Celebrating 10 years of the Facilis Shared File System 


by Jim McKenna 


James McKenna HeadshotFacilis Technology is a software company that designs turn-key storage solutions. Most of the software development at Facilis is focused on improving the performance, efficiency and compatibility of our products' major feature, the Facilis Shared File System.

It's a common misconception that any storage attached through a network is "Network Attached Storage". NAS is better defined as storage accessed through a set of generic network file systems, regardless of the physical connection. These file systems, like SMB (a generic server-client communication protocol), CIFs (a popular type of SMB), and NFS (a little better than CIFs and SMB but not as widely compatible) are the basis for traditional NAS architecture in enterprise environments. Most network attached storage in the world is Windows and Linux based, more Linux for internet hosting, more Windows for in-facility NAS. The vast majority of networking technology is developed for enterprise environments, not for media and content creation workflows.

In 2009 Facilis introduced a first-of-it's-kind feature designed to displace NAS file systems in favor of a more simple, purpose-built sharing method for video and audio - the Facilis Shared File System. It's a system of drivers for Mac OSX, Windows and Linux that provides an optimized data path from the client application to the project media files. With the Shared File System, software-defined storage volumes can be pushed to user desktops from remote workstations and accessed as local-attached drives or network shares on the desktop. Both Ethernet and Fibre Channel-connected workstations can access the same project-based storage volumes at the same time, with simple permissions management through our Web Console. Client workstations automatically connect to the server without any mapping or setup, and can fail over from one connection path to another seamlessly.

This is advanced technology developed exclusively for the media and entertainment industry, not enterprise technology borrowed for video workflow. With this specialized feature set, Facilis helps content creators focus more on their craft, and less on the setup, management and troubleshooting of their network configuration and permissions. If you'd like to see an example of the Facilis Shared File System at work, and discuss how we can help your facility collaborate better, please contact us at sales@facilis.com.