Information Faster Blog

"Database Archiving" or "Structured Information Management"?

By Mary Caplice

HP Database Archiving software may be underserved by the term ‘archive’.  A better name might be something along the lines of ‘HP Structured Information Management’ since the product does more than archiving.  Even the term ‘archive’ itself is often misunderstood, ill-defined and confused with ‘backup’ (archived data needs to be backed up itself).

‘Archive’ is a generic term that includes

  • HSM (Hierarchical Storage Management)

  • Migration (transparent, or not)

  • Data Retention (policies to govern how long to keep data around, in what form and where)

  • Data Disposition (policies about when and how to destroy or make no longer useful, either selectively or wholesale)

‘Database Archiving’ products in the market also include the following capabilities in addition to archive:

  • Subsetting of production databases, usually for testing purposes but also for compliance reasons (branch offices only need their data)

  • Masking of data for privacy reasons (SSN, salary, etc.), usually for test database subsets

  • Sunsetting -- Organizations retire old applications but need to save the data from them for compliance reasons

  • Data Transformation -- for example, Oracle or SQL Server to XML

Do they belong together?  What other areas should be included in ‘Structured Information Management’ that are typically not today?  Let us know what you think!


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