A Guide to Remote Workflow
By Hugo Chevrette, Senior Account Manager East
What is a Remote Workflow?
Any workflow that would enable your workforce, or talent pool to collaborate and work outside the box.
It rapidly became the new standard in which businesses operate in 2020.
This new paradigm shift has transformed the traditional workplace into a virtual workspace and has forced executive leadership to come up with a remote work plan that places higher expectations and increased value on the impact of business communication and collaboration—as well as implement smarter business tools and software that power both.
The Benefits of Remote Workflow:
- Savings on operational costs, and rent
- Globalization of talent recruitment
- Broader business diversity and culture
- Better employee engagement and team morale
The Challenges of Remote Workflow:
MOVING DATA – Leveraging cloud storage
Concept: Send a full copy of media, projects, sessions, etc to each artists wherever they are located
Characteristics: Lots of copying data from/to a central location and many client end points.
Use Cases: Few clients need connecting (<10). Relatively small data sets need to be transferred (<10TB). Synchronization not important.
Pros: Simple. Available with existing technology.
Cons: Bandwidth limits speed of transfers. Artist is left with full copy of original media, potentially breaking security agreements with publishers.
Wasabi for M&E
High-speed performance serves multiple use cases
WHAT IS VDI – Moving Pixels
Concept: Using the Internet as a KVM
Characteristics: Workstation & storage remain securely within the facility and local to each other. Client end points connect into the workstation from offsite and only screen information is sent to the remote client.
Use Cases: Large data sets (100s of TB). Large quantities of users (dozens). Lower bandwidth available (25Mbps per client). Security essential.
Pros: Efficient use of bandwidth. Scalable. Secure – data never leaves the facility.
Cons: Can be complex to configure. May require a broker or other hardware. May require VPN (for RGS). Support Windows & Linux only.
WHAT IS VDI?
Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) is defined as the hosting of desktop environments on a central server. It is a form of desktop virtualization, as the specific desktop images run within virtual machines (VMs) and are delivered to end clients over a network. Those endpoints may be PCs or other devices, like tablets or thin client terminals.
2 Main Players:
- Teradici: PC over IP
- HP: RGS/ZCentral
1- Teradici: PC over IP
PC-over-IP (PCoIP) is a proprietary remote display protocol developed by Teradici in 2004. The protocol is available in hardware and in software
PCoIP is a UDP-based protocol that is host rendered, multi-codec and dynamically adaptive. Images rendered on the server are captured as pixels, compressed and encoded and then sent to the client for decryption and decompression. Depending on the image, different codecs are used to encode the pixels sent since techniques to compress video images differ in effectiveness compared to those for text. The protocol also dynamically adapts its encoding based on the available bandwidth.
High Performance User Experience: The industry’s highest image quality with build-to-lossless and full color accuracy. Automatically delivers best user experience under changing network conditions.
Ultra-Secure Architecture: PCoIP traffic is secured with strong AES 256 encryption; combined with stateless zero clients to provide the most secure, easy to manage endpoints.
Widest Platform Flexibility: Supports Windows and Linux GPU and non-graphics applications, virtualized and physical machines, ESXi, KVM and AHV hypervisors, major public clouds and a broad range of SDKs and APIs for customization.
The PCoIP protocol has long been adopted as the remote solution of choice for high performance graphics or secure desktops in several sectors including:
1- Teradici: for Media and Entertainment
Color accuracy: PCoIP is the only protocol offering seamless transition from content motion to 100% colour accurate display representation. This ensures that use cases demanding high colour accuracy can operate at perceptually lossless image quality levels in the dynamic sense while assuring that RGB values in the host frame buffer are accurately reproduced at the client following motion. The CIE2000 heatmaps below compare PCoIP at Q80 thru Q100 for a frame portion from a dynamic CAD sequence, as compared to RDP configured for YUV 4:4:4 compression. Once static, the PCoIP heatmap is all white to reflect 100% lossless.
Build-to-Lossless Technology: PCoIP works on any network, thanks t image quality controls that ensure text and lines always remain crisp while intelligent algorithms operate in the background to maintain other content at the highest possible fidelity supported by your network. Unlike other protocols, PCoIP transitions seamlessly to 100% lossless without bursty retransmission of image content.
Artist Experience Acceleration: PCoIP client devices, including zero clients can be configured for ‘local termination’ of Wacom Cintiq or Intuos devices – accelerating user interactivity for graphics artists, independent of the latency introduced by the network connection.
PCoIP Ultra™ GPU Optimizations: PCoIP Ultra GPU Optimizations leverage the NVIDIA NVENC encoder for H.264 or HEVC image compression which offers CPU relief when working with processing-hungry applications such as CPU render engines. The NVENC encoder can also be configured for H.264 4:2:0 chroma sub-sampling which offers significant network bandwidth savings when operating video-centric workloads over narrowband WAN networks.
How to use it?
- Install Cloud access software on the remote workstation
- Access the remote workstation with a zero client using a Tera 2 SoC (System on a chip)
- Access the remote workstation with the PCoIP software client available on Windows, Mac, Linux iOS or Android device
HP ZCentral Remote boost software: for Media and Entertainment
Few options are available for creative talents that want to work remotely:
- Cloud storage/data transfer workflow
- VDI type workflow
It’s important to choose wisely which one is best for your workflow.
About Hugo Chevrette
Hugo Chevrette is a Media and Entertainment industry insider in the Montreal area, having sold solutions for creative professionals for the past 15 years in that region. Besides providing a high degree of technical knowledge and a laser focus on customer satisfaction, his passions include cycling, boxing, photography and DJ’ing.
Hugo is known for a high degree of technical knowledge and a laser focus on customer satisfaction, qualities that perfectly reflect the core principles of Annex Pro. Fully bilingual and well respected in the Montreal area, Hugo brings a great dimension to the Annex Pro sales team.
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