Storage Management: Data Archiving - Out with the Old (Part 4 of 4)
Thin provisioning and data deduplication are strategies for reducing the growth rate and space consumption of new data or finding more efficient ways of storing it. These strategies must be combined with addressing unnecessary data storage in order to fully utilize existing assets. The largest container of unnecessary and obsolete data is unstructured data.
Email is the biggest unstructured information pain point today and a top target for data reduction via archiving. The Radicati Group estimates that the volume of email will increase by 30 percent from 2006 to 2010. Although storage costs continue to fall on a per-unit basis, email is often stored many times in the email server, on the user’s PC, in a Microsoft Exchange or IBM Lotus Notes file, on file servers, saved in SharePoint, and in backups. Because of the excessive storage consumed, the cost of power and cooling is also commensurately higher.
Across all business industries and public sector organizations, IT professionals are being called on to address the common management concerns around email and unstructured information, which is resource management. Archiving technology will act as an online archive for older items that are moved from primary application storage according to company-defined policies. It also leverages optimized single instance storage and compression technologies to further reduce the data footprint.
By controlling the size of the message store, the applications and servers hosting them remain focused on real-time transactions. The online archive also enables organizations to rationalize their storage resources and dedicate primary storage to dynamic and transactional data. Older, less frequently accessed content can be moved to a secondary or tertiary storage device, saving money for more strategic purposes.