Maintaining High Performance Storage As You Grow

Stephen Tallamy, CTO, EditShare

When we talk about high performance storage, what do we mean?

Most obviously, your content must be stored securely, with at least one and preferably multiple layers of resilience. And you need to be able to access that content quickly, when you need it, and in the form you need it.

Those requirements are the same, whether you are a start-up, a growing business, or the largest production company in the world. This ability to scale is likely to be central to your choice of storage platform, unless of course you are content never to grow as a business, which seems unlikely.

While it may not seem obvious, this is a fundamental part of the design of the EditShare storage environment. We think that this is a really important point: wherever you start, EditShare grows with you.

EditShare EFS 200: A Solid Starting Point

In my recent blog on how much storage you might need as a creative producer, I suggested that a start-up – a YouTuber or a corporate communications department, say – might start with an EditShare EFS 200 appliance. This starts at 24 TB of storage, protected by RAID-6.

It is a network device, accessible by Mac, Windows or Linux clients, so to your editors and other post users it looks like any other storage device. It includes FLOW, a powerful production asset management system that helps you manage and keep track of your content. That means you can create bins and folders in advance, so your editors sit down with their preferred software tools and the material they need is there, organized, connected and waiting.

Flexible Expansion: Adding Storage to Meet Your Needs

As your needs grow, you simply add more disk drives into the chassis, up to a maximum in a single 2U frame of 360 TB. If you need some fast access cache for regularly used material or high bitrate codecs, some of the drives can be SSD.

You can add more devices, either of the same type or one of EditShare’s larger frames. You can put some of your content in the cloud using EditShare FLEX.

The important point is that all you have to do is add the extra storage. Routines built deep in EFS recognize the extended capacity and spreads your material efficiently across it. Loads are balanced equally across devices and RAID groups completely automatically, without the need for intervention and without limiting performance.

Managing Your Content Library with Tiered Storage

As your content library expands, you might want to manage it in a tiered structure, with online storage for active media, nearline storage devices to provide rapid response, and archived storage for completed projects.

Or you might need to open multiple locations, either to provide extra capacity or to service specific projects. To minimize issues caused with network connections between the sites you could put some storage in the remote locations.

Built-in Content Management with EditShare FLOW

EditShare storage management software is augmented with FLOW asset management. FLOW has simple tools to manage all of this, so you determine what content needs to be moved and when. This can be determined automatically by business rules, initiated by operator interventions, or more likely a combination of both. When spare network bandwidth is available, automated routines backup content from remote locations to the central facility or to the cloud.

As I said earlier, this is all baked into the EditShare environment. Whatever the reasons your storage network needs to grow, you simply add the capacity – more disks or more devices – and the software handles the rest, balancing loads and ensuring that it continues to provide the high performance your work needs.

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