Configuring Synchronization of Content for the Main and Backup SL NEO Servers

TransferMgr.jpgSynchronization of content of the backup server with the main server is implemented in the mode of permanent unidirectional file copying - the main server works in a usual mode, the backup server constantly synchronizes the content of its own storage with the content of the main storage. The synchronization is implemented by the application Transfer Manager (you should configure it at any server). As a rule, configuring is implemented at the backup server, however, there are no tough restrictions: you can choose the server that will be responsible for the synchronization, according to the configurations of a certain system. 

Checking the license key

Transfer Manager has the license key for the protection from copying. You can check the workability of a key with a command File/License Key. 

Creating a Rule for Content Synchronization

Variant  #1. Method of copying: Соpy and Rotate

The work of Transfer Manager is based on rules. You should create such a rule for configuring the synchronization of content at the main and backup servers (the button New rule at the right top part of the interface). Choose the type of copying in the opened dialog box of the field Transfer ModeСоpy and Rotate.


The method Соpy and Rotate means permanent automatic unidirectional synchronization of the ultimate (backup) storage relative to the initial (main) storage. The scheme of functioning the rule is the following:

·         When new files (clips) appear at the initial storage, they are copied onto the ultimate storage

·         When new versions of clips appear at the initial storage, they are replaced at the ultimate storage

·         The clips that are deleted from the ultimate storage, are repeatedly copied from the initial storage to the ultimate storage;

·         Deleting files from the initial storage doesn't instantly delete the similar (with the same name) files from the ultimate storage

·         The files at the ultimate storage are automatically enqueued and only those files are deleted, that don't exist at the main storage. The list for deleting is being formed as far as the ultimate storage is being filled. The order of deleting is being formed according to the time of the last file modification.

The field Transfer Threads allows you to define the number of simultaneously functioning streams of file copying (maximum eight). Setting the value close to maximal may load the arrays and the network, and negatively affect their workability. You should conduct tests and check the absence of artifacts (for example, brakes during playout).


You may set up the desirable number of the so-called "backup" streams in the field Reserve for urgent jobsTransfer Manager can analyze the executable playlists and first enqueue for copying those files that are the first in turn for playout. When you add a new event to the playlist, all streams may be loaded with copying big files, so copying a file for the new event may not happen at the moment. To avoid such situations you should specify a few “spare” streams.


The item Copy partial content allows you to copy unfinished materials (in the process of record or import, Media Browser marks such materials as “PART”).



Tab Source

The tab Source contains information about the source of synchronization, in our case it's the main server. In the field Name, type a random name for the source. In the field Type, specify the storage type for the main server - the server database SL Media Storage. Enter the IP address of the main server into the field Address. In the field Service choose the number of the server database (one – by default). 


User, Password - the username and password that will be used when Transfer Manager refers to the server database (if needed). If you need synchronization not for the whole database, but for one folder, you need to choose the folder-source by pressing a button that is placed near the field Subfolder.  The rest of parameters may stay the same. 

Tab Destination


Let's pass on to the item Destination. The item Destination contains information about the parameters of the ultimate storage (in our case it's the backup server) and the rules for deleting files. 


Press the button Аdd at the bottom part of the opened window. You will see a window for entering the information about the ultimate storage. 


In this window the parameters Name, Type, Address, Service, User, Password, Subfolder are configured similarly to configuring the parameters of the initial storage. 


AV Container - choosing the container for media-files (when working with the SL NEO server database, choose Default=avi). 


Max Transfer Rate — choosing the maximal speed for copying files, multiple to the “real time”. Setting up the value close to the maximal may load the arrays and the network. You should conduct tests and make sure that increasing the speed of copying won't affect the work of playout and record channels.


Max Wait List — choosing the maximal length for the list of files, awaiting deletion. The value by default: The default value is “Default”- it means that the list for deletion will be growing and the clips won't be deleted until the backup storage will have become almost completely filled (the residual quota by default is "Wait List Space Threshold = 10 Gb").   


