How to Use YouTube, Vimeo, and Other Online Services to Host Videos in Dreamweaver

Designers who are just beginning to use Dreamweaver to integrate multimedia into their creations should simplify by using one of the popular video-hosting sites, such as YouTube or Vimeo. These hosting services handle the storage, bandwidth, compression, formatting, and delivery of video assets to your users.

All you have to do is upload your video files and then include special code from that site in the HTML code of your web pages. The video plays within your pages, even though it’s not hosted on your web server.

If you’re designing a site that includes video that is confidential, sensitive, or used to meet business objectives, you will probably be best served by using a content delivery network (CDN). Services such as BrightCove, Akamai, and Amazon web Services not only handle bandwidth and delivery but also offer the option of transcoding your video clips to the correct format so they play seamlessly on a desktop, tablet, and smartphone.

YouTube is a great option if you want your video to reach the widest audience for free, but you give up some of your rights to your video in exchange for having it hosted on the site. Similarly, when you add a video to your site from YouTube, you’re stuck with the YouTube player, which includes the YouTube logo, as well as ads that might be shown.

Make sure to read through the terms and conditions on any video site you use so that you fully understand the rights that you may be giving away and how the site may use your video in the future.

Vimeo has won the loyalty of increasing numbers of video professionals because it offers a reasonably priced professional level of service that makes it easier to control the rights to your own videos and offers the option of adding videos to your pages without the Vimeo logo or links to other videos on the site.

Today YouTube and Vimeo seem to offer the best options for most small- to medium-sized websites, but competitors are emerging. The services that these video companies offer keep changing, so you may want to research the best services for your needs before you decide where to host your videos.

The advantages of hosting video on a site such as YouTube or Vimeo include the following:

  • Better video compression: Both YouTube and Vimeo optimize your video when you upload it to their servers, and they often to a better job than you could yourself.

  • Delivery of the right version to each visitor: YouTube detects the connection speed and device of your visitors and delivers video accordingly. If you visit YouTube with an iPhone, you see the video in MP4 format. View the same video with a computer, and you see the Flash version. Similarly, if you have a fast 3G connection, you see a higher-resolution version.

  • Bandwidth cost management: These services can help you save money. If your videos become popular and you host your own video, you may exceed the bandwidth limits of your web host and incur additional fees. Because video uses more bandwidth than other types of content, overages can get costly. Hosting your video on YouTube or Vimeo means you’ll never be surprised by extra bandwidth fees for video.

Hosting video on YouTube or Vimeo is easy. Here’s how it works:

  1. Create an account on the site by filling out a form (or log on to your account if you already have one).

    If you want to use the professional-level services on Vimeo, you also must pay a fee.

  2. Upload your files to the site through your web browser.

    In this process, the video is uploaded and encoded, which can take a few minutes depending on the site and how busy it is.

  3. Follow the site’s instructions for copying the code needed to embed your video on your website.

    For example, in YouTube, click the Embed button, which displays a dialog box so that you can control how the video is displayed to your users.

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  4. Open your web page in Dreamweaver. In the HTML code on your page, click where you want the video to appear, and then paste the code snippet.

    Use Dreamweaver’s Split view to make it easy to find the right place to paste the code, and make sure you paste the code into Dreamweaver in Code view, not Design view.

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