“Deluxe OnDemand started about four and a half years ago. And, originally our target was the rent-tailers and retailers – so providing a library of content to power their online video stores. And over time we’ve really morphed a little bit to help power cable operators. So, both to direct to the set-top for playback and also for their TV Everywhere strategies for a delivering video-on-demand content. We have to take in all the content from 200-plus different content providers; aggregate it all, normalize all the meta-data, create transform rules and as well as do all the video transcoding to all the various formats. So whether it’s for mobile tablet all the way up to 1080p, even your ultra high-def TV.
Our SLAs (Service Level Agreements) are very strict. We deliver direct to end consumers and when they push that play button they want to playback the movie. And that’s the main revenue source for, you know, the people selling the video-on-demand. And what we were doing was relying on the CDNs for the storage of the content. So now we are able to bring that back, and store it in house. And what it does is it- it’s actually enabled us to shrink our footprint required. So before we were having to store copies of the content multiple times, so whether it was for different DRM formats, different streaming formats, and different – I’d say multiple audio channels and things like that – we can now dynamically package that by having that content stored on our servers and use more advanced technology.
The Scality RING is a key part in terms of the storage – that’s where all the content exists that’s delivered to end consumers. So we’re storing all the movies and episodic content. So Scality overall has been a great technology for meeting the SLAs. So, in terms of being able to upgrade the RING, you know, while its live- you know it it’s pulling content from each of the nodes, so if one node is down you can still pull the content given the erasure coding. So, from an uptime and reliability – being able to do upgrades and being able to keep the data live all the time; it’s been a great solution. So you’re less reliant on the simple RAID groups that you get from hardware, you know. Now you have a large erasure coded content that’s spread across multiple hardware devices. So you can survive multiple hardware failures and it would be on multiple nodes, and you can ensure that your data integrity is safe. So even if you were to take down all the hardware and bring it back up, it’s the software essentially that’s maintaining the data across the disk.
The other benefits are really from a performance point of view; so anything that happens from a consumer point of view is, you know, they’re playing back movies – so it could be mobile devices as low as 250 kb or it could be ultra high-def content as high as 40 to 50 megabit. So having all those different requests for those, you know, small and large data sizes all coming back to Scality RING – it’s been able to deliver the performance we needed to serve millions of consumers. We needed close to the 100 Gigabit range, at times, for peak performance over time and the RING is able to provide that.
You know, the financial implications – it really saved us – you know – it’s going to save us millions of dollars over the next few years alone. We really wanted a solution that could evolve over time. We want to be able to continue to grow, be able to add more nodes, and with the software-defined storage we’re able to do that – and evolve over technologies and also use commodity hardware underneath. And it’s easily expandable that way, as well. You’re not tied down to one particular piece of hardware you can go to a new technology over time and keep adding new nodes of that nature and your data is still preserved. One of the biggest problems is, you know once you get petabytes and petabytes of data it’s not easy to move or copy off, and so you really have to pick a long-term solution.”