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Vol. 5 No. 8 October 2006

Long-term archiving

Tracking regulatory requirements for data retention is tough enough, but restoring data from long-term archives is likely to be even harder. Some legislative requirements mandate that data be kept for as long as 70 years--that's the easy part. Having to restore a 70-year-old file is the hard part. Twenty years ago, mainframe backups were done on nine-track, 1-inch tape, while PC backups were likely put on 5.25-inch floppies or audio-cassette tapes. Trying to read any of those media today would be difficult, even assuming the media hadn't deteriorated past readability. Besides obvious issues like the device and removable media used for archiving, the data format used by the backup program and the format of the data itself, there are additional issues such as the usable lifespan of the media, the necessary keys for any encrypted data and--a really big one--the ability to find the name of the data file you want. If that's not enough to discourage you, you may also have to discover where the archive is stored and what specific piece...

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Features in this issue

  • Survey Says: Users name their 10GbE price

  • The right way to provision storage

    Provisioning storage is still mostly a manual job, but solid planning, including the right interested parties and some improved tools, can help ease the chore. Follow these provisioning best practices to gain greater performance and higher disk utilization.

  • Long-term archiving

    With some legislative requirements mandating data be kept for as long as 70 years, your organization needs an archiving plan that defines what data needs to be kept and why. But don't overlook how you'll restore old data when it needs to be accessed.

  • How to manage encryption keys

    Encryption is an effective way to secure data. But managing encryption keys can be a major undertaking. While there are no encompassing key management tools available yet, some apps can help you keep track of proliferating encryption keys.

Columns in this issue

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SearchDisasterRecovery

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