Instituto Federal Electoral (IFE) Tunes into XenData Digital Video Archiving Software

XenData teams up with Excelencia to deliver remote monitoring and archiving capabilities across 150 broadcast facilities in preparation for Mexico’s mid-term elections

Walnut Creek, CA - November 2, 2009 – XenData, the leading IT standards based digital video archiving software, today announced its successful collaboration with Excelencia en Comunicaciones y Tecnología/Grupo Tecno to deliver Instituto Federal Electoral (IFE) remote monitoring and archiving across 150 broadcast facilities in preparation for the Mexican mid-term elections.

As part of IFE’s charter, it must ensure that all political parties are given fair and equal time and representation from the hundreds of television and radio stations broadcasting throughout Mexico. Consequently, IFE needed to monitor and record all of the country’s television channels. This was a major challenge for such a sizable country with a large number of geographically dispersed TV stations.

In order to achieve this, IFE required 150 new facilities to be installed and operational in time for Mexico’s elections held in July 5, 2009. After an intensive vetting process, IFE chose leading integrator, Excelencia en Comunicaciones y Tecnología to design and deliver a completely self-contained solution capable of monitoring and locally archiving up to 10 channels simultaneously with the ability to remotely monitor all live and recorded video feeds in one central location.

Excelencia en Comunicaciones y Tecnología/Grupo Tecno developed the overall system design to meet IFE’s detailed specification and chose the following key partners and components to be installed at each of the 150 new facilities:

- Volicon Observer for content acquisition and monitoring. Each channel was individually encoded at approximately 300KB/s creating nearly 300 MB of storage for each hour of monitored content per channel.

- XenData Archive Series software for archiving all monitored video to RAID and LTO-4 data tape. The XenData software ran on an IBM 3650 X-Series server and managed an IBM TS3100 tape library.

- Custom software developed by Excelencia to integrate the entire system and provide reports to IFE. When discrepant content was detected, it was logged by the Volicon Observer system, which was then assessed by an Excelencia software program. This compared time of playout of the logged content with the designated playout times, generating specialized reports for IFE that highlighted and identified noncompliant programs.

Given many of IFE’s facilities were located in remote parts of Mexico, each of the 150 facilities was required to operate in an unattended mode. To provide a workable system, XenData quickly enhanced its digital video archive software to ensure continual archiving operations in case of any problem with the LTO tape robotic library and to automatically recover after the problem was resolved. This new enhancement meant the solution was resilient to any problem with the LTO media or tape hardware, ranging from running out of blank LTO tapes to a complete library failure.

The major suppliers and integration team were fully committed to delivering the country-wide system which was delivered on time and within budget. Commenting on the implementation, Jorge Castañeda, President of Excelencia said, “Excelencia was pleased to collaborate with XenData. We only had 3 months to design and implement this country-wide system, so it was vital for us to work with partners that we could trust and were capable of delivering the required components on such a large scale, both quickly and cost-effectively. XenData enabled us to do exactly this.”

Prior to the new system, IFE used VHS tapes for monitoring and identifying discrepant content, a manually intensive and costly process, as the VHS tape was only capable of storing approximately 6 hours of video. With XenData’s new digital archiving software enhancements, each LTO cartridge is capable of recording over 2,600 hours of monitored content and the IBM tape library holds over one year of content for 6 channels.

“We knew it was critically important to be able to deliver high quality archiving capabilities quickly and flawlessly, in a short period of time. Given our digital archiving software is build on IT standards, we were confident that our software installation could deliver seamless integration with high compatibility and scalability for the IFE project,” said Dr. Philip Storey, co-founder and CEO of XenData.

About XenData

XenData is a leading provider of digital video archiving software tailored specifically to serve the media and entertainment industry. XenData’s solution provides the high-performance and functionality required to meet today and tomorrow’s demanding digital video applications. XenData software is built on industry standards, providing a standard file system interface and archiving to data tape using the POSIX tar format. TV stations, media service providers, post production organizations and global broadcasters using XenData standards based approach are able to benefit from significant cost-savings, ease of integration with other standards-based systems as well as long-term assured access to their video files. With over 250 digital video archive installations worldwide, XenData is trusted by some of the largest broadcasters and networks including the BBC, Televisa, Warner Brothers and the UK’s Channel Four. For more information visit:

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