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CNTV

The release date:2014-03-21

Customer


China Network Television

http://www.cntv.cn/


Industry

Online Video


Case

Cost saving by 90%, 21Vianet supports CNTV 2014 Spring Festival Gala live broadcasting.


Challenges

As a state-level Internet broadcasting platform, CNTV faced tough technology challenges in the online live broadcasting of the 2014 CCTV Spring Festival Gala due to the sharply increasing traffic. In face of the video streaming requests from different platforms, CNTV’s video live broadcast and on-demand broadcasting system had to transcode the programs stored in local servers to the corresponding formats, and then distribute them to the respective terminal users in the fastest way. The sharply increasing broadcasting requests at peak hours would push the Video-on-demand system’s computing capabilities and broadband demands to the extreme. It is a tricky problem for the CNTV technical team to rapidly and flexibly scale and deploy current servers and ensure smooth system operation and video streaming at peak hours.


Solutions

Microsoft Azure operated by 21Vianet


Value

Flexible scalability to cope with peak traffic

Reducing hardware expenditure

Stable and reliable professional operation and maintenance

Reliable disaster recovery and backup to ensure data security


Customer Testimonial

“Now with Azure’s powerful cloud technology and 21Vianet’s professional and high-efficient operation and maintenance expertise, it takes only two days, which used to be 3 months, to address short-term traffic peaks. Azure cloud service operated by 21Vianet ensured smooth streaming of CNTV 2014 Spring Festival Gala with its professional operation and maintenance capabilities.”

---Song Weijun, Chief Engineer, CNTV

“With its flexible scalability, Azure can rapidly activate cloud-based video-on-demand platform to ease computing pressures when CNTV faces temporary traffic peaks, so as to ensure the smooth video streaming at peak hours. On the day of live broadcasting, 21Vianet’s operation and maintenance team provided real-time traffic monitoring reports and maintenance suggestions every half hour, as well as 7*24 customer support and services, which greatly alleviated the maintenance pressures of our technical team.

  ---Bai Jian, Vice Director of Technical Center, CNTV


Business Challenges

The online live broadcasting of the 2014 CCTV Spring Festival Gala brought tough technology challenges to CNTV due to the sharply increasing online traffic. CNTV’s daily active user requests are about 40 million, which rose by several times during the Spring Festival Gala period. If going for the conventional approach, it would have taken 3 months to deploy on-premise servers from procurement, project confirmation to implementation. Such a long cycle would not only bring deployment and maintenance pressures, but also require a considerable amount of capital expenditure.

In face of the video streaming requests from different platforms, CNTV’s video live broadcast and on-demand broadcasting system had to transcode the programs stored in local servers to the corresponding formats, and then distribute them to the respective terminal users in the fastest way. The sharply increasing broadcasting requests at peak hours would push the Video-on-demand system’s computing capabilities and broadband demands to the extreme. It is a tricky problem for the CNTV technical team to ensure the system’s smooth operation and smooth video streaming at peak hours.


Solutions

Based on CNTV’s actual business demands, 21Vianet’s technical team has conducted all-round tests for CNTV, including performance test, architectural test and guidance. The high scalability of  Azure public cloud platform can well address the temporary traffic increase of CNTV’s live broadcasting.

After a series of comparisons and considerations, CNTV finally adopted Windows Azure public cloud platform, and deployed its systems on Azure virtual machine.

Azure can deploy virtually unlimited number of virtual machines, and dynamically allocate IT resources based on CNTV’s actual demands. After adopting Azure, CNTV only need to deploy the underlying infrastructure just several days before the live broadcasting. It can activate the cloud-based VOD platform anytime when needed to ease computing pressures.

“Spring Festival Gala live broadcasting is a traffic peak, with visits increasing over 5 times. The traditional IT support practice is not a good choice economically. However, with Azure’s flexible scalability, especially the pay-as-you-go model, we can save cost by as much as 90%,” said Bai Jian, Vice Director of CNTV Technical Center. “ Azure’s flexibility, reliability and high-value are very suitable for CNTV’s temporary traffic increase with Spring Festival Gala live broadcasting.”


Customer Benefits

Flexible scalability to cope with peak traffic

Azure can deploy virtually unlimited virtual machines and support automatic migration based on CNTV’s business demands and changes. When visits peak, the system will automatically move some users to the public cloud. When the visits return to the normal level, the system will stop all public cloud services and return to CNTV’s on-premise IT services. The flexible, real-time and dynamic scalability of  Azure enabled CNTV to cope with the 2014 CCTV Spring Festival Gala online live broadcasting challenges.


Reducing hardware expenditure

With Azure, CNTV can rapidly satisfy business demands through deploying virtual machines, without bearing the cost of hardware depreciation, and thus reducing the capital expenditures on hardware. With flexible scalability and pay-as-you-go model, Azure helped CNTV save costs by 90%. In addition, the server maintenance deployed on Azure can be remotely managed, and IT staff can conveniently conduct resources usage monitoring and deployment, so as to lower administrative expenses.


Stable and reliable professional operation and maintenance

Before Azure deployed, 21Vianet’s technical team has conducted all-round tests for CNTV, including performance test, architectural test and guidance. 21Vianet’s professional operation team, dedicated to cloud platform service, has been well trained and certified by Microsoft to provide world-class services for cloud customers.  

On the day of live broadcasting, 21Vianet team conducted real-time monitoring on CNTV’s online traffic throughout the day, and provided Internet real-time traffic monitoring reports and maintenance suggestions every half hour in three levels, ensuring the smooth online live broadcasting.

21Vianet provides 7*24 operation and maintenance service and ensures the stable and reliable operation of CNTV public cloud platform with world-class monitoring process and event management capabilities.


Reliable disaster recovery and backup to ensure data security

Azure operated by 21Vianet provides three automatic copies in one datacenter, and can produce three backup copies in the other datacenter located in a different city in China, which ensures reliable disaster recovery and backup. Azure’s openness and virtual machine support guarantee CNTV’s rapid data migration and seamless connection.



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