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Database Archiving Heats Up

Users explain the pluses and minuses of archiving structured data

IT storage pros are about to get slammed from two sides -- on the one side from the growth in and demand for archiving structured data, particularly database data -- and on the other side from vendors trying to capitalize on the opportunities.

Unlike unstructured data, such as email, this side of the archiving market has received relatively little attention, although a number of vendors are cranking up their efforts in this space. HP, for example, snapped up Outerbay to bolster its database archiving story and Solix was recently named in Byte and Switch's top 10 startup list. (See HP Hops on OuterBay and Top 10 Startups to Watch.) Other vendors playing in this part of the market include Applimation and Princeton Softech. (See Users Pick Princeton Softech.)

With the database archiving market heating up, we spoke to IT managers and analysts to discover the benefits and pitfalls of the technology.

Be Aware of Your Archiving Options

At least one analyst told Byte and Switch that most users are blissfully unaware of the options available to them. "Unlike unstructured data, there are lots of things that you can do with structured data," says Brian Babineau, senior analyst at the Enterprise Strategy Group citing, particularly, the ability to take subsets of the data and run tests on them while the main database runs in production mode.

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