Large media files (over 5MBs) being delivered with a shared hosting service can take a long time to download and cause your learning site to respond slowly. When a remote learner accesses downloadable objects (media files, software, documents) or attempts to stream media from your Moodle or Totara site, it places a constant strain on your server and bandwidth.
Downloading media files with even average resolution can impact your upstream bandwidth, resulting in slow page-load times. This results in poor user experience, which often leads to increased site abandonment rates by learners and students. The typical LMS hosting packages are designed for basic web objects (tests, graphics, and documents); however, as your learning content contains more downloadable content, the features it uses must be backed by quality and a scalable bandwidth solution.
To solve this problem and eliminate slow loading times, Lambda Solutions has added a Content Distribution Network option to our existing Moodle hosting plans. Simply put, a content delivery network or a content distribution network allows for faster and more reliable delivery of your large files (such as videos, flash movies, learning games, and large picture files) to end users. It does this by maintaining copies of your learning content on several servers dispersed across many locations around the globe, and distributes the content to users based on proximity. So when a student or learner in New York needs to download a file, the Moodle CDN uses a server closer to the user in order to reduce download time.
Downloading web pages ‘static’ content (images, video, Flash, PDFs, etc) is 80-90% of the users’ response time. The Moodle CDN is the ideal solution for any files larger than 5MBs and is NOT limited to multimedia files but can also include presentation slides, text documents, images, animations, and any type of file used to enhance the remote learning experience.
Besides an improved site response time and user experience, a Moodle CDN offloads a large amount of data from your infrastructure resulting in cost savings. A CDN also enhances a web server’s quality, reliability, and scalability so you can grow from dozens to thousands of users without fail. Moodle CDNs optimize delivery and increase throughput and availability by delivering data to users from nearby servers, instead of the central server. This reduces the load on the central server, avoids bottlenecks, and multiplies the network speed. For example, Yahoo! discovered that properties which moved ‘static’ content off their application web servers to a CDN improved end-user response times by 20% – 40% or more.
Will your Moodle or Totara site benefit from offering rich media such as audio, images, and videos? Are you concerned that your present server might not be able to store large or multiple files and render them quickly? Many of our clients were concerned because remote learners are more impatient than ever, and waiting even a couple of seconds longer for a learning collateral results in site abandonment.
Additionally, adding a CDN to your existing Moodle hosting plan will allow you to differentiate between how your Moodle is hosted and how the more media-heavy elements of your course are hosted. Your Moodle would still be hosted on our servers, via your choice of a shared, virtual or dedicated Moodle hosting server. Your media, however, is hosted separately, using larger and more powerful super-servers. The result is in an online course that is free of disruption for your learners and does not require a huge price tag in order to be hosted properly.