Handy MFT Tips: Archiving and Purging, Critical Processes Commonly Overlooked

Hanz Jorgensen

This is the latest in our series of articles discussing key secure file transfer processes.  Previously, bTrade’s MFT Nation blog discussed such things as monitoring and scheduling, tracking/reporting/alerts, basic managed file transfer scenarios, etc.  Today, I want to focus on archiving and purging, a critical (but often overlooked) process in any effective secure file transfer system.

Preserving historical data is important and sometimes even required by law.  With the current cost of storage at an all-time low, it is quickly becoming common practice to just throw more disk space at business critical applications.  However, is this really the best and truly the most cost effective solution?  The quick answer is, no.

System performance quickly becomes a concern when production databases and datastores are allowed to grow alongside the ever-increasing capacities of commercially available hard drives.  Typically, when confronted with a decision of either increasing disk space or removing data from a production database, most would choose the former option of increasing disk space.  However, as the amount of data on the live system increases, more time is required to process and retrieve all this data.  To keep all applications running at peak performance, it is important to archive data that isn’t used on a regular basis and purge unused/unnecessary data.

Archiving and Purging, Defined

Archiving:  The process of backing up obsolete data that will later be deleted during the purge process. During the archive process, data will be moved from the main transactional tables to the backup tables.

Purging:  The process of freeing up space in the database or of deleting obsolete data that is not required by the system.  The purge process can be based on the age of the data or the type of data.

It’s Easy to Archive and Purge

Secure file transfer solutions which have integrated archiving and purging processes completely eliminate the hassle and can dramatically reduce the costs of maintaining your data.  bTrade’s secure file transfer  solution, TDXchange , allows users to automatically schedule both archive and purge processes with just a few clicks of the mouse.  This can all be done within the user interface and setup based on any criteria the user wants.  Data which has been archived can also easily and quickly be restored within the same interface.

Archiving and Purging Helps You Comply With Information Governance Laws/Standards

Gone are the days of writing lines and lines of scripts which have to be run directly against the database by a DBA, or numerous batch files which have to be written, maintained and executed by a system administrator to clean up a datastore.   Now, anyone with proper access to the application can establish a schedule in which live production data residing in both the database and datastore can be archived and then purged from the system.  This can be done quickly and easily, and performed to adhere to any law or other information governance standards regarding the time in which the data must be kept.

Maximize Performance with Archiving and Purging

The importance of data archiving and purging cannot be overstated, especially considering that databases and datastores continue to grow at seemingly uncontrollable rates.  This can affect system performance and ultimately the efficiency of your business.  Properly maintained systems can ensure agility in your disaster recovery plan, while reducing IT costs and providing quicker reporting and enhanced ERP performance.  While inexpensive storage may seem like the more cost effective solution, it truly isn’t.  So next time you are in the market for a business critical application, make sure that integrated archiving and purging is at or near the top of your list.

If you have any questions about data archiving or purging, or want to learn more about how bTrade solutions can help in this regard, please send a confidential email to info@btrade.com.