Image Processing Reference
Phase 7—Emergencies and disaster recovery
Working on it like this helps you to focus on the requirements of each discrete part of the
planning and building process.
Dream Your Dreams
It's a good idea to dream of the maximum scope your system will scale to and then work
out how to build it in stages. Then you can avoid painting yourself into a corner that pre-
vents future upgrades. An example of thinking in a scalable fashion would be to build a
2-node cluster. It is so small that it scarcely qualifies as a cluster, but because it is in fact
a cluster, adding a third node is very easy. If your ultimate goal is to build a 10-node clus-
ter, start with one master and one slave. As the money comes in from client jobs, add the
subsequent nodes when you can afford them.
Foster Good Habits and Reliable Working Practices
You should study and implement good practices, such as archiving and backup. Making
sure this is considered at the outset is very important. Later on when you realize you need
backup facilities, it is hard to justify the cost when the entire budget has already been
spent. Larger installations should build this into a tiered storage strategy with faster and
more expensive storage closer to the users. A rule of thumb is that the cost of storage is
correlated to how fast the access is.
Document everything, even if you work on your own with a small system.
Keep track of your dongles. These are the little plug-in hardware keys that are
supplied with some software. They might plug into serial ports, parallel ports,
or USB interfaces. Identify and label them or record their serial numbers so
you know what each one is and where it is. Lose them and you have to buy
another copy of the software. They are your license to use it, so be careful!
Building a Custom System from Scratch
You might enjoy the challenge of building the system for fun and profit from scratch.
There are open-source projects available on the Internet with some very good video
encoders. The industry is learning a lot from these open-source communities. The ques-
tion is whether the extra work involved is worth it. Of course, the pleasure is sometimes
in the journey, and building a system just exactly how you want it may be a very satisfy-
ing experience. It is not always about the money—or the performance.
Decide Your Priorities Before Spending Any Cash
When you build your system, it is important to set out what your priorities are. If you are
building a large corporate-sized workflow solution, then the productivity is going to be