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Author Topic: Server Question
John Rizzo
Film Handler

Posts: 37
From: Demarest, NJ, USA
Registered: May 2002

 - posted 10-17-2013 02:36 PM      Profile for John Rizzo   Email John Rizzo   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
A Distributor is asking me if he can send out DCP S of his movie on Windows formatted hard drives,, He is telling me Yes, I was under the impression that for feature length movies the drive has to be Linux
can someone tell me if that is correct.

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Paul H. Rayton
Expert Film Handler

Posts: 206
From: Los Angeles, CA , USA
Registered: Aug 2003

 - posted 10-17-2013 03:19 PM      Profile for Paul H. Rayton     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
DCI systems work with both Linux (EXT2 and EXT3)and NTFS (which is a Windows formatting). I've received a few items mastered from Macs which will NOT work. I've saved the day by taking that and re-transferring it to another drive which is NTFS, and then we're good to go. Beware of someone sending you a drive with DCP content that they mastered from their Mac!

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John Rizzo
Film Handler

Posts: 37
From: Demarest, NJ, USA
Registered: May 2002

 - posted 10-17-2013 03:29 PM      Profile for John Rizzo   Email John Rizzo   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Thanks for that.

But why is Linux said to be the standard

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Marco Giustini
Film God

Posts: 2565
From: Reading, UK
Registered: Nov 2007

 - posted 10-17-2013 03:34 PM      Profile for Marco Giustini   Email Marco Giustini   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Digital cinema servers are mainly Linux bases, so are all the mastering stations.

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Carsten Kurz
Film God

Posts: 3865
From: Cologne, NRW, Germany
Registered: Aug 2009

 - posted 10-17-2013 04:08 PM      Profile for Carsten Kurz   Email Carsten Kurz   Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post 
Linux/EXT2 or EXT3 for DCPs is actually not a 'real' standard, but only a 'defacto' standard and recommended practice.

DCI left out the filesystem question completely. For a time, early servers would only support EXT2 or EXT3 filesystems. Now, to my knowledge all servers support NTFS. I still would recommend using EXT2/EXT3, but NTFS SHOULD work most of the time.

Some servers (e.g. Doremi) also support HFS+ (Mac).

It can be a bit complicated to format and write to an EXT2/3 partition from a non-Linux OS, so sometimes using NTFS is even safer to use. Usually there are EXT/2/3 drivers available for non-Linux OS's, but a driver alone usually does not allow you to format a drive, and some drivers are slow or unreliable.

There are bootable Linux systems available as free downloads, which can used from optical media or USB sticks, but then even if you have formatted a drive for DCP content, you need again access to the files on your NTFS or HFS+ volume, and then you need NTFS or HFS+ support in your bootable Linux system, etc.

For a known server or range of servers supporting NTFS, I would simply use NTFS.
For general distribution to unknown systems, use EXT2/3.

- Carsten

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