Oracle today unveiled its new Information Lifecycle Management Assistant, a free tool for the growing number of information lifecycle management (ILM) practices can lead to significantly reduced storage costs, according to experts. Oracle says its new ILM Assistant offers a wide range of features that simplify the process of implementing and maintaining such a strategy.
Used in conjunction with Oracle Database's partitioning features, Oracle ILM Assistant helps users define information lifecycle parameters, such as when it's time to purge information or move it to less expensive storage devices. The idea, according to Oracle, is to enable the maximum quantity of data to be retained at the lowest cost. Oracle ILM Assistant also offers simulated table partitioning, storage cost modeling, and security and compliance reporting capabilities.
"Organizations today really can no longer afford to use the highest-end storage for all the database requirements," said Willie Hardie, Oracle's vice president of database product marketing. "Oracle ILM Assistant is basically a tool to help our customers define the lifecycle of data and manage that data throughout its lifecycle onto different storage tiers, while continuing to meet demands for fast access."
A growing need
Experts note that organizations today are holding onto information longer for a variety of reasons, including data-retention regulations, business-intelligence reporting requirements, legal discovery and more. As a result, demand for ILM software that helps users cost-effectively manage growing data stores is on the rise.
A recent Unisphere Research survey of Independent Oracle User Group (IOUG) members found that 92% expect their database storage needs to increase in 2007, and 64% plan to increase spending on storage in 2007.
"Different data has different value to organizations, and different data may also have different performance needs," IOUG president Ari Kaplan said. "If you have different classes of data, you can reduce your cost just on the storage by a tremendous amount. If you take the time to classify your data, before you even re-architect, Oracle ILM Assistant can help you showcase how much money you'll be saving."
Although there is clearly a growing demand for ILM, Kaplan said, many companies still aren't aware of just how valuable such a strategy can be.
"A lot of people don't even know [ILM] is a need, and if they just started using it, they could save dramatic money without that much work," he said.
Where to get it
Oracle ILM Assistant requires that users install Oracle Application Express, and it is free of charge for all Oracle Database Enterprise Edition customers running Oracle 9i Database or above. The software is available for download from the Oracle Technology Network. More information on Oracle ILM Assistant can be found on Oracle's Web site.