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Interoperability: On-prem and in the Cloud

25/05/2023

As organisations continue to generate an increasing number of media assets, they are growing more reliant on storage systems to manage the vast amounts of data. Traditionally, on-prem storage systems have been the go-to option, but more recently, cloud systems have been gaining popularity due to their accessibility, scalability, and cost-effective benefits. However, as media workflows become more distributed, on-prem and cloud storage systems need to work together to satisfy the demand for remote and hybrid working.

The interoperability between on-prem and cloud storage systems is critical to enhance efficiency in hybrid workflows. But achieving interoperability can be difficult. If different systems are not compatible, something as simple as accessing a file can become a time-consuming and frustrating process.

Benefits (and Challenges) of Hybrid Workflows There are many benefits to using a hybrid storage system for media workflows. Hybrid storage systems allow organisations to choose the best storage solution for each need, without being locked into a single vendor. This flexibility is essential for organisations that need to be able to scale their storage capacity quickly and easily, especially for teams with fluctuating storage requirements.

A hybrid approach can also help organisations reduce their overall storage costs. For example, organisations can store less frequently accessed data in the cloud, while storing more critical and high-frequency data on-prem. This can help organisations to save money on storage costs without compromising on performance or security. Integrating on-prem and cloud solutions also helps organisations improve their disaster recovery capabilities by providing a secondary location for storing data. This can minimise the impact of a disaster by ensuring that data is still accessible, even if primary storage systems become unavailable.

While there are many clear benefits to using a hybrid storage system, there are also some challenges to be aware of. One of the biggest challenges of a blended approach is security. While is it difficult to completely remove the threat of data loss, a hybrid approach can increase protection from unauthorised access when data is transferred between on-prem and cloud storage systems. Another challenge is compatibility. If your on-prem and cloud systems can't directly integrate, workflows become disjointed and clunky. Introducing storage systems that fully integrate with one another removes barriers.

Partnerships to Promote Interoperability One way to address the challenges of integrating on-prem and cloud storage systems is to partner with vendors that offer solutions that are compatible with both. Partnerships can help to enable interoperability by ensuring that systems remain compatible. Systems that seamlessly connect can increase accessibility, promote security, and reduce costs. However, to be most effective, interoperability should be a priority throughout the whole supply chain. Having storage solutions which not only work together, but also with other sections of a media workflow, ensures teams are able to access, edit, and share assets, without having to switch environments.

Having a connected partner network means organisations can implement a unified framework that spans across both cloud and on-prem storage. This approach delivers huge value to customers, who benefit from improved connectivity, enhanced collaboration, and more consistency.

The Responsibility of Vendors As workflow continuity becomes more desirable across the M&E sector, vendors have a responsibility to champion interoperability with their solutions. To fulfil demand, vendors need to work together to establish common standards for data formats and protocols. This avoids content silos and improves workflow efficiency. The development of interoperable systems requires a commitment from industry vendors, who in the long-term, are helping to future-proof media workflows.

As more media organisations look to avoid vendor lock-ins, it is important for solution providers to stay ahead of the curve and deliver what the customer needs. By building tighter integrations and emphasising interoperability, vendors are contributing to a robust and flexible storage ecosystem.

Hybrid models bring the best of on-prem, public, and private cloud solutions. But it's only when the separate offerings come together as one, that the full benefits can be felt. In the age of automation, interoperability is essential. And as more providers demand collaborative, consistent, and streamlined workflows, the ball now lies in the vendors' court, to develop solutions from a foundation of agility and integration.
LINK: https://object-matrix.com/interoperability-on-prem-and-in-the-cloud/...
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