Storage Correctional Facility Uses JetStor to Archive +100 TB of Video Data
Video surveillance is a powerful tool for law enforcement and other security-intensive industries. Inyo County Jail, the only correctional facility in California’s Inyo County, the third largest county in the nation, sought a video surveillance solution to enhance the safety of its staff and inmates.
Inyo County Jail, however, needed to do more than enable its correctional officers to view live video feeds of the facility. Officials wanted to save the security video for a year for forensic and investigative needs. With 96 cameras operating 24/7, this meant storing over 100 terabytes of data, a challenge considering the jail’s limited budget and IT resources.
Read more below about how JetStor Raid Arrays enabled Inyo County Jail to store its video simply, reliably, and economically.
Inyo County Jail Enhance Security with Video Surveillance Supported by JetStor® RAID Solutions
THE ORGANIZATION At 10,412 square miles, California’s Inyo County is the third largest county in the nation and, considering its natural resources, one of the most remarkable. It is home to Mount Whitney, the highest peak in the lower 48 states, Death Valley, the lowest point in the U.S., and the Great Basin bristlecone pines, the oldest life forms in the world.
It is also home to Inyo County Jail, the county’s only correctional facility, located in the county seat of Independence, CA. The facility houses 96 inmates, who are supervised by a staff of nearly 50 correctional officers and administrators.
THE CHALLENGE Tasked with providing a safe, secure facility for people serving their debt to society or awaiting court proceedings, Inyo County Jail decided to turn to one of the most powerful security tools available to penal institutions—video surveillance.
The jail sought to install 96 IP video cameras throughout its facility and enable its staff to view live feeds from guard towers and watch commander areas. Correctional officers would have views of the entire jail, enhancing security for staff and inmates without hiring additional guards. Inyo County Jail, however, wanted to store its surveillance video for a year for potential investigative and forensic needs.
As a result, it needed a video system that can save gigabits of video every day and reliably archive over 100 terabytes of data for a year. Moreover, its solution needed to be economical to fit within tight budgets. It also had to be simple to maintain because the jail lacked dedicated IT staff, relying on an IT administrator who must service the entire county.
The correctional facility turned to one of southern California’s leading providers of security and surveillance systems, American Security Group in Vista, CA. “We’re familiar with law enforcement needs,” said Anthony S., Director of Operations, American Security Group, “and we offered a storage solution that we’ve already deployed to meet stringent security demands.”
THE SOLUTION Two JetStor SAS 516iS 16-bay iSCSI RAID Arrays with 2 Tb disks and four JetStor SAS 516J 16-bay iSCSI RAID Arrays with 2 Tb disks from Advanced Computer & Network Corporation (AC&NC). Video servers on Dell PowerEdge R510 systems
SYSTEM CONFIGURATION • Two JetStor SAS 516iS iSCSI 16 bay RAID Arrays with gigabit iSCSI links to video recording servers
• Four JetStor SAS 516J iSCSI 16 bay RAID Arrays with gigabit iSCSI links to the JetStor SAS 516iS RAID Arrays
• Two Dell PowerEdge R510 servers
• Three Dell PowerConnect 6248P Gigabit Ethernet switches
BENEFITS IMMEDIATELY REALIZED The American Security Group installed a comprehensive IP video surveillance system anchored by JetStor RAID Arrays that meets Inyo County Jail’s security and storage needs. Correctional officers view live color feeds from cameras within and outside the facility on monitors at their stations or from remote locations. They even can rewind and fast forward the video to review inmate behavior. Hourly, the video is sent to the JetStor solutions, resulting in 4.4 to 12 gigabytes of surveillance video stored daily.
The JetStor systems ensure that the jail’s video is secure thanks to their RAID 6 configuration. This dual parity setting means that no data is lost even if two disks fail. “We knew that JetStor can meet the critical demands of law enforcement, having successfully installed them for police departments and military bases,” said Anthony. “They’re easy to deploy and ideal for 100-200 terabyte storage needs. Plus, they cost a fraction of competing solutions with similar capacities.”
American Security Group manages the JetStor arrays using the web-based JetStor GUI Raid Manager application. The application will automatically email the security provider’s staff should any problems arise with the devices. “We’ve never received an email from the JetStors,” noted Anthony. “Their unwavering reliability makes them the solution of choice for mission-critical surveillance storage, especially wherever IT resources are limited.” HOW WE DID IT Key to Inyo County Jail’s long-term video storage is the system stores on the JetStors only digital “footage” in which there is motion. This prevents saving hours of empty hallways. With 96 cameras continually feeding video streams, this strategy slashes by 60 percent the amount of data that is archived.
“By safeguarding only the video that shows people in motion, we economized on the jail’s storage costs,” said Anthony. “Moreover, correctional officers can find video evidence of an incident without having to plod through hours of uneventful images.” The feeds from the cameras, which vary between high-definition and VGA depending on the sensitivity of the locations surveilled, are forwarded over the fiber-optic Gigabit Ethernet network to three Dell PowerConnect 6248P switches.
The switches send the data to two Dell PowerEdge R510 JetStor RAID Arrays at Inyo County Jail. The jail’s video surveillance system was designed and installed by the American Security Group.
CONCLUSION By enabling staff to remotely monitor all inmate activities within the facility, the advanced video surveillance system at Inyo County Jail increases security and safety. Its reliance on JetStor RAID Arrays ensures a long-term video record of inmate behavior economically, reliably, and without administrative overhead. “Preserving and safekeeping surveillance video, without loss or disruptions, is vital to a strong security strategy,” concluded Anthony. “That’s why we’ll continue to recommend JetStor solutions to our customers in law enforcement and other safety-conscious industries like healthcare.”