Frequently Asked Questions

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General

What Veset Nimbus is used for?

Veset Nimbus is cloud-based software used for professional linear TV channel creation, generally referred to as ‘playout’. While there is no formal definition of a playout functionality set, at the core of any playout solution is the ability to continuously combine multiple media elements (live and pre-recorded video, audio, graphics, subtitles, etc.) in accordance with a pre-defined schedule, to frame-accurate precision. Veset Nimbus playout outputs UDP, HLS or RTMP, ready to be delivered via various distribution platforms (satellite, cable, IPTV or CDN) to end viewers over TV, Set-Top box, OTT (e.g. Roku, Apple TV, Xbox), computer or mobile devices.

Linear TV channels can be both permanent - continuously playing 365/24/7 - or temporary, i.e. being made available for a few hours, days or weeks.

What are the distinguishing features of your products - Veset Nimbus, Veset Altos, Veset Cirrus?

Veset Nimbus is a professional all-in-one cloud playout solution used primarily by broadcasters and broadcast service providers. It includes a complete linear broadcast channel and playout workflow - media file ingest, MAM, scheduling, playout, and transport to headend locations.

Veset Altos is an addon for Veset Nimbus. It is a long-term planning and scheduling module which is optionally enabled in Veset Nimbus per each channel, and has a separate additional subscription cost.

Veset Cirrus is a simplified all-in-one-page cloud playout product aimed at prosumers who want to broadcast their relatively simpler (no set schedule, simplified graphics capabilities etc.) channels and send the output feeds to CDNs, Youtube, Facebook, Twitch, Vimeo and other streaming platforms. Veset Cirrus includes the ability to overlay simpler graphics and play live inputs, as well as mixing it with ingested media.

What does cloud playout mean in case of Veset Nimbus?

Veset Nimbus is software specifically designed to run on cloud computing resources and to maximise their use. Such cloud computing resources include cloud servers, storage, databases and security made available by global cloud suppliers such as Amazon Web Services (AWS).

What differentiates Veset Nimbus from other playout providers, in particular those claiming to have fully cloud-based solutions is the fact that: (1) Veset Nimbus was designed and developed from the ground up for cloud use, and (2) all of its elements are truly and fully virtualised and cloud-based.

This full use of cloud technologies is fundamental to Veset Nimbus, allowing the benefits of elasticity and rapid scaling, high performance, remote access, security and pay-per-use business models sought by clients.

Veset Nimbus can also be deployed as a (physical) edge solution: Veset‘s view is nevertheless that referring to an edge-based playout as a ‘cloud solution’, as some suppliers do, is highly misleading.

What are the subscription options?

If you are a broadcaster, we provide the Veset Nimbus platform as a SaaS (software-as-a-service) solution, including all AWS resources required to operate your channel(s). We charge a monthly subscription; costs are determined by your specific needs, relating to the type of channel and content, the uptime requirements and the distribution options. The initial minimum contract is three months.

If you are a playout service provider we can offer Veset Nimbus with alternative configurations; please contact us for further details.

Do I need any hardware to use Veset Nimbus?

There is no requirement to purchase any specific hardware to operate a TV channel playout when using Veset Nimbus in full cloud mode.

The cloud computing resources required to run Veset Nimbus are available on demand and are included in the subscription.

A simple computer (PC or Mac) with a browser and an internet connection is all that is required for channel operations staff (i.e. remote management of ingest, library, playout…)

How do you deliver to headend?

Please see Transport section for details.

Do you support SRT transport protocol?

There is no in-built support for the open-source SRT protocol in Veset’s products. When a Veset Nimbus playout is hosted in AWS, you are able to launch a “pay-as-you-go” Haivision Media Gateway instance and deliverUDP feeds to/from one or more Veset Nimbus playouts over AWS VPC This enables the capability of delivering both open-source and proprietary (Haivision) protocol SRT feeds to/from the playout, enabling the live input and output transport over SRT functionality.

What Library cleanup and archiving features are available?

