A novel network manager for use with a cable television system headend capable of monitoring and managing headend components and set top terminals in a television delivery system is described. The invention relates to methods and apparatus that manage and coordinate the reception of various programming and control signals at a headend. The invention manages and coordinates the storage of such signals for intelligent selection and distribution to set top terminals. The invention makes use of a receiver or set of receivers, a work station, a program control information processing component, a network management CPU, databases, control software and an instruction memory. The invention uses these components to manage and monitor certain headend components, such as signal reception equipment, an authorization component, a file server, MPEG decoders, a digital buffer with frame repeat and channel modulators. The invention is particularly useful in processing and responding to upstream information and subscriber communications received from set top terminals. In so doing, the invention accommodates various system services, including (1) near video on demand (NVOD), (2) virtual video on demand (VVOD), (3) video on demand (VOD), (4) interactive program services, (5) program suggestion features, (6) advertisement targeting, (7) generation of standard and custom menus, and (8) data spooling and text overlaying.