Email Archives Arrive

Email archiving is a necessity as companies grapple with compliance issues

June 22, 2005

3 Min Read
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Email archiving is growing into a multibillion-dollar market, and storage vendors are hustling to cash in.

This week alone produced five announcements, starting on Monday, when Sun Microsystems Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW) announced its StorEdge 5310 Compliance Archiving System based on its NAS system (see Sun Ships Archive System). Suns system uses iLumin Software Services Inc.’s software to archive, manage, and retrieve email to meet compliance regulations (see iLumin Helps Sun Comply).

Today, four announcements were made in New York City at the Securities Industry Association (SIA) Technology Management Conference:

  • Intradyn Inc.revealed it is offering tape encryption for its ComplianceVault email appliance and the next version of its RocketVault backup appliance (see Intradyn Intros Tape Encryption).

  • Email archiving software vendor C2C Systems and file archiving vendor BridgeHead Software Ltd. are offering an integrated package for email and file archiving (see C2C, Bridgehead Partner).

  • LiveOffice Corp. launched Global Power Search (GPS) technology to reduce the time required to search archived email.

  • Fortiva Inc. upgraded its Fortiva Archiving & Compliance Suite, adding support for Instant Messaging, better integration with Microsoft Active Directory, and reports designed specifically for financial services.

What makes email archiving so hot? Research points to compliance as the major factor driving the market. When The Radicati Group Inc. surveyed users in May on why email archiving is so important, 28 percent listed compliance with government regulations and another 25 percent pointed to internal policy compliance.

Radicati reports that a typical corporate email account receives 19.5 Mbytes of data per day and will average more than 45 Mbytes per day by 2009. In 2002, that number was 5 Mbytes per day. In all, the firm forecasts the email archiving market will grow from $465 million this year to $4.5 billion in 2009.Intradyn CEO Gary Doan, whose firm sells compliance and backup appliances, says his company’s revenue bear out Radicati's survey findings (see IntraDyn Fires Up Backup Box and Intradyn Expands ComplianceVault Family). “Compliance is our number one market segment,” Doan says. “It easily surpassed data protection for us.”

As it grows, the compliance archiving market is rapidly becoming segmented. The archiving offerings from major vendors such as EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC),Storage Technology Corp. (StorageTek) (NYSE: STK), and Sun, for instance, are aimed at the enterprise and built to handle more than just email.

Email archiving is also among the main uses for content addressed storage (CAS) systems for enterprise customers. Over the past two weeks, EMC and Archivas Inc. upgraded their CAS systems, and StorageTek entered the space (see EMC Widens CAS Pool, Archivas Seeks Archiving Action, and StorageTek Rolls Its Own CAS).

Other suppliers, such as Intradyn, North Seas AMT and ZipLip Inc., have email-specific appliances aimed at SMBs and SMEs. ZipLip rolled out its ComplianceAppliance for email in April, and NorthSeas has shipped an email archiving appliance since last October (see ZipLip Launches Compliance Appliance and StorServer Archives Email). Intradyn started selling ComplianceVault last June.

Price is the selling point for the little guys. Intradyn’s ComplianceVault starts at $6,995 for 120 Gbytes and $11,812 when integrated with a Sony 400-Gbyte tape library. ZipLip’s ComplianceAppliance begins at $14,500 for 30 mailboxes or less. That compares to $73,395 for Sun’s new 5310 Compliance Archiving System with 2 TBytes of storage.The rush of email archiving wares is likely to continue for firms of all sizes as regulatory compliance plans take shape. Analyst Mike Karp of Enterprise Management Associates says legal penalties for failing to comply mean that small companies need the same protection as the larger ones.

“The law doesn’t make a whole lot of distinction between small companies and large companies,” he says. “If you’re guilty, you’re guilty. They don’t ask, ‘How big is your company?’ ”

— Dave Raffo, Senior Editor, Byte and Switch

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