Veset Nimbus allows you to enable and configure automated Library cleanup functionality. Assets which are not updated for X days and not scheduled for Y days are automatically removed from the Library. Assets can be either permanently deleted, or moved to AWS Glacier. If archived to AWS Glacier, assets are visible in the Library with a specific tag Archived. If such an asset is subsequently updated or added to a Channel’s timeline, it will be automatically retrieved from AWS Glacier.

Ingest

How do I upload files to Veset Nimbus?

Files are uploaded to a pre-configured Veset Nimbus Ingest watchfolder using FTP/Aspera/Signiant or other suitable protocols, using any software tool that you are currently using. The watchfolder is then accessed by Veset Nimbus’ Media Asset Management (MAM) system automatically, and all of the new files, along with their metadata, are integrated into the Veset Nimbus platform, ready for playout.

NB: as an alternative Veset Nimbus can be integrated with external MAM and storage solutions using REST API.

What ingest formats do you support?

Please see Ingest section of the Datasheet for details.

What subtitle formats and how many tracks do you support?

Please see Playout section of the Datasheet for details.

How many audio tracks and what formats do you support?

Please see Playout section of the Datasheet for details.

What are the graphics options?

Please see Ingest section of the Datasheet for details.

Scheduling

What is Veset Altos?

Veset Altos is a long-term planning and scheduling addon module for Veset Nimbus. It can be enabled in Veset Nimbus on per-channel basis, for an additional monthly subscription cost. It adds two additional Veset Nimbus GUI sections - Planning and Schedules.

Most notable Planning features:

  • Assign user permissions for separate planning and scheduling team users
  • Create long term plans for your channels (up to X months/years)
  • Work in personalized Daily, Weekly, and Monthly views
  • Create recurring program blocks
  • Copy/paste program blocks
  • Assign customizable categories and colors to program blocks
  • Add Live events and media assets directly from MAM to the plans
  • Add Placeholder events to channel plans
  • Full secondary event support throughout
  • Commit channel plans to Scheduling
  • Make custom/manual changes to already-committed plans and automatically notify the scheduling team users

Most notable Schedule features:

  • Work in personalized Daily, Weekly, and Monthly views
  • See the planned program blocks, events and gaps in the Schedule view
  • Add Live events and media assets directly from MAM to the plans
  • Replace Placeholder events with Live events and media assets from MAM
  • Seamlessly change order of events in program blocks
  • Save and apply scheduled periods directly to Channels

Can I make any changes to the playlist in the Veset Nimbus?

An operator with appropriate access rights can control the operation of channels and change offline and online playlists at any time, including up to the very last minute. As with any solution, operators need to be aware that new media elements are available (ingested) and are ready for playout.

In addition to making last minute changes to the playlist, an operator can also launch emergency videos, skip events, take and manage live sources, etc.

Note: a significant advantage of keeping playout media in the cloud (e.g. AWS) is the availability of high speed transfer from AWS S3 storage to AWS EC2 virtual machines which run Veset Nimbus.

If I start using Veset Nimbus where is my actual content stored?

All content ingested onto the Veset Nimbus platform is stored in the AWS cloud storage service known as S3. AWS S3 is used by leading media organisations to store valuable media content in secure way.

The amount of AWS S3 storage available is virtually unlimited. In reality each Veset Nimbus subscriber needs to estimate the monthly use of storage which will be included in the monthly subscription invoice.

How does Veset Nimbus handle scheduling?

Veset Nimbus has a built-in “drag and drop” schedule editor, enabling users to create playlists manually.

Traditionally channel operators use separate standalone scheduling/ traffic software solutions to automate schedule creation and to plan long term, with a wide range of software suppliers being available. Most traffic systems are designed to output playlists in XML in accordance with Broadcast Exchange Format (BXF).

Veset Nimbus is designed to import all such XML playlists.

Alternatively, Veset Nimbus can integrate directly with 3rd party traffic systems using REST API.

Can Veset Nimbus integrate with external media asset management (MAM) systems?

REST API enables Veset Nimbus to be integrated with any external MAM system.

A TV channel operator can use his own internal MAM as the primary asset manager while Veset Nimbus’s MAM performs the secondary, mainly pass-through role, facilitating playout operations.

Live

How do you support live inputs?

