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Legacy Data Archive Migration: Open Platform vs Open Source

In this article, we’ll explore how Open Platform and Open Source cloud migration tools play into legacy data archive ...

In this article, we’ll explore how Open Platform and Open Source cloud migration tools play into legacy data archive migration. You will also understand why an Open Platform sets up your organization in the best way for the future.

What Is a Legacy Archive?

Business woman typing on keyboard with global system concept-3Many enterprise-sized organizations have data stored in systems going back years. While some of this might be used from time to time, most of it is probably old or legacy data. It may only have limited value to the organization, but often because of the sheer amount of data, it’s challenging to locate the valuable data from the data of low value.

A legacy archive might be:

  • Email data from end-users. Some of these users may still be employed by the company; some may have left a considerable time ago
  • Email journal data. This is data captured by Microsoft Exchange Journaling features and is the immutable copy of any data (it has not been edited by end users or other software applications). This data could have significant use for the business, especially in the case of a legal case that the company may be involved in now or in the future.
  • File data. This is all the file system data that is accumulated by teams and departments over a period.
  • PST data. Usually, this is backup copies of email data from end users. This data poses a risk to an organization because it is difficult to locate all the PST data, and if the data has been copied or moved to portable media, it is easy for this data to ‘leak’ outside of the organization (either deliberately or accidentally)

What Is Open Source Framework?

Put simply, Open Source in the context of Information Technology is software source code that anyone can:

  • Inspect / review
  • Modify
  • Enhance

No one ‘owns’ the software.

In comparison, ‘closed source’ or ‘proprietary’ software is owned by an individual, team, or company that created the software. Only those people can legally modify, copy, inspect or alter the software.

The debate about which type of software is ‘best’ is argued on the internet almost daily.

Sometimes Open Source software is incorporated (legally) into mainstream software projects. For example, an open-source software library to compress images or data files might be incorporated into different commercial software products. 

Note: Open Source has further implications in modern parlance – the phrase is often used on a wider scale than software. Essentially the same principles are applied in those other contexts. 

What Is an Open Platform?

An open platform means that a software system is based on open standards but does not necessarily mean it is open source. An open platform will typically have published and fully documented APIs that allow other software systems to interact with it in ways that the original creators of the platform might not have initially planned.

Open data platforms often contain a mixture of open source software and proprietary software to form the solution as a whole. The critical thing to note is those application programming interfaces (APIs). This means adding data to the platform, modifying it, and reviewing/downloading it can be done by external applications when required.

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What is a Legacy Archive Data Migration?

A legacy archive data migration involves taking the data stored in some or all of those legacy archives mentioned at the start of this article and migrating the data to a new platform or system.

Migrating legacy data can be a complex undertaking.

Specialist data migration experts, like Cloudficient, have many years of experience in migrating data from legacy archive platforms to new, better, cheaper platforms like Office 365. Depending on the data being migrated, you might also consider other systems for some critical business data. Look at how our Expireon solution can help you with legacy Exchange journal data, for example.

Why Is It Best to Migrate to an Open Platform?

When a legacy archive data migration is performed, it’s sometimes due to the need to consolidate data that may exist in the same type of system in multiple locations. For example, if your organization has an existing Enterprise Vault environment and a company you acquired also has a similar system, the consolidation of those systems might be a project that the company undertakes to reduce costs, simplify data management, and enable easier end-user access to the data.

Another reason to perform a migration might be to save costs. Often a dedicated system housing legacy data can have year-on-year costs that are starting to spiral upwards, especially if you consider the costs of:

  • Employees to maintain the system
  • Hardware to run the system
  • Operating System and Application licensing costs
  • Licensing costs for the legacy system
  • Associated software costs such as SQL Server licenses, often needed by systems which host legacy data

For more on digital transformation return on investment, take a look at this article.

When it comes to migrating this legacy data, it’s critical that an open platform is chosen. Using open source database migration tools on an open platform will:

  • Avoid vendor tie-in. Those software APIs mentioned earlier mean that now, or in the future, the software can be written to make more use of the data stored on the platform and, crucially, extract the data to move it to a new platform, if required.
  • Allow the use of new, leading-edge technology, such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), to better use the data stored on the platform.
  • Avoid spiraling maintenance costs. Often a cloud-based system is more modern and follows the open platform approach to data storage, which helps drive down the cost

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In this article, you’ve learned more about legacy data archive migration and open source migration tools. We’ve also looked at how an open platform approach, using open source archive migration tools and proprietary tools, in a future system that you migrate to can help your organization avoid problems relating to vendor tie-in and spiraling costs for data access and extraction.

With unmatched next generation migration technology, Cloudficient is revolutionizing the way businesses retire legacy systems and transform their organization into the cloud. Our business constantly remains focused on client needs and creating product offerings that match them. We provide affordable services that are scalable, fast, and seamless.

If you would like to learn more about how to bring Cloudficiency to your migration project, visit our website, or contact us.

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