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Cumulus Enterprise – why do organisations choose it, and is it for you?

Cumulus Enterprise – why do organisations choose it, and is it for you?

The Cumulus Enterprise, as the name suggests, is more suited for large, multi-office or global organisations that have complex workflow needs to oversee the content creation and management process, with typically several different stakeholders and associated teams involved. A great example here would be retail and manufacturing industries, or institutions such as universities. Don’t think your organisation fits this description? Take a look at Canto solution, the lightweight yet powerful sister of Cumulus.

The Enterprise server architecture is very powerful and allows for use of all available hardware resources, thus able to deliver greater loading and faster throughput, as well as providing a more powerful and robust database engine.

The extensive built-in features of Cumulus Enterprise allow to add specific tools to customise the software to suit your business processes and reporting obligations.

 

Distinguishing features of Cumulus Enterprise

Single Sign-On (SSO) integration

For some customers this has been a critical reason to go with Enterprise. SSO allows Cumulus end-users to access web applications without the need to log in again, and still retain their permissions.

Second license for UAT/ dev

Most importantly, Enterprise comes with a second license of the software that can be used as a staging, failover or development server. The ability to have a development server to test latest releases or new options based on your current solution prior to going ‘live’ on the production server is a major consideration. This is especially significant for those users reliant on 24-hour access to the solution with no downtime, and/or the IT department having strict standards relating to implementation of business solutions.

You could use your second license to run a mirrored copy of your Cumulus server. This enables you to split Web access requests between two machines, or limit Web access to the mirrored machine, reducing the load on your main Cumulus server.

Higher number of CPU threads

Our Cumulus Enterprise customers can take advantage of faster and larger processing of content which is key for larger organisations.

 

Modules inbuilt into Cumulus Enterprise

Extended Permissions

The primary value this feature presents is data integrity. Using category and asset-level permissions, the built-in scheduler can scour your catalogs regularly for issues of concern – such as expired usage licenses – and apply a permissions template that removes access to the assets, ensuring no one can access them until the situation is resolved.

Roles and Extended LDAP

In Enterprise, complete user management and access permissions can be controlled by a central system such as Active Directory (AD) and LDAP. Thus, users are not managed by the DAM team but by the IT team or by business administrators. Content can be controlled at a more granular level with individual characteristics of an asset, e.g. status or applicable usage, defining who can do what with it.

Usage Statistics and Reporting

The Usage Statistics and Reporting module expands on the standard collection of asset usage statistics. Create automated reports that help you value assets, fine-tune Cumulus and plan for the future.

  • discover which assets provide the most value
  • fine-tune metadata by discovering which search terms fail and which are most common
  • determine the value of an entire collection on a per-asset basis and anticipate growth and budget needs in advance
  • configure recurring, automated graphic and textual reports without IT involvement.

Additional modules to customise your Cumulus Enterprise solution

Digital Asset Request Solution (DARS)

This module provides option for external users to request download of selected assets from Portals when download restrictions are enabled.

Asset Lifecycle and Channel Distribution

Developed by databasics, this module provides an easier way to manage asset and content lifecycle giving you more control over content approval, publishing, expiration and distribution. Built as an approval workflow and channel distribution solution it uses standard Cumulus technology that can be easily supported, extended and repurposed. More on dbApprove in our blog.

 

If all this seems like more than you require, consider Canto – a lightweight yet powerful SaaS DAM. Canto is loaded with some great features, is easy to implement and manage.

Visit our website to learn more about Canto or give us a call to discuss 1300 886 238.

Questions to help determine if Cumulus Enterprise would be a good match for your organisation

  • How many power users need to be managing the content? How many will need training on the solution and require read/write level of access?
  • How many users need to upload content and enter metadata along with the upload?
  • Do we have detailed statistical usage and reporting requirements?
  • Do we need email ordering of images/documents/products?
  • Do we need automation of processes and workflows e.g. for approvals?
  • Do we need integration with other systems?

Canto + InDesign: things you can do

Canto + InDesign: things you can do

The plugin

Canto InDesign Connector is like a bridge between your DAM and InDesign. This plugin will save you time going back and forth from platform to platform and downloading and uploading files separately into INDD projects. The Canto InDesign Connector now supports CC2018 and CC2019. Here are instructions on how to install the plugin.

