Data archiving is used to move less frequently accessed data off of primary storage systems into a less expensive archive. This is information that your company doesn't necessarily need on an ongoing basis but may need occasionally. In fact, you may even be required to keep some information for a prescribed period of time before you can delete it. No matter why you must keep files, you may not want them cluttering your primary systems due to performance and document management concerns. Data archiving is more involved than simply moving files from one drive to another. Fortunately, data archiving solutions exist specifically for this problem.
The Importance of Data Archiving
According to Dolphin Corporation, "...rapidly growing data and document volumes quickly cause system performance and productivity to plummet, frustrating users and saddling IT with higher maintenance costs." Data archiving counters these problems by freeing primary systems of huge volumes of data and moving it to less expensive storage.
It's not just about improving performance and keeping users happy; data archiving is also used to comply with a multitude of contractual, legal, and governmental data retention requirements.
Dolphin Corporation also notes that the challenge with data archiving isn't storage, it's data management. For example, if you are required to store a given document for a period of seven years and then notify third parties 30 days prior to the document's destruction, how will you know when the time has come to notify others and destroy the document? If that's not difficult enough with a single document, imagine managing thousands of documents, all with unique requirements. Your IT team needs a data archiving tool that includes information lifecycle management features.
Choosing a Data Archiving Platform
No matter what industry you are in, your business is likely generating large amounts of data that you don't need on an ongoing basis. Moving it makes sense. At the same time, that data must remain accessible to users and comply with any applicable data retention requirements. With that in mind, here's what to look for in a data archiving platform:
- Cloud-Based Storage - Cloud-based storage offers several advantages over on-premises storage devices. First, there's no need to buy expensive hardware. Simply pay for the capacity you need. There's no upfront investment, and you'll never run out of capacity. Because the data archive is stored in the cloud, users can access it remotely as needed. Many cloud-based data archiving solutions include built-in data integrity checks.
- Ease of Use - Data archives must be user-friendly. Business users must be able to access critical documents, whether they're located on primary systems or in a data archive. Data access should be seamless to end-users.
- Information Lifecycle Management - At the same time, those responsible for complying with data retention policies need an efficient means of managing data retention. Choose a data archiving platform with easy-to-use but robust information lifecycle management tools.
Choosing a data archiving platform is a fantastic way to improve performance, reduce costs, and comply with data retention requirements. Look for a platform that is easy to use, readily accessible, and built with information lifecycle management in mind.
"How To Choose A Data Archiving Platform", Netword Computing, http://www.networkcomputing.com/storage/how-to-choose-a-data-archiving-platform/a/d-id/1107943
"Data Archiving and Nearline Storage Solutions for SAP ERP and BW Applications", Dolphin, http://www.dolphin-corp.com/information-lifecycle-management/data-archiving