Though data lifecycle management has been subject to a great deal of hype and disappointment over the years, it remains a necessary process. Not only is data lifecycle management essential for legal purposes, it can be used to control capacity. This means moving data off of primary and more costly storage systems to cost-effective data archives.
Moving data off of primary systems frees capacity and can improve performance and reduce costs. Rather than increasing primary storage capacity, less frequently accessed data is moved to a secondary storage system or data archive. This data remains available, but it is housed on a cheaper storage device.
Perhaps one of the biggest improvements in data lifecycle management over the years has been the ability to classify data with tags. Just as you can tag social media posts with relevant tags, the same is true of data. For example, you can tag all data generated by the human resources department as “HR data.” Similarly, you can create even more specific tags such as “employee contracts,” “garnishments,” or “attendance records” — each of which have specific data retention requirements. By using tags, it becomes much easier to identify data that must be retained.
Storage must also be classified so that archived data can be stored appropriately. For example, some data may have strict data protection requirements such as mirroring or replication while other data can be safely stored on a lower cost storage array. Many organizations use virtualized storage pools for these purposes. By classifying storage and identifying data with appropriate tags, you can ensure that data is archived appropriately.
After classifying both data and storage, the next challenge is to automate the movement of data from one storage system to another based on defined policies. A variety of systems are available including smart SAP solutions from Dolphin. According to Dolphin, less data equals faster performance and cost savings. Controlling capacity in this manner improves overall performance, mitigates risks, and complies with archive retention and destruction policies and business and regulatory compliance.