Not all data is equal. To manage data intelligently, organisations need to be able to prioritise and store data according to its value to the business. However, the task of categorising and migrating data between storage devices is incredibly labour-intensive.
However, California-based Arkivio, a supplier of data resource management software, claims its product Auto-stor gets around this problem by automatically assigning a value to data,
identifying where it should be stored, and migrating it over to an appropriate storage device with sufficient excess capacity.
By automating these processes, Auto-stor enables data- and file-intensive companies – such as a global law firm that creates and stores a large number of sensitive across a highly distributed network of storage systems – to significantly drive down costs, claims Buzz Walker, Arkivio’s vice president of marketing and business development.
Auto-stor incorporates policy-based automation software, a meta-data repository, software agents, reporting tools and a central management console. These, according to company executives, enable users to manage information intelligently, optimise capacity utilisation and predict future storage requirements. Although Auto-stor currently runs on Windows servers only, the company has promised a Unix version shortly.
Initially, an administrator activates Auto-stor’s software agents to collect information about the company’s data and storage utilisation rates. Auto-stor’s algorithms then allocate Data Value and Storage Value scores to stored information. Based on these scores, Auto-stor migrates files from a storage source to a target, Windows-based repository, which is created and controlled by Arkivio’s central console.
Arkivio only started selling Auto-stor in September 2002, and Walker claims that the company has recruited “a few” customers since then. But the company will have to compete against storage software giants such as Fujitsu Softek and IBM, which are constantly exploring new ways of helping their large customer base to manage storage more efficiently. “Arkivio differentiates itself by focusing on storage data, whereas other vendors concentrate on device management,” Walker insists.