 

How it works

After you’ve installed the plugin, you can place images straight into your INDD document via drag n drop. What happens next is your image is automatically linked to your Canto SaaS library, any changes that you make to that image will appear in your INDD document (you will need to click “update link” to apply the changes).

From your Connector window you can adjust the resolution, update the status of the image to the latest version. All changes that have been made to the image in Canto will show in the InDesign Connector window.

 

 

When sending the INDD document to someone else for editing, the recipient needs to click “update links” icon to receive all the Canto assets used in the document. Here is a helpful article on how to package and share InDesign files.

 

The Brand Templates

The last update of Canto brought us the support for InDesign Brand Templates. This add-on feature (additional charge) in Canto allow non-designers make changes to certain parts in the document right inside Canto without accessing InDesign.

 

How it works

After opening InDesign, you will need to install the PrintUI extension and log in using the credentials provided by databasics (please contact databasics to receive these credentials).

After designer creates the InDesign template in InDesign, he chooses elements that can be editable by those who will receive the document. Only local images can be used in templates, no embedded images.

Once the templates are created and uploaded into Canto, anyone with access can open them and edit them right within Canto. They are saved under the Documents and have a BT as an icon. To edit, open the document preview and click on Edit. Only parts permitted for editing will be editable, those permissions are set by the template designer in InDesign.

After editing you can either save or download the document.

 

Helpful resources

Troubleshooting:

Clearing cache

Uninstalling/ reinstalling InDesign Plugin

Connection issues

HOW TO select your Canto package

HOW TO select your Canto package

Now that you have selected Canto as your DAM solution, how to pick the right configuration package for your needs. Are you worried about your storage needs – is 1TB enough? And how about the number of Users (administrators and contributors) – do you have many outside parties that contribute content?

Let’s start with storage.

 

The amount of storage

How much cloud storage do you really need? We see very few customers go past the 1TB. A great way to get an idea of how much storage you really need is to look at how much you’re currently using. It is also a good time to start cleaning up and re-organising your files and folders. Canto has inbuilt de-duplication which is really handy at helping you clean things up. Here are a few other things to consider when choosing the storage amount.

Type of data

Some types of files require much more space than others. Video files are the largest. Audio files rarely surpass 20GB. Images can vary in size and quality. Document files don’t take much space at all.

Archive

Any of your data that is not accessed frequently, is no longer in active use, and may not be needed in months, years, decades, is suitable for Cold Storage – a much cheaper option than the normal Hot Storage. The assets in Cold Storage can still be accessed, searched for, previewed, and requested for download, or moved back to the Hot Storage. More on the Canto Cold Storage here.

One of the major benefits besides security and offsite storage is the scalability of cloud storage. You can easily purchase more if needed.

Number of user licenses

The next big question in choosing the configuration is: how many user licenses do we need.

There are 3 types of users – Administrators, Contributors and Consumers.

There are 2 types of licenses – Users or Consumers.

Both Admin and Contributors (any combination) are grouped as user licenses, they distribute content to Consumers.

Administrators control your Canto account; they are business users (not IT). Contributors can upload content, add metadata, organise your library.

Do you have external agencies, photographers or other independent parties that contribute content to your library? If so – and they don’t need to have access to your Canto account – all they need is an Upload Link to upload the content to, and the Admin can then approve the content to be added to the Main Library. It is a much more controlled process, and it saves you money for getting additional user licenses.

 

I hope this article has been helpful in clarifying some things on the different package configurations of Canto SaaS DAM. There are custom configurations available, if necessary. Make sure you talk to databasics about your needs, we are happy to help.

Top 10 Canto Features 2018

Top 10 Canto Features 2018

Approaching the end of the first quarter of 2019, we are looking back at what great features Canto introduced in 2018. Besides the ever popular – ease of use, modern interface, free updates throughout the year, ease of content sharing and collaboration, and other popular features, the latest features continue to establish Canto as a strong player in the DAM market place.

The following features introduced in 2018, have our top votes.

 

Style Guides

Creating your brand style guide is now easier than ever with the introduction of Style Guide feature at the end of 2018. You can create public or private style guides to be shared with your team, partners or public. All you need to do is showcase your colours, typography, imagery and copy. See more in our blog HOW TO create a Style Guide.

Asset-level reporting

Are you interested to see how a particular asset is used? Admin can set up Usage History and Activity sections of a single asset. This information will then be visible in the asset information window.

