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Scale Your Video Surveillance Seamlessly with NetApp E-Series Storage

Julie Fagan

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: Video data is growing faster than ever before. Whether you’re adding cameras, upgrading your infrastructure to support higher resolution video, or expanding your solution across multiple sites, the ability to scale efficiently and simply is key.

To stay competitive, you need to plan for and purchase storage to support 100% annual growth in video data. If you wait until you’re out of space, it could hamper your ability to record and retain data.

Break Free of the DVR

If you’re stuck in a DVR mindset, don’t worry—you’re not alone. Many organizations are accustomed to buying new devices every time they need more storage. They are hesitant to commit to overprovisioning of any kind. If you’re using a digital video recorder (DVR) or a network video recorder (NVR) for your video surveillance storage, there will come a time when you need to add more boxes. It doesn’t take a storage specialist to know that’s not scalable. A traditional DVR-based or NVR-based infrastructure with stacks of storage devices requires a massive amount of management overhead.

Most off-the-shelf video surveillance solutions come with cheap, white-box storage systems that are prone to breakdowns and outages. If the success of your security system depends on 100% availability, an outage of any size can be catastrophic. Not to mention that these solutions often can’t support expanding video ingest and retrieval needs, especially if a drive fails.  Speed is critical to video surveillance: If your storage can’t keep up with your video, you could drop frames and lose data. (Read more about the importance of speed to your video surveillance deployment in this blog post.)

Every time you add cameras or need to upgrade your retention policies, you’ll need to install even more storage devices just to avoid running out of capacity. Before you know it, your security teams are spending more time managing back-end infrastructure and less time doing their jobs. It’s not efficient for your security professionals, and it’s a waste of resources for the organization.

When it comes to keeping people safe, video surveillance is so much more than perimeter security. DVR- or NVR-based infrastructures can be a huge roadblock to incorporating new video technologies such as video analytics, preventing you from getting the most value out of your video data.

Embrace Enterprise Scalability

Many enterprise storage systems require you to scale storage and compute together—forcing you to add compute power when all you really need is storage. And few solutions allow you to perform nondisruptive upgrades—forcing you to shut down operations as you add and configure new storage resources.

NetApp® E-Series storage makes scaling simple. If you need to expand, you can seamlessly add another E-Series system without having to incur downtime. When Tufts University doubled its video security infrastructure, NetApp E-Series provided a high-density, scale-out solution, allowing Tufts to add performance and capacity independently, without disrupting ongoing operations. Tufts Storage Specialist Cope Frazier says the NetApp storage is “the easiest part” of its new, flexible video surveillance storage infrastructure.

Take Advantage of Economies of Scale

Cloud computing solutions offer cloud elasticity—the ability to seamlessly scale compute and storage up or down on demand. But that flexibility can come at a cost. Some police departments that have deployed body-worn cameras in the cloud now find themselves with high monthly bills, which can top as much as $0.05 per gigabyte per month, plus additional cost per gigabyte when they exceed their quotas. And that’s just the cost of storage. There are more charges for reading and restoring that data. Because cloud prices are generally static, your costs will only increase as you grow.

In contrast, the cost for on-premises solutions declines an average of 30% to 35% per year. With NetApp video surveillance solutions, you can manage your data internally for as little as $0.004 per gigabyte per month over 5 years: a savings of greater than 92% over cloud-based storage.

Break Down Data Silos

Scalability plays a critical role in your ability to bring all your video data into a centralized storage infrastructure that’s easier and more efficient to manage, protect, and grow.

The Central Ohio Transportation Authority (COTA) recently launched a project to centralize data from DVRs at park and rides, bus terminals, bus stops, and train stations to apply Genetec’s video management solution for real-time monitoring. COTA chose NetApp E-Series as the storage foundation for more than 4,000 cameras. In this new case study, COTA’s Aaron Hubbard discusses how they were able to centralize storage and management under one umbrella with a “completely sustainable” solution from NetApp and Genetec.

NetApp E-Series Storage: Modular Scalability

NetApp E-Series storage for video surveillance uses ultradense flash and spinning disk media to give you more capacity per rack unit than white-box hardware—up to 4PB on one controller. A single E-Series system gives you the capability to support up to 4,000 cameras. The E-Series linear “hot add” capability gives you the freedom to grow as your business needs dictate. So no matter how your video deployment grows, you can be ready.

Read our white paper to find out more about how NetApp’s video surveillance storage solution gives you enterprise scalability you can afford.

Julie Fagan

Julie Fagan has a long career in high-tech solutions marketing. She loves working at NetApp where she gets to focus on bringing the best video surveillance and high performance computing storage solutions to the world along with her awesome co-workers.

View all Posts by Julie Fagan

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