Archiving files or documents is the process of transferring data from the storage currently in use to a new location. By doing this, the current set of resources is saved for the purposes which are of immediate importance. Imagine an office desk which receives hundreds of applications to be processed every day. And as an acknowledgement of the application or completing of process required, you save a stub of it.
When you transfer this stub to the basement storage or a centralized storage, it is called archiving. The applications processed can be required for reference as a part of legal or audit process. Thus, ability to retrieve it easily in addition and retaining the stub for years are the two aspects that need to be taken care of while archiving.
In a digital world, all of this process that makes a normal day at work can be replaced with archiving software, and that remote storage is nothing but an archive folder that is capable of holding tremendous amount of data.
The main purposes of archiving the files are:
- Long term retention of data for accessing later
- Cleaning up of the resource set to make it available for current needs
- Easy and safe storage of important files which can be required in future for compliance purposes
If we take a look at the analogy mentioned above, we come across a term called stub. For a file, the stub can be the path, address of directory where it is stored or the archive file name by which it will be retrievable in future. The present set of resources will contain only the file name or the file path which is analogous to the stub.
What archiving a file process actually does?
The process of archiving a file involves creating a folder in new location where all files not much in use are stored after compressing. Since the files are coming from a variety of systems and sources, these can occupy tremendous space leading to its shortage. Thus, some of the important processes that are helpful in conserving the space while creating archives are carried out. These processes include:
- Data compression
The content is compressed together to fit into the archive folder in order to create space for more data.
- Self-extraction and self-installation
Hunting each and every archived file or application individually can be nerve-wrecking. Thus, archived files having these automated features can reduce the task of the archive manager.
The most important of all features from safety point of view! The encryption is really important if the information archived is of sensitive nature and requires abundant security.
- Directory structure information
This is required for easy retrieval of the archived files. The directory structure information enables easy location and retrieval and also gives information about the data size.
It is like a one-line description of the file you have archived. Having metadata is important for saving time while recovery as it annuls the need for going through the whole content in order to pick the required file.
Important formats of archiving
All files need not be archived in a standard format. The purpose varies from file to file, thus, the way these are to be archived is ought to differ too. You can be given choices amongst formats like only archive, compress only, software packaging, multi-function, or disk image. The existing file storage system defines the action it allows. Some may offer multiple options while other can be more specialized in their approach.
Properties to look for in a file archiving software
Before picking a file archiving software, you must be aware of the basic characteristics that can validate your decision. Some of the crucial ones are:
- Fast and relevant to the existing file system
Archiver Software should be in alignment with the existing file system. In the present times, most of the file systems are NTFS type and having the latest version of it. The Archiver FS is one such archiving tool that is an end-to-end NTFS tool and therefore, is found in all the major companies. You can find out more information about Archiver FS to get the one for your work environment too.
Archiving is simply migrating the large number of not so much used files to a safe, remote location. Thus, the process incurring too much cost is certainly not desirable. It adds significantly to the operation cost that may affect bottom line eventually.
- Compliance with data safety
Getting data leaked or stolen can never be a fruitful proposition. It is something to be avoided at all cost. The users of archiving solution, therefore, must look for this ability of the software to keep up with stringent laws pertaining to data protection and GDPR.
- Light weighed
By light weighed, it is meant having minimal footprint and is quite resource-efficient. The server or hard disk on which the archiver software resides should not be consumed by it only. This software is meant to provide relief to the main resources so that these can be allotted to more important tasks. Thus, by being light-weighed, it fairly serves the purpose.
- Fully scalable
Flexibility of accepting all file types and scalability to match the varying quantum of data is two most important features worth looking for in archiving software. The data in any particular period can vary in size depending upon the type and amount of work done in that time. Thus, it should be able to adjust to the fluctuating scale.
- Does not need additional deployment module
The archiving software should have compatibility with the existing work environment. It should be just another entity to be processed by existing Windows OS. It saves installation hassles and does not burden the resources by demanding more tools to work.
Get more info on how ArchiverFS works as this is unique archiver software that has all these properties. So, learn all about it and get it as soon as possible if archiving process is making life difficult for you.