India's Zee Entertainment builds disaster recovery in the cloud

Zee Entertainment Limited logo
Neal Romanek
July 12th 2017 at 3:55PM : By Neal Romanek

Imagine Communications Versio playout and D-Series automation have been deployed in the backup solution

Indian media company ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) has deployed a new cloud-based business continuity solution in its back up facility in Mumbai. The disaster recovery solution uses the redundancy capabilities of virtualised and geo-dispersed environments for improved protection of its playout operations. 

Zee will be using Umagine Communications Versio playout solution and D-Series automation solution. Versio is 100% software running on commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) IT platforms. The cloud-native solution is portable to all deployment environments, including premise-based appliance approaches.

The backup site supports 15 ZEE channels running on Hewlett-Packard Enterprise (HPE) servers across a virtual platform that mirrors the main site. Changes made to the main system are immediately reflected on the disaster recovery system. 

A cloud-native approach to DR provides private or public cloud-based restoration of broadcast and video playout operations. Said to be more affordable, reliable and easier to manage than traditional business continuity solutions, cloud-native disaster recovery is growing in popularity. 

In Mumbai, Versio works in tandem with the D-Series playout automation system, a highly scalable solution that provides device control for linear playout channels and manages the movement of file-based media to multiple delivery platforms. The D-Series Remote Schedule Synchronization (DRSS) feature enables both the primary and backup ZEEL sites to run in sync.



“Imagine Communications’ cloud-native business continuity solution helps to ensure that our live channels never go off the air, no matter the unforeseen circumstances we may face during the day-to-day running of our facility,” said Amitabh Kumar, head of broadcasting for ZEEL's parent company, Zee Network. “The virtualised nature of the solution has already allowed ZEEL to realise savings on rack space and power consumption. In addition, the installation’s remote management capabilities help us to reduce resources at the DR site, keeping our OPEX low.”

“ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Limited enjoys a long history with Imagine Communications and is one of the most innovative media companies in the region, and among the first to transition operations to a fully software-centric model utilising COTS equipment,” said Brick Eksten, chief product officer at Imagine Communications. “It is no surprise that ZEEL is one of the first media companies operating in the Indian subcontinent to recognise the cost and efficiency benefits of cloud-native solutions and to identify business continuity operations as a starting point for the adoption of a next-generation architecture.”

In a press release Imagine Communications observed that some media companies are adopting cloud-native disaster recovery operations as a first step in the transition of mission-critical operations to virtualised environments, with plans to use the virtualised facilities for launching new channels or hosting existing ones after gaining familiarity with working in the cloud.