Email Archiving in 2011- what we might see

Our last set of predictions for 2011 may have some way to go before they become reality, but having spent a few moments searching for 2011 predictions on the Internet, I'm confident most of what is out there is a very long way off, if not a just a little scary too.

As this week is the first proper business week of 2011, I'm wondering what we are likely to see in the Email Archiving industry this year and if anything dramatic will shape its future.

In a highly un-scientific piece of research amongst my colleagues, the top issues I'm expecting to see in 2011 are as follows. By the way, I'm willing to take small wagers on their likelihood if you're keen.

  • The Archiving Market will see Further Consolidation: The last couple of years saw the arching market consolidate drastically, even during the economic downturn. I expect that for email archiving vendors this consolidation will continue, and we will see some surprising shifts in the market. SaaS and Cloud vendors are likely to be at the top of the shopping list for many on-premise vendors.
  • Microsoft Exchange 2010 will go Mainstream: This blog has written many posts about the virtues of Exchange 2010, and rightly so. 2011 will see the large scale uptake of Exchange 2010 by mainstream organizations because of the new features it offers. Smart Businesses that have chosen not to archive to date, will use the migration to Microsoft Exchange 2010 as a catalyst to deploy a sustainable email archiving solution to ease migration headaches.
  • Goodbye to Stubbing Emails: Many legacy email archives support the stubbing or short-cutting of email attachments or body content as a mechanism to reduce Exchange store size. Since Exchange 2007, Microsoft has been persuading users away from this dead technology because of the problems it causes in later life for migration and retrieval. 2011 will be the year that businesses needs to decide what to do about the great stubbing problem. This is a problem that isn't going away and needs to be addressed. More on this blog soon.
  • Say NO to Buying More Disks: For many organizations email archiving has been a way of life for years. Users continue to send and receive email, the archive continues to grow, disk space is eaten up at an alarming rate. To their hardware vendors delight and their CFOs despair, IT departments have continued to purchase more disk, and purchase more disk, and purchase more disk - or worse, start storing email on the SAN. 2011 should be the year the CFO says no to this maddening cycle, and asks the IT department to look for an alternative (he's heard about Cloud). The IT department are likely to look at a cloud solution that doesn't rely on local disk.
  • New Search Engine for Symantec Enterprise Vault: The search engine built into Symantec's Enterprise Vault email archive has long been due for an upgrade. Rumor has it that Symantec are considering the Vivisimo Velocity search engine for a release later this year. This will mean a couple of things for users of Enterprise Vault. New 64bit hardware is likely to be needed, and data needs to be re-indexed - both of which are big jobs. Time to consider your options? More on this particular issue on this blog soon.
  • eDiscovery Becoming More and More Important: Already an important driver for many regulated or legal centric businesses, but I expect that 2011 will make eDiscovery a much more mainstream issue for businesses. New regulations in the US like the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform (and Consumer Protection) act are likely to put a much larger burden on relevant businesses, but the knock-on effect of this and all other regulations that require email archiving, retention and eDiscovery will finally start to trickle over into non-regulated organizations. As is popular in the UK and Europe, the retention of everything will start to become the norm in the US too. After-all, which CIO or even CEO wants to be unprepared in the face of someone who is far more so?
  • Cloud by default: Many of the issues above are caused by legacy technology. 2010 saw the Cloud make huge in-roads into corporate IT infrastructures. 2011 by contrast is likely to see the fine tuning of legacy services to utilize Cloud in much deeper integrations. (Note I said legacy services, not applications; the latter will be phased out as a result)  The most obvious advance we'll see in 2011 is the use of Cloud or SaaS email archiving vendors, for the simple reasons that they are able to provide the same or better functionality as their LAN based aging-relatives, but without the requirement for on premise hardware or software.

So there you have it. 2011 in an email archiving nutshell. On Thursday this week, tune in for the same predictions on email security.

Happy New Year everyone.

for 2011 may have some way to go before they become reality, but having spent a few moments searching for 2011 predictions on the Internet, I'm confident most of what is out there is a very long way off, if not a just a little scary too.

As this week is the first proper business week of 2011, I'm wondering what we are likely to see in the Email Archiving industry this year and if anything dramatic will shape its future.

In a highly un-scientific piece of research amongst my colleagues, the top issues I'm expecting to see in 2011 are as follows. By the way, I'm willing to take small wagers on their likelihood if you're keen.

  • Market Consolidation: The last couple of years saw the market consolidate, even during the economic downturn. I expect that for email archiving vendors this consolidation will continue, and we will see some surprising shifts in the market. SaaS and Cloud vendors are likely to be at the top of the shopping list for many.
  • Microsoft Exchange 2010: This blog has written many posts in support of Exchange 2010, and rightly so. 2011 will see the large scale uptake of Exchange 2010 by mainstream organizations, and as a result consideration of the new features it offers. Businesses that have chosen not to archive to date, will use the migration to Microsoft Exchange 2010 as a catalyst to deploy a sustainable email archiving solution.
  • Stubbing, or short-cutting: Many legacy email archives support the stubbing or short-cutting of email attachments or body content as a mechanism to reduce Exchange store size. Since Exchange 2007, Microsoft has been persuading users away from this dead technology because of the problems it causes in later life. 2011 will be the year that your business needs to decide what to do about the great stubbing problem. This is a problem that isn't going away and needs to be addressed. More on this blog soon.
  • Disk space usage: For many organizations email archiving has been a way of life for years. Users continue to send and receive email, the archive continues to grow, disk space is eaten up at an alarming rate. To their hardware vendors delight and their CFOs despair, IT departments have continued to purchase more disk, and purchase more disk, and purchase more disk - or worse, start storing email on the SAN. 2011 is likely to be the year the CFO says no to this maddening cycle, and asks the IT department to look for an alternative. The IT department are likely to look at a cloud solution that doesn't rely on local disk.
  • Symantec Enterprise Vault: The search engine built into Symantec's Enterprise Vault email archive has long been due for an upgrade. Rumor has it that Symantec are considering the Vivisimo Velocity search engine for release later this year. This will mean a couple of things for users of Enterprise Vault. New 64bit hardware is likely to be needed, and data needs to be re-indexed - both of which are big jobs. More on this particular issue on this blog soon.
  • eDiscovery: Already an important driver for many regulated or legal centric businesses, but I expect that 2011 will make eDiscovery a much more main stream issue for businesses. New regulations like the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform (and Consumer Protection) act are likely to put a much larger burden on relevant businesses, but the knock on effect of this and all other regulations that require email archiving, retention and eDiscovery will finally start to trickle over into non-regulated organizations. As is popular in the UK and Europe, the retention of everything will start to become the norm in the US too. After-all, which CIO or even CEO wants to be unprepared in the face of someone who is far more so?
  • Cloud, SaaS and IaaS; Many of the issues above are caused by legacy technology and legacy thinking. 2010 saw the Cloud make huge in-roads into corporate IT infrastructures. 2011 by contrast is likely to see the fine tuning of legacy services to utilize Cloud in much deeper integrations. (Note I said legacy service, not applications; the latter will be phased out as a result)  The most obvious advance we'll see in 2011 is the use of Cloud based or SaaS email archiving vendors, for the simple reasons that they are able to provide the same technology and functionality as their LAN based aging-relatives, but without the requirement for on premise hardware or software.

So there you have it. 2011 in an email archiving nutshell. On Thursday this week, tune in for the same predictions on email security.

Happy New Year everyone.

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