IBC 2018: Fox Sports Mexico chooses Masstech Flashnet as storage management system
Fox Sports Mexico has become the latest major broadcaster to switch its Oracle Diva archive management system to Masstech’s (stand 7.C55) FlashNet content storage management system. The new system manages 3PB of content, across nearline disk and a 2000 slot, 8 LTO tape drive library. The switch represents a major operational and financial saving to the sports broadcasting giant, whose Mexico operation is overseen and managed by Comtelsat Integrated Solutions, the leading integrator of high technology solutions for broadcast and telecoms in Mexico and across north and south America.
Driven by a requirement to update their PAM system, Fox Sports Mexico and Comtelsat underwent an evaluation that lasted several months, concluding that their existing archive system was unable to remain compatible, and, as it could not be upgraded, Comtelsat therefore took the decision to switch its storage management software. FlashNet was selected for a number of reasons, including price, system scalability, stability and flexibility, and Masstech’s high-quality, rapid-access support. The key deciding factor, however, was Masstech’s ability to make the switch from Oracle Diva quickly and easily, with minimum disruption to Fox Sports Mexico’s daily operations.
The process was fast, and very simple: over a period of just 3 weeks, Masstech Professional Services team analysed the Diva database, sampled a few tapes that were copied from the archive, and subsequently mapped all data from the Diva database to FlashNet. At that point, after an installation period of less than a week, and without the need to re-read any tapes or remove them from operations, the Diva archive was disconnected from live production. Throughout the process Fox Sports Mexico’s operational staff had full access to all of its archived content.
“Fox Sports Mexico is one of the largest sports broadcasters in Mexico. With the amount of assets it processes on a daily basis, it was essential that the process of switching archive management systems impacted on its operations as little as possible,” says Frank Lima, Masstech’s Regional Manager, LATAM. “It was paramount that throughout the process Fox Sports Mexico was able to retain the highest levels of content quality and exceptional standards in delivery. This was significantly aided by the fact that switching from the Diva archive management system to Masstech gave Fox Sports Mexico uninterrupted access to its content throughout the process.”
Luc Tomasino, Masstech’s VP of Worldwide Sales comments: “We’re extremely pleased to be able to help Fox Sports Mexico/Comtelsat with this potentially problematic project. Similar to the many other customers we have been working with throughout Latin America and the rest of the world, being able to take advantage of a seamless process was an extremely important factor for them when selecting Masstech as a new storage management partner.
Many of our clients have archives consisting of several thousand tapes, which, using other systems, represents a complicated migration involving significant man-hours and considerable operational disruption. Masstech’s Diva Switch process is very simple, and therefore enables a much easier, quicker, and extremely cost-efficient transition,” adds Tomasino.
Chris Luther, Masstech’s Director of Professional Services, Americas, oversaw the technical process and worked closely throughout the process with Fox Sports Mexico and Comtelsat technical staff. “Whenever we’re switching out an existing archive system, such as Oracle Diva, there are many technical factors that have to be considered. Reading the archive database quickly and simply is hugely important, but of course it is also essential that FlashNet slips seamlessly into the wider ecosystem,” says Luther. “In the case of Fox Sports Mexico, this consisted of Grass Valley Stratus. FlashNet is qualified and certified with the major MAM, DAM and PAM providers, which means that whichever management systems are in place, clients can comfortably switch out the storage management system without worrying about compatibility issues or the need to implement workarounds. Throughout the switching process, Masstech personnel work closely with our client’s technical staff, to ensure a seamless transition, to verify the efficiency of workflows, and to offer further help and guidance on their archive and storage management as required.”