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Network Nightmares!

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Chris Sgaraglino
Network Nightmares!
on May 12, 2011 at 1:39:42 am

I have had CatDv for more than a year now and have REALLY struggled to be able to use it.

It will not catalog MT2 files from my HDV Cam - and now I am struggling with cataloging files on my home network.

I have a Gigabit network and I am trying to store my stock footage and my sot footage on my home server so that my desktop and my laptop can access the catalog & footage.

I have less than 300 stock clips cataloged and I have the catalog sitting on the server and it takes over 4 minutes for it to save. And that includes the auto-saves. The file is less than 3mb? But it takes so long to update that windows links it is not responding and sometimes even crashes?

So my next option is to move the cat file to my local drive and copy it each time to the server when I am done – but this is stupid and full of failure points!

But, even so – I am still having trouble viewing the clips in the Movie window? CatDV will not play any of my footage that is on the server? It just hangs and then crashes? I can edit these files in Premiere Pro – but viewing in CatDV – nope.

I am not sure what I am doing wrong, or what I have setup incorrectly.

I don’t typically rant like this especially in the public, but I have sent two emails to their support with no responses. I spent my money and all have fallen on deaf ears and a year later I still don’t have something functional.

Chris

---
Warm Regards,
Chris Sgaraglino
Outdoor Studios Photography || on Flickr || on Twitter


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Matthew Stamos
Re: Network Nightmares!
on May 13, 2011 at 4:34:04 pm

Just a thought but could you not simply keep a local catalog and have that folder synchronize to the directory on the server? CatDV desktop is designed to work with locally stored Catalog files. As for the network performance what codec extensions are you using for mt2 files as that is not directly supported under quicktime to my knowledge?


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Chris Sgaraglino
Re: Network Nightmares!
on May 13, 2011 at 6:04:50 pm

Ok, let's see if I can answer your questions:

1. My server and desktop are both in my Studio and my laptop in my home. All on the same property and all connected to a Gigabit network. When I am in the studio, I am on the desktop and doing my work. When up n my home - I am on the laptop. Having separate catalogs would require synchronization, of which I am now doping throgh the Dropbox Cloud.

But this does not solve the issue with clips that normally play fine over the network - not playing in CatDV's player?

2. As fr .mt2 files - I know these will not play nativally in CatDV - while frustrating, I have MOV copies of them created just for CatDV - of which will not play across the network.

Additionally - I am seeing sppeds of 40-45MB/sec across the network - plenty for watching video files.

---
Warm Regards,
Chris Sgaraglino
Outdoor Studios Photography || on Flickr || on Twitter


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Matthew Stamos
Re: Network Nightmares!
on May 13, 2011 at 7:21:43 pm

Chris
There are two things we are attempting to resolve slow catalog performance and slow playback performance! I suspect they maybe related but in the meantime let's try to address these a little bit separately. Catalog files in CatDV are loaded into RAM to make navigating them snappy. Most CatDV users that run a standalone copy also keep their catalogs locally to that machine. Just want to confirm the slow down is only over the network. As for .mov copies could be uncompressed or H.264 so need more info there. How do the files play in Quicktime over the network as CatDV primarily uses quicktime as the codec engine? There is a nifty re-wrap tool for HDV that could prove useful as well.

http://www.divergentmedia.com/clipwrap


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Chris Sgaraglino
Re: Network Nightmares!
on May 13, 2011 at 8:02:54 pm

The performance is fine - it's saving (or auto-saving) when the cat file is on a network drive that is the issue. For instance - I open a catalog (2.8mb) on a network drive, made a Note change ans saved - it took over a minute to save the file?

Right now all I have is MOV files - some mine and some stock footage - but over the network, they are very jittery, or stop and lock CatDV altogether.

Here is something to note - I work over the network all the time. I take photos and open them in my photo editor, edit them right from the network. And these are 15-20mb raw NEF files?

Also, I can play the video files across the network just fine and I can edit them in Premiere Pro without having t move them either.

I'm not worried about the mt2 files - I'll deal with that later, however, I cannot use the wrapper you mentioned as it is for a mac only and I am on a PC.

