In a world of continually expanding information, data archiving is becoming increasingly important. Instead of letting your organization s data create unnecessary clutter, learn how to organize and archive it safely and securely.

Data Archiving Basics

What is data archiving? It s essentially the process of transferring inactive data out of open, active systems and into inactive storage systems. The goals of data archiving are twofold. First, the process allows for greater system optimization, since it clears out inactive data and speeds up active data retrieval. Second, data archiving can offer an affordable solution for accessing archived data when it becomes necessary.

When to Use Data Archiving

Many businesses set up best practices for data archiving that suit their data production and storage needs. Some organizations require extensive data archiving, while others need less frequent data retrieval. Information technology professionals typically weigh the organization s individual needs with the advice of other stakeholders.

Considerations that go into developing a data archiving plan include data type, data life cycle and retrieval needs. Different types of data may have varying archival needs, and an organization may need more than one archival policy. Similarly, data that remains static for a certain period of time might meet archival requirements, but organizations may need to choose between archiving and deleting data.

Data Archiving Pros

One of the biggest benefits of data archiving is that you don t have to rely on local machines for all of your data archiving needs. Instead, you can opt for an online data backup, which means you can store your backups in the cloud instead of continually purchasing on-site storage space.

Three major benefits come from online data archiving. First, this process is typically more cost-effective than purchasing local storage. Cloud-based storage can be incredibly affordable, depending on your business needs. Second, creating online data backups means you don t need to reserve physical space for local storage. Third, cloud-based storage programs typically have high security standards, which means you can feel assured that your data can be safe until you need it.

Data Archiving Cons

Although data archiving provides you with data retrieval when you need it, you can t always put the archiving process on permanent autopilot. Periodically testing your backups is necessary to ensure your data is properly archived, that your backups function as they should and that your process still meets your needs.

In addition to testing, you ll need to come up with a policy for how often to archive data and how many backups to keep. If you create only one backup per week, you risk losing seven days of data. On the other extreme, if you create a backup every minute and keep every backup for an undetermined amount of time, you ll run out of storage space quickly.

Data archiving is both an art and a science. By taking the time to develop an effective plan for archiving your organization s data now, you ll save time, money, and grief today and for the future of your business.

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