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Log files grow unabated

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COMPANIES THAT HAVE turned on logging report that logs are growing astronomically, with no end in sight. "I know of one aerospace company that was generating 1TB per week of logs," says Scott Ruple, VP of marketing at Packet- Motion, which makes the PacketSentry traffic analysis appliance. "That's a lot of logs."

Adding insult to injury, most logs aren't that relevant from a compliance standpoint, says Ruple. Whereas the PacketSentry appliance collects information such as who opened a file at what time, other logs might also collect data like server heartbeat, CPU temperature and fan speed.

"It's useful if you're looking for a hardware failure, but not if you're just trying to document the traffic on the network by your users," he says.

By contrast, PacketSentry data consumes one-tenth the space of server logging. Furthermore, the logs are stored on a standalone SQL database, explains Ruple, so they don't take up precious space on the app servers.

--Alex Barrett

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This was first published in August 2006

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