Manage the Node
Your node has a massive amount of storage. Carve it into spaces, share it with your team, and upload your content. Toss out the closet full of hard drives.

Every node has a management interface that lets you:



The management interface has four sections:

When you first log into the management interface, you arrive at the system section. This section describes how the node's storage is allocated, how the node is connected to your network, who is connected to it, what tasks are running, and what hardware is inside the node.

creativespace.local/node

Use the system section to:

  • allocate storage
  • connect the node to your network

You can also use the system section to:

  • snapshot your content
  • see who is connected to the storage
  • configure services
  • restart the node

The team section lists all of the user accounts that can access content on the node. When you first log in, this page will contain two accounts: your admin account, and a Creative Support account, which our support staff will use in case you need them to access the node.

creativespace.local/team

Use the team section to:

  • create user accounts

You can also use the team section to:

  • let other people manage the node
  • organize information about each of your team members
  • deactivate user accounts

The spaces section is a file browser that shows you all of your content. When you first log in, the spaces page will be empty. As you upload content to the node, it will appear here.

creativespace.local/files/spaces

Use the spaces section to:

  • upload your content
  • share your content over your network
  • grant access to your content

You can also use the spaces section to:

  • view and organize your content
  • review your content's metadata
  • search for content
  • make templates for your content

The monitor section provides a dashboard with gauges and graphs that display system resources over the past 10 minutes. Every second the node collects over 2,000 metrics, that can be presented as hundreds of charts, and is currently monitored by approximately 150 potential alarms. Some of these charts are displayed on this page.

creativespace.local/monitor

Use the monitor section to:

  • monitor performance

#

Step 2

Add Your Team Members

creative.space lets you share content with everyone you work with. All you need to do is add them to your team. Your team consists of user accounts, which can be organized into groups and sorted into roles.

# Create User Accounts

Your user account is your passport to the node. It determines what content can access, and what kinds of changes you can make to the node. Your account is a system administrator account. You can access everything on the node, from the content stored in it, to the management interface. Most notably, you have the power to grant others access to the node, by creating user accounts for them.

As the system administrator, you decide which spaces each user can access, and what each user can do in the management interface.

TIP

Create a separate account for everyone you work with. Do not share a single user account among different team members.

To create a user account:

Click Team.

Click + and then Create User.

Use User Profile Picture to select or upload a profile picture for the new user.

Use Username to enter a username for the new user.

WARNING

Use Password to set a password for the new user.

Use User Role to select the role you woud like the user to have.

Use First Name Last Name to enter the user's first and last name.

Use Email to enter the user's email address.

Use Phone Number to enter the user's phone number.

Use Notification Dropdown to select where you would like the node to send notifications.

Click Add User.

# Create Groups

If you have a large team, you can organize each team member into one or more groups. A group is a set of user accounts. A user account can be included in as many or as few groups as you want. Groups make it easy to grant all the user accounts included within them access to the same space.

To create a group:

Go to Team.

Click on + and then on Create Group.

Use Group Name to enter a group name. Then click Create Group.

TIP

Create groups that match your organization's structure. For example, if your organization has a group of editors, a group of animators, a group of VFX artists, and a group of production managers, make one group for each of these roles.

TIP

You can put a user in more than one group. For example, if your organization has someone who edits and animates, you can add their user account to both the editor and animator groups.

WARNING

If you delete a group, you will not delete any of the users within that group. However, you will revoke all of the access that the group conferred upon the included users.

#

Step 3

Add a Space

A space is a portion of the node's storage. It is a versatile way to organize, protect and restrict access to your content.

By default, spaces stretch to fit the content you place within them. However, you can limit how large a space can grow, and you can also limit how small a space can shrink.

Each space can have its own set of access restrictions. By default, no one can access a space except for the person who created it. However, you can always grant users and groups permission to access a space.

Click add a space.

Use the new space name field to enter a name for your space. Keep in mind that names cannot start with a number, and cannot contain spaces or punctuation.

Click create share and set permissions.

Click ok.

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Step 4

Connect to a Space

Each space can be shared over your network. This means that you can access it from any workstation on your network. How you connect to a space varies depending on your workstation's operating system:

Choose your workstation's operating system:

MacOS 10.15

CATALINA

Windows 10

MAY 2020 UPDATE

CentOS 7.8

Build 2003

Click on spaces. Next, find the space you want to share, and then click on the ellipsis.

Click on apple copy path. The link to access the space will be copied to your computer's clipboard.

Open Finder finder.

Click on the finder's go menu.

Click on connect to server.

Paste the link you copied in step 2 into server address. Then, click connect.

The first time you connect to the node, MacOS will ask you to confirm that you want to connect. Click connect again.

Enter the username you use to log into the node in name and the password you use to log into the node in password. Then, click connect. Your space will show up as a network share in the Finder.

