Wednesday, December 9, 2009

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Use SkyDrive for Hosting Streaming Media

If you've tried to use Windows Live SkyDrive to host a podcast or video, you may have noticed that the link seems to  become unusable within a few hours of uploading the file. Well, it does, and that's due to Microsoft implementing a changing URL system, probably precisely for preventing streaming media to be placed on, and clog up, their servers. The old method, which worked fine up until a few months ago, would be to right-click the file you wanted to stream in your SkyDrive library, copy the link location, take the "?download" text off the end of the address, and that would be the direct link.

Well my cyber friends, don't despair, Tim Acheson has come to our rescue! Acheson has created a dynamic redirect URL that allows you to use SkyDrive to host streaming media, and will work as a permanent link! Here are the steps:

1. ASK Tim Acheson if you can use his redirect link. He's worked hard on it, and would like to know how many of us are taking advantage of it. It's only right to ask permission from the author, and it's not all that difficult or time consuming, so do it!

2. Copy this URL, as it will be the first half of your permanent link: 

3. Go to the SkyDrive page that simply shows your file as an icon. It's hard to describe this page exactly, so I've got an example for you HERE.

4. Copy that URL, and paste it behind Acheson's URL listed above so that it follows the "=" sign.

Once you've followed these steps, you've got a working link! The streaming URL for the file is the one that changes, not the URL that takes you to the file's SkyDrive page. Tim's basically gotten the redirect to automatically click to access the file that the SkyDrive link is connected to. This is AWESOME news for us podcasters, as we can now use a full 25GB of space to host audio, video, and whatever streaming media we want! Be sure, again, to ask Tim if you can use his redirect URL, and thank him while you're at it for helping us out majorly.

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