Reasons to Archive – Part 1

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Before and Beyond Archiving reasons to archive

In this series of blogs we are going to take a look at how archiving has evolved over the years.  We will be discussing the four key business drivers for email archiving, and then contemplating the future of archiving …

Reasons to archive before and beyond archiving

The evolution of archiving  reasons to archive

Archiving solutions for email have been in existence for many years, and have changed dramatically since their early days.  Originally designed as a means to manage specific issues with mailbox management for email servers such as Microsoft Exchange, they have evolved steadily in response to changing market requirements and opportunities.

Although they still perform archiving, these solutions now provide organizations with a broad range of powerful Information Management capabilities, and are able to address the challenges of managing large amounts of unstructured email data in an integrated and transparent manner. reasons to archive

As a result, email archiving continues to be seen as a key business application, and continues to deliver real benefits for organizations regardless of their size or business sector.

It all started with capacity management

The evolution of archiving ... where it all beganOne of the original drivers for archiving was capacity management.  Email servers used to be more limited, both in terms of the amount of data they could store and the efficiency with which they could process that data.  Archiving addressed these limitations by offloading some of the data to a second tier of storage; as well as storing this data more efficiently, it reduced the load on the email server and improved overall performance for both IT administrators and end users.

The latest versions of Exchange are now capable of storing almost unlimited volumes of data.  Whilst this appears to address the issue of capacity, the cost can be significant and it increases complexity.  It brings a new set of problems such as preservation, deletion, compliance and discovery, managing and using that volume of data effectively.  These problems apply equally whether the data is stored locally or in the cloud.

All of this is within the context of a continual and unrelenting growth in the volume of email flowing through organizations.  According to analyst firm IDC, over 99 percent of all documents are now created and stored electronically, with around 60 billion emails being created and sent every day.

Both the number of emails and the size of those emails (including attachments) continues to increase, meaning that email storage requirements for a typical organization can grow by up to 30% per year.

It is clear that a ‘keep everything’ strategy for email is not a workable long-term solution, so organizations need to decide what their approach for managing email is going to be, and to put in place Information Management solutions that will meet their information management needs for the foreseeable future.

Managing email capacity

Business drivers for archiving

Capacity management is still a key driver for email archiving, just as it was when the first applications became available back in 2003.  These archiving applications have evolved and expanded continuously since then, and now provide comprehensive solutions that address a wide range of Information Management needs, including not only capacity management but also compliance, discovery and  PST Management.

In our next blog we will look in more detail at the issues around capacity management, and how archiving addresses these … 

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