created will be displayed (if any).

    playout channel list

    The page will display the following information:

    • Channel Name - Name of the channel
    • Start Time - Start time for the channel
    • End Time - End time for the channel
    • Looping - Indicates whether the program will loop
    • Destination - Target destination for the channel
    • Date Created - Date the channel was created
    • Last Updated - Date the channel was last updated
    • Status - Channel status
      • DRAFT - Channel has been created but not activated
      • CREATING - Channel is in the process of being activated
      • SCHEDULED - Channel is active and ready to stream
      • STARTING - Channel starting process to begin streaming
      • RUNNING - Channel is actively streaming
      • STOPPING - Channel streaming is stopping
      • IDLE - Channel successfully ran and has been stopped
      • DELETING - Channel is being deleted
      • ERROR - An error occurred while creating or streaming the channel

    Creating a channel

    To create a new Cloud Playout channel, follow these steps.

    1. Click Cloud Playout in the navigation header.
    2. Click add new:
      New Channel
      New Channel
    3. Enter the channel Identification details:
      • Name - Name for the channel. The name must have English characters and the following special characters are allowed:   _ . : / = + - 
      • Description - Channel description
      • Image URL - URL to an image file for the channel; meant to be a channel image that could be retrieved as part of the channel's metadata
    4. Enter the channel Schedule details.
      • Loop Playout Content - If On, the program will be played in a loop and the End Date/Time will be enabled. The program can still be modified at any time and the changes will be reflected in the current program and the loops to follow. See the Creating a looping program section below.
      • Ad Insertion - If on, allows ads to be displayed during channel playback. If this option is selected, Live inputs are not allowed, and you can only output to a Brightcove Live Event or Amazon S3 Bucket. See Monetizing Content.
      • Start Date/Time - Time when the channel will start playing out. The start time for all assets will be calculated by adding their duration to this start time. This time can be updated only when the channel is not in running state.
      • End Date/Time - If no value is entered and Loop Playout Content is not selected, the stream will end once the playout is complete. If Loop Playout Content is selected and there is no End Date/Time, the playout will be streamed until the channel is stopped. This time can be updated at any time.
    5. If you will be using Live inputs, set Live Input to On, and enter a Slate URL, unless you are going to use the default Brightcove MP4 for you slate. The slate MP4 will play whenever Live input is stopped because the encoder is stopped or some technical issue blocks the live stream. Note that the Slate URL must be a static URL that is always available (short-lived CDN URLs are not allowed).
    6. Enter the channel Destination details. Cloud Playout supports 2 outputs at the same time. For example, you can output HLS into an S3 Bucket and an RTMP feed to a Brightcove Live Channel or a 3rd party ingestion point. Note that combining Brightcove Live Event and RTMP as simultaneous destinations is not supported.
      • Optimize Display for - Controls the bitrate and dimensions for the output
        • Mobile & Web - If checked, HD Output (RTMP or HLS single bitrate)
        • Smart TV - If checked, full HD Output (RTMP or HLS single bitrate)
      • Output Region - The region where the channel will be created. Brightcove recommends selecting a region geographically closest to where the majority of your audience is expected.
      • Output to - Select an output method for the channel
        • Brightcove Live Event - Create or use a previously created Brightcove Live Channel. When creating a new channel, the region of the channel will be optimized based upon the Output Region that was selected.
        • RTMP - Select to output the stream to an RTMP or RTP ingestion point. RTP is not available for third party ingestion points; you can use it only when Ad Insertion and Brightcove Live Event is enabled. When selected, an RTMP URL field will appear - enter the RTMP input URL for your live streaming service.
        • Amazon S3 Bucket - Select to push an HLS output to an Amazon S3 bucket. You will be required to enter Bucket Name, Region, Access Key and Secret Key. The bucket should be public and writeable.
    7. Click create channel. The new channel will be created with a status of DRAFT.

    Adding videos and live events to a channel

    After you create your channel, the screen will show the channel settings:

    Channel Settings
    Channel Settings

    You can edit details, but the main next step is to add videos and/or live events (if you enabled live inputs) to the channel.

