Date & Location
- Date: Thursday, September 11, 2014
- Location: Naples, Fla. USA
As the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) works to complete its ambitious, multi-year digitization project, it’s partnering with industry leader ASG Software Solutions and its ASG-Digital Archive offering to complete and improve its archiving infrastructure. This will ensure that Canada’s audiovisual legacy will be better preserved and safeguarded for generations to come.
“Recognized worldwide for artistic excellence and innovation, the NFB serves as an unmatched laboratory, supporting Canadian filmmakers and creators as we take artistic and technical risks in creating cultural content that might otherwise be difficult to produce,” said Luisa Frate, CTO of the NFB. “This allows us to offer a variety of productions about Canada’s rich culture. The NFB is tasked with preserving of all of their audio-visual content, in analog and/or digital format – more than 13,000 works in all, comprising over 6,000 hours of content.”
A large project was started in 2010 to digitize all of the NFB’s analog footage into digital files to preserve and protect them from decay. For this core preservation project, the NFB chose to partner with the ASG-Digital Archive solution.
“The NFB is a Canadian, and global, leader in digitization and digital archiving,” said Robert Overzee, product marketing manager for ASG Software Solutions. “The NFB collection is a cultural and artistic legacy for all Canadians. The ASG partnership with Sony makes it possible for us to integrate ASG-Digital Archive with the Sony Optical Disk Archive solution. That will enable us to improve on how the NFB archives and safeguards this priceless heritage, and make it available to audiences as never before, on the digital platforms of their choice.”
NFB’s Four Golden Rules of Archiving
“We have four golden rules that define our long-term archiving strategy,” said Jimmy Fournier, head of the Research and Development department of the NFB. “First, we have put a process in place that continuously checks the integrity of the stored data. Second, we choose open-file formats, which will last for well over a decade, to avoid frequent data migrations. Third, we proactively anticipate the obsolescence of the storage hardware. Fourth, and finally, we will keep two copies of every media asset on two very different storage technologies, in two completely different locations.”
For the latter rule, the NFB had been creating dual copies on LTO tapes in their tape library. However, this wasn’t satisfactory, as just one storage technology was used. After a long process, and considering many different technologies, the NFB partnered with ASG-Digital Archive, who works with the Sony Optical Disk Array, to complete their archiving infrastructure. It offers a secure media, which is very different from magnetic tape, and with a life expectancy of 50 years.
“We will integrate this new storage solution into our infrastructure with ASG-Digital Archive, the archiving software solution we have used for many years to orchestrate our data life cycle,” said Fournier. “We will place the second copy of the media in a remote location, and right away we will use it to protect the data that needs it the most. First will be the “Born Digital” assets, resulting in new ways of producing completely digital files. Second will be the ones where the analog media is degraded; and third, those files for which the analog media will be at risk within the next 10 to 20 years.”
With this solution, the NFB now completely follows its four golden rules of archiving.
About the National Film Board of Canada
The National Film Board of Canada (NFB) creates ground-breaking interactive works, social-issue documentaries and auteur animation. The NFB has produced over 13,000 productions and won over 5,000 awards, including 14 Canadian Screen Awards, 11 Webbys, 12 Oscars and more than 90 Genies. To access acclaimed NFB content, visit NFB.ca or download its apps for smartphones, tablets and connected TV.
About ASG-Digital Archive
High Performance File Archiving Software for Large Data Volumes
ASG-Digital Archive (ADA) is a software archiving solution that can move and preserve massive volumes of business data. As a very robust and highly scalable archiving platform, it integrates with existing storage solutions ranging from shared disk and NAS to tape to object storage and private or public cloud, so customers can easily combine their existing storage technology with the latest storage trends.