Users should consider archiving, data compression, and data de-duplication
Organizations of all sizes are generating and depending on larger amounts of data that must be readily available and easily accessible. This growth in data results in an ever-increasing data footprint: More data is being generated, copied, and stored for longer periods of time.
Consequently, IT organizations have to effectively manage more infrastructure resources, including servers, networks, and storage, to ensure data is protected in a timely manner while at the same time providing adequate performance and capacity and securing data for access when needed.
Your data footprint is the total storage capacity needed to support your various business applications and information needs. Your data footprint may, in fact, be larger than how much actual storage you have, or, as in the following example, you may have more aggregated data storage capacity than actual data.
As an example, say you have 2TB of Oracle database instances and associated data, 1TB of Microsoft SQL Server data, 2TB of Exchange e-mail data, and 4TB of shared NFS and CIFS file-sharing storage, resulting in 9TB of data; however, your actual data footprint could be much larger. The 9TB simply represents the known data or how storage is allocated to different applications and functions. If the databases are sparsely populated at 50%, for example, only 1TB of Oracle data actually exists while occupying 2TB of storage capacity.
Assuming, for now, that in the above example the capacity sizes mentioned are fairly accurate to the actual data size based on how much data is being backed up during a full backup, your data footprint would include the 9TB of data as well as the online (primary), nearline (secondary), and offline (tertiary) storage configured to your specific data protection and availability service requirements. For example, if you are using RAID-1 mirroring for data availability and accessibility, in addition to sending your data asynchronously to a second site where the data is protected on a RAID-5-based volume with write cache, as well as a weekly full backup, then your data footprint would be at least 37TB (9 x 2 for RAID 1) + (9+1 for RAID 5) + (9 for full backup).
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