Information Faster Blog

Much Ado About vStorage

By Shari Cravens

You’ve probably seen the February 2010 announcement from VMware heralding the end of life for its Consolidated Backup (VCB) framework – and their intention to rely on the new vStorage APIs for Data Protection (VDAP) in vSphere 4.1 once it’s released.

How does this impact you?  The new vStorage API will be beneficial for VMware backups as a whole (you can learn more about it on VMware’s blog.) But there are a number VMware backup methods that won’t be impacted in the short term.

HP will provide support for the new vStorage APIs for Data Protection (VDAP) in the current Data Protector software version after VMware releases vSphere 4.1 (find an overview of VMware data center products here), but it’s important to remember that most of the methods that HP Data Protector software supports for backing up VMware environments won’t be impacted. 

That includes:

  • Traditional online “guest” backups: the end-of-life announcement has no impact on customers who are performing virtual server backups by installing a Data Protector agent inside of their virtual machines.

  • Server-based snapshots: if you’re using Data Protector to execute server-based snapshots via VMware ESX 3.5 & 4.0, or vSphere environments (through version 4.0) you can continue to do so.

  • Array-based snapshots: Customers who are using Data Protector Zero Downtime Backup & Instant Recovery to execute array-based snapshots in ESX, ESXi, or vSphere environments (through version 4.0) can also continue to use this method. 

And – incidentally – Data Protector Zero Downtime Backup & Instant Recovery is still the only solution in the industry that addresses three of the biggest challenges associated with virtual server backup today – ensuring application-consistent backups, avoiding server performance impacts, and simplifying management – all from a single interface and without scripting.

Data Protector also currently supports VMware Consolidated Backup (VCB). While VMware will discontinue VCB, until that time customers who are using Data Protector to execute their VCB backups can continue to do so.

For more information on Data Protector methods for backing up and restoring VMware environments, visit the Data Protection forum on the HP Software & Solutions Community.



Answering the information explosion “wake-up call”

By Judy Redman

The information explosion should serve as a “wake up call for business enterprises of all sizes,” says an April 8 article in  Nearly 90 percent of businesses blame poor performance on data growth, according to the Informatica survey that was cited in the article.  The survey concludes that for many businesses their applications and databases are growing by 50 percent or more annually, putting them in a position of being unable to manage this incredible expansion of information. 

The article recommends that it is best to implement a lifecycle approach to information management.  This means managing your applications and data “from development, test and early production all the way through to archive and retirement."  Having an information management strategy is a key success factor in managing the ever-expanding information that the average enterprise produces annually.

HP has an entire portfolio specially designed to help you answer the information explosion wake-up call.  HP TRIM Records Management software is designed to capture, manage, and secure business information in order to meet governance and regulatory compliance obligations. HP TRIM 7 is integrated with Microsoft Office and Microsoft SharePoint Server 2007 and the upcoming Sharepoint Server 2010. The Sharepoint integration is especially important as the Radicati Group predicts Sharepoint use to grow at 25% rate for the next few years.  HP Integrated Archive Platform for compliance archiving and HP Clearwell E-Discovery Platform for legal analytics are two additional HP Governance and E-Discovery solutions.

Finally, no Information Management program is complete unless critical business data is backed-up and recoverable.  HP Data Protector software has more than 35,000 customers who use it to automate high-performance backup and recovery from disk or tape for 24x7 business continuity.

I’d like to hear what you think are your biggest challenges in managing the information explosion.  Do you employ a lifecycle strategy to help you harness the unwieldy expansion of data at your company?  

Save $100 when you register now for HP's Information Management sessions at Software Universe

By Patrick Eitenbichler

HP Software and Solutions’ Information Management suite will be featured at the upcoming HP Software Universe 2010 in Washington DC, June 15 – 18th, 2010.

The IM suite, including HP Data Protector, HP Email, Database and Medical Archiving IAP, and HP TRIM records management software, will be represented in two tracks:

  • Data Protection

  • Information Management for Governance and E-Discovery

Customer case studies and presentations from product experts will highlight how HP’s Information Management solutions provide outcomes that matter. For more information about this event, or to register, please use code INSIDER at and get $100 off the conference rate.

How three very different companies are managing rapid database growth

By Patrick Eitenbichler

Wanted to share three great customer success stories. The companies are very different from each other, but they’re all grappling with business challenges posed by surging data growth: meeting compliance obligations, controlling storage costs, and optimizing performance. The companies turned to HP Database Archiving software to solve these problems, and more.

Tektronix, a U.S.-based provider of test and measurement solutions to the electronics industry, improved application and database performance by more than 47%, and aced compliance tests in 29 countries, despite data growth of 1.25 GB per month.

Tong Yang Group, a Taiwanese automotive parts manufacturer, experienced data growth at a rate of 30-40 GB on average per month - impacting database performance and causing
user-related issues. Tong Yang saw an immediate 10% increase in efficiency in handling orders, and they gained the ability to support 7% business growth in 2009 despite the economic recession.

Turkey is both a private financial services company and the country’s central depository for dematerialized securities. The agency’s database grew 1000 times in a one-year period, due in part to industry regulations requiring financial services firms to store more data for longer periods of time. With HP Database Archiving software, the agency met its growing data archiving needs while reducing storage costs by 50%.’s Central Registry Agency

To learn more about how these companies overcame their database growth challenges, click on their corresponding names above.

HP TRIM for SharePoint and the Enterprise – Launch vs. Reality

By Kris Brown 

We launched HP TRIM 7 last week, and for the most part the press coverage was about the new SharePoint integration. Now don’t get me wrong, as one of the team that is responsible for the product and the launch, I would say we accomplished what we set out to achieve regarding our SharePoint support. But what we actually set out to achieve beyond that, may not necessarily be as apparent from what you read in the media.

In the press last week we saw a lot of this…

“The fact that a large company like HP recognizes the need for this type of management in the enterprise is significant. Companies are being flooded with information, while at the same time, they come under increasing pressure to monitor and in some instances, control this information.”    Fierce Content Management

 “Given the number of organizations that are now using SharePoint and are considering SharePoint 2010, the new HP TRIM modules are quite timely and probably not the last module we are likely to see for TRIM.”   CMSWire

And yes, HP TRIM 7 can seamlessly manage SharePoint content, not just documents.  Yes, it can help an organization archive information based on our lifetime management policies.  And yes, I think that we are extending SharePoint to a place where almost any organization could consider it for their frontline information collaboration platform.  But that’s not all we introduced in this launch!

