So, Linus explained why he wanted to use Windows for his dual cpu powerhouse in a video which is on his vessel page now. He wants the xeons to automatically transcode footage which is uploaded to one server and then transfer it to another server, making it easier to work with and transferring the transcoding work from the editor's workstations to this single computer dedicated to the task. He said that the software that he wants to use (I believe that he is using Sorenson Squeeze Sever) doesn't run on linux, but is there a way to do this under linux? I imagine that there is a way to do it and likely a better way to do it as well. Anyway, go watch the video if you want more details, it is part 3 of the rendering machine series, I hope someone around here has some insight for me.
TBH he seems perfectly fine using Windows and it is likely to better suit him and his environment.
The only reason he "backlashed" quite audibly in the video is because no one knew what software he was planning to use.
Anyway the last time I saw something being done like this..... it was a render farm for the blender project. (Big Bucks Bunny renderer?) However that is for rendering 3d images in blender.
The easiest route is most probably to just use ffmpeg and setup a watch script that loads new files into new instances of ffmpeg. (This would however depend if ffmpeg could do the formats required or using an alternative tool)
This. Though on codec support really ffmpeg supports pretty much most codecs, unless you were wanting to convert something from some dodgy unsupported propitiatory format.
Ive not seen the video (is it on youtube yet?) (offtopic, but i knew this would be one of the side affects of a pay-wall), but based on your description there's no reason GNU/Linux couldn't do this quite easily.
I don't know of a single all in one package (there may be one) but as mentioned ffmpeg is the goto transcoding tool. It has a lot of capabilities and can be used in pretty much any way you like https://ffmpeg.org/about.html
The automation part is also reasonably trivial, again there may be a single solution but its not particularly hard in GNU/Linux to detect changes and work on those changes.
How how efficiently would it use the resources in that system? Speed is the goal, so I have to wonder how well any particular implementation does compared to the other options. Given that linux tends to be better for multi-core workloads (iirc), I would imagine that doing this under linux would be more efficient, but there is no way of knowing without trying it out. Maybe we can talk Linus into sending the machine to Wendell for a few days........
They have a 7-day exclusive thing going on with vessel. All of their videos go up on vessel and then a week later hit youtube. This would really irk me, but they gave away vessel memberships when they started that, so for those who picked up the membership, there is no pay wall. It will be a few days before it hits youtube.
Part 3 will be on youtube (i believe) next Monday (22nd).
There really is no need. Seeing as the 5xxx series 2011v3 chips use the same architecture, you could quite easily simulate the tests on that platform and calculate the differences in performance and scalability between the two systems.
Along with the fact that shipping that machine would cost a bit too much for "just an experiment".
You also have to look at this from a support point of view. What support is available to Linus using his current off the shelf system. Along with the fact that custom building something could cause problems later down the line. Also how well does the Linus Media Group team know Linux and would be confident in potentially tweaking and updating a Linux tool as required?
This isn't just a question of "Which is better?" its a whole package. Although I would be 95% sure (without testing) that a Linux based solution would be faster, it would be a question of how much faster and if it is even worth the difference.
That is the reason I brought this up, as I know they have been using "Pro-res" footage for quite sometime. But alas I do not know what they are doing currently.
Might be difficult to produce a balanced test, I think i could say with some confidence that GNU/Linux would be far more flexible.
Edit: i probably should have added that by flexible i mean you would have much more room to do what you want he way you want.
For speed. there are some tests out there using ffmpeg, but it varies so much because it high depends on format, encoding, hardware, etc.
Linus doesnt have any clue about Linux at all.
So thats the reason why he probably goes with windows.
I think it makes more sense to create a thread like this on LTT it self.