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INFOTECH: Active Data Management – Reducing Storage Costs, Simplifying Data Management

 





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Every day, organisations create data that has intrinsic value to their business. However, when this data is required, often we are not able to find it. Whilst all of us have lost some form of valuable data at some stage, sometimes it was simply misplaced. In some cases, it only had a current value and the loss was not an issue. But what if this data is needed again? Even if it is found, more than often, ‘misplaced’ data is recreated. This results in an added challenge for the data management team as there is now an additional copy of the same data in the system…. Active Data Management can easily resolve these challenges, write Mike Rees.

If the original data or document is not found, it is usually ‘resting in peace’ somewhere in the system, difficult to access. Data that is not accessible to an end-user is of no value whatsoever, whether it is live data, stored data, in a virtual environment, on a mobile device, or in the cloud. If it cannot be accessed easily, the business value of that data cannot be derived, despite the organisation’s best efforts.

And then there is the issue of additional storage required due to multiple copies of data saved. Businesses in South Africa are no stranger to this challenge as we are steeped in a culture of storing data on our laptop local hard drives or even our mobile phones, tables and other devices. This was largely driven by a lack of bandwidth and a collaborative mindset.

In an attempt to achieve Active Data Management and prevent data loss, companies tend to procure vast quantities of storage as well as data management solutions from an array of vendors all promising us a solution that will address our business challenge.

Each vendor selected may offer ’must have’ features such as rapid recovery of virtual machines or de-duplication. However, irrespective of how impressive these solutions may be, in reality they provide little benefit if they are not able to view and manage the entire businesses data holistically. In addition, these solutions address the symptom but not the root cause.

There is no point in having a number of ‘sufficient’ solutions for each segment of the business if they do not benefit the entire business or, for example, hamper your planned journey to the cloud.

Oganisations’ may select a solution that at best, is loosely coupled, requires separate infrastructures and multiple management consoles. Instead of reducing cost and simplifying management they increase complexity. Importantly, they don’t allow for effective Active Data Management.

In light of this, it is prudent to look for an integrated data and information management solution. It is important to find a solution that is built from the ground up on a single platform that can holistically manage enterprise data, whether it is in a physical, virtual or cloud environment. There is much value in having a solution that can manage data, irrespective of where it is saved with a common set of core functions with capabilities like data collection, data movement, data storage, and data tracking. The goal is for all functions to share the same back-end technologies to deliver the unparalleled advantages and benefits of a truly holistic approach to protecting, managing, and accessing data.

Instead of a limited unintegrated solution, organisations, from enterprises to Small Medium Businesses (SMBs), should be able to choose the features and functions required from an integrated data and information management solution that provides all the key data management functionality they required.

The solution should also include advanced data protection and archiving for physical, virtual and cloud, endpoint protection, database and application protection, snapshot management, global de-duplication and search and e-discovery for compliance and multitenancy if required. The over-arching benefit? A single, complete view of all the data no matter where that data actually resides.

The upshot is that technology that provides a single view of data can deliver additional benefits. In addition to Active Data Management, it can amplify the business value that the data can deliver and reduce storage costs significantly, making it a compelling business priority.


 
 
 
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