Is Your Business Ready for Court Action ?
Currently there are around 25,000 national and local statutory regulations world-wide governing the archiving of various industry specific and/or general corporate data for anywhere from 3 to 50 years or beyond. This has to be achieved seamlessly with the primary business process at all times. Data storage is a background task for the most end users.
Blu-ray is the state-of-the-art optical disc format for the 21st century. It stores up to 10 times more data, movies, music or HD videos on a disc the same size as a DVD and fits perfectly into a wide range of archiving needs such as CCTV footage, medical documentation, financial records, video productions etc.
Ninety nine percent of archives today are stored on tape, sharing space with backup data. But backup and archive are not the same. Backup data its a secondary copy of dynamic content, intended for recovery only in the event of a failure. In contrast, archive data is the primary version of fixed content, designed for preservation and retrieval. Backup is short term, archive is long term.
Putting data on tape is the same as banishing the data. Tape is not designed to provide easy, immediate access to information; it's typically written in a proprietary backup format and can only be searched sequentially. It is designed for the infrequent and unlikely retrieval of backup data when primary storage fails. It is optimized for density not access.
Now that the pitfalls of tape for archiving are becoming more evident, some organizations are considering disk as a storage medium for important archives. It is true that disk offers the advantage of easy access to information, compared to tape. But disk is not the ideal choice for long-term storage of fixed content. With an average shelf life of three years, disk does not offer permanence.
It may sound strange, but the first optical recording technology was invented about 5000 years ago, when the Egyptians started using hieroglyphic and alphabetic writing systems. Writing allowed storing, retrieval, and duplication of data without errors (except for misspellings and misunderstandings).
Understanding and Selecting Appropriate Storage Media
1. What kind of storage media should I use?
For years, the term "archival" was used to describe data that was in its long-term, decreasing value stage, and was most often stored on optical discs. As customers and vendors identify their more pressing storage needs going forward, the amount of data in the category of archival and long-term retention is being viewed differently than before. Historically, when data reached archival status, it had reached its final state before being deleted and ending the data life-cycle. Archiving almost always assumed that the value of data decreased as it aged. This is no longer the case, as the value of data is often increasing as it ages due to a variety of factors including new government regulations. The concept of managing data throughout its life-cycle has taken on renewed emphasis throughout the storage industry and, at times, it seems like all data has become critical. The second-wave of archival storage management is underway.