Huge Systems — a company that provides RAID storage systems to the entertainment industry — has introduced HugeMediaLibrary, a solution for shared media access over traditional TCP/IP networks including Ethernet (10BaseT), Fast Ethernet (100BaseT), and Gigabit Ethernet.
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HugeMediaLibrary is available in two different configurations; a single RAID3-controller model with up to five 160GB removable disks and a dual-controller version containing up to ten 160GB drives for a total of up to 1200GB of on-line RAID protected storage. The HugeMediaLibrary is the first combination NAS/SAN device specifically designed for rich media content, according to Mike Anderson, chief designer of the product.
The introduction of HugeMediaLibrary brings real-time media capability to every major market segment, not just video broadcast and production, he added. Educational users can plug HugeMediaLibrary into their existing Ethernet networks. Mac-based graphics companies can plug Macs into Fast Ethernet networks.
Now, users don’t need to choose between the benefits of Ethernet and Fibre Channel; they can have both in one cost effective shared storage subsystem, Anderson said. The integrated 2GB Fibre Channel ports allow for integration into existing Fibre Channel networks, as well as expandability of the HugeMediaLibrary.
For users that need shared network storage, the integrated Gigabit Ethernet ports include native file sharing capabilities and broad cross-platform compatibility. In the past, their biggest drawback has been speed, Anderson said. This is addressed in the HugeMediaLibrary product through hardware TCP/IP acceleration using Alacritech’s 1000×1 Single-Port Server and Storage Accelerator, the industry’s first Integrated Storage Network Interface Card (IS-NIC), to simultaneously accelerate both IP storage and standard Ethernet traffic, he added. The Alacritech Gigabit Ethernet accelerator is compatible with all versions of Ethernet, allowing HugeMediaLibrary users to achieve maximum performance with any existing Ethernet network.
On a 10BaseT Ethernet network operating at 10 Megabits per second (Mbps), a HugeMediaLibrary can purportedly provide real-time playback of compressed MPEG video. Using a Fast Ethernet connection, HugeMediaLibrary can also provide real-time access to DV resolution files. With Gigabit Ethernet, multiple SDTV-resolution video files can be accessed simultaneously. The Alacritech 1000×1 accelerator automatically adjusts to the speed of the network based on its connection to the network switch, Anderson said. When 10 Gigabit Ethernet becomes available, HugeMediaLibrary can be upgraded to provide multiple streams of HDTV-resolution video material, he added.
HugeMediaLibrary will be demoed next week at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) trade show in Las Vegas. It’s scheduled to ship in the third quarter of the year with pricing starting at US$14,995.