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Archiving data, part 1: Decommissioning legacy applications with cloud

Migrating only the relevant data to a new system, archiving data that needs to be retained and getting rid of the rest. It is possible to do this cost-efficiently with cloud.

Topi Westerholm / April 12, 2022

Is your organization currently maintaining a legacy application – just for the sake of end-users requiring access to data in a system where technological support is hard to get or non-existing?

Read also my second blog: Archiving data, part 2: Six tips for assessing data for meaningful archiving

Maintaining these kinds of systems can be a nightmare for two reasons. You not only have the challenge of getting support but there is also a significant risk of jeopardizing access to the data or even losing crucial business data if the system stops working. A common business case is to get cost savings and reduce the risks by decommissioning a legacy system while still providing access to important data.

When legacy systems come to end of their lifecycle, there is usually still a large amount of business data in the applications, and they cannot be ramped down just like that. Organizations always need to consider the importance of the data and what to do with it now that it is most likely located in the legacy application’s databases and file systems.

To keep data and to what extent?

This boils down to choosing one of the following options:

  1. Maintaining the legacy system and keeping it running or hibernating.
  2. Migrating all data to a new system replacing the old legacy system.
  3. Archiving all data to an archive system.
  4. Migrating only the relevant data to a new system, archiving data that needs to be retained for regulatory and business reasons and getting rid of everything else.

Organizations commonly tend to choose one of the first two options, but in most cases, this will introduce additional costs the organization does not want to pay. Continuing the maintenance of a legacy system is always risky and maintenance costs can be high compared to alternative options.

Migrating all data to a new system is a challenging task as the legacy data might not fit into the new data model. Transforming massive amounts of data during the data migration imposes a risk of data getting corrupted and might also require a lot of manual effort for making data to be compliant with the new data model. Archiving all data is an option if data is no longer requested often enough, or if there is no need to access the data anymore.

Migrate and archive only the relevant data

When considering these options, there are clear and tangible benefits for an organization to migrate and archive only the relevant data

Compliance with laws and regulatory requirements – Archiving data according to requirements will ensure your organization is compliant with applicable regulations and the law. The organization retains only the data it is allowed to retain, and the archiving system will ensure the data will remain accessible, readable and secure throughout the whole retention period.

Improved performance of operative systems – Having useless data in the operative system, or data that is not needed will increase the footprint of operative systems databases and file systems. Every data sensitive operation in the operative system such as searching and backups will become much slower as the application needs to browse through the data when executing the operations.

Reduced costs – Less time spent maintaining and managing software and infrastructure and moving ‘inactive’ data from a costly, high-performing primary storage to a more affordable, low-performance storage. It will also bring huge savings to the organization.

Improved data management – Data management processes never want to manage any unnecessary data. By getting rid of data that is no longer needed, you simplify the process of managing data in the organization.

What kind of archiving plans does your organization have?

We are happy to help you to plan your archiving strategy and provide Tietoevry Archiving as a Service. It is a next-generation, cloud-based enterprise-wide archiving platform based on the OpenText™ InfoArchive product, compliant archiving both structured and unstructured information.

Whether actively archiving business information to reduce system loads or de-commissioning applications to stand down outdated systems, InfoArchive is the flexible and cost-efficient way to reduce IT costs and accelerate the move to cloud. Users remain effective in their everyday work and can quickly access data and documents in familiar, process and role-specific views. This allows any organization to cost-effectively upgrade to new applications with active data and still keep historical data aa click away. Get in touch!

Topi Westerholm
Lead ECM Business Consultant

Topi is an IT consultant who has 20 years of experience in specifying and gathering business requirements from customers for software applications and has led several software delivery projects during his career. Last 10 years he has worked in the enterprise content management area, especially in archiving and is currently responsible for add-on sales, consultancy and archiving deliveries for multiple customers.

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