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Kaltura - Best Practices (UW-Madison)

This document is intended to provide foundational information about UW-Madison Kaltura MediaSpace, including some guidelines and recommended best practices for usage.

If your questions are not answered by this document, please contact the DoIT Help Desk.

A screenshot of the "Kaltura MediaSpace" logo from UW-Madison's MediaSpace instance at


Recommendations for creating and uploading media to Kaltura MediaSpace to help lighten the load on the system

These recommendations are more important while Kaltura MediaSpace is seeing unprecedented usage during the COVID-19 situation:

  • Upload a short (<5 second) sample video first so you know what to expect from the recording and upload process.
  • Break up your course content into 4-6 minute mini-lecture segments. Shorter videos keep your students attention and are faster to upload and process. See the Video Guidelines article for more info on recommended duration.
  • Upload material in the order you need it and upload early to allow time for file upload, processing, and potential errors.
    • Even when Kaltura MediaSpace is running smoothly other internet service providers are seeing degraded service which could limit your upload speed. Test your speed by going to, run the test and click the "Show more info" button to see your upload speed. 1 Mbps upload speed should be able to upload a 250 MB file in about 33 minutes.
  • Don’t upload all your course content at once. Space it out over a few days if possible.
  • If you are creating narrated slide lectures use Powerpoint for Office 365 slideshow (Win, Mac). If you use Kaltura Capture only record one input - webcam or screen. Recording both inputs doubles the file size, the time it takes to upload and process your file. Consider recording a short intro video with your webcam and the rest of your lecture segments with just the screen.
  • Upload and processing times will lengthen when there are a lot of users uploading content (for example late March 2020 during the COVID-19 situation). It may take a half-hour to an hour to upload a 15 minute video and process overnight. Keep an eye on the Learn@UW-Madison KnowledgeBase for notifications regarding performance impacts and outages.

How is Kaltura MediaSpace intended to be used?

Kaltura MediaSpace is a service available delivery of media files by UW-Madison faculty, staff, and students for UW-Madison-related purposes. Kaltura is not meant to be a storage repository where media lives forever. We recommend you keep a backup copy of your media files outside Kaltura and delete media that is no longer needed or used. In the future it is possible old media may be archived or deleted if a media item has not received any plays within two years.

Can I upload whatever I want to Kaltura MediaSpace?

Users should comply with campus policies, including Responsible Use of Information Technology Policy and the University of Wisconsin System’s Kaltura Terms of Use Policy. UW-Madison does not routinely pre-screen, monitor, or regularly review posted content and associated data, yet reserves the right to remove, at any time, at its sole discretion, any content considered to violate these Terms of Use or the provisions of any other campus policies that may govern use of the campus networks, or that it deems in violation of a University policy or local, state, or federal law.

While Kaltura MediaSpace content can be delivered to audiences outside UW-Madison, the service is not intended for viral videos that receive tens of thousands of hits. Please consider using an alternate video platform like YouTube or Vimeo if you want content to have a wide public audience. If a media item has “gone viral”, an alternative delivery platform may need to be considered. If you decide to host viral videos using YouTube, you have the option to embed those videos in Kaltura. Please see Kaltura Media Ingestion Tools for more information.

What are your recommendations for webcam recordings and screen captures?

We recommend you keep your webcam and screen recordings short (5-10 minutes) for a few reasons:

  1. Shorter recordings reduce the cognitive load on the viewer;
  2. Lapses in the viewer's attention become more frequent with longer videos;
  3. Updating your material is much easier if it is more modular (updating a 5 minute video is a lot easier than a 60 minute video); 
  4. Longer recordings tend to encounter more frequent technical issues

How much storage is available to me?

As of Fall 2019 there are no formal storage or bandwidth quotas in Kaltura MediaSpace, but users are encouraged to be mindful of the amount of media uploaded. Kaltura is not meant to be a storage repository. We strongly recommend you keep copies of your media files outside Kaltura and delete media that is no longer needed or used. In the future it is possible old media may be archived or deleted if a video has not received any plays for two years.

What format of video should I upload to Kaltura MediaSpace?

We generally recommend that you upload MP4 video to Kaltura MediaSpace. More detailed specifications can be found in Kaltura MediaSpace - Recommended practices, video source formats and specifications (UW-Madison).

How long can I keep my media on Kaltura MediaSpace?

Kaltura MediaSpace is not a repository for the permanent storage or archival of digital media. Currently, it is the responsibility of each user to keep a copy of their media, monitor the active usage of their media, and remove media that is no longer being actively viewed or used.

For more information on how to monitor the active usage of your media please see Kaltura - MediaSpace analytics (UW-Madison)

As of Spring 2020 there is no regular removal of media from Kaltura MediaSpace. However, we are exploring options for potentially removing media based on usage patterns or age. Users would be notified in advance of any removal policies. We recommend you keep backup copies of your media files outside Kaltura and delete media that is no longer needed or used. In the future it is possible old media may be archived or deleted after a period of two years of inactivity.

Is the original media file kept in Kaltura MediaSpace?

Source files are retained as part of the transcoding process, so they can be retrieved from Kaltura MediaSpace. Although the Kaltura MediaSpace server retains the original copy, it is recommended that the content publisher retain an original copy of their media content for archival or other purposes. For information on how to download the source file, please see Kaltura - Downloading Media (UW-Madison).

What happens to my media when I leave UW-Madison?

If you are leaving the university, please delete media that is no longer needed. If you would like to transfer ownership of your media to another user, please follow this tutorial: Kaltura - Media Collaboration - Changing Media Ownership, Adding Editors and Publishers. Files deleted from Kaltura MediaSpace can sometimes be restored if the restoration request is made within a week of deletion by submitting a request from Kaltura - Requesting changes including ownership, download, co-editor/co-publisher/co-viewer and restoring deleted media (UW-Madison) . Users can also submit a bulk ownership transfer request by following the instructions in Kaltura - Requesting changes including ownership, download, co-editor/co-publisher/co-viewer and restoring deleted media (UW-Madison) .

Should I caption my video?

UW-Madison’s Web Accessibility Policy specifies that every non-text element posted on the web—including audio and video files—must have a text equivalent. Users can add captions by following  Kaltura - How to add a captions file to media in MediaSpace (UW-Madison) . For more information on captions see Captioning transcripts, and audio descriptions - Getting Started (UW-Madison) .f

Are there recommended conventions for tagging media?

Tags are used to help find media when searching. You should make tags as meaningful and relevant to the media as possible so they will be useful in a search. You can add as many tags as you want. Tags can be a useful way to group your media. For instance, if you have several pieces of media for one course, it’s a good idea to tag them with the same course title or code so that they can be located together in a search.

Can I give other people access to manage my media and channels?

Yes. For more information about sharing access to channels, please see Kaltura - Creating, accessing, and adding members to a channel. For more information about sharing access to your media, please see Kaltura - Media Collaboration - Changing Media Ownership, Adding Editors and Publishers.

What do I do if I need help, have feature requests, or bugs to report?

Please contact the DoIT HelpDesk with any requests for assistance, feature requests, or bugs.

See Also:

Keywords:kaltura, mediaspace, video, streaming, online, stream, media, best, practices,storage, image, terms of use, caption, captions, tagging, tag, channel, share, policy, policies, webcam, screen, recording media   Doc ID:45459
Owner:Learn@UW Madison .Group:Learn@UW-Madison
Created:2014-12-05 12:56 CDTUpdated:2020-03-30 10:07 CDT
Sites:DoIT Help Desk, Learn@UW-Madison
Feedback:  6   1