The LIVE555TM Media Server
The "LIVE555 Media Server" is a complete RTSP server application.
It can stream several kinds of media file
(which must be stored in the current working directory
- i.e., the directory from which you launch the application - or a subdirectory.):
- A MPEG Transport Stream file (with file name suffix ".ts")
- A Matroska or WebM file
(with filename suffix ".mkv" or ".webm")
- A MPEG-1 or 2 Program Stream file (with file name suffix ".mpg")
- A MPEG-4 Video Elementary Stream file (with file name suffix ".m4e")
- A H.264 Video Elementary Stream file (with file name suffix ".264")
- A H.265 Video Elementary Stream file (with file name suffix ".265")
- A VOB video+audio file (with file name suffix ".vob")
- A DV video file (with file name suffix ".dv")
- A MPEG-1 or 2 (including layer III - i.e., 'MP3') audio file (with file name suffix ".mp3")
- A WAV (PCM) audio file (with file name suffix ".wav")
- An AMR audio file (with file name suffix ".amr")
- An AC-3 audio file (with file name suffix ".ac3")
- An AAC (ADTS format) audio file (with file name suffix ".aac")
These streams can be received/played by any standards-compliant RTSP/RTP media client, including:
- The server can transmit multiple streams (from the same, or different files)
- By default, the server transmits its streams as RTP/UDP packets.
If requested by the RTSP client, the server will stream its RTP (and RTCP)
packets over TCP.
(This can be useful for clients that are behind a firewall.)
- Some non-standard RTSP clients - such as Amino set-top boxes - request raw
UDP streaming, rather than standard RTP streaming.
Despite this, this server will accommodate such requests, and stream MPEG Transport
Streams over raw-UDP, if requested.
Downloading the LIVE555 Media Server
Pre-built binary versions of the server are available for some platforms:
If a pre-built binary version is not available for your platform
(or, for whatever reason, does not work on your system), then you must instead
build the application yourself, from source code.
The application's source code is distributed as part of the
Open Source "LIVE555 Streaming Media" code,
in the "mediaServer" subdirectory (which must be built last).
Running the LIVE555 Media Server
The server is a console application (there is currently no GUI version).
To run the server, simply type "live555MediaServer".
'Trick play' functionality
The server supports RTSP 'trick play' operations for some, but not all,
Note that in order to provide 'trick play' operations for a streamed MPEG Transport Stream file,
a special 'index file' must created for each such file,
Trick play support for additional media types will be added in the future.
Streaming to iPhones and iPads
As a special case, the server can also stream MPEG Transport Stream files to iPhones and iPads, using
Apple's "HTTP Live Streaming" mechanism.
(A single server can stream the same file(s) using either RTSP/RTP (to standard RTSP/RTP clients such as
or using HTTP (to "Safari" on iPhones and iPads).)
For a streamed file to be viewable on an iPhone or iPad, it must be a MPEG Transport Stream file with H.264 video,
H.264 "Baseline profile 3.0, Baseline profile 3.1, or Main profile 3.1", or just "Baseline 3.1" for older iPhones.
Also, each such Transport Stream file must have a corresponding
(However, unlike some other streaming servers for iPhones/iPads, the Transport Stream files are not broken up into
segments; instead, they are left intact.)
To view such a stream from an iPhone or iPad, you do so using the "Safari" browser app, and
use a "http://" URL, not a "rtsp://" URL.
Specifically, you enter an URL of the form
where <http-port-number> is the port number - for "HTTP Live Streaming" - that the
"live555MediaServer" application displays at the end of its console output, after it starts up.
(If the port number is 80 (the default port number for HTTP), then you can omit ":80" from the URL.)
All support for this software is via our mailing lists.
(Personal requests for support will not be handled.)
At present, we use just one mailing list:
(Note that you must subscribe to this mailing list before you can post to it.)
Live Networks, Inc. (LIVE555.COM)