HP TRIM also introduced a range of other new product features and enhancements. So here is a laundry list of highlights that hopefully will put some of the constabulary at rest… for now...

ThatTRIMGuy’s Top Ten HP TRIM 7 Enhancements (sans the SharePoint Integration):

10. A brand new SDK set, including SDK.NET and SDKUI.NET.  Separating our user interface components from our standard SDK, enables our partner and developer community to build even more extensible add-ons for HP TRIM 7;

9.   While this isn’t necessarily a functional enhancement, the acquisition of TOWER by HP, has meant that HP TRIM now has access to all the power of the testing and performance tools that HP development teams have. Which only means good things for the customer base!

8.   Full DoD 5015 v3 certification including all chapters Baseline, Classified, FOI and Privacy, ensuring HP TRIM continues its tradition of being one of the most certified products on the market. For the record, SharePoint 2007’s certification has expired and SharePoint 2010 doesn’t have DoD certification at the writing of this blog;

7.   Unicode support, ensuring our ability to move towards providing access to HP TRIM in all markets around the world;

6.   New search engine improvements, including parametric searching, and the ability to provide effective filtering by a search;

5.   User settings that follow the user through all of the HP TRIM 7 interfaces, such as favorites, recent documents, saved searches and even labels (which are now hierarchical);

4.   New Mini Crash Dump facilities to help you and the help desk provide detailed error information;

3.   New architectural features, like providing more efficient transport of database requests in WAN environments, for even faster search results;

2.   New workgroup features including distributed event processing, allowing multiple workgroup services process a single event type for an even more scalable solution; and

…. the # 1 HP TRIM 7 enhancement…. a brand new Web Client!

But this is only a short highlights reel, there are many other significant improvements, including 64-bit support, improved record type scalability, new email drag and drop functions, schema report and repair, and updated platform support.

So don’t judge a launch by its press coverage alone… If you’re reading this… then the coverage did its job. But as you can see above, HP TRIM 7 has introduced significant new features and improvements for all of our customers!

If you are in Australia in late March, be sure you register for TUF 23, our annual user forum.  If not, look out for HP TRIM 7 at an industry event near you!

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What would you say if... An HP TRIM for SharePoint Primer – Part 2

By Kris Brown 

What would you say if I told you, you can have fully compliant records management for SharePoint, without the hassle of doing records management (RM).  You’d probably say I’ve already read that blog, and it's time you told me something else.

Then what would you say if I told you that you can archive SharePoint sites, using automated rules to a Department-of-Defense-compliant Records Management platform.

HP TRIM 7 has recently introduced a new module that does just that.

In conjunction with the new HP TRIM for SharePoint Records Management module, HP is proud to announce the HP TRIM for SharePoint Archive module.

This module makes use of the same set of functions provided to the RM module, including Lifetime Management Policies, but allows organizations to manage, finalize, relocate and archive information from the site level and above.

Have you ever been involved in a project team that utilized a team site for collaboration?  How many times did you revisit that site after the project ended?  Probably not very many, if at all.  However, I’d be almost certain in saying that this team site still exists, is still being crawled by SharePoint, and is still returning results for searches.  While that might be important for a short time after the project ends, it is likely that a lot of the information created on that site will become stale, and perhaps even inaccurate.  Returning results from this site, could lead to an incorrect decision in the future.

SharePoint performance will also be affected by this continued growth of team sites. This is one of a  number reasons for CIO’s not formally deploying SharePoint across their entire organization.  The lack of control of the growth of SharePoint or put another way, the success of SharePoint to capture the users' information, is a key reason to put in place a records management system.

I hear you say is that you don’t want your users to be burdened with Records Management.  Well, HP TRIM 7’s Archive Module utilizes Lifetime Management Policies to seamlessly transfer information from SharePoint in the form of entire sites, and site collections to HP TRIM.  No user interaction is required, other than to use SharePoint in the way it was designed.  The records management burden is removed from the user while records management rigor is applied to important information as deemed so by the Records Manager.

And let’s be honest…  90% (or maybe even higher) of any given user base cares very little for the regulatory needs of an organization… But the organization still has those needs. HP TRIM 7 can meet you in the middle, allowing the experts in records to manage the information, and the experts in their fields, HR, Finance, Operations etc etc, get on with using SharePoint as a tool to get their work done.

Watch for more HP TRIM 7 updates…  including all things NOT related to SharePoint.

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What would you say if... An HP TRIM for SharePoint Primer – Part 1

By Kris Brown

What would you say if I told you that you can have fully compliant records management for SharePoint, without the hassle of actually doing records management (RM)?

Or if I told you that you can let your user base collaborate freely in SharePoint, without the fear of losing control of the critical business information?

I suspect you’d say:  GREAT, but what’s the catch?

There is no catch. HP TRIM 7 has recently introduced a pair of new modules that do just that.

And this solution is coming not a day too soon. SharePoint sites the world over are housing more and more business sensitive and business critical information, and CIOs, IT and Storage Managers are constantly asking how are they going to control not only the growth of their SharePoint environment, but also the records that are contained within SharePoint.

So here we go...  The HP TRIM for SharePoint Records Management module introduces four new features to the RM space in SharePoint.

  • Manage

  • Finalize

  • Relocate

  • Archive

These four features provide the capability to capture and manage any SharePoint content. Not just documents, and definitely not just things in a specific web part!

  • Manage – This feature allows you to take a copy of the object and put it in HP TRIM, where metadata, retention, classification and security are all applied automatically, according to rules set in SharePoint.

  • Finalize – This feature allows you to take a copy of the object and put it in HP TRIM, where metadata, retention, classification and security are all applied automatically, according to rules set in SharePoint and mark it Final. So no further edits can be made.

