3 Tips for Better Copy Data Management

Posted 06/20/2017 by Phil Wandrei

New technology can often be deceiving. Let's say you have an IT problem and a new company introduces a new technology to fix it. Sounds great, but there may be complications. How does your team install and manage the new technology, learn the administrative tools, or integrate it into your broader IT environment? Over time, the new technology requires more care and feeding than you had envisioned. In fact, you begin to question the value of your decision. Welcome to the new puppy - I mean new technology - syndrome. 

We have recently seen the new technology syndrome play out with copy data management (CDM). What started out as a quick fix for a specific problem (i.e., reducing the number of redundant data copies) is failing to live up to your long term needs in three areas: little value-add beyond fixing the immediate problem, increased complexity of managing a point product and no investment protection. 

Select a Solution with Value-Add

Initially, CDM products focused on reducing the number of redundant copies and it performed this function well. While copy sprawl is a legitimate IT problem, the previous status quo fix was to order more storage, which increases costs. CDM addresses copy sprawl by reducing the number of copies but it also requires more staff time to determine which copies to keep or delete.

A better approach is to leverage the value of copies and make them work for you! What if you could reduce the number of copies AND use copies to drive greater value to the business? For example, what if your Dev/Test group could obtain copies in minutes instead of days or hours, bringing new applications to market sooner and more frequently. Driving new and incremental revenue for the business is IT sexy. 

Need to Reduce Complexity  

Another challenge with copy data management is it is a feature, being sold as a product. Often with new features, start-up companies will package the feature as a hardware and software bundle, a point product, to get it to market sooner. While this can be convenient for that one capability, the customer has to deal with yet another point product that requires separate management, additional staff training and integration into the environment. This adds complexity rather than removing it.

A better approach is to select a data protection and management solution that includes copy data management as a feature. It eliminates the complexity and cost of managing an additional point product within your environment while still providing all of the CDM benefits.

Select an Integrated Solution for Investment Protection

When a new feature is brought to market as a point product it often costs more over its life than integrated products. With a point product you are locked into a specific vendor’s software and hardware. This is especially dangerous as new technology typically declines in cost over time and may eventually become commoditized. If you are locked into a vendor’s point product, it is unlikely they will pass along these cost savings which results in paying a premium price over time. 

A better approach is to select copy data management functionality that is a component of a broader data protection and management solution. For example, look for a solution that delivers integrated, flexible data protection including snapshot management, deduplicated backup, replication, archive and copy data management. This provides greater scale and flexibility to meet your short- and long-term needs, delivering the investment protection you require.   

A New Approach

Commvault has a new approach to copy data management, called Active Copy Management. Integrated into the Commvault Data Platform, Active Copy Management leverages the value of copies to deliver greater value to your organization while reducing the number of copies needed. A single data management platform with Active Copy Management saves valuable staff time, eliminates complexity and delivers investment protection.

To learn more about Active Copy Management and how Commvault can help you protect, manage and leverage your data, read ESG Solution Showcase: Commvault Copy Data Management Has Never Been More Relevant.