Click on spaces. Next, find the space you want to share, and then click on the ellipsis.

Click on windows. The link to access the space will be copied to your computer's clipboard.

Click on file explorer.

Paste the link you copied in step 2 into the quick access bar and then click quick access arrow.

Enter the username you use to log into the node in username and the password you use to log into the node in password. Then click ok. Your space will show up as a network share.

Click on spaces. Next, find the space you want to share, and then click on the ellipsis.

Click on apple copy path. The link to access the space will be copied to your computer's clipboard.

Go to places, then select browse network.

Select the network destination network destination icon you want to connect to. In this case, it's CREATIVESPACE.

Select the space space icon you want to connect to. In this case, it's my-content.

Select registered user. Then enter the username you use to log into the node in username, enter WORKGROUP in domain and the password you use to log into the node in password. Finally, click connect.


#

Step 5

Set Up Remote Access

Under routine post-production workflows, remote access to shared storage was challenging. Now with a pandemic, creatives require twenty-four-hour access and collaboration from any location. VPN, WAN, and Internet access to shared projects and files present technical challenges that can be difficult to overcome, especially for small production teams. creative.space has integrated ZeroTier’s VPN and SD-WAN technology on its easy, reliable, and secure storage platform to empower the creative process. Collaborative storage is the main hub connecting remote locations.

Now, effortlessly control team and device access to your creative.space storage from anywhere and anytime. Create secure networks between on-premise, cloud, desktop, and mobile devices. Easily provision and de-provision remote access authorization for users, freelancers, and clients. We simplify your network stack by unifying VPNs, VLANs, and SD-WANs into one solution. The creative.space storage seamlessly interacts with ZeroTier’s zero-trust networking software to provide scalable security, peer-to-peer (P2P) connections, and 256-bit end-to-end encryption.

What does this mean for your workflow? The bottom line is that you can quickly provide secure SMB (Network Share) and FTP remote access to folders and files on your shared storage. As an example, the SMB connection smb://192.168.1.33/dailies, works the same as if you were onsite. Just be aware that you may need to adapt your projects to account for bandwidth speed and latency. We can assist you in implementing a proxy-based workflow.

FTP is excellent for transferring multiple directories and files to and from your creative.space storage. Another advantage of FTP is the ability to continue transferring files even if the connection is lost. In case you accidentally lose your connection or have to reboot your computer, you don’t have to worry about starting from the beginning again. You can pick up right from where you left off.

Securely authorize users and devices, and configure networks all within the creative.space web app. This integration saves multiple manual steps and needed IT security knowledge if only using the ZeroTier administration website. There are two levels of authorization for users to access the creative.space storage. The first is ZeroTier for encrypted network access. The second is the creative.space LDAP server to control user rights and folder/file permissions. Think of it as a locked gate and front door. You must have the right keys to both before you can get inside. ZeroTier offers a free Basic account for up to 50 network members and 1 admin. Their Professional account increases the numbers to 500 network members and 10 admins for $49 per month. You can always start with their free account and then upgrade as your requirements change.

# Open your Gateway's Firewall

Before you can set up zerotier, you will need to make sure this port is open on your gateway:

Port Number TCP/UDP Inbound/Outbound Why?
9993 UDP Inbound and Outbound Zerotier uses port 9993 to receive incoming connections.

We also recommend that you open the following ports. While you do not have to open them, it helps us help you if you do:

Port Number TCP/UDP Inbound/Outbound Why?
22 TCP Outbound We use port 22 to apply software updates and provide remote support.
53 TCP and UDP Outbound The node's network interfaces use port 53 to connect to Domain Name Services (DNS). Without this port, you cannot configure any network interfaces to use a custom DNS.
80 TCP Outbound The node's management interface uses this port to show up in your web browser
123 TCP and UDP Outbound The node uses this port to get the time from a Network Time Protocol (NTP) server. Without this port, you cannot connect your node to an external NTP server.
443 TCP Outbound The node uses this port to send you email notifications
12975 TCP Outbound We use port 12975 to apply software updates and provide remote support.
32976 TCP Outbound We use port 32976 to apply software updates and provide remote support.

# Get a Zerotier API Access Token and Add It to Your Node

Create a ZeroTier account and log in to your account at my.zerotier.com. Then Select Account from the top menu bar.

Scroll down to the API Access Tokens section. Then click on New Token.

Use Token Label to give your token a name that matches your node, and then click Generate.

Copy the API Token.

Warning

Go to the system page, then click on the settings gear in the zerotier networking panel. After that, click Add ZeroTier API Token

Paste your Zerotier API Token into ZeroTier API Token Then, click Save Token

The “Manage ZeroTier Networks” panel will appear. It will be empty if there are no networks configured. If you have existing networks, you can manage them from this panel.