  • Relocate – This feature allows you to move the object and put it in HP TRIM, where metadata, retention, classification and security are all applied automatically, according to rules set in SharePoint, and still allow it to be edited from HP TRIM.

  • Archive – This feature allows you to move the object and put it in HP TRIM, where metadata, retention, classification and security are all applied automatically, according to rules set in SharePoint, and mark it Final, so it cannot be edited.

The powerful Lifetime Management Policies in HP TRIM 7 are a key enabler for these new capabilities. They are built into SharePoint, and provide a Records Manager or SharePoint Administrator with the ability to set rules around ALL different types of SharePoint content (not just documents!).

For example:

On a SharePoint HR team site, the HR users might go through an employee on-boarding process, with applications for jobs, interviews and the like. This type of information would require all sorts of different retention, classification and security. Based on SharePoint Content Types, user names and the metadata required by the SharePoint team site, HP TRIM’s Lifetime Management Policies can automatically place those objects including calendar items, announcements, and discussion items directly into the HP TRIM Records Management platform.  Once there, they will be managed according to the rules set by the administrators -- all without the need for the user to interact with TRIM.

In fact, users will not need to see HP TRIM or even have it installed on their desktop. They can continue to work in the SharePoint environment they are familiar with and the organization can feel safe in the knowledge that the information created is managed in the way that the Information Management policies of the business dictate.

It certainly doesn’t get any easier, or more transparent than that !!

Check back for Part 2 – HP TRIM for SharePoint – Archive Module.


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HP TRIM 7… How we got here?

By Kris Brown

With today’s launch of HP TRIM 7, I thought it might be time to reflect on how we got here. So for effect, blink your eyes very quickly alternating from left to right, to have us fade into a dream sequence.

The year is 1985. Ronald Reagan is sworn into a second term as US President.  “We are the world” is released to raise funds for the famine in Ethiopia. Mike Tyson wins his first professional fight, and Michael J Fox stars in “Back to the Future”. Norway wins the Eurovision song contest, and Australia pulls out of the MX Missile project.

Here in Australia, 1985 is the year that a gentleman by the name of Brand Hoff and his partner Peta Hoff founded a small business called TOWER Software, in a garage in Canberra – Australia’s capital. The purpose of the business was to develop tools to help with the recently created Australian Standard for Records Management, the AS 4390. The first series of these tools were a card based system, for want of a better explanation, like a Dewey Decimal library system that allowed organizations (mainly Australian Government departments) to meet their compliance requirement forced upon them under the newly created standard.

Times changed, and so did the government… slowly… but TOWER Software and the IT industry in general ploughed forward. TOWER Software then released its first computer based product, a physical records management system for the VAX. Then came early Windows versions of the software, and in 2002 TOWER Software released TRIM Context v5, a platform for Document and Records management. It was this year that I joined the fray.

I had no prior experience with records management, and it didn’t really matter all that much as I was only a part of the team responsible for the TOWER Software office network. But it wasn’t long before I gained a strong appreciation of what the team around me was so passionate about. Joining the sales team, in a series of technical roles over the coming years, I got to know the customers and the challenges faced by these same organizations that Brand and Peta had endeavored to help some 20 years back.

TOWER’s records products were seen as one of the best in the market, but analysts were forced to comment that the reach of a small Australian company meant that it was going to be hard to break into the bigger markets, like the US and Europe. Hard… but not impossible, as TOWER successfully implemented some of the largest and most awarded implementations of information management software on the planet.

Market consolidation meant that lots of little players were gobbled up, as the larger vendors strived to meet the ever challenging demands of the marketplace, picking up technology from these smaller companies and making them a part of their overall product line. Hewlett-Packard, one of the largest IT companies in the world, did the same, acquiring TOWER Software in 2008, but with one subtle difference. Rather than cannibalize the technology and abandon the product, they kept almost all of the staff from the TOWER acquisition and told them to build the next version of what is now known as HP TRIM.

And - there were no other products that HP TRIM had to compete with internally unlike a lot of the other acquisitions: IBM/FileNet, Opentext/Hummingbird/Vignette, and Autonomy/Zantaz/Interwoven/Meridio. HP wanted to concentrate on the product that was HP TRIM, and add the backing that only a company like HP can bring to a product.  And so, HP TRIM 7 was born.

With a series of new innovative features such as transparent records management for SharePoint, backed by the 25+ years of information management industry expertise, HP TRIM 7 is a firm commitment to its current and future customers. We’re confident we have a product that not only can compete on the big stage, but can continue to do what it has always done: Provide excellent solutions to information management problems.

This all started in 1985… Old Coke, became New Coke and then very quickly became Old Coke again. Records Management was a requirement back then, and while document management has been the flavor of the month for a while, the world has changed and information management is now more important than ever. And just like Wrestlemania, HP TRIM is still here to help!

Check out some of the new stuff at!

I personally was lucky enough to be a part of this ride for many years and while I am still waiting to buy my first Hoverboard, I can’t wait to see what we do next with this product.

That TRIM guy

When the sun sets... and... when a vendor obsoletes your solution...

By Scott Draeger, HP Exstream Product Manager

Last night as I sat at my desk working later than usual, I couldn’t help but notice the sun has already begun to set much earlier than it did even a couple of weeks ago.  And that got me to thinking about the downside to “sunsets”. 

Now don’t get me wrong, I love sunsets as much as the next person.  But if we’re being honest, sunsets aren’t always good thing.  Case in point, working in the technology industry I’ve seen plenty of mergers and acquisitions which have left countless solutions and services “sunset” – meaning the newly formed company would no longer support or invest in these products/services.   As a point of practice and in the interest of the existing customer base, many of these companies will then offer an “upgrade” path to another solution – but is it a good idea to take it?

A former colleague of mine recently moderated a very informative podcast on the subject of “sunsetting” lead by a couple of industry-leading document composition experts who provided great insight into what companies can/should do in the face of product “sunsetting”.  Among some of their recommendations:

  • Use this as an opportunity to evaluate what else is on the market.  After all, if a solution/service is being sunset, then it probably means there are other solutions with more robust capabilities – just don’t assume the upgrade your vendor is touting is the best one. 

