Under the Hood: Kraken 3.0 Video Transcoder
Designed for high-density tactical live HD video transcoding, the Kraken video transcoder just got even better thanks to the latest release. In this post, we’re going ‘under the hood’ to explain the new features and benefits of Kraken 3.0 but first, a primer on what makes Kraken such a powerful solution for ISR applications.
High-Performance Video Transcoding for ISR Communications
The Kraken is often used for deployment within a ground control station receiving encoded video streams from various platforms such as airborne platforms, ground vehicles or maritime platforms. In these stations, Kraken can further compress video for transmission over satellite or other disadvantaged links. The Kraken is also often used to “flip” codecs, for example from H.265/HEVC to H.264/AVC for distribution to edge sites where there are legacy systems that cannot accept H.265 streams.
Where Kraken really shines for ISR communications, is its ability to optimize video streaming over constrained networks and maximize the number of streams processed simultaneously. Kraken can produce very high-quality video at low bitrates, keeping bandwidth costs down.
What’s New in Kraken 3.0?
In this release, the new features address security issues for administrators and improve interoperability for system integrators.
When using Kraken as a virtual machine (VM), Kraken can now leverage NVIDIA GPUs for encoding. In cases where there are other virtualized appliances running on the same hardware which are potentially competing for the CPU, transcoding work can now be offloaded to the NVIDIA GPU. This leaves the CPU free to run other applications such as WAN optimization software or ISR application software for example.
Operating System Update
Kraken’s operating system has been updated to CentOS 7 64-bit to reflect this. The objective of this update is to help our customer base with their security initiatives and adherence to STIGs and Information Assurance (IA) policies. By offering a more current operating system, security patches can be applied to multiple systems all running the same base OS at the same time, making life easier for administrators.
Enhanced User Account Management
Kraken administrators can now create individual user accounts with three defined account roles to assign privileges to users: Viewer, Operator, and Administrator. Like the OS update, this feature ensures adherence to IA policies by providing Kraken administrators with increased security, avoiding multiple users potentially sharing the same login.
Kraken REST API v2
Version 2 of the Kraken REST API is a comprehensive API that can be used by system integrators to incorporate stream configuration and management from Kraken into their own management software. This update to the API provides all the functionality from the Kraken web GUI which means that anything you can do in the Kraken web GUI to manage stream configuration and administration; you can now do in the API. Ultimately this allows end-users to configure their streams simply and easily without having to understand more about the impact of encoding parameters on their video streams.
Want to learn more? For more information about the Kraken Series, contact us for a demo or to request a datasheet.
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