The ZeroTier configuration panel lets you

  • create new ZeroTier networks.
  • enable and disable existing ZeroTier networks.
  • join and leave ZeroTier networks.

The configuration panel is divided by Active Networks, Disabled Networks, and Available Networks. This is based upon the current status of your creative.space storage within each network. It also displays the number of nodes authorized for each network. A “Node” is a device on the network. A user’s name is automatically added to the node description field. A user can have multiple devices such as a desktop, laptop, and iPad authorized on multiple networks, each with a separate “Node ID”.

Use Change ZeroTier API Token to update the token you use to connect to your ZeroTier account. This token allows the creative.space management interface to communicate with ZeroTier.

Use Filter Networks to search among the ZeroTier networks associated with your account.

creativespace.local/system

Manage Zerotier Networks Panel
Change ZeroTier API Token
Filter Networks

The Active networks section lists the networks that your node is connected to. If your node is connected to a network, it can connect to the other nodes on the network. In this case, a node can be another creative.space node, or a workstation.

creativespace.local/system

Manage Zerotier Networks Panel
Active Networks
network-1, 6 nodes are authorized
network-2, 28 nodes are authorized

The Disabled networks section lists the networks on your ZeroTier account that nothing can connect to. To use these networks, you must first enable them.

creativespace.local/system

Manage Zerotier Networks Panel
Disabled Networks
network-3, 8 nodes are authorized

The Available networks section lists the networks on your ZeroTier account that you can connect your creative.space node to. Once you connect your node to an available network, the network will move to the active networks section.

creativespace.local/system

Manage Zerotier Networks Panel
Available Networks
network-4, 2 nodes are authorized
network-5, 7 nodes are authorized
network-6, 7 nodes are authorized
network-7, 2 nodes are authorized
network-8, 4 nodes are authorized
network-9, 2 nodes are authorized
network-10, 2 nodes are authorized

Use Name for Your ZeroTier Network and Name for Your ZeroTier Network to create a new ZeroTier network with a name and IP address range of your choice. The network will show up in the Available Networks section as soon as you create it.

creativespace.local/system

Manage Zerotier Networks Panel
Name for Your ZeroTier Network
And Assign an IP: 192.168.170.0/24
Create a New Network

# Install the ZeroTier and creative.space Desktop Applications on your Workstation

Download and install both the ZeroTier One ZeroTier One package and creative.space desktop creative.space desktop applications.

Open the creative.space desktop application. Then, click Not Logged In. After that, click settings.

Locate the ZeroTier Node ID in the Settings panel of the desktop app. Then copy ZeroTier Node ID.

Go to your creative.space node's management interface. Then, click the gear in the top right corner of the ZeroTier Section of the System Page.

Use network to select the network you want to add your workstation to.

Click Invite User to Network.

Select your user account from the Send Network Invitation menu. Then paste your workstation's ZeroTier Node ID ZeroTier Node ID into ZeroTier Node ID field.. Next, type a memorable name for your workstation into device description field. Finally, click send invitation to send an invitation to the email associated with your creative.space login.

Open the invitation you received in the email associated with your creative.space login. Then, open the .creative file attached to it.

Go to the desktop app, then click connect.

Use username to enter the username you use to connect to your node, and use password to enter the password you use to connect to your node. Then, click login.

# Additional Configuration and Monitoring - "System" Page

Click the “View Connected Users” button in the Connected Users Panel. It will display connected users, and you can monitor what Spaces, Folders, and Files are being accessed. This is great for troubleshooting or looking for detecting suspicious activity. If a user’s credentials are being used from multiple IP locations, then they may be compromised or shared.

In the ZeroTier Network panel, you can view Active and Disabled networks. For “Active Networks,” you have a graphical chart displaying network bandwidth speed and activity. The “Connection Type” Private or Public, “Network ID”, and IP address of the storage is shown.

“Disabled Networks” display networks that the storage has been disabled on. Click the “Reconnect Network” button to make live and reachable again.

Through the creative.space web app, you can only create “Private” networks. If you wish to create a “Public” network not requiring node authorization, it must be done on the ZeroTier administration website. If a network is configured for “Public”, the panel will display it with a red border and warning message.

At the bottom of the ZeroTier panel is a section to add a ZeroTier Network ID that is not on your ZeroTier account. It will automatically add the network, but you will need to add the storage Node ID and approve it manually on the ZeroTier administration website.

Add the ZeroTier Network ID and click the “Add” button.

On the “Manage ZeroTier Networks” panel, there is a “Change ZeroTier API Token” button. Click this to change the API token if needed.

In the “Services” panel, you can Start and Stop the ZeroTier service if needed. Click on the “Change” button and select “Start ZeroTier” or “Stop ZeroTier”.