 

WCAG 2.0 compatibility

This is a big win for Canto User Experience. The WCAG 2.0 compatibility makes Canto more accessible to people with disabilities. You can find the Keyboard shortcuts to help navigation here.

 

Drupal integration

Pull content from your Canto library directly into Drupal.

 

Amazon Translate and Set Your Preferred Language

Besides the powerful Amazon Translate feature that would translate the extracted document text for you right there inside Canto, each user can also set their own preferred language in Profile Settings.

 

Free API keys

Canto has made it easy to build an integration with the DAM using self-generated API keys.

Inbuilt CloudFront – Content Delivery Network

Canto now uses AWS CloudFront, a highly secure global content delivery network from Amazon that delivers content to almost anywhere in the world with low latency and high transfer speeds.

 

Add a note to specific area of an image

@mention in annotations

In the preview view, you can add a note or a comment to a specific area of an image.

@mention users

Set up self-registration for multiple Portals

If you’d like to setup self-registration for multiple portals at once, it’s now easy to do through Users & Groups Settings.

 

 

 

Expanded S3 Regions for Optimal Performance

Store your files in Sydney with this new AWS S3 location. Being closer to your files means faster upload and download speeds.

We chose these features based on what our customers ask for most frequently. That being said, we feel we need to mention a few other features that are frequently requested and are now part of your Canto DAMS:

  • Asset Request – distribute low resolution and/ or watermarked content, or send request for original
  • Edit Existing Keywords – easily edit existing keywords in the Configuration Options in Settings
  • Superzoom in full screen
  • Folders and Albums show Portal information – see in which Portals you can find the particular Folder or Album
  • Terms & Conditions viewable from Portals
  • Follow Folders – you can now follow Folders along with Albums
  • Updated reports page – all analytics on the same page
  • Easy access to My Uploads, My Collections, Portals and Workspaces – select them from the left pane.

 

There are many more features we could talk about. You can find the Release Notes in Canto Help Center.

What are your favourite Canto features? Let us know and we might write a blog about it!

 

HOW TO create a Style Guide

HOW TO create a Style Guide

The key to a strong brand and increased brand awareness is consistency. Big companies invest a lot of money in building a brand that is instantly recognizable – think about Apple – their strict style guides make it very hard to imitate thus providing instant brand recognition and loyalty.

Creating a brand style guide is now easier and more straight forward since the introduction of Canto Style Guide feature, introduced in December 2018 Canto update, that is included with your purchase. That could translate to savings of more than $2,000 a year in agency fees, you get it for free!

What do you need to create your organisation’s brand Style Guide?

You will start with the colours of your logo, specific typography you want to use in your communication and other visual standards, like imagery, and a message copy that you would like to convey.

Let’s take a look at what you can do in Canto.

You can access the Style Guide feature in your settings. Go to New Style Guide. Next fill in the information fields about your style guide, such as Name and Description.

 

You can set the access of style guide to be Public or Private. If you would like to allow parties outside of your Canto instance to access the style guide, you can then set it as Public.

Next you need to add content to your style guide that you would like to showcase as example of your brand style. It could be albums or folders that are specifically created for display in the style guide.

Make sure to select Auto Sync to automatically include any new content to your style guide.

Now you’re ready to build your style guide in Style Setup.

To start, Canto provides 4 different building blocks to be included in the guide – colour, typography, imagery, and copy. More can be added if necessary.

Let’s start with colour. Add any colours you associate with your brand. You can give your colours a specific name. In the text field on the left you can add any instructions for the users of the style guide.

Next, a big part of your brand identity is font. Decide if you’d like to stick to one font or use several, provide detailed instructions in the text box.

Let’s move on to imagery. Use it to display your logos and any other images/ photography that showcase your brand and style. Here you can create several sections of imagery – for logos or different products, for example. Or to be used in different communications, such as advertising or social media.

Add any folders or albums you would like to include in your style guide, these can be then accessed by the style guide users to make sure they have the right brand imagery.

The description of the albums you see under the images, can be edited in the main library in the description field for the album.

Finally, in the Copy section include any message or text you would like to always appear consistent in your marketing communication.

After style sections are completed you can create a custom branding for your style guide landing page, by changing colours, font or logo.

Lastly, you can add any users or groups you would like to have access to style guide. They will now be able to access it in the left-side menu under the main library. This is what a final style guide could look like and be further shared with others.