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Doug Bassett
CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 21, 2010 at 11:05:01 pm

Anyone using CalDigit SuperShare? It sounds too good to be true. There must be something I'm missing.
20Gbs at half the price of editshare or xsan plus you can use any san software you want.
There has to be some "GOTTCHAS". The setup seems to simple and they only hint at a metadata controller in a few of their work flows.
I've read everything on the site but want to hear from anyone using or who has set on up.


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Jason Myres
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 22, 2010 at 3:51:30 pm

Here's another one....

http://www.maxtronic.com/pcie-san

There are definitely gotchas, but none of the sites profiling these solutions offer enough detail for you to clearly understand how they work. PCI-E can be very fast, but it's essentially just another high-speed transport. There is no intelligence built in (that I know of) that will coordinate file access, so essentially it's just a replacement for fibre channel. You still need to use "the SAN software of your choice" which means you're back to the limitations of SAN-MP, FibreJet, or MetaSAN (cringe).

My guess is that it will allow you to aggregate a number of RAID chassis together into a large pool, and that it's very fast, but it's still "dumb" with out a software layer on top.

The company who finally creates an affordable, scalable storage solution, with (real) file-level locking will flip this entire industry on it's ear.

JM


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Bob Zelin
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 22, 2010 at 4:24:09 pm

Jason,
how come you don't like MetaSAN ? FibreJet is Volume based only, MetaSAN is file based.

Bob Zelin



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Doug Bassett
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 22, 2010 at 4:24:53 pm

Thanks for the reply. The thing I think that is not mentioned is that a separate metadata network is still needed. So another "private" switch to invest in and more cables bundled up.

What I like is that you don't need a dedicated machine for a metadata controller and you can use any SAN software. Also that they have made it so simple to configure and setup.

The only other option is edit share with 10 gig (one cable- love it) but it is convoluted with software and client software/logins. The price is still steep as well.


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Bob Zelin
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 23, 2010 at 12:47:22 pm

The only other option is edit share with 10 gig (one cable- love it) but it is convoluted with software and client software/logins. The price is still steep as well.

REPLY -
Doug, this is incorrect. Both Maxx Digital and Small Tree sell 10 gig solutions (I think Studio Network Solutions does as well). The Maxx Digital and Small Tree solutions just use Apple File Sharing - no metadata server, and it's file based. If you are doing uncompressed HD or 2K, you need 10 Gig. If you are only doing ProRes422HQ, or DVCProHD, you can just use an ethernet solution (including EditShare, as well as Maxx Digital, and Small Tree).

The Maxx Digital and Small Tree solution for 10 Gig is not cheap however. The 10 gig host cards are expensive, and the 10 Gig ethernet switch is $15,000 (just for the switch). This is becuase this is all new technology. If you are just doing ProRes422HQ or DVCProHD, you DO NOT NEED 10 Gig - ethernet works perfectly, and companies like Maxx Digital, Small Tree, Apace, Studio Network Solutions and EditShare can all do this for you over ethernet.

The Cal Digit is a VERY elegant solution if you need Fibre Channel, and want the abiltiy to do uncompressed HD or 2K media. Yes, you will need an inexpensive gig e switch (like a cheap Netgear), but your "learing curve" is just learning MetaSAN, Command Soft Fibrejet, or Apple XSAN, as this is the software that you will be using to get your system to work.

There are other solutions on the market that are wonderful simple fibre channel solutions, just like Cal Digit super Share - for example, both Sonnet Technology, and JMR (both who advertise heavily on Creative Cow) make a wonderful inexpensive solution that is similar to Super share, and also use MetaSAN or Command Soft Fibre Jet as the shared client software that is required on each station.


Systems that are ethernet or 10 gig based DO NOT NEED sharing software, as they can easily use Apple File Sharing, which works just fine.

Bob Zelin



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Ryan Stoutenborough
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 24, 2010 at 3:23:31 pm

Bob,

Yes, we do have 10GbE. Our EVO shared storage sever offers GbE/iSCSI, 10GbE or fibrechannel. You can have all 3 going in the same box at the same time if you wish. You can have up to 10 direct connect GbE or FC clients without the need for any external switch. It offers file sharing and volume sharing. No Metadata controller ever required! The 8TB Base unit can do multi-stream ProRes422HQ or uncompressed HD over GbE or 2k over FC. DPX 4k?, add more drives please :) Best of all, SANmp is bundled in for free. You can also scale by adding the EVO expansion chassis, tossing in a switch and stacking your favorite 3rd party FC storage in the mix. EVO can also repurpose existing storage by using the built-in IP to FC bridge.

