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The survey of decision makers and influencers looked at the types of electronic content that organizations archive today and where that content resides. Notably, as shown in Figure 2, a high percentage of corporate email on-premises (61 percent), users' files (61 percent), invoices (58 percent), security audit logs (52 percent), and project data (48 percent) are all archived on-premises. Not surprisingly, corporate email in the cloud tends also to be archived in the cloud (56 percent). In addition, slightly more than 20 percent of both user files and on-premises email are stored in the cloud.
There are three key takeaways from the figure above:
In short, the more rapid growth of cloud archiving, as well as the continued use of on-premises archiving systems, points to a decidedly hybrid archiving future as both delivery models will be used for various types of electronic content archival.
Underscoring the shift of archiving to the cloud, while on-premises archiving will continue to a popular option for the archival of electronic content, is the data shown in Figure 3 on the next page. While the cloud will not displace on-premises archiving systems, we have reached a tipping point at which more content will be archived in the cloud during 2018.
There are many drivers for this shift, including the general trend towards the adoption of the cloud for core applications like email and file management, the increasing maturity of cloud archiving solutions, and the increasing acceptance of hybrid archiving solutions. As indicated in the figure above, cloud-based email content created in the near term will tend to be archived in the cloud, so there is a significant relationship between the location of the production system and the archive that stores it.
That said, it is important to note that there is value in many situations for organizations that are maintaining email and other unstructured data both on-premises and in the cloud (such as before or during a migration from on-premises Exchange to Office 365) to be able to archive their content in a single cloud repository. This can improve both operational efficiency in having a single archive of corporate content, and it can speed search and eDiscovery of this content.
With the growth in data types, as well as the explosion in the amount of data generated and stored over recent decades, many organizations are seeking a solution that will permit storage of multiple content types in the same archive. Such a universal archive can offer a number advantages in that it ingests and indexes data from different sources and offers a common management interface and one storage management infrastructure. Savings comes from management, administration, and training on one system and one vendor to manage.
There are a number of scenarios in which decision makers are more comfortable with hybrid archiving:
It is important to note that we are not implying that on-premises solutions are necessarily more secure than those in the cloud, or vice-versa, but there continues to be a mindset among many decision makers that content behind the firewall is more secure than content in the cloud. Consequently, a hybrid solution may be the best option in these situations.