By Rick Finley on Apr 22, 2013
Archiving Roadmap and Futures
26 July 2011
The Oracle archiving option available with Enterprise Taxation and Policy Management was created to help customers speed response time, reduce hardware costs, and to retain historical records for viewing and reporting.
The Current Archiving Solution
The existing solution is designed to move data gradually and continuously. It makes heavy use of system meta-data to ensure that records are not orphaned or widowed when the data is moved. Because a robust consistency check can slow the overall data moving process, this archive design requires the archival processes to be run on a regular basis to reduce the numbers of records processed in a given run. Waiting to process a large number of records in a single run will require a lengthy processing window.
Data selected for "archiving" can be moved to another database, moved to offline flat files, or purged completely. Once archived, data cannot be moved back to production without a consulting effort (reinstating data is not offered with the base product).
Finally, database union features have been defined to allow the archived data to be viewed on-line, using a copy of the system. From the archive application server, the archive data joins a union with the production data so that they can be viewed together. All system features that do not involve updates are available.
The Roadmap Forward
In order to have a consistent product across the entire Oracle application stack, the current solution will be retired, in favor of a new option that will make better use of native, high performance DB features.
The current archival solution will be maintained through the life of the current product release: Enterprise Taxation and Policy Management V2.3.1. They will be supported, but there will be no further enhancements to the existing archiving features. Oracle recommends that recent customers that do not have immediate archival requirements wait until the new solution is available.
The Future Solution
Oracle DB provides an "archive" option within a set of features that are called "Information Lifecycle Management", or ILM. As the name implies, this is a comprehensive data lifecycle tool, not limited to just archiving. ILM is a set of automated solutions that work with Oracle Database 11g to enable you to use multi-tier storage to dramatically lower the cost of storing application data. It makes use of automatic storage management (ASM), partitioning, and a management tool called the ILM Assistant. Prerequisites are Oracle 11g EE with Automated Storage Management enabled, the Partitioning add-on option (which has a separate license), and the ILM Assistant (a free tool). More information about ILM is provided here:
With this solution, we will no longer require maintaining a separate archive environment to view the data. Older, less frequently accessed data will reside in production, but on slower, lower cost storage devices. In order to maintain high performance in queries, applications will be tuned to avoid retrieving the older data unless it is explicitly requested.
In addition to the technology, Oracle plans to provide pre-defined ILM definitions, following best practices for data life cycles on high volume transactional tables. Oracle may also provide, as needed, special functions and software to check and ensure data integrity.
Note the prerequisites: Oracle DB 11g EE with ASM enable, and the Oracle DB Partitioning option. Advanced Compression is optional.
The above is intended to outline our general product direction. It is intended for information purposes only, and may not be incorporated into any contract. It is not a commitment to deliver any material, code, or functionality, and should not be relied upon in making purchasing decisions.
The development, release, and timing of any features or functionality described for Oracle’s products remains at the sole discretion of Oracle.