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What's taking so long?

Andrew Pile
February 27, 2008 by Andrew Pile Alum
**Update:** Things seem to be back to normal for now, there may still be some delays later. For a video recap of this post, be sure to [check out this video]( by [Carleton Torpin](/copic). If you've uploaded a video in the past 48 hours or so you've probably noticed the extremely long wait times when it comes to your video getting converted to Flash. First off, we're sorry! Around here minimizing the amount of time it takes from upload to viewing has always been a priority, so having to wait around for hours to see your video is just unacceptable. Here's a little background on why this is happening: Over the past several months we've been planning to beef up our Flash encoding infrastructure to be able to encode a lot more videos at the same time. These improvements are still a few weeks a way. Earlier this week, Stage6 (a well-known and large video sharing site) announced they were shutting down completely, and users only had until the end of this week to move their videos off. For us, this is a good problem. A lot of great people from Stage6 have migrated here (hi guys!), brought some awesome videos with them, and we're very excited to have them. Unfortunately, this sudden and extreme influx crossed a tipping point where people were uploading faster than we could encode given our current setup. Normally, a backup like this clears up quickly when traffic dies down. However, people were uploading at a furious pace right through the night, and our encoding servers just haven't had a chance to catch up. Today we've taken some immediate steps to fix the problem: - Added extra encoding machines (including borrowing some from our office buddies at [CollegeHumor]( - Rolled out additional upload servers so transfer times stay speedy - Temporarily reduced the number of thumbnails you can choose to 3 (you can still upload custom thumbnails) - Optimized our internal file shuffling techniques so things get where they need to be faster - Sacrificed a goat Just to give you a sense of the level of traffic we're dealing with right now, on Monday we had more uploads in one hour that we did in an average day a year ago. At peak hours yesterday we were getting 50-75% more uploads than we were last week. Thanks to [Peter](/ptrm), we've managed to speed up the encoding process significantly and it looks like we've reached a point where we can stay ahead of the flood of videos coming our way. Unfortunately, it's still going to take awhile to work though the videos that are currently queued up. **We may disable uploading for a few hours tonight (after 12 am EST) to allow our machines to catch up.** Again, sorry for the inconvenience. In the mean time, grab a drink and relax. We'll automatically email you when your video has finished encoding.



Sorry about the goat. Being a stage6 exile I feel a bit responsible :)

Ted Roden Alum

We had two goats, so we've still got some room to move if all this doesn't work.

Soxiam Staff

billy? billy? hey, anyone seen my goat billy?


I'm glad to hear that that was a home grown goat.
I'm sure that your care for a green economy will pay off soon. :) good work guys.


365 minutes :(, but i love vimeo so its worth it :)

Evan Walsh

I'm glad you addressed this. I was wondering why it said 205 minutes!


Vimeo is growing sooooo big!

Chris Gampat

Not a problem...I see myself still sticking with you guys for a while. I trust you guys more vs. youtube and Vimeo also gives me more of a homely feel anyway.

Alika Awana PRO

Aint no thaaaang but a chicken waaaang brotha's.
You should make features like speedy uploads for extra cost when y'all figure out the whole Vimeo Pro subscription stuff. No problems here, thanks for being so ON IT GUYS! peace out

Cameron Christopher PRO

We may seem pissed, but deep down there's nothing but love and a little bit of impatience.

Go Vimeo Go!

Karen Abad Plus

I'm glad this is good!

I migrated from Stage 6 months ago.

And have since then posted on there that people should move here.

(what a bad person I am)


But guys are doing a good job either way and we all appreciate what you do for us.


eric cwiertny

The goat died a hero! All hail the Vimeo goat!


he, he. i allready thought that we stage6 ppl would cause that longer encoding and uploading times.

hey, dont look so sternly at me ;)

seriously, the staff here is doing a great job.
very cool to see that kind of communication with the community.

keep it up! :)

ah, and just in case you need a new toat, take mine. it makes me feel dizzy all the time. :P


Could you also offer the divx player. I know that divx will still be updating their player. Having the option to upload in divx or flash would be awesome. Even if it took 6 months to implement it would be worth the wait. If you guys made an announcement that you were going to use the divx player, you would get even more stage6 refugees to come here.


