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Old 09-09-2005, 03:01 PM   #1
Registered: Aug 2003
Posts: 368

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network speed questions

i've recently been doing a lot of video editing and that's prompted me to consider networking
my sound library. up to now it's resided on my separate audio machine but as i do more video
editing i'm beginning to want ready access to it from my other workstations. is anyone else
working in this kind of environment?

i'm reasonably confident i can set up the necessary gear but i need some basic info first.
things like:

1. if i were to set up a file server machine (probably a samba server as the media
workststions are all xp), what are the speed priorities? i can move the existing library drives
to this new server, but if all it's doing is allowing access to those drives, how important is cpu
speed, memory capacity, ide bus speed on the server box?

2. is a gigabit network fast enough for such usage? or are the bottlenecks in the machines
themselves? iow, is the speed of the machines more of an issue than the network capacity?
i've been told that my disks will not be as fast as a gigabit network. is that true? (there won't
be a lot of other users, just me working from different workstations at different times.)

3. is it practical at all to even consider multi-tracking with materials accessed from other
machines, or would it be more reasonable to think in terms of using the server for previewing
and then moving the chosen files over to the active workstation for more direct access?


Last edited by babag; 09-09-2005 at 03:06 PM.
Old 09-10-2005, 08:04 AM   #2
Registered: Dec 2001
Location: Basel, Switzerland
Distribution: ubuntu
Posts: 297

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hi there

You gave not enough info to tell, where exactly the bottlenex will b.

It all depends on what transfer rates you really need. It also depends on the network hatdware - if using gigabit also the HD read speed is important, as gigabit is fast enough to transfer more than a low-end HD could ever transfer...

CPU speed is rather unimportant, the amount of memory, and its speed also. except of course, you place the server under high load (which you do not intend to as you wrote...)

Also the software you are using can be a bottleneck, I believe SMB is pretty good (I never tried to transfer more than a megabyte from my linuxbox to win, so I can't really tell...) but also there are alternatives. FTP is rather slow, and not applicable at your site. Consider NFS. I believe there are Win drivers for this excellent piece of work.

So. I hope this helped.


Old 09-10-2005, 01:10 PM   #3
Registered: Aug 2003
Posts: 368

Original Poster
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thanks raven. this does help. the hard drives in question are generally
something like the western digital jb series, ata133 w/8mb cache. they
get quite good throughput, especially on my promise raid card. 50-90mbs.
how does this fit in with your assessment?

thanks again,
Old 09-11-2005, 12:33 AM   #4
Registered: Jun 2005
Location: q3dm7
Distribution: Mandriva 2010.0 x86_64
Posts: 338

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Research your gigabit NICs carefully. Onboard Marvell Ethernet can give a throughput of 91 megabytes/sec using 10% CPU of a P4 3.4 GHz. Onboard Realtek on a nForce3 ultra chipset is not far behind but needs 19% CPU of an AMD 3800+. VIA Velocity performance was WAY behind in the following tests - may be driver related.
Old 09-11-2005, 02:04 AM   #5
Registered: Aug 2003
Posts: 368

Original Poster
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thanks for the input snowbat. from past experience i've learned never
to use via for anything audio related so i wouldn't be going with that
anyway. good to get tips for other specifics to look for.

thanks again,


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