Active Channel Multicaster

Definition of Active Channel Multicaster in The Network Encyclopedia.

What is Active Channel Multicaster

A component of Microsoft Site Server that provides the capability of distributing channels only one time per refresh period. This results in considerable savings in bandwidth and server resources, since networks not using the Active Channel Multicaster require each client to separately pull the same channel content.

For example, if a network has 10 clients, the same content would traverse the network 10 times.

How it works

Active Channel Multicaster uses multicasting to reduce the number of connections needed to broadcast channel information. The server opens only one connection to the Web in order to retrieve the channel information.

The multicast server then transmits a single copy of the channel information, directed toward an Internet Protocol (IP) multicast group.

Users who have subscribed to this multicast group receive the information being transmitted directly into their Microsoft Internet Explorer browser cache. Users then view the multicast information through the standard Internet Explorer interface.

To receive Active Channel Multicaster multicasts, Internet Explorer client browsers must have the Multicast Delivery Agent (MDA) installed on the client computers. The MDA runs in the background client computer and

  • Checks the CDF file against the client browser’s subscription list to identify multicast information
  • Replaces the delivery agent for the multicast channel content
  • Supplies the user with information about multicast subscriptions