Wowza Media Server


Version: Wowza Media Server 3.6.4

Wowza Media Server™ 3.6 continues to future-proof and simplify online video delivery by expanding its ability to stream video to any screen using any streaming protocol, augmenting its options and improving the workflow for delivering closed captions, and providing enhanced scalability, flexibility, and reliability. Wowza Media Server 3.6 includes new features and enhancements to features that were introduced in Wowza Media Server 3.5 and earlier versions. Additional functionality and services have also been made available to work exclusively with Wowza Media Server 3.6.

Getting started

To get up-and-running quickly, use the Wowza Media Server Quick Start Guide.

For the most up-to-date information about this release, visit the Wowza Media Server Articles and Forums.

Starting Wowza Media Server in standalone mode on Mac OS X and Linux

When you start Wowza Media Server in standalone mode for the first time, you'll be asked to enter your license key in a terminal window. Get the license key from your approval email and enter it in the terminal window. After you enter your license key in the terminal window, it will be stored in the following file:

See: Starting and Stopping the Server (Standalone)

New Features and Functionality in Wowza Media Server 3.6

MPEG-DASH Technology Preview

Wowza Media Server 3.6 adds basic support for Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP (DASH), also known as MPEG-DASH, to its existing suite of supported streaming formats. MPEG-DASH is a new international standard for adaptive streaming that's being adopted by the streaming industry. Wowza has tested its MPEG-DASH support using several DASH clients. See: MPEG-DASH Overview

Closed Captioning

Wowza Media Server 3.6 includes expanded support for closed captioning formats for live and video on-demand streams, which were first introduced in Wowza Media Server 3.5. Wowza Media Server enables caption data from a variety of instream and file-based sources to be converted to appropriate caption formats for live and on-demand video streaming using the Apple HTTP Live Streaming (Apple HLS), Adobe HTTP Dynamic Streaming (Adobe HDS), and RTMP protocols. This feature helps US broadcasters to comply with the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 and increasing requirements in the European Union by providing captioning for television programs that are distributed over the Internet.

For live streams, Wowza Media Server can ingest instream closed caption information from Action Message Format (AMF) onTextData events or CEA-608 data. These ingested captions can be delivered in Adobe HDS and RTMP streams as AMF onTextData events, in Apple HLS streams as CEA-608 captions, or in Apple HLS streams for Apple iOS devices (iOS 6 or later) as Web Video Text Tracks (WebVTT) subtitles. In addition, instream CEA-608 caption data can be passed through Wowza Transcoder AddOn for delivery in Apple HLS streams to iOS-based devices.

For video on-demand streams, Wowza Media Server can extract caption data from 3GPP Timed Text data embedded in MP4 files or use caption files in a variety of formats including Timed Text Markup Language (.ttml), SubRip Text (.srt), Scenarist Closed Caption (.scc), and Web Video Text Tracks (.vtt). These ingested captions can be delivered in Adobe HDS and RTMP streams as AMF onTextData events, in Apple HLS streams as CEA-608 captions, or in Apple HLS streams for Apple iOS devices (iOS 6 or later) as WebVTT subtitles. Delivery of VOD sidecar files is also supported.

See: Closed Captioning Overview

Mobile Encoding

The Wowza GoCoder™ app is a live audio and video application for Apple iPod touch (iOS 4.0 or later) and iPhone (3GS or later) that allows content providers to encode live content right from their iOS device and deliver it to Wowza Media Server in real time over 4G, 3G, and Wi-Fi systems. See: How to use Wowza GoCoder video broadcasting iOS app with Wowza Media Server

NVIDIA NVENC Accelerated Encoding

Wowza Media Server 3.6 leverages the NVIDIA Encoder (NVENC) API to access the high-performance H.264 hardware video encoder introduced in graphics cards with the new Kepler GPU architecture. NVENC-based video encoding is faster and consumes less power than legacy CUDA-based or CPU-based encoding, enabling accelerated transcoding with Wowza Transcoder AddOn at greater scale and speed. Support for NVIDIA NVENC accelerated encoding is included in Wowza Media Server 3.6 for 64-bit Windows and Linux operating systems. See: Server Specifications for NVIDIA NVENC and NVIDIA CUDA acceleration with Wowza Transcoder AddOn

Verimatrix KMS with PlayReady Encryption

Wowza DRM AddOn integrates with Verimatrix Key Management Services (KMS) for Microsoft Smooth Streaming. This allows studio-grade Microsoft PlayReady DRM to be applied to Smooth Streams that are delivered to a wide variety of Smooth Streaming clients. This bolsters existing support for Verimatrix VCAS protected Apple HLS playback with ViewRight clients on iOS-based devices, Android devices, PCs, and set-top boxes. See: How to set up Verimatrix DRM

