Cloud Object Storage Earns Top Marks at Radio and TV University

A university builds a strong online curriculum and expands its infrastructure and cloud storage to support the large data files stored within it. A hybrid cloud approach provides better access and availability, protects sensitive data, offers redundant backups, and enables faster application development, benefiting students and teachers. 

  • September 5, 2023 | Author: Susan Biagi
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Guizhou Radio and TV University and the Guizhou Vocational and Technical College operate as a single university that provides vocational education and lifelong learning. It maintains 10 campuses and 87 offices throughout the Guizhou Province of China and offers distance learning through a substantial online curriculum. 
The growth of its online education began to tax the university’s network. With its focus on radio and TV broadcasting, the teachers and students create an enormous amount of unstructured data. Course materials include documents and images, but also large files of video and audio footage. The introduction of new applications and online resources further stretched network capabilities.  
To protect and manage its data, the university began to explore public cloud platforms, but initial trials came up short. Limited upstream bandwidth frustrated teachers when uploading content, interoperability issues between cloud providers lead to reliability problems, and security concerns prevented the university from uploading sensitive data to the public cloud. 
Hybrid Cloud: Crowd-Pleaser for Students and Faculty
Recognizing that the public cloud alone wouldn’t meet its needs, Guizhou instead decided to build a hybrid cloud architecture. The university partnered with Sichuan Changhong IT Information Products and Hitachi Vantara Infrastructure Services to build a private cloud object storage platform that would operate locally at the university’s data center and link to a public cloud environment. 
With its solution and technology partners, the university deployed the Hitachi Content Platform (HCP) and was able to use its cloud object storage integration capabilities to connect to public cloud resources. Data files are uploaded to HCP through the university’s intranet, taking advantage of the faster upload speeds, and then HCP distributes the content to the public cloud asynchronously. 
The public cloud acts as a content delivery network for instructor and classroom resources. It’s more efficient for teachers, who can upload content in minutes rather than hours. Students benefit from faster downloads, regardless of where they connect to the network. 
Redundant Architecture Propels App Development
The hybrid cloud architecture is fully redundant, maintaining data integrity and ensuring high availability. The scalable system will enable the university to expand to petabyte range with limited time needed to address storage capacity and planning. 
If the public cloud storage experiences an outage, users still can access the original data files stored in HCP. The redundant architecture also provides a single, standardized backup solution for all departments, saving more than $280,000 over five years. 
Developers use HCP to accelerate application delivery, which allows the university to create, test, and integrate new educational techniques and experiences into the online curriculum up to 25 percent faster. With faster upload speeds and new applications, instructors have been able to focus on enhancing student learning.
Explore Hitachi Vantara File and Object Storage solutions.
Image Credit: Hitachi Vantara

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