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Valery Guilleaume05.14.20191 min read

HSM (Hierarchical Storage Management) vs Active Archive

Couple of year ago, when I spoke with people about Active Archive, most of time they claim that they understand this Archiving concept which is something like HSM (Hierarchical Storage Management).

I said .... yes it's something like this, but you know, it's not exactly the same thing. ....

If you are also confuse by this both concepts, I'm trying to clarify it in this post.

HSM (Hierarchical Storage Management) :

It's a data storage technique that automatically moves data between high-cost and low-cost storage media. First implementations have been done in 1960s.

This main reason why HSM systems exist it is to reduce capacity usage on more expensive and faster disk system and move the data to less expensive disk which are also slower. HSM also move data from the slowest storage to faster storage when data are needed.

Active Archive :

Unlike an HSM, data in an Active Archive remains online regardless of the age or usage of the data.

When accessed, data is not automatically copy or move to the higher tier storage ; but rather it is directly accessed from the storage device that the data is resting on.

This makes every storage device in an Active Archive both primary storage and secondary (archival) storage.

In Summary:

The main reason why customer want to move out of HSM is because this technology uses stub file. This technic cause a lot of trouble when application trying to list these files on a primary storage. This listing occasion a lot of files movement back to primary storage. This cause overload, lack of time and performance.

Today, the customer adoption for Active Archive is growing, as this concept manages the data within the active archive throughout the lifecycle of that data according to each company's particular Information Lifecycle Management (ILM) policies and procedures. This means that while the active archive serves as the primary storage pool, it is also the final storage location for a file at the same time.

Nodeum provides to each customer the capability to implement their lifecycle management workflow and procedures. Furthermore graphical interface manage traceability of each movement.