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This paper presents a rate control algorithm designed for a content-based 3D wavelet video compression scheme. Wavelet compression schemes demand a rate control algorithm for real-time video communication systems. The new rate control algorithm manages the uncertain factors in both the size of the GOF and the network delay, and the new rate control algorithm is based on the leaky bucket approach, which employs a frame buffer for both the client and server sides. An intelligent buffering mechanism is developed on the client side to ensure the continuous display of reconstructed image frames. For the server side, a feedback mechanism is used from the client to control the server's buffer content and ensure that the acquisition rate of the server and display rate of the client are equal.