The New Media Storage Paradigm: Wide Area Nearline

Within media workflows there has often been a variety of tiers of storage deployed, traditionally these consisted of:

  • Traditional Tier 1: Online, on premises storage. Your SAN or NAS configured for speed. Used for editing and also at times for playout.
  • Traditional Tier 2: Offline, on and off premises storage. Tapes and tape backup solutions that can benefit from being moved off premises for disaster recovery scenarios.

But, the world has changed. The quantity of digital data created has vastly increased and the variety of storage solutions available have become more capable than the old filesystems ever were:

Non-linear Media Storage Solutions for a Non-linear Media World

Types of storage solutions now include, but is not limited to:

  • Online Storage for editing type tasks.
  • Nearline Storage for storing the mass of data generated during a production with instant access.
  • Playout Storage with guarantees of quality of service.
  • Wide Access Storage for data accessed via private or public clouds.
  • Archive Storage, such as tape of optical as a cheap backup.

It might be convenient to talk about 3 tiers of storage but the reality is that storage just doesn’t fit into a linear view of the world anymore. Storage systems often span multiple uses and multiple tiers … take Nearline storage…

Nearline Storage: More than just a FileSystem

Nearline started off being a place to ingest data to or park projects to… a bit faster than tape but capable of random access and therefore operations such as conforms. Nearline essentially keeps data safe with automated self-healing, ease of data management/scaling and the highest levels of security..

But now it is far more:

Nearline can be on-premises or off-premises – perhaps responsible for moving data between multiple geographically dispersed locations – allowing fast data intensive operations such as transcode or Nearline editing to occur. Nearline is now responsible for keeping the metadata safe as well as the data itself, enriching the metadata by examining the data dropped onto it and making that metadata available for a variety of 3rd party applications.

Object Matrix’s vision of Nearline is that it is far more than a file system. It is capable of being the “cloud storage” / multiple location storage in addition to being on-prem.

MatrixStore provides this: and we call that Wide Area Nearline.

The Object Matrix View

The future of storage is non-linear with data being moved in and out of storage solutions (such as Nearline) during its lifetime. Nearline / Object Storage / Disk-based archive is a massively growing area that, as it becomes ever more powerful via its API’s, 3rd party integrations and on prem and off prem silos will continue to make the need for traditional tiered platforms, file system based or complete offline solutions, ever more side-lined.

Wide area nearline