---
Warm Regards,
Chris Sgaraglino
Outdoor Studios Photography || on Flickr || on Twitter


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Matthew Stamos
Re: Network Nightmares!
on May 13, 2011 at 10:28:33 pm

Would be helpful if we knew how these files behave in QT and if there is any sort of error thrown during these processes. In the meantime in the preferences under advanced media handling check the protected player option as this should alleviate much of the crashing. The Catalog performance should be addressed by one of the development team as I have not heard of the challenges you are experiencing.


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bryson jones
Re: Network Nightmares!
on May 18, 2011 at 8:51:52 pm

Am I correct that you're not using the CatDV server, just saving remote catalogs over the network?

If so, then there's likely nothing wrong with the app, we do this all the time. It's an OS or network hardware, sadly.

Obviously no one could use this app if it performed as it is on your network.

bryson

bryson "at" hidefcowboy.com

hidefcowboy.com


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Rolf Howarth
Re: Network Nightmares!
on May 25, 2011 at 7:14:30 am

Apologies for the delay replying. This is first we've heard of excessive times saving catalogs onto a Windows network share but that could just be because, as Matt says, that's not a typical use case. Most standalone users save catalogs to a local drive, most network users save them to the CatDV Server (which is specifically designed for sharing catalogs, of course). Anything more than a second or two or so to save a 3MB catalog file is excessive though, so we'll do some tests and investigate.



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Chris Sgaraglino
Re: Network Nightmares!
on Jun 2, 2011 at 5:17:00 pm

I have to think that I am using CatDV as most anyone would who has a computer and laptop...
However wit that said, I have come to the following conclusion.

CatDV will not run properly over a network if ANY of the files are native.

I have used as free tool called Handbreak and I have created CatDV versions of absolutely every clip I have recorded. These are now 320x240 at 1200kbps and CatDV seems to only crash occasionally.

Also, I am having to copy catalog files from laptop to desktop each time I am done...

Yes all this work seems excessive and it truly a pain int he ass, but right now seems to be my only choice?

I am looking into Lightroom this weekend and see if it will meet my needs? I'm pretty done with CatDV for now...

---
Warm Regards,
Chris Sgaraglino
Outdoor Studios Photography || on Flickr || on Twitter


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bryson jones
Re: Network Nightmares!
on Jun 2, 2011 at 8:44:39 pm

"I have to think that I am using CatDV as most anyone would who has a computer and laptop..."

First, I'm sorry that it didn't work out for you.

But the thing about your quote, as Rolf said, is that you actually aren't using the app as designed. In a networked system, CatDV stores its metadata in a database in the CatDVServer app. With two machines, you can in some instances use it over a network, but you are bound by network performance, Java issues and other things. The development of the app as far as a networked solution is moving further and further towards the database side of things, to the detriment of stand alone performance in some cases.

I hope you find a solution but know that CatDV isn't really aimed at replacing Lightroom or any other standalone apps, it's more to be compared to DAM's such as Final Cut Server, B4M's product line, North Plains and others in that field. Unlike these, it can serve certain small users and can be purchased and installed for less than $10,000, but the stand-alone product can be limited, as a $340 version of a sometimes $50,000-$100,000 system would be expected to be.

Finally, in my opinion, it's not intended to be a "do it yourself" system. This is only me speaking, but honestly, it's much easier if you have an integrator to help you get it running. (Yes, this is what I do for a living so take that with a huge grain of salt.) But if you read on here long enough... you'll see that that's usually the case. It's a deep and sometimes daunting program. It's powerful but with that flexibility comes a good bit of customization, troublshooting and learning that you may not, as a creative person, choose to do.

We are in the early days of this whole industry, I hope things become more plug and play and again, good luck and I hope you find a solid solution to your problem.

bryson

bryson "at" hidefcowboy.com

hidefcowboy.com


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Rolf Howarth
Re: Network Nightmares!
on Jun 2, 2011 at 8:45:06 pm

Hi Chris,
Sorry to hear about your continuing problems. All I can say again is that the issues you mention (eg. an excessively long time to save catalogs) seem quite untypical, so it could be something specific about your system that CatDV doesn't like. If you can provide details of your system configuration to support@squarebox.co.uk we'll be happy to try and help you further any way we can.
Best regards,
-Rolf



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