Ten—Make That 11—Characteristics of the 'New ILM'

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2007-05-31 Print this article Print

News Analysis: What was a hot acronym four years ago has cooled somewhat, but it also has evolved along with new storage products, services and regulations.

Remember information lifecycle management? It is still around and making money for some companies, albeit in a quiet way.

ILM can be as simple as filing a word document into a desktop folder or as complicated as multi-tiered storage, archiving and authentication policies.

Four years ago, when ILM first became a hot commodity, it was all about storage and access. Now it's also about encryption, deduplication, e-discovery management and storage allocation strategy.

The Clipper Group in Wellesley, Mass., first published a whitepaper written by analyst Michael Fisch in May 2004 entitled, "Top 10 Things You Should Know About ILM." Certainly, most of those tenets put forth were intelligently conceived and still relevant in 2007, a veritable eternity later in IT time.

However, we at eWEEK decided we needed to update that list, since an awful lot has happened in storage, security, resource planning and compliance since the year the Red Sox won the World Series.

So here are The Clipper Group's ILM points of interest, as they appeared exactly three years ago:

1. ILM is a concept for dynamically managing data over its life cycle, from creation to deletion, as its value changes over time.

2. ILM is based on the premise that data has a life cycle and a relative value that changes.

3. The business benefit of ILM is maximizing the value extracted from information while minimizing the total cost to store and manage it.

4. ILM requires viewing storage as a service, not just as a box.

5. ILM is an enterprise-wide strategy, not an individual product.

6. Implement ILM one step at a time.

7. The primary operational components of ILM are tiered storage, data classification/policy definition and data movement.

8. Tactical triggers for considering an ILM solution include: meeting business and regulatory requirements for data retention and access; providing appropriate storage service levels; improving application and file system performance; lowering storage hardware costs; and speeding up data management operations like backup, restore, upgrades or replication.

9. ILM is coming.

10. ILM is here.

Okay, there you have it the way the analyst saw it back then. However, we have the distinct feeling that, with the last two entries, Mr. Fisch was perhaps trying to stretch it a bit to make an even 10 items.

Click here to read about how deduplication is leading to more efficiency.

So we'd like to replace those last two items with two of our own.

9. Encryption and better, more rigorous authentication methods are fast becoming important options for handling highly sensitive company data. This is becoming an increasingly important part of the overall ILM picture.

10. Data deduplication is quickly becoming a staple of both enterprise and SMB data center storage—and also part of the ILM scene.

Oh, and if we can take the liberty to add one more item, it would be this:

11. A clear-cut storage allocation strategy—utilizing such hot technologies as thin provisioning and virtualization—is another way for enterprises of all kinds to realize big savings over time.

There you go. Have a good ILM day!

Check out eWEEK.com's for the latest news, reviews and analysis on enterprise and small business storage hardware and software.


Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
eWeek eWeek

Have the latest technology news and resources emailed to you everyday.