Sidebar: Success Story in Oracle Archiving

Tektronix Inc. in Beaverton, Ore., is a test measurement and monitoring business that operates in 27 countries. With annual revenue of $850 million, all financial data resides in one database. Traffic volume stays at about 800 concurrent sessions throughout the day and night. Two instances of Oracle 10.7 service all countries:

  • Oracle Financials for accounts payable, general ledger and other transactional systems are hosted on a Sun UE5000 database server with eight 336-MHz processors and 3GB of memory.

  • Oracle Customer Fulfillment for invoicing, accounts receivable and other functions. This 85GB production database is hosted on a Sun UE6000 box with 12 248-MHz processors and 6GB memory.

"Despite tuning exercises and hardware upgrades, a growth rate of 1.25GB per month caused performance to decline," said Lois Hughes, a senior business systems analyst at Tektronix. "Runtimes for batch programs increased despite fewer numbers of executions."

An investigation of usage patterns revealed that running all data from all time periods in one system severely slowed down transactional traffic. Yet over time, data usage declined sharply. Users reported simple queries of current transactions took ages.

Instead of continuing to add disks, servers and people, Tektronix decided to use intelligent archiving to manage data by country, while at the same time streamlining and centralizing it. The company adopted LiveArchive by OuterBay Technologies in Campbell, Calif. It functions in conjunction with Oracle to purge and archive data.

The result is improved database efficiency from the end-user perspective in terms of queries and reports, reduced storage requirements, and reduced time to back up. Plus, data retention is fully compliant by country.

"Queries are now instant," said Hughes. "Overall, we have benchmarked a 46% improvement in our financial performance by implementing archiving."


Tektronix Data Retention Policy

Tektronix archives transactional data every three months. Over time, information is reduced in priority within the existing Oracle instance, then moved to a less expensive online infrastructure. Eventually, it is removed from the online archive and placed in a final retention format.

Current State Online Archive Final Form Retention
Type of Data Current operations, data retained up to one year Data archived by year from year one to year six Data 7 years or more in age is removed from the online archive
Type of Access Online production, transaction processing Read only, no transaction processing Read only
Where Stored No long term history. Stored in Oracle database Less costly form of storage. Stored in Oracle database Summarized data, reports, specific tables etc. stored offline on CD’s, fiche and so on
How Administered Most costly form of storage. Administered by IT Administered by IT Least costly. Administered by functional data owners, not IT

Copyright © 2004 IDG Communications, Inc.

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