I just got back from an Annexpro event http://www.annexpro.com/news-events/. The event was held at the Annexpro office and was “Managing Digital Content Throughout Your Workflow with Backup and Archive” presented from Atempohttp://www.atempo.com/ on their Atempo Digital Archive (ADA): “a long-term data storage system and file archiving solution aimed at mid-market and larger organizations“.
The product looks pretty easy to use and sounds fairly easy to setup with a nice GUI, drag and drop interface, and good support for both backups and archiving. The interesting part was some of the integration directly into Final Cut Pro and Final Cut Server (and more Avid and other products on the way), as well as drag and drop from Finder (on the Mac, although supported on multiple operating systems). It looks like Atempo are partners with lots of the major players in software and hardware as well as dealing with government, and I am always interested whenever NASA is mentioned (although how involved is hard to say).
The focus was on digital content and being able to optimize SAN or NAS storage by archiving data to low cost disk or tape archive, with easy retrivial. One of the nice features of ADA was its ability to have the files appear as if they were still on disk while they were archived and made it transparent to the user. Another interesting approach was automatic archiving which allowed rules to be setup to automatically archive an entire folder (such as if a file is over a year old and has not been accessed in a month, archive it). There was also quite a bit of metadata that was involved which allowed it to easily store the data.
One of the things that would be a nice to have, was an in place versioning system. The answer to this could be by archiving separate copies for each version, but would be nice to have built in (similar to SVN, Git, Perforce or AlienBrain) but also automatically archived. Really good
(preferably open source) binary versioning with backups, minimal storage and ease of navigation and retrieval of data is something that seems to be lacking in most studios as there is no definite solution. The amount of memory used with something like SVN on binary data quickly becomes unusuable, as networks and harddrives begun to struggle with 100s of gigs or multiple terabytes are in play.
Still and interesting presentation and it is always good to see what kinds of solutions are out there.
Bye for now,