To view this page ensure that Adobe Flash Player version 11.1.0 or greater is installed.
outsourced) data centre, the headends, the transmitter sites, the viewer’s home network and the individual mobile devices used to consume OTT streams. Obviously some of this monitoring is best done with dedicated hardware probes – nobody really wants to maintain servers at a sub-zero transmitter site on top of a mountain. Conversely, a hardware probe is pretty much an alien presence in a room full of 400 servers. The essence of this integrated approach is that all the parts – hardware probes or virtualised software probes – talk to each other as if identical, and where appropriate, offer exactly the same functionality and performance. The overall monitoring environment can then provide a completely coherent picture from end to end, with no blank spots or ‘language barriers’ caused by incompatible monitoring equipment. Engineering staff can track status and data from the satellite ingest, the IP transport streams at the headend, the RF performance at the transmitter, and the OTT service quality – all within a consistent graphical display. to implement this kind of monitoring environment, and to make large-scale installations of virtualised probes almost instantly when scaling up server-based capacity to launch new services or extend existing ones. One of the key attractions of data centre computing is the ability to scale up and reconﬁgure capacity at very short notice, so for media organisations competing for territory with new audiences and new markets, virtualised functionality is a vital aid. The ability to roll out services in a rapid reaction to some new market opportunity is increasingly important, but in this very contested ﬁeld, where much of the content may be similar from one service to another, the point of differentiation could well be the service quality available to the subscriber. The virtualisation of functionality in production and in monitoring is an important development for the continued competitiveness of media businesses now and into the future. By virtualising the functionality of the VB330 core network probe, Bridge Technologies has made it possible for media organisations C M Y CM MY CY CMY K KITPLUS - THE TV-BAY MAGAZINE: ISSUE 108 DECEMBER 2015 | 63