    Add videos (VOD)

    1. Click Add Videos (If you are on the channel list page, click the channel name to open the channel settings page and then click Add Videos).
    2. Click the checkbox next to the videos you want to add to the channel.
      report switcher
    3. Click add videos.
    4. Click save.
    5. The program list for the channel will appear:
      Program List
      Program List

      Note that start and end times are automatically calculated from the video durations. You can drag and drop videos in the list to reorder them, and the start/end times will be automatically adjusted.

    Add Live events

    1. Click add live event
    2. In the Add Live Event dialog, enter the Name, Duration, and Description for the live event:
      Add Live Event
      Add Live Event

      Note that the minimum duration for a live event is 5 minutes, and the duration can be incremented or decremented in 5 minute intervals only - If needed the duration can be edited in-line on the textbox to adjust the granularity of time. The duration of a live event can be modified at any time, even while it is currently playing.

    3. After you add live events, they will appear in the program list along with VOD items:
      Program List
      Program List
    4. You can drag live events to reorder the list just as you can videos. You can also use the quick edit button to modify the duration of a live event.

    Also see Adding Bumpers to Content for adding bumpers to VOD or live event items, and Monetizing Cloud Playout Channels for information on enabling server-side ads.

    After videos and live events have been added to a channel, click Activate to activate the channel. A channel must be activated before streaming can begin. See the Using channel actions for more information.

    When videos are added to a channel, a system-generated playlist will be created and visible in the Media module.

    report switcher

    We strongly recommend that you make any changes to the channel in the Cloud Playout module, and do not edit the generated playlist in any way.

    Get information for the Beacon Channel

    Before you leave Video Cloud and go to Beacon, you will want to capture information that you will need in setting up your Beacon channel. See Creating a Beacon Channel to see how information about the Cloud Playout channel is entered.

    1. Go to the channel details page by clicking on the channel in the channel list.
    2. If you have not already done so, click Activate to activate the channel. See Using Channel Actions for more details.
    3. After the channel has activated, use the main navigation to go to the Media module.
    4. At the top of the video list, you should see a new live video that was created for your Cloud Playout channel:
      Video for Cloud Playout
      Video for Cloud Playout
    5. Save both the video id and the channel id (the long alphanumeric string that follows cloud-playout: in the Tags).

    Note that the channel id is also available in the Channel Details in the Cloud Playout module:

    Channel ID
    Channel ID

    Getting the RTMP ingest point

    For your live encoder, you will need the RTMP ingest point for your channel. You can find it in the :Channel Settings:

    Ingest Point
    Ingest Point

    Depending on the encoder you are using, you may need to enter both the RTMP ingest point and the stream name. The stream name for the channel is the Channel ID, which is also the last part of the Ingest Point address.

    Editing a channel

    For channels in DRAFT or SCHEDULED state

    To edit a draft or scheduled Cloud Playout channel:

    1. Click the channel name to open the channel details.
    2. Click edit button
    3. Make the appropriate edits in the dialog and then click update channel

    Note that the Destination properties cannot be edited once a channel has been created.

    For a running channel

    To edit a running channel:

    1. Click the channel name to open the channel details.
    2. Click settings
    3. Click edit button
    4. The channel settings dialog will open - some options that can't be changed will not be available.
    5. Make changes and click update channel

    Creating a looping program

    To create a program that loops, when creating the channel, set the Loop Playout Content setting to On. As videos are added to the program, the program listing will update to display the series of videos with associated start/end times to fill the entire channel scheduled time. When you change the duration of a live event, the duration of events that have already passed will remain unchanged, but any future plays of the event will use the new duration.

    In the example below, the channel includes VOD and live events in a loop.

    report switcher

    Working with an electronic program guide

    Brightcove generates the EPG for Cloud Playout channels and Beacon will handle that for you.

    If you want to see the program data for the EPG, an API is available to retrieve the EPG. For more information see the Overview: EPG API topic.

    Deleting a channel

    To delete a Cloud Playout channel, click the checkbox next to the channel name and then click Delete.

    Page last updated on 05 Apr 2021