SOURCE: DataDirect Networks

DataDirect Networks

September 13, 2010 12:15 ET

Leading International Visual Effects/Postproduction Company Deploys Mission-Critical Media Storage Solution With DataDirect Networks

Smoke & Mirrors Selects OCF for Petabyte-Class Storage Infrastructure, Leveraging DDN Technology for Scalability and Performance

CHATSWORTH, CA--(Marketwire - September 13, 2010) -  DataDirect Networks (DDN), Inc., the leading data infrastructure provider for scalable, content-intensive enterprises, today announced that it has teamed with OCF, the UK's premier High Performance Computing (HPC) system integrator, high performance storage integrator and cloud service provider, to provide London-based visual effects and postproduction house Smoke & Mirrors a full VFX and media storage environment to increase staff productivity and deliver content to customers more quickly. 

The OCF-designed storage system, built on DDN S2A6620 technology and the General Parallel File System™ (GPFS) shared file system from IBM, enables users to simultaneously access, read and write to the same digital video sequences at resolutions over 2K in real-time, even across wide-area metropolitan networks. This real-time, shared file capability allows access to files instantaneously and eliminates data copy across the workflow, allowing editors to transform the original film to digital format and edit the content instantaneously. Leveraging the Tivoli Storage Manager™ (TSM) archive utility from IBM, which integrates natively into the GPFS file system, Smoke and Mirrors has access to all of its content -- on both disk and tape -- at the touch of a button using the HSM capabilities of the combined solution.

"Previously we had to scan, courier and upload digital format content to our various offices which could take days to complete. We were frequently creating silos of data and archiving and retrieval of data could take days," says Mark Wildig, CIO, Smoke & Mirrors. "OCF has successfully engineered a forward-thinking real-time storage environment that enables Smoke & Mirrors to grow its business exponentially and puts us at the forefront of the post-production industry."

Smoke & Mirrors is a full-service post-production facility with expertise in VFX, CGI and Telecine. The company has a long history of award-winning production and has most recently been seen in feature films such as Clash of the Titans and the Academy Award®-winning The New Tenants, in commercials for companies such as Panasonic and Chevrolet, and in video games such as Rock Band Beatles.

"One of the greatest challenges for the media sector is its silo approach to unstructured data," said Barry Evans, OCF Technical Director. "Because this solution is all based on non-proprietary technology, Smoke & Mirrors has the perfect architecture that can be expanded easily as the business grows."

"This success story at Smoke & Mirrors is representative of a larger media industry trend towards leveraging purpose-built storage technology to meet the demands of today's high-resolution formats, collaborative workflows, and tight production deadlines," said Alex Bouzari, CEO of DataDirect Networks. "We are pleased to team with OCF to deliver an innovative solution to accelerate the velocity of Smoke & Mirrors' business."

About DataDirect Networks
DataDirect Networks, Inc. is the data infrastructure provider for the most extreme, content-intensive environments in the world -- including the largest online gaming and music sites, social networking applications developers, photo and video sharing services, high performance computing environments, and seven of the 10 largest supercomputers in the world. The company's storage technology delivers massive throughput, scalable capacity, consistency, efficiency and data integrity for today's extremely competitive and evolving markets. For more information, go to or call +1-800-TERABYTE (837-2298).

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