TechRepublic member N.Zwaneveld, like many IT managers, is facing a dilemma over data decisions. Zwaneveld, who works for a large bank in Europe, is seeking the advice of other TechRepublic members on how to manage the rapid growth of data stored on the bank’s eight servers.

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“I am trying to determine if our rate of data growth on file servers is reasonable and whether the current data storage policy needs to be reviewed,” Zwaneveld wrote in a TechRepublic discussion post. “What is a reasonable rate of data (normal office applications) on file servers? How do you define ‘reasonable’?”

Zwaneveld said he launched the discussion because “…I expect that there is no single correct answer and I also expect that many others are also concerned with rate of growth of data on their file servers.”

Join the discussion to help Zwaneveld make the right data decisions. He is seeking advice on growth rates for data used in typical office applications (i.e., word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation data).

Figure A
The chart represents the growing data load at a large financial firm in Europe. The big jump in early 2001 occurred when new departments were added to the data server. The key below the chart indicates the server names.

Drowning in data
Zwaneveld wants to determine if the rate of data growth on his organization’s file servers is reasonable and, if not, should he alter his organization’s current data storage policy. Figure A shows the growth rate of the organization’s file servers since August 2000.

“Our current strategy is to analyze access to files and categorize files. Each category of files would have a different means of storage, varying from online to near-line to optical. We are considering implementing [a tool] that aids detection of files that have not been accessed over a period of six months…,” he said.

Zwaneveld also has other questions about data storage:

  • Do other organizations allow unlimited growth of file server data?
  • What incentives can be used to encourage departments to reduce data volume?
  • Is there a tool that can be used to track and compare storage costs and methods?

You can help
How does your organization track and store data? What do you do with old data? Do you have a data policy for your organization that Zwaneveld could implement for his? If so, what advice would you give him? Join the discussion.

Something on your mind?

Do you have a question or a problem that you think other managers might know the answer to? Leave your question in the TechRepublic Discussion Center to solicit the help and advice of other IT professionals.