Wait List Space Threshold allows choosing the value of the disk quota in gigabytes: after reaching this quota the clips that await deletion in the Wait-list will start being deleted (if the value "Max Wait List" is set up as "Default" or more than zero).


Max Wait List Time is the value of time after which all the clips that are in the queue of the Wait-list, will be automatically deleted. 


The default values set in the fields Max Wait List, Wait List Space Threshold and Max Wait List Time allow users to delay deletion of files for the maximally possible time, meanwhile, the backup array will be always almost completely filled. To hasten the deletion process, you should manually set up the parameters: the length of the list for deletion (50...300), expand the size of disk quota in gigabytes and set the time interval, after which all the clips in the Wait-list will be automatically deleted.

Tab Playlists

Transfer Manager can analyze the executable playlists and first enqueue for copying those files that are the first in turn for playout in playlists. Open the tab PlayLists and press the button Add: here you should enter the IP address and the number of the playout service (Program Channel), for which the queue will be formed and the files will be copied. You may specify several playout services: it's useful in case if there's only one database with materials, common for a few playout channels.


After the entry of all necessary information and closing the configuration windows, the anew created rule will appear in the list of the window Transfer Rules. You can launch the rule by the button Start rule. Files copying will start in forty seconds. Statuses of the processes of copying and deleting files from the backup server are displayed in the items Transfer State, Transfer Jobs and Delete Jobs



Variant #2. Method of copying: Соpy for PlayList

The method Copy for PlayList means automatic unidirectional copying to the ultimate (backup) storage from the initial (main) storage only those clips that are contained in the playlist. In the item PlayLists you can press the button Add and enter IP addresses and numbers of playout services (Program Channel), for which the files are copied. The scheme of the rule functioning is the following:

·         When new files (clips) appear at the initial storage, they are copied onto the ultimate storage only in that case, when their names ("ID" - the column "Media" ) are contained in the executable playlist.

·         Deleting a line with a clip from the playlist will instantly delete the corresponding files from the ultimate storage.



When setting a lot of streams/rules for Transfer Manager, the loading of the server processor may be close to 100%; it may have a bad influence on the recording and playback operations: freeze frames will appear during the broadcast and drop frames during the record. To avoid such situations, you should monitor the CPU load and keep the 80-85 % level after changing the settings of Transfer Manager, especially after adding new streams and rules.

Feature of Work of Transfer Manager with Clips-Links

Clip_cuts.jpgThe window File Monitor of the application Air Manager contains the instrument Cut. It is used for "cutting" the clip that is selected in Media Browser, for two parts. Meanwhile, actually, no actions are done to the media-data, “cutting" is implemented on the metadata level: a new clip-link is created in the server database, and the parameters of marking (IN/OUT point) in the clips' attributes are changed. 


The feature of work of Transfer Manager with such clips is that when copying the clips-links onto the backup server, every clip will be copied wholly - actually, one media-material will be doubled at the backup server several times, according to the number of links. If you mark the materials of big duration in this way, the array of the backup server may get filled very quickly. You should take this circumstance into consideration and use the following instruments for working with big materials that need a lot of marking points:


Manual “Cutting" the Playlist Lines When selecting a line in the Broadcast window, a corresponding clip is displayed in the window File Monitor. The function CUT in the window File Monitor allows the user to split the line into two parts. The current position of a marker in File Monitor defines the point that is used for cutting the lines. When implementing this operation with lines, no changes happen in the parameters of clips from the server database.


Automatic Forming Playlist Lines on Key Frames. Key frames are used for indexing inside of the clip for instant following navigation to the marked point. When viewing the clip in the window File Monitor, key frames for this clip are formed by the button + at the top part of the window. The formed key frames are displayed in the separate window Key Frames. After putting the clip containing such a marking into the playlist, you can right click on the playlist line and choose the item Split at Key Points - after this, new lines will be automatically added into the playlist (according to the marking of the clip on key frames).