Method for streaming multimedia information over public networks

  • US 6,708,213 B1
  • Filed: 03/29/2000
  • Issued: 03/16/2004
  • Est. Priority Date: 12/06/1999
  • Status: Expired due to Term
First Claim
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1. In a network having a content server which hosts a plurality of streaming multimedia (SM) objects which comprise a plurality of time-ordered packets for distribution over said network through a plurality of helper servers (HS) to a plurality of clients, a method of reducing latency associated with distributing said plurality of SM objects from said content server and said plurality of helper servers HSs to said plurality of clients, said method comprising:

  • servicing a first request received from one of said plurality of clients, including a requested starting position of said SM object, for one of said plurality of SM objects by allocating a first ring buffer in a memory associated with said one of said plurality of HSs for storing data representing a first portion of one of said plurality of SM objects, wherein said first portion includes a packet having an associated time-stamp approximately equal to the requested starting position;

    maintaining the first ring buffer in the memory as a sliding window by replacing stored data with data representing successive portions of said one of said plurality of SM objects; and

    allocating a second ring buffer to service a further request for said one of said plurality of SM objects received at said one of said plurality of helper servers, if it is determined that said further request cannot be serviced from said first ring buffer, otherwise servicing said further request from said first ring buffer.

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