Access the CougarVISION application in Cougar Village and Cougar Place:
Open your browser and type in (you do not need to type http://www). CougarVISION is not available on wireless at the present time. In order to access it you must be plugged in to your Ethernet wall connection in your room.  It is recommended that you disable your wireless card on your computer if you are using a laptop.

Accessing CougarVISION

You will see a screen like this.

Do not click on the Sign In button as this feature is not in use.  You need to have Java (current version 7, update 51) installed and enabled to use the services; you probably already have this installed or enabled.  You may have to edit you Internet Options/Security Settings as shown below, to allow the running of ActiveX Controls for Internet Explorer.  More information is available in the FAQs at the end of this document.

Security Screens

If you see this screen or similar, you must click Run or Allow to view the content on CougarVISION. This downloads a very small application that runs in your computer’s memory; it does not install anything. Depending on your Firewall settings, you may also need to allow it to modify your Firewall to allow the application to pass through or just turn it off.  All data networks at the University are behind a firewall.

Once this application is running you can use your browser for anything else or close it. When you are finished watching TV, close the application; it is then removed from your computer’s memory.




InStream launches with the Guide closed, showing just the player window. Interface controls such as the Guide button and Control bar appear whenever you pass the cursor over the player window.
Typically, the first time you click the Guide button, the Guide window opens in compact mode, showing only the Channel List.

The player and expanded Guide are two separate windows that can be opened, closed, moved, and resized independently. You can drag either window anywhere on the desktop to suit your preferences (just click anywhere in the window while holding down the left mouse button).

When the Guide is in compact mode, the player and Guide are docked and will move and resize together.

Controls over the viewing experience are available on the player window and Player Settings menu (right-click to open).

Watch TV

Watch TV

You can open or close the Guide at any time by clicking in the Guide button on the right side of the viewer screen.

TV Guide

TV Guide

Player Settings

Palyer Settings 

Right-click on the TV picture to see additional options and shortcut keys that are available. Those with right pointing arrows have additional options. The InStream Player Settings provide additional controls over the viewing experience, such as adjusting the video, enabling Full Speed Playback, and hiding the Dashboard. From the Player Settings menu, you can also enable Closed Captioning and configure Alerts and Reminders to monitor Closed Captioning streams.

Control Bar

Control Bar

The Control bar (located by default below the player window) is used to control video playback and perform various other functions. Hovering the mouse pointer over each icon describes its function. The Control Bar hides automatically when there is no mouse activity. The controls vary depending on whether Live Channels or On-Demand assets are being played. Live Channels are only available at this time on CougarVISION.

Moving and Sizing the Viewer

The viewer may be moved clicking and holding the mouse nearly anywhere there’s not a button or entry field and dragging the viewer window to a new location. It can also be re-sized by clicking and holding on the corners or sides of the view window.

Ending Your Viewing Session

To end your viewing session, click on the close button in the top right corner of the InStream™ viewer.


CougarVISION is an innovative service designed to provide video programming over the University’s data network in Cougar Village and Cougar Place. It will be available to other parts of the University campus in the future as infrastructure upgrades allow. CougarVISION offers the same local, national and international programming channels to watch on your computer, just like on the older cable network system did on a television set in most areas of the University.

 Before The InStream™ Player Application Loads

Why do I get a message in my browser that says my platform is unsupported?
This message means that the InStream player is not available for your platform. If you have what is determined to be an unsupported device, the portal attempts to display a helpful message to guide you in resolving the problem.

Will it work on my system with multiple monitors attached?
Multi-monitor displays are supported. Issues pertaining to multiple monitor display (e.g., poor display on one monitor and not the other) may be resolved by updating video drivers for your system.

