Spanish commercial broadcaster Atresmedia, home of Antena 3 and other popular entertainment channels, has complemented its existing Imagine Communications Versio integrated playout installation by deploying a Versio-based disaster recovery playout centre. The new backup facility maintains tight synchronisation with the primary playout centre to ensure instant and seamless failover should it be necessary.
Facing growing demand to guarantee maximum availability of its critical playout services, Atresmedia decided to implement a backup facility. The requirement for the disaster recovery centre, designed and developed by Imagine Communications certified reseller QinMedia, was that it should deliver the highest reliability standards in terms of location, power supply and access networks, as well as redundancy of the technical systems.
In addition to providing full redundancy for all elements at the main playout centre, the new business continuity solution had to be fully integrated into the Atresmedia architecture. In particular, there had to be an automated workflow which links the disaster recovery centre from the main playout. While the two systems are physically isolated from each other, they are maintained in perfect synchronisation and switchover is virtually seamless.
“Quality is a core value for the Atresmedia Group,” said Raúl Lorenzo, deputy technical director at Atresmedia. “We have invested a great deal of effort into our contingency requirement to guarantee continuity for our broadcast services. We consider Imagine Communications a partner with similar values to ours and a partner that is willing to work with us to find solutions to our emerging challenges.”
The backup playout centre is a mirror of the main facility. There are currently 11 Versio channels, configured as 10 plus a spare, sitting alongside an Imagine Communications Versio IOX SAN high-performance online storage system. The Imagine Communications Versio integrated playout system ensures synchronisation with the main centre and is available to go on air automatically using the Versio Redundancy tool. Mirroring technologies in the Versio IOX SANensure that content is matched between main and backup centres. Production graphics are generated within the Versio graphics engine and triggered automatically from the playlist.
“The Versio platform is a particularly powerful solution for disaster recovery,” said Mathias Eckert, SVP & GM EMEA and APAC for Playout & Networking at Imagine Communications. “Using Versio and the software tools built in, we have been able to create a backup playout centre which precisely mirrors the main continuity, and we have done it quickly and cost-effectively.”
Madrid-based specialist QinMedia, who provided the Imagine Communications equipment at Atresmedia, also incorporated some of their proprietary software tools, including QMonitor, QList and QMover.