  • Take time to perform due diligence and see what other offerings are available.  It’s important not only to evaluate functionality, but also look for a solution that can consolidate disparate systems and establishes a solid enterprise platform for your future business needs.

  • Look for a technology partner who is reliable and committed to continued innovation – that’s the only way to know you won’t find yourself in the same situation later down the road. HP Exstream has a nearly 10 year track record of continued support of our customers' business investments. In almost all cases, version 1.0 applications from 2000 can run on 2009's Version 7.0 engines with no modifications at all. We are the only ones out there who have respected business investiments and have delivered innovations for a decade.

So if you’ve been informed that the sun will soon go down on your beloved solution, do not fret – help is just a click away.  You can hear the podcast in its entirety at  And here’s hoping you emerge from the darkness to face a brighter day. 

Tags: Exstream

DoD 5015.2 Version 3 includes Freedom of Information and Data Protection process management

Three of my colleagues just returned from the certification testing of TRIM against the latest version of the DoD 5015.2 standard, and once again TRIM has been certified against all chapters, which gives us an unbroken certification since the standard exists.  This time around the certification was interesting because version 3 of the standard introduces some new functional modules including Web client, XML import and export, and the new FOI and DP chapters.

The FOI and DP chapters contain requirements to enable the processing of Freedom of Information and Data Protection requests. As such they move into a new field of business process management, albeit records related.  The document and workflow management features of TRIM, as well as the reporting module came in handy. Naturally, all of this TRIM functionality can also be used for other document automation processes, such as application processing, complaints handling, contract management etc. From that point of view I think that certification against these chapters is valuable not just for records managers, but for any business manager who wants to streamline document processes with the added benefit of having the documents managed as records at the same time, without any additional effort.

Once again it leads me to make the point that records management needs to be an integral part of all processes, rather than being looked at as a separate discipline that can be added "after the fact". (I know, I keep going on about this, but it is important...) 

Task Force Finds Electronic Discovery Process in Need of “Serious Overhaul”

By Dean Gonsowski, Clearwell Systems, Inc. 

sixmilliondollarmanfinalThe American College of Trial Lawyers Task Force on Discovery (”Task Force”) recently came out with their final report based on their survey of the Fellows of the American College of Trial Lawyers (”ACTL”).  The project was conceived as an “outgrowth of increasing concerns that problems in the civil justice system, especially those relating to discovery, have resulted in unacceptable delays and prohibitive expense.”  After releasing an interim report, the Task Force issued its final say on the topic, which honed in on three major themes borne out by the Survey:

1. Although the civil justice system is not broken, it is in serious need of repair. In many jurisdictions, today’s system takes too long and costs too much. Some deserving cases are not brought because the cost of pursuing them fails a rational cost-benefit test while some other cases of questionable merit and smaller cases are settled rather than tried because it costs too much to litigate them.

2. The existing rules structure does not always lead to early identification of the contested issues to be litigated, which often leads to a lack of focus in discovery. As a result, discovery can cost far too much and can become an end in itself. As one respondent noted: “The discovery rules in particular are impractical in that they promote full discovery as a value above almost everything else.” Electronic discovery, in particular, needs a serious overhaul.

3. Judges should have a more active role at the beginning of a case in designing the scope of discovery and the direction and timing of the case all the way to trial. Where abuses occur, judges are perceived not to enforce the rules effectively. According to one Fellow, “Judges need to actively manage each case from the outset to contain costs; nothing else will work.”

In short, the Survey revealed widely-held opinions that there are serious problems in the civil justice system and that the discovery process, though not broken, is “badly in need of attention.”  While not cited specifically, a recent case highlights many of the Survey’s observations.  In Fannie Mae Sec. Litig., 552 F.3d 814 (D.C. Cir. 2009) the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO) responded to a third party subpoena and in the process incurred $6M in electronic discovery expenses.  While this case had a number of procedural nuances that fortunately make its holding fairly limited to the facts, this electonic discovery fiasco certainly is a poster child for a discovery process that is bursting at the seams.

The $6M problem started for the OFHEO when the individual defendants became skeptical of a limited production and obtained a Rule 30(b)(6) deposition, which confirmed that OFHEO had failed to search all of its off-site disaster-recovery backup tapes.  This inquiry led the OFHEO to enter into a stipulated order to avoid further contempt hearings.  As part of the stipulated order, the individual defendants submitted over 400 search terms, which covered over 600,000 documents.  Overwhelmed with the burden of conducting such a search and the need to hire 50 contract attorneys, the OFHEO objected that the list of search terms was “tantamount to a request for the dictionary,” since it resulted in a “retrieval of approximately 80 percent of the office’s emails.”  Unfortunately, the court ultimately held that the OFHEO needed to comply with the terms of the stipulated order even though the cost was a staggering “9 percent of the agency’s entire annual budget.” To add insult to injury, and despite their efforts, the OFHEO was found in contempt and sanctioned for not meeting the agreed upon discovery deadlines.

This $6M example brings us back to the Survey and the findings of the Task Force.  They proposed a set of Principles (modeling and citing the Sedona Working Group) that would “shape solutions to the problems they have identified.”  Several relating to e-discovery stand out…

  • Promptly after litigation is commenced, the parties should discuss the preservation of electronic documents and attempt to reach agreement about preservation. The parties should discuss the manner in which electronic documents are stored and preserved. If the parties cannot agree, the court should make an order governing electronic discovery as soon as possible. That order should specify which electronic information should be preserved and should address the scope of allowable proportional electronic discovery and the allocation of its cost among the parties.
  • Electronic discovery should be limited by proportionality, taking into account the nature and scope of the case, relevance, importance to the court’s adjudication, expense and burdens.
  • The obligation to preserve electronically-stored information requires reasonable and good faith efforts to retain information that may be relevant to pending or threatened litigation; however, it is unreasonable to expect parties to take every conceivable step to preserve all potentially relevant electronically stored information.
  • Absent a showing of need and relevance, a party should not be required to restore deleted or residual electronically-stored information, including backup tapes.
  • Sanctions should be imposed for failure to make electronic discovery only upon a showing of intent to destroy evidence or recklessness.
  • The cost of preserving, collecting and reviewing electronically-stored material should generally be borne by the party producing it but courts should not hesitate to arrive at a different allocation of expenses in appropriate cases.
  • In order to contain the expense of electronic discovery and to carry out the Principle of Proportionality, judges should have access to, and attorneys practicing civil litigation should be encouraged to attend, technical workshops where they can obtain a full understanding of the complexity of the electronic storage and retrieval of documents.

