Optimizing SoundGrid Server Redundancy

Last updated on: 5/24/2018 10:01:12 AM

When setting up redundant SoundGrid servers with your live console system, there are a few ways to ensure optimal performance so you can be ready for anything that may occur during a live show.

Use servers of the same model and version

Pairing servers of the same model and version (i.e. Extreme server V3) will ensure that the redundant server would be able to handle the session load when it's time for it to kick in.

If you have servers of different models and/or versions, make sure that both servers can run your session properly (find exact instructions for testing later in this article).

Finding the model/version of your servers

SoundGrid server model names are printed on the front panel as well as on the back panel. Exact version is printed on the back panel.

If you are using SoundGrid Rack for VENUE, this information is also available via SoundGrid Inventory > Servers rack drop-down menu > Info.

Use severs that have the same firmware version installed

Firmware updates may include new capabilities, performance enhancements and bug fixes for better stability. Making sure that both servers have the same firmware version installed will assure that they have the same expected performance, capabilities and stability.

Checking the firmware version of your servers

If you are using SoundGrid Rack for VENUE:
  1. Go to SoundGrid Inventory
  2. Hold [Shift] + F and click the FW button next to each server
  3. The installed firmware version is listed in the pop-up window
If you are using eMotion LV1:
  1. Go to Setup > System Inventory
  2. Hold [Shift] + F and click the FW button next to each server
  3. The installed firmware version is listed in the pop-up window
If you are using MultiRack SoundGrid:
  1. Go to Audio > SoundGrid Inventory
  2. Hold [Shift] + F and click the FW button next to each server
  3. The installed firmware version is listed in the pop-up window
If you find that your servers have different firmware versions, update the older version.

Test redundancy failover before the show

It is important to make sure that both servers can run the session and handle the load. This can be done during setup/sound-check and is even more important to test if the two servers are not identical.

If you are running SoundGrid Rack for VENUE/eMotion LV1:

  1. Load the session and run audio for 15 minutes at least. Load different snapshots (if exist) and make sure that there are no audible drops while processing audio.
  2. While audio is still running, disconnect the primary server and allow the redundant server to take over.
  3. Run audio for 15 minutes at least. Load different snapshots (if exist) and make sure that there are no audible drops while processing audio.
Please note: When crossing over to a redundant server, audio is muted shortly. On Avid VENUE systems using SoundGrid Rack, this mute is converted to an automatic bypass on/off.

If you are using MultiRack SoundGrid:
  1. Load the session
  2. Go to Audio > SoundGrid Inventory
  3. Make sure that both servers are assigned (1 and 2)
  4. On the top of the window, click on the Test Redundancy button

Prime your servers

Server redundancy crossover time is affected by two factors:

  1. Size of the session (number of plugins)
  2. Heavy plugin data
The following plugins use more data than average:
  1. IR1, IR360, IR-L, IR-Live
  2. H-Reverb
  3. Waves Tune Real-Time
  4. Abbey Road Reverb Plates
  5. X-Noise
  6. PRS Supermodels / GTR3 Amp Modeling
  7. F6 Dynamic EQ
  8. X-FDBK
  9. Eddie Kramer Guitar Channel
  10. Manny Marroquin Reverb
These plugins require additional data besides the server’s standard firmware which is used by all Waves plugins. This data not being loaded on the server can substantially increase redundancy crossover time.

To prime your servers and assure all plugin data is loaded:
  1. Create a session with all plugins listed above
  2. Connect both servers
  3. Run the session for 15 minutes
  4. Disconnect the primary server and allow the second server to become primary
  5. Run the session for 15 minutes.
In this process, the necessary files are copied to the assigned-primary server, and we assure there is no interference while processing. The result will reduce crossover time to a minimum if/when redundancy switching will take place. Doing this once is enough and permanent — no need to repeat the process after updating firmware or restarting the servers.

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