EVO - http://www.studionetworksolutions.com/evo-features.php

Ryan Stoutenborough
Studio Network Solutions
http://www.studionetworksolutions.com


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Bob Zelin
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 22, 2010 at 4:16:50 pm

Hi Doug -
when you buy Super Share, you need the following -
you need a Cal Digit HD Pro
you need a Super Share hub/switch combination.

Now, in EACH of your computers, you need a fibre channel card to connect to the Cal Digit
Super Share to each of your computer. Cal Digit sells these cards that go into the client FCP systems.
And of course, you need fibre cables to interconnect the fibre cards back to the Super Share.

Then you have to purchase a site license copy of Command Soft Fibre Jet, Apple XSAN, or Tiger Technology MetaSAN. These are about $995 per MAC client that you have. So ultimately this will wind up costing about the same thing as EditShare. There are less expensive solutions on the market that are ethernet based from Maxx Digital and Small Tree, but these are ethernet, and will only do ProRes422HQ (for example), and not do uncompressed HD like SuperShare will.

As long as you understand the additional requirements of SuperShare, it is a teriffic solution, and a perfect alternative to the insanely expensive Apple XSAN.

Bob Zelin



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Jared Picune
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 23, 2010 at 11:30:35 pm

Take a look a at this cost breakdown. Mind you the software is not included.

http://www.caldigit.com/SuperShare/features10.asp

Jared Picune CalDigit. Serious Storage.


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Bob Zelin
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 25, 2010 at 5:22:50 pm

Jared forgets one VERY IMPORTANT THING (which is to the benefit of Cal Digit) - Jared forgot to put in the TWO Apple XSERVE computers to run an XSAN system, both which require fibre cards, both which require Finisar transceivers, and both with require $995 seats of XSAN software. So the XSAN solution is a LOT more money, and a LOT more complicated.

That's right - you don't need this with the Cal Digit solution.

Bob Zelin



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Jared Picune
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Sep 25, 2010 at 5:28:59 pm

Only if you want to run XSAN. You don't need an xserve with metaSAN. While a dedicated metadata server is a good idea, it's not required, especially for smaller configurations. metaSAN's floating master is perfect for a 4 user setup like the one in the chart.

Jared Picune CalDigit. Serious Storage.


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James O'Connor
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Nov 9, 2010 at 5:15:25 pm

Are you saying that MetaSAN is already "installed" in the SuperShare switch? If so, how are we supposed to maintain, update it? Is it a "server"? What's it running? Hard to spend money on things we don't fully understand. This, for me right now is the appeal of the Small-Tree 10Gb ethernet solution because it is using pretty much off-the-shelf parts that can be re-purposed in other systems if we change the setup. With SuperShare, it's all or nothing. That's fine, but if I'm not 100% happy with the way it performs then it's a bitter pill.

I am right now in the process of compiling all the specs and prices on these different systems - for 4 Mac Pros and I'm realizing that money isn't the deciding factor. It's the day-to-day functioning. I'm already having to deal with way too much IT!


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Jared Picune
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Nov 9, 2010 at 5:29:23 pm

No it is not on the switch. You need to install the SAN software on each client.

Jared Picune CalDigit. Serious Storage.


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Rui Peres
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Jul 27, 2011 at 9:42:16 pm

Doug Basset said
"It sounds too good to be true. There must be something I'm missing." and i totally agree.
A month ago I bought a Caldigit Supershare with 2xHDPro 16Tb to work with 2 Avid Media Composer 5.5, 1 Final Cut, 4 After Effects. I have the metaSan installed but I can not work in the storage. Avid can not capture to the storage, the other machines can't work either. I don't have special permissions so far, all user can read & write.
But the funniest thing is that Caldigit say talk to Tiger Technology (metaSan) the hardware is ok, Tiger don't say nothing and I start to think I should have chosen Avid Unity instead of Supershare.
Ok now that i already said the problem is anyone here that can help me to put this to work like they say it will work?