When I direct my Web browser to the portal to ‘Tune In’, why does my browser ‘crash’ or show an ‘Applet unable to initialize’ or similar status message in the lower left corner?
Your Java run-time environment may be obsolete or corrupt. Users of Mac OS X platforms are advised to consider visiting and upgrading to Apple’s latest MRJ. Users of Windows and Linux platforms should consider retrieving the latest Java Runtime Environment at

When I click the launch button, I never see a player load, and there are no errors displayed.
The InStream player requires Java to be installed and working with your web browser in order to launch. It does not work on the wireless network at the present time.  If you see no errors after attempting to launch, Java may not be working correctly with your browser. You can verify this at

When I try to connect to a broadcast using my Web browser, I see a pop-up message, what are these messages and how should I reply to them?
These are security warnings that ask whether you authorize to load the signed software necessary to automatically provision your computer to view the selected content. These messages are common the first time you select a stream in a browser session. Select the ‘Grant’ or ‘Yes’ button to bypass each request, each time. If you do not want to see these messages again, check the ‘Remember this decision’ or ‘Always trust content’ or similar option before you select the ‘Grant’ or ‘Yes’ button or select the ‘Always’ button depending on the type of pop-up displayed. When you inform the security manager that you always want to grant authorizations to the software, the messages will no longer appear when you request to view enabled content in the future.

Why do I see the message ‘Unable to Initialize Transport’ in the browser’s status area?
This means that one or more of the certificate authorizations was not granted. Reload the page to force the browser to ask you for authorization again. You may also need to upgrade your Java installation (see elsewhere in this FAQ). You may need to close all instances of the browser and start again.

After The InStream™ Player Launches

Why does InStream display ‘No broadcast available’ ‘Retrieving guide data’, or ‘Waiting for Broadcast’, and then do nothing?
The stream may not be available on the network, your computer system may not be receiving multicast data from your network connection, or the stream may be blocked by a personal firewall. Multicast is a standard network-based data distribution technology used to broadcast services on the network. If you encounter one of these messages but never receive guide data or video stream, you may have a firewall or other configuration issue that prevents multicast data from reaching the application on your system.

Some additional information can be found below.

Multiple Network Interfaces: You may encounter problems if your computer is configured to use several different connections to the network such as a wired 802.3 and wireless 802.11x adapters. Disable settings for wireless adapters and try again.

Firewalls: If your computer has a personal firewall such as Zone Alarm or Black Ice installed and configured to ‘Block Internet Servers’, you will not receive multicast services even if your network connection is multicast enabled, because an improperly configured firewall will block multicast. To enable multicast on a system with a firewall you can either temporarily disable or remove the firewall software by going to Control Panel < Add/Remove Programs (Windows), or reconfigure the firewall program to ‘Allow Internet Servers’ in an option menu. Your firewall must be configured to allow the IP addresses carrying the multicast traffic on your network (e.g., 233.0.103.x, check with your site technical support). Also, be sure to allow the following ports: incoming multicast udp ports: 4900 and 4901 and outgoing unicast udp port 4902. Keep in mind that some network services client applications may install firewall software on your client device without your knowledge (e.g., Cisco – IPSec VPN). If you suspect this to be the case, consider opening that application, finding the firewall option and disabling it, closing the application then try accessing the video services again. If it now works, consider appropriate configuration of the firewall as mentioned earlier.

Note: Windows XP provides a built-in personal firewall that is disabled by default. If you have not enabled this feature and have no additional firewall software, multicast should not be blocked.

NAT Routers: If your computer is behind a NAT (Network Address Translation) router, you will probably not be able to receive multicast traffic. Check with your support organization if you believe this to be the case.

Linux Users: Verify that your kernel is enabled for IP multicast.

Some Balckberry software also prevents receptin of the broadcast.

Why does InStream display ‘Tuning In’, or ‘Connecting’, and then do nothing – or worse, crash?
The stream may be suffering from network packet loss, rendering it unwatchable, or it may be incompatible with our player software. Contact technical support or network support at your location for further assistance.

