When the Grand Casino in Baden in Switzerland upgraded its video security system in 2009 it installed a Geutebruck high availability IP solution with virtual GeViScope platforms and incorporating thirty-five 1.3 Megapixel cameras. The 250-camera system provides a complete video history from all cameras, including the megapixel ones, at full available resolution for 28 days on a 320 Terabyte instant access database.
Two technologies were key to achieving unprecedented performance and reliability. One is Geutebruck’s own CCTV-optimised video compression process MPEG4CCTV. This uses standard MPEG-4 compression tools in unusual ways to deliver professional performance and image handling specifically for security users. MPEG4CCTV systems are not only remarkably fast, delivering top quality video images without latency; but also lean and efficient with low network and storage requirements.
The other notable technology is virtualisation. Geutebruck uses virtualisation, in the shape of Microsoft’s Hyper-V tool, to generate multiple virtual GeViScope servers in fail-over cluster formation on a single piece of hardware, thus providing high redundancy but without additional hardware. Consequently, the server room at the Grand Casino Baden is impressive for what is not there! — Less hardware means less power and less emergency capacity on standby; fewer devices mean less waste heat, less air conditioning and lower energy consumption. Together, space, energy and cost savings mean virtualisation significantly reduces the Casino’s total cost of ownership.
The system’s cameras include a dozen legacy analogue speed domes and a hundred analogue box cameras all now linked to an existing Kat5 Ethernet with CAM2IP video encoders; 35 new 1.3 megapixel cameras and a hundred new VIPCAMs - high resolution day/night IP-cameras.
Two Intel servers each incorporating five high performance computers handle all data streams and run 21 virtual GeViScope video system platforms operated in cluster formation. These record to RAID Level 6 databases mounted on 21 Promise SAS storage systems with sixteen 1TB capacity server disks each. If - despite all care and cutting-edge technology – something does fail, then the full functionality of the system is immediately automatically re-established without down-time or data loss.
|The systems' cameras include a dozen legacy analogue speed domes and a hundred analogue box cameras|
The new megapixel cameras provide improved picture quality along with support for close-ups. On their 30-inch monitors supervisors can view all 250 cameras and can pull up live and recorded footage of identical quality in milliseconds. Despite its technical complexity, supervisors find the system simplicity itself to operate as the user-friendly GSCView display and operating software is extensively customised for each application, optimizing operator comfort and convenience.
“Virtualisation offers end-users significant advantages,” reports Carmen Lahr, Geutebruck corporate communications director. “Not only does it enable redundancy and high availability to be achieved without hardware duplication; but using hardware resources more efficiently like this reduces the installation’s need for space, power and cooling, and that cuts the system’s overall energy consumption by 30-40%.”