Managing tabular data as records in a hybrid environment

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Hi all,
I posted this message a while back in the ECM community but did not get a response so I thought I would revisit in the all inclusive area. Are any of you managing tabular data as records in a hybrid environment using the retention tools in an ECM suite (or tool) or in conjunction with something like IBM Spectrum Protect for Data Retention? I am looking for something to manage data (records) across LOB apps/ tools and unstructured repositories. The struggle seems to be there are not a lot of tools that I know of, that deal with tabular data retention, unless the application itself has some sort of retention component built in. How are you all addressing this in current state? Most of the tools we look at want to duplicate a record in the ECM solution versus managing in place. We do not want to duplicate anything.

Austin Energy

Zasio has created tools to help customers manage data in place, including strategies for managing retention on individual records within a database. I’d be happy to explain in more detail if you’re interested.


Hi, There isn’t really a records management solution per se for structured databases in the way that there is for unstructured/content that I’ve heard of in 20+ years in the IT realm. EDIT: The above noted “Zasio” may be a notable exception, and that means there may be others.

The very nature of the relationships of data across tables, and potentially across databases which, in turn, might be across many virtual servers across, potentially, multiple physical hosts and so on makes it impractical to attempt the same methodologies we apply to content. After all, we use database driven software to do our EDMS/ERMS work, right? So, you kind of end up chasing your own tail trying to use a DB-driven solution to manage data in another DB ;).

As well, DB’s are searchable inherently so eDiscovery efforts can take place at any time. And every DB software that I’m aware of provides some sort of “master” level security to be able to lock down the data to read-only to prevent data changes. And most also provide a constantly running log function (MS Access being a notable exception which is one of the reasons IT departments generally hate it).

Now, what DOES exist is archiving capabilities for DB’s. There is a no cost open-source solution for doing this called SIARD Suite, which is based on a standard developed by the federal archives in Switzerland. There are also a wide variety of vendor solutions for this. The 4 biggest things to look for (I think) in this would be:

. To make sure the solution can handle as many as possible of the database vendors (MS, Oracle, DB2, Informix, MySQL, and so on) and database types (RDBMS, Graph, Spatial, etc.) that you have in your environment.
. That the archive file structure is as independent/agnostic of the input DB formats as possible
. The archive stores both the data and a machine readable description of the original data structure such that it could be reconstructed
. The archive solution provides some sort of standards-based compression capability, or, works with storage-level compression (or both)

Hopefully this helps.


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