As Oscar Goldman said about Steve Austin, the legendary $6M man“Gentlemen, we can rebuild him. We have the technology…” The electronic discovery “quagmire” appears to need the same type of radical makeover.  Data is proliferating at a rate far greater than the e-discovery competency of litigators and judges alike.  Tools are out there that can help tackle the proliferation problem, but the need for, and ultimate use of, such tools must be appreciated by counsel on both sides of the “v.”  Until notions of proportionality and cooperation start becoming common parlance for both litigators and judges we will unfortunately continue to see more $6M examples like Fannie Mae.

SourceOne customer speaks, but HP IAP customers boast

An EMC customer has spoken about the new SourceOne suite, saying:

  • EMC’s solution is not the cheapest.

  • They wonder if they’ve over-bought.

  • They’d like to see EMC add support for end-user access to the archive through mailboxes.
HP customers speak louder: Here’s what HP IAP customers are saying about HP’s comprehensive solution:Brunel University: “What we have is effectively the best 'find' button on the internet!  Beyond just efficiency, the solution has helped Brunel further enhance its reputation for corporate integrity, and you simply can't put a price on that.”Coscon: “The software and hardware integrated solution delivered by HP has not only mitigated the risks we faced, but also helped us to realise real-time mail data management in an effective manner within a short period of time.”Dubai International Financial Centre: “With the HP IAP we have peace of mind knowing that we can be in full compliance with legal and financial regulations.  It has made it far easier for us to retrieve any email we need— we can now do it in minutes.”


Government Launches Bold New Recovery Effort

By Kurt Leafstrand, Clearwell Systems, Inc. 


While we don’t normally report news on the blog, this article seemed important enough to repost in its entirety…


WASHINGTON — Senior Administration officials today took the wraps off of their latest effort to stabilize the American economy: The nationalization of the electronic discovery industry. According to a senior official who declined to be identified, “Even before the beginning of the current turmoil, everyone acknowledged that electronic discovery costs were out of control. Now, with litigation accelerating and corporate earnings plummeting, something had to be done. Without this action, a significant number of leading American corporations would be in danger of shutting their doors due to the overwhelming burden of e-discovery.”

A Single Common Portal

Effective immediately, all electronic discovery projects are being centralized under a single authority, the National Electronic Record Discovery Institute (NERDI). The Institute will be launching a nationwide electronic discovery portal on April 1, 2009 at (see demo). The site will build upon the recent success of the government’s economic recovery accountability site, Said one Institute official, “Just drop the ‘r’ and insert a ‘dis’, and you get eDiscovery. It really is the next logical step in the government’s efforts to help the country in a time of profound need.”

Industry experts initially expressed skepticism about the government’s ability to make electronically discoverable information available in an efficient, expedient, and secure manner. Early plans had the government using the U.S. Postal Service and the network of I.R.S. tax return servicing centers as the logistical backbone for managing the collection and processing of documents. However, after negotiations with the National Security Agency, this step was eliminated from the process. Instead, all electronically-generated information in the United States will be instantly processed and made available through the site. Commented an NSA spokesman, “We have all the information anyway; why not make it easily accessible, instead of pretending it’s not here?” As for security, officials stated that “individuals can expect the same level of security and identify protection they’ve come to expect from their financial institutions and credit card companies, along with the additional protection and responsiveness they’ve come to expect from the Federal government.”

The Future of the E-Discovery Industry

What will become of the existing electronic discovery industry, made up of hundreds of individual vendors with aggregate revenue estimated to be in the $2-3 billion dollar range? According to a senior-level NERDI director, “One word: toast.” However, a group of industry software vendors and service providers has expressed open skepticism about the ability of a historically incompetent, multilayered bureaucracy to deliver electronic discovery services more effectively than the competitive market.

One vendor pointed out that it will be “difficult for the government to establish itself as a credible player in electronic discovery with millions of White House emails still missing without a trace.” In response, the group of vendors that make up the Top 5 Software and Service Provider lists on the 2008 Socha-Gelbmann survey (Autonomy, Clearwell, Fios, FTI, Guidance, Kroll, and LexisNexis) have announced an immediate consolidation of operations under the name ClearGuideAutoKrolLexFTios. Gloated new incoming CEO Rick Wagoner, “Our expectation is to roll over the government’s efforts like our new name rolls off your tongue.”


Compliance concerns resulting from cross-border litigation

By Patrick Eitenbichler

On April 7th, the Sarbanes-Oxley Compliance Journal published a great article written by Brandon Cook, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Clearwell Systems.

Brandon describes how the increasing number of business transactions across borders leads to more litigation, government inquirires, and compliance audits spanning international boundaries.  Using a number of real-life examples, he shows the implications and then provides recommendations on how to get prepared for cross-border e-discovery.

Take a read:  "Why Cross-Border Litigation is a Compliance Concern"


Records management in US Federal Government Agencies

By Noel Rath

Are you interested in how different records management systems have been adopted in U.S. Government Federal agencies? Would you like to see how easy they were to deploy and how easy it was for users to use these new systems?

The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration has published a report from their ‘Continuing Study of Federal Agency Recordkeeping Technologies 2008’ study. The agencies studied were:

  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

  • U.S. Department of Defense, U.S. Navy

  • U.S. Department of the Treasury

  • Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC)

This report is very informative and publically available at .


EMC's new services: Not new to HP customers

The EMC announcement of the SourceOne suite includes new consulting services to help customers develop information policies which align with business goals and regulatory requirements.

 HP already provides customers with regulatory compliance services, such as compliance and e-discovery workshops, information discovery and classification, business value analysis and requirements development, compliance and data policy assessment, and information policy definition.  Furthermore, the May 2008 acquisition of EDS enables HP to deliver a broad portfolio of information technology, applications and business process outsourcing services to clients in manufacturing, financial services, healthcare, communications, energy, transportation, retail industries, and government. In fact, HP recently increased its Information Management Services headcount by 10X, to further meet the needs of its customers.