Thanks in advanced

Rui Peres

PS: I'm a little disgusted with the situation. Sorry.


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Bernard Lamborelle
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Jul 28, 2011 at 1:02:05 am

Hi Rui,

Where are you located?

What do you mean by "I have the metaSan installed but I can not work in the storage. Avid can not capture to the storage, the other machines can't work either"?

This is a very vague statement and it is pretty much impossible to help without more information.

A few question to get started:
1- are your Avid Windows- or Mac-based?
2- is your file system NTFS or HFS+?
3- do you have a dedicated metadata controller?
4- are you able to read/write to the SAN storage at full speed?

Cheers,

Bernard Lamborelle
bernard at tiger-technology dot com
http://www.tiger-technology.com
514-667-2015


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Rui Peres
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Jul 28, 2011 at 8:48:21 am

Hi Bernard,

I'm in Portugal.

"What do you mean by "I have the metaSan installed but I can not work in the storage. Avid can not capture to the storage, the other machines can't work either"?"

I have 1 PC (Win7 64Bit)running metaSan server and the metaSan client istalled in all machines. The Avid Media Composer can't capture to the storage and when I try to do so the answer is File'M:Avid MediaFilesMXF1CreatingCreating6' not Found.


and the other machines can't index the volumes of the storage (can't do a search for example).


This is a very vague statement and it is pretty much impossible to help without more information.

A few question to get started:
1- are your Avid Windows- or Mac-based?

Avid are Windows (1 is Win 7 64 and the other is XP 32.

2- is your file system NTFS or HFS+?
NTFS

3- do you have a dedicated metadata controller?
YES


4- are you able to read/write to the SAN storage at full speed?
In Avid I can read but can't write.

I don't know if that matters but when working with Nuendo from the storage the system hang and have to reboot.

Thanks Bernard.

Rui Peres


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Bernard Lamborelle
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Jul 28, 2011 at 4:23:36 pm

Hi Rui,

I think there might be two different problems and they may or may not be related...

I forgot to ask: what version of metaSAN you are running?

There should be no problem with Nuendo. If it is hanging while playing, there has to be something wrong somewhere...

There is a special procedure for activating the "Virtualization for Avid" feature. If this procedure has not properly been followed, it is normal to you receive errors while trying to update its databases. Please note that the order in which the steps are followed is critical. If the following document has not been carefully implemented, I would suggest starting all over again:
http://www.tiger-technology.com/downloads/ConfiguringMetaSANforAvid.pdf

However, there is probably no point trying to implement this procedure if Nuendo isn't working fine as it probably means there is something else wrong with your install.
- How often is Nuendo hanging?
- Does it matter how many tracks are you playing when this happens?
- Are you able to successfully run the metaSAN Read/Write Performance Test in the Utilities tab for a while without hanging? If so, what readings are you getting?

It will probably be necessary to analyze complete system logs and work with our support team to resolve your issues. My suggestion would be that you fill a support request at: http://www.tiger-technology.com/support_request to get the process started.

Let us know how it goes.

Cheers,

Bernard Lamborelle
bernard at tiger-technology dot com
http://www.tiger-technology.com
514-667-2015


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Rui Peres
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Jul 28, 2011 at 10:17:16 pm

Hi Bernard.

First of all thank you for helping.

The version of metaSAN is 4.6.1.29.

For the "Virtualization for Avid" i'm gonna do the step by step and see. I tell you after.
Ok i'm gonna fill a support request. I'll keeping you informed.

Thank you for you help.

Rui Peres


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Bernard Lamborelle
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Jul 29, 2011 at 12:03:42 pm

Hi Rui,

Make sure your SAN setup is sound and solid before trying to configure for Avid. For instance, you should have no problem playing back or capturing from a single Avid machine without implementing this procedure. You should also be able to work with FCP without problem. This procedure is only required so two or more Avid can connect and work off the same volume.

If you are experiencing issues with even a single Avid machine, it is best to get in touch with our support team...

Good luck,

Bernard Lamborelle
bernard at tiger-technology dot com
http://www.tiger-technology.com
514-667-2015


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Rui Peres
Re: CalDigit SuperShare
on Jul 29, 2011 at 2:57:01 pm

Ok Bernard i'll do that during the weekend and see what hapens.
Once again thank you for you precious help.

Regards

Rui Peres


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