Data Storage Management - Information Lifecycle Management

Posted by Mark Teter, Chief Technology Officer
August 21, 2011

So a few blogs ago, I wrote about data archiving best practices, and one of those best practices was implementing Information Lifecycle Management (ILM) to help prioritize and store data according to its value. I hinted that I might write a blog about this particular best practice, and given its overall importance to data storage management, I’ve done just that.

When you implement Information Lifecycle Management, you effectively store your information in a manner consistent with the value of the data. All data maintained on storage networks has a defined lifecycle, and this lifecycle identifies the way information travels through an organization from its creation to its archival and removal. The exact steps in data lifecycles largely depend on organizational policy, though data generally travels through three stages:

Stage 1: Creation/Acquisition of Data. During the creation of data, both data availability and data value are extremely high.

Stage 2: Publication. The value and availability requirements of published data, whether printed or accessed through other means, often depend on the content of that data.

Stage 3: Retention and Data Disposal. The length of time an organization archives and retains information depends on the nature of the data. However, increasing federal regulations, standards, and compliance measures often govern how long organizations must keep certain types of data.

The changing importance of data and the requirement for data availability create problems—it is costly to store all information on expensive, high-availability Tier 1storage systems. At some point, organizations must shift at least portions of corporate data to less expensive storage media. However, that merely raises the questions, “What data do we move to cheaper media? And when do we move it?” ILM provides a strategy for data storage management throughout the information lifecycle. It identifies the processes and technologies that determine how data flows through an environment. Information path management is another consideration with ILM organizations are unlikely to offload all rarely used data to cheaper storage unless they can still access the data reliably, if needed.

In this video, I was asked about ILM, what it is and why it’s important for data storage management:

About Mark Teter Before he retired from ASG in 2013, Mark Teter was Chief Technology Officer (CTO) and the author of 'Paradigm Shift: Seven Keys of Highly successful Linux and Open Source Adoptions.' As CTO, Mark regularly advised IT organizations, vendors, and government agencies, and he frequently conducted seminars and training programs.

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