What happened to all the structured data we used to manage as records?

I started my professional life when computers were big machines that filled rooms and only large corporations could afford them. In smaller businesses many of the administrative tasks, such as accounting, keeping customer registers, product catalogs, managing personnel, leave control, payroll etc. were done on paper in big ledgers.  These ledgers were managed as records with very well defined access controls and retention schedules.

With the advent of personal computing, or affordable computing, most of these well defined administrative processes started to use specialized applications that stored the data in some form of database. The focus of these applications was the day-to-day business process and the focus of the underlying databases was the storage, linking, and retrieval of the data, as a service to the applications. Neither the application nor the database technology looked at the requirements of records management.

At the same time, records management systems moved from index card systems to computerized metadata catalogs, and pretty soon moved on to also capture electronic records directly from users' desktops. The focus of electronic records management was on unstructured documents, which proved to be a real nightmare to manage in environments where information could be created by anyone, virtually anywhere and anytime. The information of the structured line of business application was seemingly managed - at least it had a recognizable structure and was stored in a controlled environment.

It is only now, when e-discovery and freedom of information legislation includes all electronically stored information (ESI), that businesses start to realize that very large parts of their ESI resides in structured databases and is not managed as business records.

In a post a couple of months ago I wrote about how some of our HP TRIM customers use metadata only records to at least recognize the existence of records in structured systems within the records management environment; the next step is now to talk about how to start taking control of the structured records at a more detailed level.

The combination of HP Information Management's Database Archiving and HP TRIM technologies makes it possible to manage structured records right from their definition in the source system to their management and destruction as part of TRIM's classification and retention policies.  This allows us to bring back into the fold of records management all that information that somehow got overlooked during the rapid change from paper to electronic environments.  Stay tuned for more...


EMC announcement: More like "PromiseOne"

On April 2, 2009 EMC finally announced the long-awaited replacement of EmailXtender.  No surprise.  Actually, it looks like they tried to announce it on April 1 and then pulled all the links—perhaps it was feared it would be seen as an April Fool’s joke.  What isn’t a joke is that this product, called SourceOne Email Management, is actually not a one-source archive solution—yet.  Like its predecessor, it does still archive one overall type of content: messaging.  EMC says that later this year they will release file, XML, and SharePoint archiving.  So, that’s when it will be “one source”?  Not exactly.  Why?  Because the SourceOne product family is not integrated.  Give them twelve to eighteen months—hey, they promised after all.

Bottom line: EMC’s announcement does not compare to the breadth and range of HP’s current offerings, and EMC is more than six months late to market with a product that does not even fulfill what they previously communicated to customers in terms of their key archiving needs.  Furthermore, the release of SourceOne Email Management is a replacement for EmailXtender, and what EMC is delivering with this release is a mere promise of what this product could become in the next year to eighteen months.  In these economic times, we need more than promises to show ROI like what HP IAP customers have been achieving for more than four years:

--Improving staff productivity by up to 80%, and email- and file-based productivity by over 34%

--Lowering email and document processing, review, and production costs by up to 90%

--Reducing time needed to analyze email and documents from weeks to minutes

--Achieving control of their corporate data, improving information governance

TRIM Web Content and Records Management

There is no doubt that a lot of  web content constitutes business records and must be managed. The question is which is the easiest way to achieve this?

If the Web Content Management (WCM) system is the main tool for the creation of the web content, then it should provide an integration with the records management system, consistent with the integrations with other authoring applications. The HP TRIM WCM system allows you to configure rules that automatically capture web pages as records when they are published. The rules can vary between different sections on the web site, so that you can exclude non-records content. If you want to capture regular snapshots of the whole site, you can use the site capture scheduler.  This will automatically render the whole site into static HTML pages, zip it up, and store it as a permanent record in the HP TRIM repository.

If the Web site is used for the publication of content created from other systems, then it makes sense to use the records management repository as a source for that content. Use the integrations of the authoring applications with HP TRIM  to capture the version that you want to publish as a record, and then publish it from there. The WCM module allows you to publish records in three ways, all of which interactively extract the record from the central repository:

  • Hyperlink to a single record

  • Fixed list of links to selected records

  • Dynamic list of links based on search criteria

If you use HP TRIM for document management, you can define at what point a new version of a document gets published, based on rules.  This allows you to automatically publish a new major version of a document as soon as it is declared; or you can make the process manual by the users assigning a publish date in the document management client.

If the Web site is used to publish interactive forms, it becomes part of a communications process with your customers. You will want to capture the submitted forms into the records management system to bring them into context with related correspondence and transactions. The WCM module allows you to capture forms as a combination of metadata and rendered form in various formats.  It even allows you to automatically start off a HP TRIM workflow process when a form is submitted, allowing you to automate your business processes.

Because the HP TRIM WCM module is based on standard technology such as XML, XSLT and CSS, it can be configured or customized to publish data from other applications as well.  Whether you want to capture records as part of these integrations or whether you want to capture the records as part of an integration between the source application and HP TRIM records management directly, varies from case to case. Our professional services specialists can help you analyze the requirements and figure out the most effective approach. The high level of out of the box integration between HP TRIM WCM and HP TRIM records management not only gives you a head start, it also means that you are dealing with people who have the integration experience, both at a technical and at a conceptual level.


The affects of change management on your information

By Melissa Osborne 

It’s amazing how quickly time flies when you’re in the middle of organizational change. When I wrote my last blog I was going to write about deploying DRMS software, and then time got away.

And that got me thinking…how did it get away? Was it the usual, a lot of work and deadlines? Or was it something more than that? I had a suspicion that it was the added pressure of organizational change on my information.

Most organizations engage in some sort of change, whether it’s a re-structure, a move, the implementation of a new system. In most cases the organization engages a team of professionals to manage this change. And this change is a disruption to information.

Why and how does this information change? The obvious is the change of a new system. This has an immediate impact starting with the creation, flow and access of the information. This is usually well managed and documented.

