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Sony DADC Streamlines Disc Production with SGI Storage Technology


At Its Central U.S. Facility for Production of CDs, DVDs, and UMDs, Sony DADC Uses an SGI SAN Solution to Speed Automated Mastering Processes

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. (Feb. 22, 2006)—Silicon Graphics (OTC:SGID) announces that Sony DADC, a leading producer of optical disc media, has purchased a SGI® InfiniteStorage SAN solution to increase throughput, ensure scalability, and improve data management in the automated mastering facility at its Terre Haute, Indiana plant. The plant, which is the flagship Sony disc production facility for the U.S., produces 2.4 million music CDs, DVDs, and UMD game discs in a typical day and provides services that range from postproduction to distribution. Production will increase substantially when Sony DADC begins production in 2006 of 25GB Blu-ray discs, which can contain a complete movie in HDTV format. The company is adding 90,000 square feet to its 700,000-square-foot Terre Haute plant to house Blu-ray production.

Sustained growth of its business had been putting pressure on the IT infrastructure of the company’s mastering department, which currently stores nearly 100,000 media filesets in industry-standard DDP (Disc Description Protocol) format. Each fileset, which includes not only content but complete production information including graphics, can easily occupy 25GB of disk space. As the mastering department added tape and disk capacity, network bottlenecks developed. The impending demand for Blu-ray products would clearly exacerbate these problems.

“We found over time we needed more and more space, and it became kind of a nightmare to add more equipment,” says Sony DADC Systems Engineer Ray Kapperman. “Our storage costs kept going up.”

Kapperman worked with SGI engineers to design an SGI InfiniteStorage SAN solution that became fully operational in the summer of 2005. Today arriving media filesets are stored as DDPs on a high-performance 2.1TB SGI TP9300 RAID. Sony DADC’s Network Mastering Control System pulls files from RAID and presents them to the mastering cutters in a totally automated process. SGI DMF (Data Migration Facility) automatically moves the files from RAID to a 7.3TB SGI SATA tape cache, then to a 500TB STK SL8500 tape library.

“DMF was a key reason for going with the SGI solution,” says Kapperman. “It allowed us to consolidate our storage and handle expansion. We can now keep new media live on a high-speed drive for about a week, which is more than enough time for most of our jobs to be cut. It then moves to our SATA tape cache for up to a month, so if we need to cut more metal from it, we can do it without having to pull from the tapes.” DMF automatically moves files from the SATA array to the tape library after a month.

Four SGI® Origin® 350 servers run DMF and SGI® InfiniteStorage Shared Filesystem CXFS™ over the mastering system network.

“CXFS has also accelerated our workflow,” says Kapperman. “Its big advantage for us is that files can be shared, so we don’t have to move a lot of files around anymore. All data is instantly available to all systems without copies. That, and the speed of the box, enabled us to cut a lot of time off processing.” The SGI solution has increased network throughput from 72MB/sec to 400MB/sec, scalable to 800MB/sec.

In preparation for Blu-ray production, Sony DADC is making major upgrades to its SGI storage infrastructure. In December 2005, the company purchased a TP9700 controller, an additional 8TB of Fibre Channel disk capacity, an additional 16TB of SATA capacity, additional CXFS Windows® OS client licenses, two 4GB 32-port Brocade switches; and additional processors for its SGI servers. SGI InfiniteStorage technology will simplify expansion of both disk and tape capacity.

“Sony DADC is an industry leader known for quality and innovation,” said Stan Posey, manager of business development for the manufacturing industry, SGI. “SGI takes pride in being able to supply Sony DADC with innovative storage technology that will enable the Terre Haute facility to accelerate its automated mastering throughput and expand to fill any future need.”

SILICON GRAPHICS | The Source of Innovation and Discovery™
SGI, also known as Silicon Graphics, Inc. (OTC: SGID), is a leader in high-performance computing, visualization and storage. SGI’s vision is to provide technology that enables the most significant scientific and creative breakthroughs of the 21st century. Whether it’s sharing images to aid in brain surgery, finding oil more efficiently, studying global climate change, providing technologies for homeland security and defense or enabling the transition from analog to digital broadcasting, SGI is dedicated to addressing the next class of challenges for scientific, engineering and creative users. With offices worldwide, the company is headquartered in Mountain View, Calif., and can be found on the Web at

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