Real Time Media Flow Protocol (RTMFP) is a proprietary protocol developed by Adobe Systems. RTMFP enables direct peer-to-peer communication between multiple Adobe Flash Players and applications built using the Adobe AIR framework for the delivery of rich, live, realâ€time communication.
By using RTMFP, applications that rely on live, realâ€time communications, such social networks and multiâ€user games will be able to deliver higher quality communication solutions. RTMFP enables endâ€users to connect and communicate directly with each other using their computerâ€™s microphone and webcam. RTMFP will not support file or document sharing. This solution enhances the current functionality in the Flash Player by creating a higher quality solution that will perform better regardless of variations in the network
RTMFP will reduce the bandwidth costs for direct, live, realâ€time communication solutions, such as audio and video chat and multiâ€player games. Because RTMFP flows data between the endâ€user clients and not the server, bandwidth is not being used at the server so solutions are less expensive to scale. RTMFP also increases the speed of delivery through the use of UDP. UDP is a more efficient (but less reliable) way to send video and audio data over the Internet that reduces the penalties associated with missing, dropped, or out of order packets. RTMFP has two features that may help to mitigate the effects of connection errors.
Rapid Connection Restore: Connections are reâ€established quickly after brief outages. For example, when a wireless network connection experiences a dropout. After reconnection, the connection has full capabilities instantly.
IP Mobility: Active network peer sessions are maintained even if a client changes to a new IP address. For example, when a laptop on a wireless network is plugged into a wired connection and receives a new network address.
The principle difference is how the protocols communicate over the network. RTMFP is based on User Datagram Protocol (UDP), whereas RTMP is based on the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP). UDPâ€based protocols have some specific advantages over TCPâ€based protocols when delivering live streaming media, such as decreased latency and overhead, and greater tolerance for dropped/missing packets, at the cost of decreased reliability. Unlike RTMP, RTMFP also supports sending data directly from one Adobe Flash Player to another, without going through a server. A serverâ€side connection will always be required to establish the initial connection between the endâ€users and can be used to provide serverâ€side data execution or gateways into other systems. The user of a Flash Media Server will also be required to authorize network address lookup and NAT traversal services for the clients to prevent Flash Player from being used in an unmanaged way.