But even this change is disruptive in a way that is not always identified. Changing information in one area usually impacts information in another area that is not always immediately obvious or identified.  

In organizational changes that are not targeted by new systems or where IT does not have the major responsibility, changes to information and the consequences of those changes can sometimes be overlooked. This leads to a drop in productivity because people cannot go to their usual sources to retrieve or store information. It also leads to a less successful change program, because the indicators of successful change is as little resistance to the change as possible, and people will resist if they cannot easily access the information they need, when they need it.

It is important to remember the impact of your organization's change on information – the obvious and not-so-obvious, and to manage it as you would all other elements of the change management program.

Concept Search Versus Keyword Search in Electronic Discovery

By Will Uppington, Clearwell Systems, Inc.

bear-fight-webIn my last post, I started a discussion on the myths surrounding concept search.  The first myth I dispelled was the “concept search is concept search” myth.  The myth is that there is an agreed upon definition of concept search.  In actuality, when people in e-discovery use the term concept search, they don’t always mean the same thing.  Frequently they are not actually talking about concept search technology at all and are actually talking about concept or content categorization technology, which is very different.  The second myth that needs dispelling is that concept search is better than keyword search.

The thinking behind this myth goes something like this:

Keyword search has a lot of problems.  It is prone to being over-inclusive, i.e., finding some non-relevant documents, and under-inclusive, i.e., not finding some relevant documents.  Concept search technologies are new and interesting and using these technologies you can find documents that keyword search can’t find.  Therefore, concept search must be better than keyword search.

Let’s examine this thinking.  The first two statements are accurate.  Keyword search is not perfect and can produce over- and under-inclusive results.  And concept search and content categorization technologies can both help identify documents that keyword search technologies might not find.  However, the conclusion that concept search is better than keyword search is not valid and doesn’t follow from these two statements.  Why?

In order to answer this question, we first need to go back to the difference between concept search and content categorization. Because these are different technologies, we really need to separately compare concept search versus keyword search and content categorization versus keyword search.  Let’s start with content categorization and keyword search.

The issue with this comparison is that keyword search and content categorization do different things.  Keyword search can be used in many ways in e-discovery.  The two most common are: (1) analysis or case assessment: finding the hot documents and understanding the matter by determining who knew what, when, how and why, etc., and (2) culling: removing non-responsive documents and/or identifying potentially privileged documents in order to reduce a large, starting set of documents to a smaller set before review.

Content categorization, on the other hand, has historically been used within the review phase of e-discovery.  Categorization can help reviewers to better understand the documents they are reviewing and thus potentially increase the speed of review.  Practitioners with whom I have worked also find that categorization can be useful during analysis by helping to understand a matter and identify potentially important keywords.

However, content categorization has not been used as part of culling.  First, culling needs to be transparent.  You need to be able to get agreement with or at least explain to the opposing side and the court exactly how you have culled the data set.  If you cull based on categories of documents that have been generated by a proprietary, black-box algorithm, it’s going to be difficult to gain agreement on or explain your culling methodology.  This is why the typical method of culling is still to use keyword search and either agree on the set of search terms with the opposing side or to use e-discovery search best practices to perform keyword searches on your own.

Second, content categorization has its own issues when it comes to being over- and under-inclusive.  There is no guarantee that your group of documents that have been categorized as being related to, for example, a company’s hiring policies include all of the documents in your matter related to hiring policies or that they do not include some documents that may not really be related to hiring policies.  Content categorization, like keyword search and virtually every information retrieval technology, is not perfect.

So what about concept search technology?  Surely, concept search technology is better than old, boring keyword search.  Well, actually it’s not that clear-cut.  The problem with concept search technology is that while it might find more relevant documents than plain keyword search, it will also likely find more false positives.  Imagine searching for documents containing “terminate” in an employment matter and your concept search technology automatically searching for “fire”, “dismiss”, etc. as well.  You’ll find more documents related to the termination of employees, but you’ll also find a lot more non-relevant documents concerning house fires, the fire department, etc.

So concept search can help address the under-inclusive problem with keyword search, (though it won’t solve it) and can be helpful during analysis.  But it can often increase the over-inclusive problem.  In addition, today’s concept search technologies share the transparency problem with concept categorization.  These technologies have largely been designed as “black boxes”, which as I have discussed in the past, makes sense for Enterprise search but not for e-discovery search, and, as a result, could also be potentially difficult to explain and defend.   For these reasons, concept search technology isn’t used very much in e-discovery today.  In order for its use to become widespread, it will need to become more transparent.  But that’s a topic for another day.

The bottom line here is that despite all the hype, concept search and content categorization technologies do not solve all the challenges of e-discovery search.  Both of these technologies can be very useful and the technology behind them is always improving.  However, as most of the experienced practitioners I work with already know, these technologies are generally better thought of as supplements to keyword search, not replacements.  The important question is not whether to use one technology over the other but which technology is best suited to your objectives and how best to use all the available technologies to achieve the desired goal.



Remember the past, prepared to learn

By Noel Rath 

 “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” said George Santayana, poet and philosopher, in his book Life of Reason in 1906. His advice has been there for generations to take note of, and we evolved as a species and progress as a society because we remember past successes, learn from mistakes and continually progress.

Information is the DNA of an organization. For a business to access and learn from this knowledge base requires systemic processes and procedures embedded in the business. So as technology evolves why have many businesses collected their past without thought about the efficient use of their corporate DNA? The systems and processes have been around for a long time to ensure efficient management of corporate knowledge. Records management provides these systems.

Instead, many organizations have documents and records poorly managed in disparate archives, file systems, warehouses and filing cabinets with limited control. Accessing this corporate DNA becomes problematic, inefficient and ineffective without records management policies and systems in place. It is therefore not surprising that some organizations are spending vast amounts of money trawling their data stores in an attempt to meet their legal obligations when required to produce evidence of all business activity associated with a legal dispute.

It’s not too late!  Protect your corporate memory, improve staff productivity and weather the storm, be it the global economic crisis or litigation. Invest in document and records management policies, procedures and systems and the investment will be returned very quickly!


