Four Reasons Why you Need a Modern File System for Media Workflows

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In media and entertainment, it’s often difficult to meet even the basic requirements for data storage. You need to ingest content quickly, provide fast access to that content, facilitate collaboration, and cost-effectively preserve and protect content over the long term.

But as viewing habits are changing, and the creative process continues to evolve, meeting the escalating requirements for storage is becoming more difficult than ever before. You need greater performance and flexibility to handle 4K and higher-resolution content from a growing number of sources. You also need to balance this with capacity and cost.  And last but not least, somehow streamline management of an increasingly complex storage environment.

Within the technology ecosystem of a modern storage implementation, there are a number of crucial aspects at play influencing the dynamic interplay of performance, capacity, management and cost. Chief among these is the file system.  So, let’s take a quick look at four key areas where a modern file system can really make a difference to your overall workflow efficiency.

Performance

It wasn’t long ago that organizations could make do with storage performance that was “just good enough.” However, as the industry has moved to higher-resolution formats, much more performance is required for real-time editing, color grading, transcoding, and other tasks.

This is where the right file system substantially improve the performance of the underlying storage hardware – no matter if its composed of solid-state drives (SSDs), hard-disk drives, or any combination of the two.  For example, a file system that separates user data and metadata operations—and runs those operations in parallel—enables both tasks to complete faster while helping ensure data transfer is unimpeded. In addition, a file system that slices logical unit numbers (LUNs) and enables the creation of stripe groups can help better match high-performance workloads to high-performance storage.

Flexibility
To enhance the efficiency of workflows and facilitate collaboration among team members, storage solutions must enable simple, flexible access to content. By creating a single, global namespace, a modern file system can give team members direct access to files, images, and other content at high speed—no matter where users are located.

The right file system will also support several types of storage systems and connectivity options. This means that the file system should natively support shared storage area network (SAN) environments with Fibre Channel connections as well as scale-out network-attached storage (NAS) environments over Ethernet. Such flexibility for different storage types and connectivity provides organizations the capability to architect the most ideal infrastructure for their specific use case.  And as most organizations will need to expand and grow as their business becomes more successful, they have the option to migrate to a different topology as future needs dictate. 

Optimization of Storage Resources

How can you effectively balance performance, capacity, and cost for your storage environment? One tried and true method is to architect a multi-tier environment that seamlessly integrates multiple types of storage; from Tier 0 flash-based storage through object-based systems, data tape archives, and cloud archives.  This kind of structure allows for the hottest data to be placed on the fastest storage pools, while cold or less frequently accessed data can be placed on capacity optimized storage pools. 

Another crucial functionality is that the data movement must be automated so it flows seamlessly across those storage tiers.  Ultimately this translates into the ability to keep current, time-sensitive projects on high-performance arrays while moving older, less-frequently accessed content to cost-effective media and large-capacity archives.

Streamlined Management

Very few media organizations have large, dedicated administrative teams to handle storage. As storage environments grow in size and complexity, organizations need ways to simplify management so their IT teams can more easily meet the requirements of their users. The right file system will streamline administration by offering an array of capabilities—from remote management options to analytics tools. This means an entire multi-tier environment can be managed with a small staff or even a single person.

Move forward with StorNext So as you can see, there are a handful of exceptionally good reasons why investing in a storage infrastructure powered by an industry leading file system could really make a large impact on your business. To learn more how StorNext can deliver the performance, flexibility, balance, and streamlined management I just described, download the new eBook, “Modern File System Functionality That Can Supercharge Your Media Workflows. “

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