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PPLive — A Practical P2P Live System with Huge Amount of Users. Gale Huang P2P Software Architect [email protected] Shanghai Synacast Media-Tech Corp. Sept. 2007. Agenda. What is PPLive? An online video broadcasting and advertising network

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pplive a practical p2p live system with huge amount of users

PPLive—A Practical P2P Live System with Huge Amount of Users

Gale Huang

P2P Software Architect

[email protected]

Shanghai Synacast Media-Tech Corp.

Sept. 2007

  • What is PPLive?
    • An online video broadcasting and advertising network
    • An efficient P2P technique platform and test bench in the world
  • Common & Special characters
  • Continuous self-adjustment procedure
  • Key points PPLive most concerns for
introduction of pplive
Introduction of PPLive

What is PPLive?

    • An online video broadcasting and advertising network
      • Provides an online viewing experience comparable to that of traditional TV broadcasting
      • 75 million global installed base and 20 million monthly active users
      • 600+ channels on PPLive with content ranging from news, music, sports, movies, games, live video and other interactive services to a global audience
    • An efficient P2P technique platform and test bench

History of PPLive:

  • Bill’s story
    • Inventor of PPLive core technology
    • Dropped out of post-graduate program to start PPLive in dorm and grew the user significantly in the first two years.
industry trends
Industry Trends

PPLive is well positioned to exploit the next explosive growth

Video Streaming


Advanced Applications





File Sharing


Basic Applications

2001 2003 2004 2005


Encoding &




P2P file share

P2P Download


P2P Streaming



Napster/ Kazza

eMule/ Poco

Bit Torrent/ Thunder

Dudu Accelerate




xPlus/ ZCom/

Poco MagBox

Digital Rights


Digital Watermark

Introduction of PPLive ——Focus on P2P Streaming

Streaming technology

P2P technology

introduction of pplive distribution view
Introduction of PPLive——distribution view
  • PPLive is a P2P Live System
    • Media Publish System
    • P2P content delivery network
    • End users’ PPLive player
    • Multi-media formats Supported
    • DRM Supported


Online Show



common characters
Common characters
  • Common points
    • what topology of p2p architecture to be chosen
      • Tree based (multi-tree based)
      • Mesh based
      • Unstructured
      • Other DHT based…
    • How to organize peer nodes?
    • How to make peer nodes know and communicate with each other ?
      • Find the partners
      • Make use of the partners
    • How to manage the resource?
    • Most concern about the metric of the P2P System
different points


PPLive test bench




Different points
  • Most different points
    • Viewing experiences is the most important metric
    • Much more practical
    • Feedback from the PPLive test bench itself
      • 75m end users
      • Consider their viewing experience
      • Take responsibility of all users
      • Part of users have updated version which is under control , before spreading to all of users
pplive software architecture
PPLive software Architecture
  • PPLive has centralized servers taking charge of registering, providing the source and bridging with other applications
  • DHT based Super Node consists of stable SN and virtual SN
  • Each SN takes charge some Channels in Live system ; while in VOD system, each SN takes charge of a certain area
  • In each P2P group , we can assign a special p2p algorithm different with other groups

One Channel, One P2P Group

One P2P Group, One P2P Strategy

Smart routing Algorithm

Global Distribution

peer node architecture
Peer node architecture
  • Peer node
    • Key point of the whole P2P System
    • Implementer of the smart routing algorithm
    • Hierarchical design
    • A unified interface provided to the high level applications




PPLive Peer node architecture

pplive software architecture1
PPLive Software Architecture

Network layer view

P2P layer view

Global view

pplive common overlay
PPLive Common Overlay
  • A Common overlay network contains
    • Query queue(P2P orders)
      • Application related
        • Real streaming
        • VOD
        • File sharing
    • Download from the query queue (How to execute the orders)
      • Application independent
      • Ability of uploading and downloading
continuous self adjustment
Continuous self-adjustment
  • 1st Misunderstanding
    • For most P2P System, it is commonly thought: The more users look simultaneously the better view experience the users will have.
  • Conclusion
    • For most p2p system, especially for streaming applications (bandwidth wasted and real time requested application ), it is not necessarily the truth.
    • User scale greatly influences the architecture;
  • Initial PPLive core with Single Global Index
  • Chord based DHT is used for all Index Servers
  • Smart SN introduced to corporate with peers
  • Unified p2p platform proposed to support multi-applications
  • Distributed Index Server supported
  • Gossip based Peer communication mingled with DHT

May. 2007

May 2005

Oct. 2006

Dec. 2006

Jun. 2007

Nov. 2004


Over 250K peak simultaneous users to watch the “Super Girl” Live, China, Q3,2005

  • 2nd Misunderstanding
    • Theoretical model can lead to the real performance evaluation
  • Conclusion
    • Modeling the system has a big help to design and optimize the P2P application
    • P2P System’s capacity can just be proved by the fact of real operation
  • 1 PC server
  • 10Mb distribution bandwidth
  • 500kbps video
  • 250,000 audiences
  • 50,000 audiences from abroad

A NBA play-off game with Huston Rocket, Live, China, Q2,2007

Source: PPLive database

  • 1 PC server
  • 10Mb distribution bandwidth
  • 400kbps video
  • 1,480,000 audiences

Source: PPLive database

3rd Misunderstanding
    • Experimental environment can represent the real network environment.
  • Conclusion
    • PPLive was also born from the CERNET, which is specially for educational use and very idealistic for P2P experiment
    • PPLive encountered many difficulties while walking out from CERNET
      • Heterogeneous network
      • Unpredictable user pattern
      • Asymmetric network
      • Poor network condition, half of them are 512kbps bandwidth, while we run 400kbps video on it
    • Stronger and smarter algorithm should be used
pplive platform strategy

Content Provider


Services Provider

End Users

PPLive Platform Strategy

File Sharing

Live System

VOD System




P2P Content Deliver Network

Broadband Network Infrastructure

continuous self adjustment cont
Continuous self-adjustment (cont)
  • Deeply improve the users’ viewing experience
    • Based on the P2P streaming technology
    • Adapting for Chinese complicated network environment
  • Integrate the multi high level applications into this platform
  • Open the part of the platform interface to public
    • Let others join in this platform
thank you question time

PPLive—P2P changes our lives

Thank you!

Question Time