IAP Retention Management – Future Ideas

By Ronald Brown

Today, the HP Integrated Archive Platform (IAP) manages retention at the “archive level” – meaning the archive itself is not only responsible for executing the retention management functionality, but it is also the place where the retention settings are configured.  This means the “archive” administrator has the responsibility to maintain the system in accordance with a company’s record retention strategies.  This is certainly one approach, however, there are others which may give more flexibility.

As the number of applications that move data into an archive grows, it becomes more important to actually understand the business value of that data and to provide more flexible retention policies.   Perhaps the owners of the application data itself should be able to communicate their requirements to the IT personnel responsible for their data.  In this case the application itself should drive the retention policies.  This will help ensure that the retention policies are specific to the application and maintained by the application experts.  The archive itself will be the executor of these policies.  While this affords more flexibility, the downside is that it requires more attention in order to define these policies and maintain them – so sometimes a blanket policy works better, especially for customers who are reluctant to commit the time and effort involved in defining their corporate retention strategy in a granular manner.

Another interesting use case is where the archive only retains data that is under active investigation or discovery.  Here, the archive is loaded with, for instance, 3 years of corporate data.  Then, specific queries are performed and the resultant data sets are placed on hold.  After this process is completed, all data not on hold is released and removed from the archive.  This use case serves a specific customer base very well – even though it seems to defeat the intended purpose of the archive.

One can never “predict” what is best for a customer and how they will utilize their technology investments.  The key is to give enough flexibility so that all use cases can be explored.


HP TRIM User Forum & Conference (TUF22) – It’s Back

By Helen Barnes 

I’m excited!  The HP TRIM User Forum is on again soon!  Can you believe this valuable event has been going for over 21 years?  I’ve been lucky enough to attend several TUFs both as a customer and also as an employee of HP Software.  My first was the Tasmanian (Hobart) TUF in 2001.  It was an eye opening experience for me for a couple of reasons:

  1. I’d never been that cold in my life (I’m from Darwin, it was still Winter)

  2. I was meeting all these fantastic people who were passionate about the same thing as me – this best-practice document and records management system – HP TRIM.

TUF has always been an event that I’ve taken incredible amounts of information away from (and had a little bit of fun too).  It was the only time I got a chance to talk to likeminded people from all over our region face to face.  We all know we experience the same problems in trying to get our staff to embrace information management and HP TRIM, and that some of us are moving forward more quickly than others – TUF lets us get together and hear what these movers and shakers are doing, then we can fly home and apply their ideas and lessons learnt in our own organisations.

The other unique feature of TUF that I love is that it also gave me a chance to talk to the people who actually wrote the software!  It was quite an honour to talk to these people (not that I understood them half the time – geeks) who’d produced this fantastic application about the way HP TRIM worked and things I’d come across while using it.

This year I’m presenting (can you hear my knees knocking?) and I’m excited for lots of new reasons.  This year I get to infect you with my passion for HP TRIM, I get to talk to you all about the things you love and any issues you may have with HP TRIM and I get to see you all interact with each other and watch the learning happen!

If you haven’t already, get yourself to and register to this awesome event.  If you have any enquiries about TUF22 please contact


5 ways to improve email management

Today, 85 percent of business communications occur through email, as the average email user sends and receives 76 messages per day.  This tidal wave of email is creating enormous challenges for almost everyone touched by Microsoft Exchange or Lotus Domino messaging environments. If you’re a CIO, CSO, IT VP/Director, Director of Messaging, legal/compliance officer or a GC, then you know that compliance, email security and control, mail server performance optimization, storage TCO reductions, and e-Discovery preparedness are top of mind challenges that you must resolve.

Today, up to 90 percent of companies from small (1-100 users) to very large (10,000+ users) who have deployed the market leading email applications don’t have an archive solution.  Yet 100 percent of these companies face requirements, whether internal or external, that dictate the need to ensure that their intellectual property is secure, controlled, and available when needed.  Since you’re in the 100 percent category, can you ensure that your email messages are captured, protected, accessible, and managed? HP Email Archiving software (for both Microsoft Exchange and Lotus Domino environments) can help you overcome all of these challenges. It works exclusively with HP Integrated Archive Platform (IAP) to provide long-term retention and high-speed search and retrieval of messages and attachments to reduce the cost and business impact of e-discovery preparation, legal response, and regulatory compliance. This modular appliance approach eliminates the need to purchase separate archiving client software, servers, operating systems, indexing and search software, and content-addressable storage, helping enterprises improve:

Compliance: Many of the 20,000 compliance requirements across the globe require that you enable access to secure email. HP Email Archiving software with HP IAP helps reduce risk of non-compliance with Compliance Archiving (capture all sent and received email—before it becomes a PST), WORM on disk, encryption, and digital fingerprinting—all standard.

Security and control: 75% of corporate intellectual property is contained in email and other messaging applications. HP Email Archiving software with HP IAP enables email to be continuously controlled, secured, and protected with traceable audit trails and simple administration, all transparent to the end user.

Mail server performance: 183 billion email messages are sent daily. HP Email Archiving software with HP IAP lowers storage burden on the mail server, reducing mail server backup volume and speeding the backup and recovery processes.

Storage TCO: HP Email Archiving software with HP IAP reduces mail server storage burden. By reducing the number of users per mail server, server storage costs can be lowered and CAPEX can be deferred on mail server storage and upgrades.  

E-Discovery readiness: Many companies recognize that the cost of a solution enabling email security and e-Discovery readiness is far lower than legal costs associated with either an internal or external audit or legal discovery event. HP Email Archiving software with HP IAP ensures that the #1 culprit in legal discovery cases (email) is securely archived, searchable, and accessible.  By finding secure email quickly and easily, you’ll reduce the demand on IT, lower internal costs, and eliminate the need for expensive outside consultants.

For more information, visit

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About the Author(s)
  • This account is for guest bloggers. The blog post will identify the blogger.
  • For years I've been doing video and music production back and forth between Boston MA and New Orleans LA. Starting in 2010, I've began working with Vertica (now HP Vertica) in the marketing team, doing customer testimonials, product release videos, and website management. I'm fascinated by Big Data and the amazing things my badass team at HP Vertica has done and continues to do in the industry every day.
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