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Avere Systems Helps Framestore Create Extraordinary Visual Effects for Blockbuster Films

by david.nunes

Avere Systems Helps Framestore Create Extraordinary Visual Effects for Blockbuster Films

PITTSBURGH, PA —May 15, 2013Avere Systems today announced that the Avere FXT Series Edge filers are helping visual effects studio Framestore, the winner of multiple BAFTAs, Golden Globes, Emmys and Oscars, to stay ahead of the technology curve. The case study explains how Framestore – whose visual effects have brought life to many hit films including Avatar, The Golden Compass, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Skyfall, War Horse, and upcoming space drama Gravity – chose Avere’s FXT 4500 Edge filers to manage the massive rendering and storage performance requirements.

Essential features Avere brought to Framestore include the ability to identify hot files, improve storage load visibility, identify “rogue renders” that could wreak havoc on the system, and accelerate random and sequential read-and-write access to the system’s backend storage or core filers. The Avere FXT4500 Edge filers served the render farm, freeing up the storage system to service the rest of the facility. For more details, read the complete case study.

Framestore CTO Steve MacPherson explained that several competitive SSD-based solutions were considered – everything from building their own system based on CacheFS software to adding SSDs to the newly installed core filers.

MacPherson said, “Ultimately, Avere won the argument with its ability to deliver the type of metrics, analysis and identification of hot files essential to production efficiency. Simplicity is a key Framestore engineering design goal. Once we established the correct configuration for the Avere system, we were able to just step back and let it do its thing.”

He added, “We are also very pleased with the support and technical knowledge of the Avere team at all levels – from the installation engineers to the CEO, we have been able to discuss our challenges in a way that focuses on an informed solution. The Avere Edge filers were absolutely critical to the delivery of Gravity – the most computationally demanding film Framestore has ever done. On Gravity Framestore had an unprecedented level of CG imagery being created and a huge number of people working on this material simultaneously.

“The Avere FXT 4500 edge filer, with its ability to deliver up to 150 TB of Flash in a single cluster, was built to meet the challenging demands of workloads found in the entertainment industry and other similar types of environments,” said Ron Bianchini, President and CEO, Avere Systems. “Avere is thrilled to play a supporting role in the production of blockbuster movies in conjunction with Framestore.”

About Avere Systems

Avere Systems brings to the market NAS Optimization solutions designed specifically to scale performance and capacity separately and take advantage of new storage media using real-time tiering. Avere’s FXT Series Edge filers allow organizations to achieve unlimited application performance scaling, free applications from the confines of the data center by eliminating latency and cut storage costs by more than half. Learn more at www.averesystems.com, and you can follow the company on Twitter.com/averesystems.

About Framestore

Framestore (www.framestore.com) is an Oscar-winning visual effects company that uses innovative talent and technology to create hi-end images for every platform. Framestore partners with clients ranging from Hollywood studios through to advertisers, ad agencies, production companies and video game developers. In addition to being recognised for its globally celebrated visual effects, Framestore has more recently made its name as an innovator in the digital space by focusing on the immersive engagement potential of interactive visual effects. Visit Framestore on Facebook and Twitter.

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