Thursday, September 30, 2010

what is Microsoft NetMeeting ?

Posted by OurTech Team | Thursday, September 30, 2010 | Category: |

Microsoft NetMeeting was a VoIP and multi-point videoconferencing client included in many versions of Microsoft Windows (from Windows 95 OSR2 to Windows XP). It used the H.323 protocol for video and audio conferencing, and was interoperable with OpenH323-based clients such as Ekiga, and Internet Locator Service (ILS) as reflector. It also used a slightly modified version of the ITU T.120 Protocol for whiteboarding, application sharing, desktop sharing, remote desktop sharing (RDS) and file transfers. The secondary Whiteboard in NetMeeting 2.1 and later utilized the H.324 protocol.

NetMeeting was originally bundled with later versions of Internet Explorer 3, and the launch version of Internet Explorer 4.0.

Before video service became common on free IM clients, such as Yahoo! Messenger and MSN Messenger, NetMeeting was a popular way to perform video conferences and chatting over the Internet (with the help of public ILS servers, or "direct-dialing" to an IP address). The defunct TechTV channel even used NetMeeting as a means of getting viewers onto their call-in shows via webcam, although viewers had to call on their telephones as a matter of redundancy because broadband Internet connections were only starting to proliferate.

Since the release of the initial MSN Messenger Service (sic) and later Windows XP, Microsoft has deprecated it in favour of Windows Messenger and Microsoft Office Live Meeting [1], although it is still installed by default (C:\Program Files\NetMeeting\conf.exe). Note that Windows Messenger, MSN Messenger and Windows Live Messenger hook directly into NetMeeting for the application sharing, desktop sharing, and Whiteboard features exposed by each application.
[edit] Protocol architecture

    * NetMeeting uses H.323 standard for IP/Ethernet LAN multimedia conferencing:
          o Audio codec uses ITU G.723.1 and G.711 standards and offers bit-rates between 5.3 kbit/s and 64 kbit/s.
          o Video codec uses ITU H.263 standard and supports 30 fps.
    * NetMeeting audio and video codecs use RTP above UDP/IP connections.
    * Whiteboard, Chat, and File Transfer use ITU T.120 Data Conferencing standard above TCP/IP connections.

[edit] Discontinued

As of Windows Vista, NetMeeting is no longer included with Microsoft Windows, and Microsoft recommends using newer applications such as Windows Meeting Space, Remote Desktop Connection, Remote Assistance, Windows Live Messenger and Microsoft Office Live Meeting in place of NetMeeting. Windows Meeting Space works only over peer-to-peer IPv6 local networks, not the internet, only has collaboration features and lacks NetMeeting's conferencing features, however Windows Live Messenger allows 1-to-1 audio-video conferencing. Live Meeting is a paid subscription/service-based offering that [1] includes multi-party conferencing features. For internet collaboration and screen sharing, Microsoft has also released SharedView as a separate download.

However, NetMeeting can still be installed and run on Windows Vista. A hotfix for Vista was published by Microsoft on March 22, 2007 [2]. Users can obtain this hotfix by contacting Microsoft Support. The hotfix contains an installer package to install NetMeeting 3.02 on Windows Vista Business, Enterprise or Ultimate editions. Version 3.02 is essentially a port of 3.01 to Windows Vista, however some features are not available in 3.02 such as remote desktop sharing invitations (incoming) and whiteboard area selection.[2] Microsoft has stated that the Vista compatible version is unsupported and is only meant as a transition tool to help support collaboration sessions when used with Windows XP-based computers.[2] NetMeeting 3.01 can also be installed under Windows Vista by setting the installer's compatibility level to NT4.[3]

The Windows Vista version of NetMeeting does not install and work properly natively on Windows 7. However, Windows XP Mode (a virtual XP computer running within Windows 7) can be used to regain all NetMeeting functionality. Windows Meeting Space has also been removed in Windows 7. Microsoft SharedView requires internet connectivity, it does not work only over a local LAN.

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