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Production Assets: Data Management

The verification and back-up of data including original camera files (OCF) throughout a workflow is crucial. Data loss can mean losing significant investment both in planning and shooting. Our requirements are designed to help minimize costly incidents during production.

There are multiple ways to manage your data backup and verification workflow. Below are critical requirements.

3 : 2 : 1 Back-Up Rule

  • Hold at least 3 copies of all Original Camera Footage (OCF) and audio at all times.
  • Store the copies on at least 2 different types of media.
  • Maintain at least 1 backup offsite.

For example:

  • 3 copies:
    • Camera Media Card
    • On-Set RAID 1, 5, 6 or 10
    • LTO
  • 2 types of media:
    • RAID 1, 5, 6 or 10
    • LTO
  • 1 different location (geographic separation):
    • One copy of media at the Production House and one copy of media at the Post House.

Please Note: RAID must be connected to computer by a hardware RAID controller. Software based RAID should not be used.

Acceptable Final Archival Formats

  • LTO tapes (LTO5, LTO6, LTO7; written in LTFS format)
  • Netflix's Content Hub (cloud storage)
  • High-Speed RAID (1, 5, 6, or 10)-protected external hard drive (Pending Netflix Approval)

Please Note: RAID 0 is only acceptable for temporary transfer/shuttle drives, and not for backup purposes.

Verification

Data Verification:

  • Checksums must be generated and verified for all original camera footage and checksum manifests must accompany all original camera files.
    • Checksum manifests are text files that contain the file name and corresponding checksum of each file in a group of files. ie. Media Hash List (MHL).
  • OCF must be verified with checksums every time a copy is made, up to and including the Final Archive.
  • On Set checksum generation and verification may use MD5 or xxHash64-BE verification algorithms. MD5 checksum is required for copies from on-set transfer drive to the lab's ingest, all the way to final archive.
  • Checksums must be stored in the folder in which they are being run, at one of the following directory levels:
    • Camera Media
    • Shoot Day
    • Root Level
  • If possible, generate a .MHL file and store in the root of each copy.

Visual Verification:

  • Footage must be visually inspected for possible recording or data transfer issues, referencing camera reports with scene/take information and script notes.
    • Visual check must be at real time playback.
    • When possible, visual check is preferably performed at 1:1 (pixel-for-pixel) image ratio in order to identify visual artifacts.
    • When editorial proxies created from the original camera footage are available, a visual confirmation is required to ensure that all scenes/takes are transferred and accounted for.

On Set Media Re-purpose

Original Camera Media Cards may only be reformatted after both:

  • Visual QC of all footage has been performed against camera reports/script notes, with all footage accounted for and signed-off on.
  • OCFs have been copied and reside in a minimum of three storage mediums. For example:
    • LTO
    • RAID 1, 5, 6 or 10

On set RAID 1, 5, 6 or 10 may only be reformatted after both:

  • Visual QC of all footage has been accounted for per camera reports and script notes and signed off by editorial.
  • OCFs have been copied and reside in a minimum of three storage mediums, including their Final Archival format. For example:
    • LTO
    • Content Hub
    • RAID 1, 5, 6 or 10 - protected external hard drive (Pending Netflix Approval)

Sample Data Flow

There are multiple ways to achieve a compliant data verification workflow, so discussion with Netflix prior to shooting is recommended.

 On-Set

  1. Record Footage and Audio to appropriate.
  2. Media sent to digital imaging technician (DIT). Camera media must be maintained from this step until release as described in Step #9.
  3. Generate checksums from recording media.
  4. Concurrently copy footage from media to on-set RAID and shuttle drive (copies must be verified using either MD5 or xxHash64-BE checksums).
  5. Transport Shuttle Drive to Lab via encrypted media or locked container.

Lab

  1. Ingest Shuttle Drive to Lab verifying md5 checksums.
  2. Perform a visual QC of media being written to final archive (either by playback of OCF or viewing proxies generated directly from the OCFs), referencing camera reports and/or script notes.
  3. Final Archival Format:
  • OPTION 1 - Create 2x LTO archives, geographically separated in secure locations such as the post facility and the production facility.
  • OPTION 2 - Create 1x LTO archive and Upload OCF to Content Hub (Netflix Cloud Server).
  1. Once LTO creation and visual QC are complete, notify all necessary teams that Recording Media can be released back to production.
  2. Once LTOs have been verified and Dailies have been checked for completeness and integrity by editorial, On-set Raid5 may have its storage space released for newer OCFs.

SampleDataFlow.png


Change Log:

2018-11-01:

  • Verification: Reformatted/reworded this section for clarity.
  • Sample Data Flow: Reformatted/reworded this section for clarity.

2018-10-15:

  • RAID 1 has been added as an acceptable configuration throughout article.
  • Added note that RAIDs must be connected via a hardware RAID controller.

2018-08-21:

  • Article rewritten to provide additional clarity and context.
  • Image added showing example workflow.
  • File and folder naming information has been moved to "Production Assets: File & Folder Naming"
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