Jason Buffington | Data Protection Analyst at ESG
Jason Buffington is the senior analyst for data protection at the Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG) and has been working with data protection and availability for over 25 years.

Understand the Expectations of your Long-Term Retention Strategy

Often, when people use the term ‘archive’ it means many different, often erroneous, things: Some refer to any time that tape is used, instead of disk, to be an ‘archive’ – compared with a ‘backup’. Some refer to ‘archiving’ as the grooming or moving of data from primary storage. Some refer to any long-term retention mechanism (greater than a year) as an archive, even if the copies of data were originally created by a backup application or just a drag-and-drop of a folder or other object

Think “Data Management,” Not Just “Data Protection”

Today, everyone seems to understand the ever-growing importance of data protection, often viewing it as a superset of backup combined with snapshots and replication. Typically, a conversation about data protection includes the assumption of a “gold standard” centered on using secondary disk for rapid recovery and tertiary tape for long term retention. Of course, “the cloud” also is always a consideration as part of the next generation of the solution. It’s still all under the banner of “data protection” (DP), the collection of activities, methods, and media used to help recover or restore business information after a crisis or other IT disruption. According to research, primary storage is growing around 40% annually, with secondary storage used for data protection growing at similar rates. Budgets aren’t growing nearly that much. Meanwhile, IT organizations are being asked to do more (i.e., inject more agility, functionality, and resiliency into their operations) while spending as little budget money as possible. In actuality, data protection budgets are growing around 4.6% annually according to ESG research, but that level of increase won’t even let you keep doing what you have been doing at a larger scale.Therefore, you have to do something different. What you should do: ARCHIVE!