Post Magazine

July 2018

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STORAGE GALLERY 36 POST JULY 2018 FACILIS HUB SERVER GOES GLOBAL HUDSON, MA — The Facilis ( Hub Server, a performance aggregator that can be added to new and existing Facilis shared storage systems, has been deployed in several large and notable customer sites around the world. The company's new Hub Sever is seeing customers benefit from its ability to offload shared file system processing and increase data resilien- cy. Recent installations include: NBC Universal Marketing, Universal City, CA; Sony Pictures Animation, Culver City, CA; School of Visual Arts, NYC; NBC Universal International, London; Buddha Jones, Hollywood; Liberty University, Lynchburg, VA; Story House Media Group, Munich, Germany; Denver Broncos, Denver, CO; Intel Corporation, Santa Clara, CA; and Schnittwerk GmbH, Cologne, Germany. "With our TerraBlock and Hub Server system, the storage space can be used much more effectively," comments Marc Czessack, head of technical post at Schnittwerk GmbH in Germany. "This means that no copies and versions have to be created, and the individual workstations can also be used more flexibly for several applications. Most workflows have been simplified and automated in many ways. There are certainly cheaper solutions available, but they are far from being as flexible and fast." The Facilis Hub Server optimizes drive groups and increases the band- width available from standard TerraBlock storage systems. It gives new cus- tomers a way to scale bandwidth through dynamic aggregation, and current customers a way to extend the usable life of older systems. It also offers speeds over 4GB/sec. available from a single, virtual, project-based volume. During development of the new Hub Server, the Facilis team focused on broadcasters and facilities that were seeking to grow their content-creation infrastructure on a limited budget. A key design goal was to bring custom- ers with existing TerraBlock shared storage into the future, as well as those purchasing new systems. "Ever increasing media file sizes with 4K and HDR workflows are contin- ually putting pressure on facility infrastructure," says James McKenna, VP of marketing at Facilis Technology. "The Facilis Hub Server is focused on protecting customers' current storage investment while providing the most future-proof new systems available." TECHNICOLOR RELIES ON EXCELERO NVMESH STORAGE SOLUTION LOS ANGELES — As media & entertainment firms adopt 4K formats and 60fps high frame rates, with even higher resolution content like 8K and 16K formats on the horizon, data center and infrastructure teams at post houses are struggling to keep up with storage and networking demands. Doubling the frame rate from 30fps to 60fps also doubles the storage needs. Increasing resolution from 2K to 4K quadruples the storage need. When a studio switch- es from 2K 30fps to 4K 60fps, the post house must store and stream eight times as much data — without dropping frames, which impacts the technical quality of the asset. For those with legacy infrastructures such as Fibre Channel, the speed to ingest data to the workstations from the Fibre Channel storage arrays is just too slow and does not scale. Excelero ( is helping film and TV facilities such as Technicolor ( deliver dazzling work more readily and cost-effectively with NVMesh, a software-defined block storage solution that customers deploy on their choice of hardware from any server, storage or networking vendor. NVMesh allows any application to utilize pooled NVMe storage devices across a network at local speeds, while getting the benefits of centralized, redundant storage. For post and production houses, this improves the interactive editing process and enables customers to stream high-res- olution video at "Any-K" resolution, and at highest quality. One production company found that with just (6x) standard servers powered by NVMe flash, NVMesh enabled 4K streaming at 60fps to 55 workstations concurrently with a low cost per GB (includes servers, NVMe drives and networking). Technicolor achieved 99.8 percent of local NVMe storage server perfor- mance across the network in an initial use of Excelero's NVMesh, Intel 3D NAND SSDs with NVMe and 64-layer technology, Mellanox 16 port SN2100 100GbE switch and RoCE (RDMA over Converged Ethernet) technology, and a novel application of GPFS storage made even more scalable with Excelero's shared NVMe at local performance. "The IT infrastructure required to feed dozens of workstations 4K files at 24ps is mindboggling — and that doesn't even consider what storage de- mands we'll face with 8K or even 16K formats," says Amir Bemanian, engi- neering director at Technicolor. "It's imperative that we can scale to future film standards today. "Now, with innovations like the shared NVMe storage, such as Excelero pro- vides, Technicolor can enjoy a hardware-agnostic approach, enabling flexibility for tomorrow while not sacrificing performance."

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