[dream mode on]

that would be realy awesome =)

[/dream mode off]


[dream mode on]

dreamers are the reason great things happen

[/dream mode on]


thanks for this posting clearing things up. i love vimeo more and more for each day. kudos!


logo upload seems not to work properly atm.
upload finished -> no video displayed.

mostlikely only a glitch because of the serverside upgrades :)

any ETA on how long the upload will stay dissabled? :)

logo upload works again :-)


thanks for the details and transparency! you rock! this site rocks.


get drunk, and by the time we're sober all will be well in the world

Patriot PRO

I was shocked to see 585 minutes as my wait time ;)

Took 2-3 hours to upload, and another 2-4 hours to convert after waiting in line.. definitely over 12 hours!

But I knew it would get done ;)


did the goat thing help? i'm just glad i have a safe place to upload


Succinct explaineo, & an AH ha (moment) for the three thumbnails (but of course),
Still marvel at how you ALL handle these "bumps in the road" , rather well.
Thanks for the explanation, we're hanging in there with you, vimeo is tops!

Mark Schoneveld

Thanks for the explanation! It's great to know I can count on you to let us know wtf is up when things are going south. Here's to clear servers. And sacrificed goats.

Joel Dueck

You know what would be cool? Make your encoder/converter available as some kind of download so we could do it locally if we wanted. Save your servers some stress eh?


thank you for working it out.


Thanks for the communication and transparency, you guys rock!


All the best for Vimeo. Right behind you guys :)

*poor goat though*

Erick C.

thanks for updating us. wassup Stage6 dudes!

Josh K

lol. I actually just found out the hard way that stage6 shut down about 3 hours ago. Was sad to see them go, but maybe not so bad after all; I found Vimeo. Anyone who sacrifices goats in the name of Encoding Queue Optimization is OK in my book.

Hey everyone, and hey to all you other s6 refugees!


interesting is that is still online.

local time 2008-02-29 11:14AM (CEWT = Austria)


Nice service you have here. Well-yeah VIMEO is awesome. Vimeo rocks! We definitely can wait for our servers to catch up. We don't want to spoil a good thing. The Billy goat must go!

M.Allen Taylor

You guys are doing great Andrew. By the way, if you run out of sacrificial goats give me a yell. I have a bunch of them from 2 days old to full grown 250 pounds bucks. (see video)

Matthew Carrozo

the goat had it comin'

but excellent work on holding the rest of the site together.

let us know when our expanded thumbnail options are back!


Hey, no problem.
I'm glad to have made it here !
Let me see what I can do to contribute.

David White

I have migrated a few videos here from my channel at Stage6. Cannot understand why anybody would convert a DivX file to Flash. Sorry to learn that you will not be using the DivX codec or DivX player since I will move my videos to the first site which does so. Stage6 was all about quality and although the quality at vimeo is acceptable I have come to expect a higher standard.


Yesterday i upload a HD video,
Upload ok
transcoding ok
Mail ok

but my video isn't visible at all for the public

I can see it but i'm alone, :(

why ?

Blake Whitman Staff

Which video are you speaking of? I see one in your profile and it plays fine for me.

Keep rocking guys. Amazing quality. Please do your best with encoding times. I have a spare goat if you need

mike ambs

This is great news - I don't mind the wait, especially knowing it means new people and new great videos.

The quality of this site is so great - the wait is well worth it ;)

Lars Cousteau

Any experince with the vimeo plus? Is it worth the money?


I uploaded a video this friday 9th and today monday 12 of August I continuos waiting for it.
What happened?


Some people have crazy wait times, so I guess I shouldn't complain about this 16 hours and counting for my 4 minute video that's 200mb upload. :/

Daniel Brown

I've been waiting an hour for a 50 second video. This is a terrible site

seyyed reza khatami

2 day passed and until my video is in converting this normal?

Stafford PRO

its been 5 days, why is this taking so long i am losing business

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