Live Stream Record
Enhancements to the Live Stream Record feature in Wowza Media Server 3.6 give you more flexibility and control over how live streams are recorded by providing options to record live streams at both the server and application level and by enabling support for property overrides. Live Stream Record, formerly a free AddOn, was incorporated into Wowza Media Server 3.5 as an API that gives you more control over recording live streams to video on demand files. It enables you to control the live stream recording process using a web-based user interface, HTTP URL queries, or programmatically. You can split in-process live stream recording archives into multiple on demand MP4 (QuickTime container) or FLV (Flash Video container) files automatically, with the split points based on video duration, clock time, or file size. A developer user interface is also included, which shows all current live streams and gives the option to record or stop recording a stream. See: How to record live streams (HTTPLiveStreamRecord)

AC-3 Passthrough

Wowza Media Server 3.6 allows Dolby Digital (AC-3) and Dolby Digital Plus (Enhanced AC-3 or E-AC-3) audio from MPEG-TS encoders to pass through unaltered for delivery using Apple HLS and Microsoft Smooth Streaming. This allows your customers to experience immersive surround-sound audio when streaming on media devices such as Apple TV, Xbox 360, Sony PlayStation 3 (PS3), hybrid set-top boxes, and smart TVs.

New Features and Functionality in Wowza Media Server 3.5

Wowza StreamLock AddOn

Wowza StreamLock™ AddOn is Wowza's new security option for network encryption. It provides near-instant provisioning of free 256-bit Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) certificates to verified Wowza customers for use with Wowza Media Server. SSL certificates provide the best security when used with RTMP and can also be used for secure HTTP streaming (HTTPS). See: How to get SSL certificates from the StreamLock service

Wowza Transcoder AddOn

A new module for Wowza Transcoder AddOn enables you to overlay static and dynamic images on top of video. It can be configured manually or pre-programmed based on external events, making it a powerful new tool for adding premium TV-like experiences. See: How to add graphic overlays to live streams with Wowza Transcoder AddOn

Wowza Transcoder AddOn contains preview technology that makes the best use of 3rd-generation Intel Core processors on Linux-based operating system distributions by adding support for Intel Quick Sync Video. Using Intel Quick Sync Video can double transcoding speeds over 2nd-generation Intel Core processors by moving video-conversion tasks to dedicated media processing space. The final version of the technology that supports Quick Sync Video will be available in a later release of Wowza Transcoder AddOn. See: How to configure Quick Sync accelerated encoding on Linux

Wowza Transcoder AddOn now supports H.263 encoding for live video streams, enabling users to stream to older devices.

Digital Rights Management (DRM)

Wowza DRM AddOn supports integration with BuyDRM KMS services for Apple HLS. This allows studio-grade Microsoft PlayReady DRM to be applied to HLS streams that are delivered to Apple iOS devices that have a BuyDRM player. See: How to set up and test BuyDRM KeyOS DRM (PlayReady)

New APIs in Wowza Media Server enable new encryption schemes for HLS streaming. In addition, a new API is provided that enables decryption of PlayReady assets. See:


MediaSecurity, formerly a free AddOn, is incorporated into Wowza Media Server. MediaSecurity features such as SecureToken, RTMP authentication, RTSP authentication, StreamNameAlias, and secure streaming (RTMPE, RTMPTE, and RTMPS) help to ensure a more secure stream when delivering content using HLS, HDS, Smooth Streaming, and MPEG-DASH (Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP). See: Media Security Overview

HTTP Origin

Wowza Media Server can be used as an origin that fulfills requests from HTTP caching infrastructures for live and video on demand HLS, HDS, and Smooth Streams. Downstream HTTP caches are ideal for scaling out streaming across larger regions and audiences. See: How to configure Wowza Media Server as an HTTP caching origin

Push Publishing AddOn

A new version of the Push Publishing AddOn adds support for RTP and MPEG-TS publishing to downstream Wowza servers, Adobe Flash Media servers, and CDNs. See: How to get Push Publishing AddOn (push to CDNs and other services)

Silverlight Multicast Player

Wowza Media Server contains a Microsoft Silverlight-based player that allows users to stream an MPEG-TS multicast from Wowza Media Server to any Silverlight-enabled desktop. The multicast feature allows users to deliver live video broadcasts across the network to thousands of Silverlight-based players simultaneously while only using the bandwidth of a single stream. See: How to get the Silverlight Multicast Player AddOn

Issues and Comments

Windows Getting Started webpage

When you start Wowza Media Server in standalone mode on Windows operating systems, a Getting Started webpage is automatically displayed. The webpage can help you to get up-and-running quickly by playing a sample video file from your local Wowza Media Server installation. It also provides links to tutorials and documentation. If you installed Wowza Media Server with a Trial or Developer license, this page will also tell you when your license will expire.

