Archived data affecting business operations

A new survey suggests companies are backing up too much information.

The enormous volume of backup data is disrupting business operations and tying up valuable IT resources, according to a survey released today.

Over half (59 per cent) of UK and North American IT executives polled by software firm BridgeHead said the amount of data they are forced to back up interrupts day to day operations, or will do so eventually.

The process consumes a large period of time, with 37 per cent confessing that their daily back ups take over nine hours to complete, while 19 per cent admitted to spending over twelve hours a day.

Yet nearly all of the 472 executives polled (93%) said their routine back ups are continuing to increase.

BridgeHead Software's chief executive Tony Cotterill, the company that commissioned the survey, has a simple solution to the problem: save less data.

"Some 61 per cent of organisations in our survey admit that between 30 to 50 per cent of data on their primary disk is unlikely to be accessed ever again, yet they are squandering time and resources on backing up and replicating this big chunk of static data," he said. "It's a very poor use of resources."

Limiting the amount the volume of data routinely backed up could reap a number of advantages according those polled. Over half (58 per cent) said it could reduce the disc resources needed for data snapshotting or replicating and mirroring, while 45 per cent said it would decrease disruption to the live application environment.

To have a major impact on the problem BridgeHead believes an IT-driven move towards archiving organisation-wide data from a single point needs to be set into motion.

"If you can take an organisation-wide approach to archiving, then the volume of data you're taking off the primary store will start to reach a critical mass that will help call a halt to increasing backup volumes," said Cotterill.

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