Wednesday 16 January 2019

Data Archival - Traditionally and with Cloud!

Data is an important and integral part of business. Data here can be in any form critical to the business and needs to be preserved as a compliance requirement. For example for a media company, maintaining specific versions of all the video files is essentials for a longer defined period of years typically 10 years or more! Requirement here is data to be archived and preserved. With the Cloud solutions in place, the way we maintain manage and process the data is changing rapidly. 

What Leads to Data Archiving ? 
The factors calling for organizations to archive data includes explosive growth of data quantities on corporate networks with the need to retain all of data for longer time in accordance with legal and corporate compliance requirements. This is considering reducing cost in possible ways by archival of data. 

Data Archival Traditional methodologies, Challenges and Problems : Traditionally data that is no longer actively accessed, but for compliance reasons required to retain would be stored in various ways. The methodologies used includes Data archiving on tapes or Hard drive based data archival. Choosing the right set of tools and software for backup would be a part of the process. 

Challenges and Problems : 
  • Challenges for the archival of data in traditional manner includes management of the tapes, shipping tapes at locations required, management of the tape drives. 
  • Procurement and management of the backup server and configuration and installation of the backup software. 
  • Creating the backup policies and maintaining the security for the data is also a responsibility. 
  • Retrieval of data is also a challenge in case of any hardware failures. 
  • The environment is not scalable, in case more storage capacity is required, hardware procurement has to be done. 

Leveraging Cloud Services for Archival & Benefits : 
People are today adopting Cloud Services for Data storage and archival. Cloud service providers like Amazon Web services provides a very secure, easy to use and a robust infrastructure platform for the use cases such as data storage and archival. The main concern with data is security; AWS ensures infrastructure security and provides number of features and services for designing the best possible solution. It also provides guidelines for security best practices one can employe in the solution. 

Benefits : 
  • Durability for data is 99.999999999% with Amazon S3 and Amazon Glacier.
  • AWS provides a number of options for access control and encrypting data in transit and at rest. 
  • AWS let’s you go Global with Infrastructure available across the globe. 
  • Data can be stored or backed up in the region as per your compliance requirement. 
  • AWS infrastructure is designed and managed in alignment with regulations to meet your compliance requirements, standards and best-practices including SOC, SSAE 16, ISO 27001, PCI DSS, HIPPA. 
  • AWS provides scalability for the infrastructure. 
  • It helps with Lower TCO, The AWS scale of operations drives service costs down and helps lower the overall TCO of the storage. AWS often passes these cost savings on to the customer. 
  • Management of any hardware or tapes is not required in case of Cloud.
  • Accessing data from multiple locations is possible for authorized users without any physical devices being shipped. 
  • No procurement process to be followed. With AWS storage scales with respect to the demand and capacity requirements. The environment is scalable. 
  • Data security can be ensured with all the features and services in place.
  • Retrieval for data is easy through available options like Console, CLI or APIs. There are different types of data retrieval policies that can be set. 

Due to above mentioned benefits, businesses are migrating to Low cost Cloud based archival solution for the expanding volume of data. Moving data into the cloud makes it more accessible and analytics can be done leveraging other Cloud services. 

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