If you don't want this page to be displayed, do the following (this procedure requires administrative permissions):

  1. Shutdown Wowza Media Server.
    • Windows 8 / Windows Server 2012 (Start > All Apps > Wowza Media Server 3.6.4 > Wowza Shutdown)
    • Windows 7 / Windows Server 2008 (Start > All Programs > Wowza Media Server 3.6.4 > Wowza Shutdown)
  2. Make a copy of [install-dir]/bin/startup.bat and rename this file to [install-dir]/bin/startup.bak. The startup.bak file retains a copy of the original batch file settings.
  3. In a text editor, open startup.bat and comment-out or delete the following lines:
    rem display trial page with sample clients
  4. Save the updated startup.bat file. If permissions prevent you from saving directly to [install-dir]/bin, copy the file to another location (such as your desktop) and then copy the file from that location to [install-dir]/bin.

If you have problems, you can restore startup.bat to its original state by using the content in startup.bak.

Wowza Media Server tuning

For up-to-date tuning instructions, see the Performance Tuning article.

Connecting over RTMPT or RTMPTE

The default Server.xml file is configured to listen on port 1935 only (the default rtmp port). To connect to Wowza Media Server over rtmpt, you can either use a text editor to uncomment the port 80 configuration section in the [install-dir]/conf/VHost.xml file or connect over rtmpt using port 1935 (example: rtmpt://localhost:1935/applicationname).

Memory settings

If you encounter OutOfMemory errors while running Wowza Media Server, you may want to increase the maximum size of the Java heap. See the Performance Tuning article for instructions.

JAVA_HOME environment variable on Windows platform

On the Windows platform, Wowza Media Server uses the JAVA_HOME environment variable to determine the location of the Java environment under which to run. If you have problems starting Wowza Media Server on Windows, make sure the JAVA_HOME environment variable points to a Java 6 (aka 1.6), Java 7 (aka 1.7), or greater Java environment. Also when making changes or upgrades to your Java environment that may affect the installation path, be sure to update the JAVA_HOME variable to point to the new location. The JAVA_HOME environment variable should point to the base folder of the Java installation. This is the folder that contains the bin folder. See: After installing latest Java version, java command is still using old Java (fix)

Windows service

By default, the Wowza Media Server service is set to Manual startup so that it doesn't conflict with the version started from the Command prompt. For more information about how to change this to Automatic startup, see "Starting and Stopping the Server" in the User's Guide.

OS X service

By default, the com.wowza.WowzaMediaServer service is set to Disabled startup by default so that it doesn't conflict with the version started from the Command prompt. To enable the launchd service to startup automatically when the machine is restarted, issue the following command in a terminal window:

sudo launchctl load -w /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.wowza.WowzaMediaServer.plist

To disable:

sudo launchctl unload -w /Library/LaunchDaemons/com.wowza.WowzaMediaServer.plist

JMX and the Windows service

When running Wowza Media Server as a Windows service, the JMX interface won't be available unless the service is running as a named user. To configure the service to run as a named user, do the following:

  1. Go to Settings > Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Services.
  2. Right-click the Wowza Media Server 3.6.4 service, and then select Properties.
  3. On the Log On tab, change the Log on as option to This account, and then enter a user name and password for a local user.
64-bit OS and Java requirement for Wowza Transcoder AddOn

Wowza Transcoder AddOn must be used with a 64-bit Windows or Linux operating system and must run against the 64-bit version of Java.

Wowza Transcoder AddOn on Windows Server operating systems

To run Wowza Transcoder AddOn on the Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2012 operating systems, the following server features must be be installed:

Wowza Transcoder AddOn hardware acceleration

When running on a Windows 64-bit OS, the hardware acceleration (NVIDIA CUDA and Intel Quick Sync) used by Wowza Transcoder is only available when running Wowza Media Server as a standalone application. Due to driver accessibility restrictions while running as a Windows service, the hardware acceleration won't be available and only software encoding is invoked.

Relocating Wowza Media Server

Mac OS X and Linux installers don't provide an option to choose the installation location of the base server files. For Mac OS X, the location is /Library/WowzaMediaServer-[version]. For Linux, the location is /usr/local/WowzaMediaServer-[version]. All of the server startup scripts locate the server files through a symbolic link named /Library/WowzaMediaServer (Mac OS X) and /usr/local/WowzaMediaServer (Linux). If you want to relocate the base server files, you can move them to where you choose and then update this link using the ln -sf command.

Updated examples

If you're familiar with the installed examples in earlier versions of Wowza Media Server, you may notice that some examples have been removed from the Wowza Media Server installation while others have been renamed. The examples that have been removed are available for download from the Wowza website. For more information about the installed examples, see [install-dir]/examples/README.html. For more information about the examples that are available for download, see Wowza Media Server additional examples.


All Wowza Media Server documentation can be found in the Documentation and List of All Articles webpages.

Here are a few direct links to help you get started:


For free support for this release, see the Wowza Media Server Forum or send email to

When emailing, be sure to provide the following:

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