IX. System Components
1. Suite Equipment
- Internet Multimedia Box (IMB): The IMB used by this system is customized for the HIMIS. This smart multimedia box supports a wide range of TV signal inputs and terminal outputs such as TV, multimedia devices and notebooks. It can be used with analog TV and digital TV systems as shown in Fig. 1.
- TV and Remote Control: The TV used for this system can be a customized hotel unit or a normal TV. If the guest rooms have not yet upgraded to LCD TV or specified a particular TV brand, a HIMIS-specific model is recommended. A 32" or 37" wall-mount TV is the preferred choice because they can be mounted on the wall to save space.
- Multimedia Data Terminal (MDT): The MDT used for this system is a disk-less embedded terminal designed for use with HIMIS. It is intelligent with the TV so two outputs are provided per room. Therefore, two people can watch TV, VOD or surf the web at the same time. The dual-screen output architecture is as shown in Fig. 1.
- Keyboard: Standard computer keyboard provided for surfing the web.
- Mouse: Standard computer mouse provided for surfing the web.
- Wireless Headphones: A set of wireless computer headphones is provided for the TV. Two people can therefore watch TV, VOD or surf the web at the same time without noise interference.
- Headphones/Mic: A set of wired computer headphones/microphone is provided for the MDT. Two people can therefore watch TV, VOD or surf the web at the same time without noise interference.
Figure 1 Suite Equipments
2. Hotel Servers
This system's server grade is Fault Tolerance. In other words, if one server malfunctions the system will remain running as normal with no interruptions. It is therefore also referred to as a "Non-Stop System".
The hotel server room contains four servers set up as shown in Fig. 2. Each play a different role and there has two servers for each type. These are:
If there is an increase in service volume or number of rooms, the hotel simply adds more media servers. Dozens of media servers can be added to deliver content to over a thousand rooms. If the video has a resolution of 5Mbps, one media server can support 50 users all watching different movies at the same time. If the VOD rate is 50%, then one media server is required for every 100 rooms.
- DR Server x 2: The DR server is redundant so one is usually online and the other on standby. When the Master Server malfunctions, the second server takes over and the system continues running.
- Web Server x 2: The Web server is redundant so one is usually online and the other on standby. When the Master Server malfunctions, the second server takes over and the system continues running.
- SQL Server x 2: The SQL server is redundant so one is usually online and the other on standby. When the Master Server malfunctions, the second server takes over and the system continues running.
- Media Server x 2: The Media Server is set up as a cluster with two media servers running simultaneously. The first user connects to Media Server 1, the second user connects to Media Server 2, the third user connections to Media Server 1, and so on. When one media server breaks down, the system continues running with all users connecting to the same media server. This results in increased load on the media server.
Figure 2 Hotel Server Architecture
3. Hotel Network
The hotel network architecture takes the form of a dual network – i.e. a two-path network. The two networks are physically segregated with one path used for notebooks and the other for HIMIS. Such physical segregation prevents room guests using their notebooks to hack into the HIMIS system.
The network cabling of each room divides the existing 8-core network cables into two sets of 4-cores. Additional cabling and routers are needed between each floor and the server room. As the multimedia system requires a lot of bandwidth, additional cabling and routers must be installed. The network architecture is as shown in Fig. 3.
Figure 3. Network Cabling Diagram
4. Front-end Equipment
The hotel front reception is equipped with a MDT to use for back-end system management. This includes check-in, check-out, billing and invoice printing.
5. Business Center
The business center is provided with a MDT for handling Internet TV shopping transactions. These include writing order lists, printing order lists and guest interaction information from the rooms.
6. Remote Control Center
The HIMIS Remote Control Center is responsible for routine tasks such as managing hotel servers, changing movies, updating advertisements and software updates.
LTS is responsible for using its technical expertise and operations team to set up and manage the HIMIS Remote Control Center. The relevant rights, responsibilities and confidentiality requirements will be dealt with in a separate agreement.