Veset Nimbus allows the broadcasting of not only pre-recorded content but also live video and audio sources.

Live events can be created and edited in the Nimbus scheduling module. The user can equally use skip and take controls to either begin or end live events manually and can manage consecutive live events.

Additional elements such as graphics can also be added to on-air live events.

Incoming live feeds are delivered to the cloud using either IP transport technologies such as Zixi or using IP connectivity providers such as Equinix.

Is it possible to record and re-use live?

It is possible to record the live incoming feed by using our partner’s Zixi software running on the playout server and used for transmission of the outgoing feed. The recording is done before air and is then automatically ingested into Veset Nimbus library. The ingested recording can then be played in the channel as a regular asset.

Is it possible to have more than 1 live input?

It is possible to preview and schedule concurrently only one live input in Veset Nimbus.

That said, it is possible to pre-configure multiple live playout input graphs to create as many live inputs as you need and then switch them on/off to enable/disable the particular live input that you need at the time.

You can also use Zixi Broadcaster as a switcher board for the incoming multiple live feeds; it allows you to preview all of the feeds and choose the one you need at the time.

Deployment

Which public cloud providers do you support for Veset Nimbus?

Veset Nimbus’ solution can be deployed in Amazon Web Services ,Telia Cloudy ,and Alibaba Cloud . Additionally, the separate playout module can also be deployed in any other public or private cloud, or physical private cloud infrastructure.

Can you provide an option to view a channel on a mobile device?

Yes. A specific channel output stream can be provided, compatible with most global CDN services and with various HTML5-based web video players (for example, JW Player or THEOplayer), and deployable on iOS/Android-based mobile devices.

Can you geo-localise the playout for licensing purposes?

Yes, any playout can be deployed in any public or private cloud in any required geo-location.

Does Veset Nimbus offer a cloud-based compliance recording functionality?

Yes

How quickly can I launch a new playout?

New playout creation is a fully automated process: a user with appropriate permissions can launch an SD or HD playout within 20 minutes from scratch.

How quickly can I scale down and shut down playout?

Technically you can shut down playout by a press of one button.

Typically Veset will charge a minimum of a month’s subscription for 24/7 linear channels.

For temporary channels using the Veset Nimbus solution, specific arrangements can be made, both technically and commercially.

What playout redundancy options are available?

Two redundancy options are available for Veset Nimbus playouts - Hot and Warm.

In the Hot scenario there are two playouts running and playing the channel 24/7.

In the Warm scenario the primary playout is playing the channel 24/7. The backup playout is fully pre-configured, with Zixi licenses pre-loaded (if Zixi is used), and the playout is in standby state.

Warm backup will then switch on automatically (it usually takes a few minutes) in case of the primary playout failure, or if there are any other issues with it (cannot connect, black screen for more than X minutes of time etc.). Warm backup can also be switched on manually, to do scheduled maintenance work on the primary playout.

Warm backup can be set to automatically switch on once a day to cache the latest playlists and media assets, and then switch off again. In both scenarios the playouts can be deployed in separate public cloud regions for additional redundancy. Switching of the output delivery between the primary and backup playouts is done at the transport level (for example, Zixi Broadcaster supports automated and manual switching between several sources).

Can you offer a disaster recovery solution?

Veset Nimbus also offers tailor-made disaster recovery (DR) solutions which provide unique, cost-efficient alternatives leveraging the advantages of cloud technology pay-per-use capabilities. Typical DR solutions deploy backup content being continuously or periodically uploaded to the DR channel’s Veset Nimbus Library and stored in AWS S3. Playouts can run in hot (‘live – ready to go’) or warm (‘standby – launch to go’) modes. In the case of the “warm” mode, a maximum cost saving is achieved. Please contact us for a customised quote and to learn more.

How are costs calculated?

Costs are driven by various factors including (but not limited to) the channel resolution (UHD/HD/SD), the quantity and size of media assets, new ingested content volumes, graphics requirements, SLA and output requirements. Once you have shared with us your channel’s key parameters, we will provide an all-in-one pricing that includes the monthly subscription for both cloud resources, the Veset Nimbus platform and, if required, transmission solutions and costs.

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