Broadcast Audio Streams Without High Bandwidth Requirements
= interesting, promising
Peercast.org has released a very easy to use thin client application that allows to easily listen to a music stream while redistributing it out to multiple listeners.
PeerCast.org was established in April 2002 as a non-profit site providing free peer-to-peer broadcasting software. The aim of the project has been the one of creating an easy to use, simple and reliable software client that enables anyone to broadcast streaming media on the Internet without the need for expensive servers or bandwidth.
PeerCast offers considerable savings for broadcasters because they do not have to provide the bandwidth required by all of their listeners. According to what can be read on Peercast.org home page a single 56K modem can be used to broadcast to the entire network.
In the PeerCast network distribution approach there is no central server, each user can be a client, server or broadcaster of streams. It offers anonymity for broadcasters because there is no easy way to trace back to the original stream, it is even possible to broadcast directly to a single client located in a different country and have that provide the source for the entire network.
PeerCast uses the Gnutella 0.6 protocol as the basis for all communications and works in much the same way as other Gnutella clients except that instead of downloading files, the users download streams. These streams are then exchanged in real-time with other users.
The client software has the ability to serve web pages to normal browsers such as Mozilla and Internet Explorer. This means that you or someone else on your LAN can view/listen to your active channels without having to run the client software.
Offices can have one PeerCast client providing MP3 streams to the entire LAN. Or you can set up a private network with your friends on the Internet to listen to music. Its your choice about whether you connect directly to the PeerCast network or not.
There is currently a beta Windows client that is available for download. Linux and Mac versions have also been planned and are presently under development.
The software developed by the Peercast.org project intends to become Open Source very soon.
How to use the Peercast client:
1. Download and run the client program.
2. PeerCast will automatically try and connect to the network.
3. Once connected, some channels should appear in the Search window. If they don`t after a few seconds, try clicking Find again. (You can leave the text box blank to search for all channels)
4. Select a channel in the Search window and click Get Channel.
5. After a short time, the channel you selected should appear in the Channels window and it will say RECEIVE to indicate that the channel is being streamed to your machine.
6. Select this channel and click Listen to open up the channel in your default MP3 player. Click Browse to view all channels in your web browser.
This is not a tool for the technophobes and it requires some knowledge of streaming and webcasting.
This tool is also compatible with online streaming services like Shoutcast, Oddcast, Icecast and Live365.
Download the Peercast thin client at:
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