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General Questions
Who or what is jellycast?

jellycast is the new media-casting arm of The Positive Internet Company Ltd. Positive Internet is a well established UK web hosting company, market leaders in the use of Open Source and Linux for managed and dedicated web application and site serving. Jellycast is primarily aimed at the emerging and growing world podcast community. We provide free low-traffic community podcasting services and highly cost effective corporate podcasting packages. Positive Internet provided the hosting and infrastructure behind the recent Guiness World Record breaking, "most downloaded podcast" in the world:The Ricky Gervais Show, which received over one million downloads per month.

What is a podcast?

Podcasting is the distribution of audio or video files (such as radio programs or music videos) over the Internet for listening on mobile devices (such as iPods) and personal computers. A podcast is a web feed of audio or video files placed on the Internet for anyone to download or subscribe. For a full history and comprehensive definition of podcasting we recommend reading the wikipedia podcast entry.

Is a podcast a streaming audio/video service?

Podcasts don't stream in the sense that the player has any direct control over which portion of the stream is heard at any given time (ie. you cannot skip forward in a podcast before the content has completed downloading). That said may players including iTunes have the capability to start playback before download has completed so in this regard there is an element of server streaming. For full streaming audio service we offer a number of alternative solutions. Please contact us for further details.

How fast is your network?

Our network is bottled lightning. With fibre optic uplinks to our transit provider and the capability of handling up to a Gigabit of traffic every second we provide one of the fastest networks available for serving your podcast.

Do I get a web hosting account with my podcasting account?

Our podcasting server is highly optimised and dedicated to the task of serving media files. Your podcasting account does not include web hosting. Our web hosting accounts are available at a hugely competitive rate with first class service and support and hosted on the best hardware available. At little more than a tenner a month you get a vast 1000MB, full shell and ftp access, 200+ real email accounts with antispam and antivirus options, your very own mysql database, server logs with analysis, CGI, SSI, DBI, suExec, Perl, ePerl, mod_perl, PHP4/5, C, C++, Java and Java Servlets and much much more. As with the podcast server, the webhosting servers are monitored 24/7 and fully backed up with an uninterruptable power supply.

Do I get an e-mail account with my podcasting account?

No, the podcasting product is a purposefully a dedicated specialised supported media file serving only service. Our e-mail products are priced and supported separately. Call us to discuss our highly competitive specialist email services. From a single IMAP account to a company-wide managed mail system.

Can my video or audio files be infected with viruses?

It is extremely unlikely that this can happen. Viruses are normally spread between software that is executed on systems rather than media files which themselves are accessed by media players. We have never heard of a media file being infected by a software virus, however it may be possible to disguise a virus as a media file and then in some way fool your victim into executing the file rather than playing it. We therefore recommend you use a local virus scanning tool on any file you upload for public viewing.

Can I get a dedicated podcasting server?

Certainly, there are a number advantages to doing this both with security and increased capacity and resource capability. If your podcast is likely to be very popular we would recommend you contact us to discuss your options in this regard.

Is my podcast data backed up?

All your data is fully backed up overnight to protect all your hard work. We can instantly recover from the previous day and with rolling off-server backups, even if you make the most catastrophic of errors and delete your podcasts we can recover them if you notify us quickly. We would however always ask you to make your own backups and keep copies of your valuable data.

How reliable is your podcast server, will it be accessible 24/7 around the world?

We only use state of the art, fully tested equipment from trusted vendors. Our podcast server is no exception. Utilising RAID and hot swap drives, as much resilience has been built into the server as possible. The server is also connected to our resilient network and has access to multiple Internet transit providers. Should one of our links go down, the other instantly carries the traffic. We make sure that all our servers are available from anywhere in the world by choosing our transit provides carefully and by actively resolving any routing issues as and when they may happen. The Internet works in such a way that from any given point to any other there are a multitude of different service providers who play a part in making that particular link work. If we find somewhere along the line something is not functioning as it should, we are always happy to contact our fellow Internet Providing peers directly to try to resolve such an issue quickly on your behalf.

Can I have more than one podcasting account?

You may only have one podcasting account under our free plan 0 option. You can however host as many podcasts from this single account as you wish. You can have any number of podcast accounts using our higher bandwidth plans.

Are your systems secure? Could someone access and change my podcast without me realising?

All our systems are locked down tightly to prevent this from happening. We constantly monitor the software security mailing lists for bug and security patches and apply these as soon as possible to keep our servers up to date and secure. Since our podcasting servers do little else but serve podcast audio data, we are able to further limit the potential for any security hole to arise by tightening our security far more than systems which may have to be handling e-mail or other web based traffic.

Can I use my existing web space to podcast from?

Whilst it is perfectly possible to use any existing web space to podcast we do not recommend this for a number of reasons. Our jellycast podcasting platform is specifically optimised in a number of ways to ensure maximum throughput and reliability for media casting. The jellycast servers are on high bandwidth fibre optic networks for near zero latency. In addition our control panel and FTP options offer an easy to use and highly secure platform for your data. A shared web hosting environment cannot offer this level of security or optimisation. Lastly the jellycast community and directory offer a well supported and exciting platform for your podcast. For these reasons we cannot see why anyone would not want to host a podcast with jellycast or prefer to use a web hosting environment.

Is it true Positive Internet broke a world record for hosting the most downloaded podcast show ever?

We're glad you asked this important question. Yes indeed, jellycast is brought to you by Positive Internet who were responsible for this world record. Our network has a proven track record for coping without interruption or glitch with over two million downloads of this 30 minute podcast per month for the 3 months it ran.

Can I do a live podcast?

Podcasts are never live in the sense of live radio. It is possible however to create live streaming media content using other server technologies and the Jellycast team have plenty of experience and advice on how to best achieve this taking advantage of open source and low cost software and our fantasticaly fast network. Please contact us for further information.

Is there a limit to how long or short a podcast can be?

No, however we would not recommend your podcast is overly long since this will affect how long it takes for listeners to download and may also increase your bandwidth costs. Audio podcasts tend to be 15 to 60 minutes long on average.

What are the charges for the podcasting service?

We have attempted to make our charges as simple and fair as possible. Up to the first 25GB of data transfer per month (which is enough for 5000 downloads of a 12 minute long speech podcast per month) there is no monthly charge at all! We only ask for a small initial administration and setup charge of 10 UK pounds. We do this because we wish to differentiate the quality of our service with those services who provide unrestricted and free service to all. By taking a setup fee we hope to encourage only serious podcasters and avoid our network and servers getting too cluttered and disorganised.

At the time of signing up to our service you should decide which plan you wish to use for bandwidth charges. Plan 0 allows up to 25GB of data transfer per month at no ongoing monthly cost. This is a good plan to choose if you have no real idea of how popular your podcast is likely to be. We have other plans for small monthly amounts which allow for more bandwidth to be used. Use our handy Jellycast bandwidth and pricing calculator to estimate how much bandwidth you may require and what the associated costs will be.

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