Perhaps you've been using the Windows Live Silverlight Streaming Service since in debuted in beta, however I've been using a private server to host Silverlight videos, nevertheless, recently I decided to claim my free 10GB of multimedia storage and play around with the service. What did I find out? Everything works great, however I uploaded a video and I must say, the default skin that appears to be unchangeable leaves a lot to be desired. What next? Well, we can put together a little Silverlight application and upload the video as an application giving us the flexibility of using any skin we desire.

The Easy Way

Ensure that you have the following components:

  1. Your free 10GB Silverlight Streaming Account
  2. Microsoft Expression Encoder
  3. Silverlight Streaming Publishing Plug-In for Expression Encoder

The easiest way of obtaining the desired Silverlight skin along with all required JavaScript files is from Microsoft Expression Encoder. If we launch Expression Encoder, import any video and immediately head over to the Output tab, select a template, configure the publishing settings (available because of the Silverlight Streaming Publishing plug-in) and encode the video, your video will begin uploading to the Silverlight streaming servers with your selected template.

The video below is hosted on the Silverlight streaming servers and demonstrates this technique.

This is by far the quickest and easiest way to alter the video skins for your videos hosted on the Silverlight streaming service. However, for those of you who wish to gain more control over your Silverlight application check out the MSDN article Encode a Video File Using Expression Encoder.