April 2, 2002 -- Vio will launch its new Vio AMPS (Acquire Media Protocol Suite) at Ipex 2002 to enhance its core Digital Workflow application.
Vio AMPS will replace enhanced FTP as Vio’s transfer mechanism, with the aim of improving efficiency, reliability and security for customers transmitting large, mission-critical files over the public Internet.
Vio AMPS creates a software-based Virtual Private Network (VPN), tunnelled over the Secure Socket Layer (SSL) and adds additional application-based authentication and security to ensure an easy-to-use, secure and efficient connection between two communicating partners.
While suitable for any IP network, Vio AMPS is designed specifically for use on the public Internet. Its availability will allow Vio customers to use the Internet for file transmission in place of expensive fixed circuits and managed services such as frame relay.
David Jones, Vio’s General Manager explains, “Resistance from graphic arts customers towards driving their production over the Internet has largely focussed on their fears over security and reliability and the Internet’s ability to guarantee delivery of valuable media content.”
“What is needed is an intelligent protocol which is both compatible with standard network protocols, and owned by the transmitting and receiving application. Vio AMPS provides just such a solution and is a major step forward in developing the Internet as a dependable environment for media production.”
Prioritisation of urgent content
In standard operating mode, Vio AMPS serialises messages or files being transmitted so that they arrive in the order in which they were sent, thus ensuring, for example, that corrections do not arrive before the item needing correction.
However, using packet-streaming technology, Vio AMPS enables varying priorities to be attached to the individual packets of data that make up each file. This facilitates the acceleration of urgent content, by allowing high priority packets to be delivered through low priority data transfers, without any transmissions being halted.
Examples are news flashes being transmitted while large graphics files continue to be distributed, or urgent messages to a printer being transmitted through the data stream created by the sending of large files to be printed. Vio AMPS supports five priority levels.
Since Vio AMPS compresses the packet stream by up to ten per cent without needing to touch the structure or format of the files being transmitted, it has the additional benefit of being bandwidth conservative.
Improved control and visibility
Vio AMPS is more than simply a protocol, it actually has its own application. The power of Vio AMPS in a digital workflow comes from the fact that control of connectivity and transmission is in the hands of this application, rather than delegated to the network. An application that wishes to make use of the Vio AMPS protocol does so by presenting data to the Vio AMPS application.
The initiating application and Vio AMPS application can have a dialogue. Vio AMPS application directly controls subsequent delivery; as a result of its ability to talk to the sending application, the latter is kept aware in real time of the status of transmission right down to the packet level.
Using Vio AMPS, Vio can provide proof to the sender and the receiver that a job was actually sent and received without any loss of data.
Enhanced security and resilience
If a connection across the Internet were to fail while a file was being transmitted, Vio AMPS would know from which packet to resume transmission when connectivity was restored, thus guaranteeing delivery.
This contrasts with the equivalent situation with a TCP/IP managed transmission where the TCP/IP protocol, on its own, is aware of the successful delivery of a packet, but is entirely unaware of the nature of the data, the file or the context of the data being transmitted. If a TCP/IP connection breaks, the TCP/IP protocol has no mechanism to take restorative action because it is not an application.
Similarly, in the event of an internal systems or network failure which causes the destination to destroy or corrupt the original transmission, Vio AMPS’ historical replay feature can replay a message or message stream.
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