Why does InStream display ‘Session Not Authorized’, or ‘You are not authorized to view’?
Your video service provider is controlling access to the InStream player and its video content, and likely requires you to contact your local support desk to determine how to successfully view the video content.

Why does InStream display ‘License server not responding’?
Your local firewall may be blocking network ports required to use the player successfully, or there may be other issues related to the network. Please contact the help desk at ext. 713-743-1411 for further assistance.

Why does it take so long to connect to the transmission when using Internet Explorer?
This may be caused by an early version of the Microsoft Java Virtual Machine (JVM). Upgrade to the latest version of the Java run-time environment at

Why does it sometimes take a while for the video and audio to restart when I click Stop, then Play?
Your computer has to leave and rejoin the multicast group for that service, then reacquire the stream. This may result in a brief delay.

How long should it take for video to start playing after I select a channel?
It should take only a few seconds after selecting an enabled channel. A brief delay of a few seconds is normal. On the Mac platform, it may take up to a minute to start playing.  If the video has not appeared in 30 seconds, there is a problem either with your platform, it’s ability to receive the network transmission, or other problems that may require the assistance of your site technical support. Close all unnecessary programs and try to restart InStream™.

Why do the onGuide™ event times appear to be inaccurate by an hour or two for the programs showing?
The time zone and system clock time of your computer (PC/Mac/Linux) might be incorrect. Be certain that you set the time zone, date, and time appropriate for your location and select the daylight savings time option if appropriate. If your time settings are correct for your location, notify your local support desk.

Why do I get the message ‘Ready’ or ‘Waiting for Broadcast’ in the InStream™ information window?
The playback of the stream may have been “Stopped”. Try clicking the “Play” button to restart playback. If this condition persists, notify your local help desk.

Why is my video not smooth like TV?
The streams are placed on the network at a ‘full motion video’ rate (30 frames per second). Your version of Microsoft DirectX may not support monitors that are set above a scan rate of 75Hz or your CPU is taxed by other applications and not enough CPU bandwidth is available for InStream™ to display full frame-rate video. The following suggestions may help: check your CPU load with the CPU monitoring tool provided by your Operating System. If you have surplus CPU cycles available, try to change the scan rate on your monitor to 75Hz. If not, consider closing some of your other opened applications. Also consider upgrading graphics card drivers and/or your system software (e.g., Microsoft Update, DirectX (if used), Apple OS X update, or try a faster computer).

Another possible cause is that Full Speed Playback has been inadvertently set to None. Right-clicking (Windows/Linux) or control-clicking (Mac) the mouse over the player, and selecting the appropriate Full Speed Playback option should fix this.

Microsoft Windows Specific

Why does my Windows PC ‘lock-up’ when video starts to play?
Your current graphics card drivers may not handle overlays properly. Upgrade to latest video drivers for your graphics hardware.

Why does my cursor flash when the video is running?
Your drivers may not handle graphics overlays properly. Consider changing the properties of your mouse pointer in the control panel to normal pointer and turn off the ‘enable pointer shadow’ option.

Why does my browser crash instead of loading InStream™ or the Java applet will load but nothing happens?
Be sure to install all Critical Updates at The Critical Update package may include an up-to-date Java Virtual Machine (JVM) from Microsoft, which may fix this problem. More information in recommended Java plugins can be found elsewhere in this FAQ.

Does it work on Macs?
Yes. Currently InStream™ supports OS X on the new Intel platform.  It does NOT work on a Mac using the Chrome browser.

Does it work on Linux platforms?
Yes, InStream™ supports RH Linux 7.3 and later in X/Windows with OpenGL. See platform requirements in another part of this FAQ. With Linux, the first request to watch IP video may ask that you accept and install the appropriate Java plugin. This may show a series popup messages to guide you through installation of the appropriate Java run-time environment.

How do I upgrade my Java Runtime Environment?
See for help with installing Java on your PC.  It is recommended that you remove all versions of Java, re-start your computer