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Importance of Database Uptime

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Stephen J. Richards
July 20, 2007

Stephen J. Richards
About the Author: Stephen J. Richards has 25 years experience in Data Management and Information Technology. This information is provided as a public service by Neon Enterprise Software, a leading provider of data retention products. For more information, please visit http://www.neonesoft.com
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For many businesses, logging, warehousing and processing information about transactions is the lifeline of their corporate strategy and crucial to their profitability. Important records detailing a company’s user history, product inventory and shipment tracking, supplier information, configuration settings, or any other necessary collections of information are most often stored in and retrieved from databases. Databases provide a convenient means of storing vast amounts of information, allowing the information to be sorted, searched, viewed, and manipulated according to the business needs and goals. Many companies rely so heavily on the functions of databases that their daily business operations can not be executed if databases are unavailable, making database management and maintenance a vital component of their business models.

The significance of database up time and hazard of downtime can best be illustrated with a hypothetical example. Suppose ABC Company is a subscription based web application that provides a variety of on demand services to its subscribers. Every piece of data that ABC Company uses to provide its subscription services is stored in one or more massive databases, and fulfilling user requirements relies on the website’s ability to access, format and deliver database information almost instantly. However, if that database is undergoing maintenance, queries cannot access the required information that is needed to create a deliverable, thus depriving the user of the services for which he or she is paying. On a large scale, database downtime can result in lost clients and sales, and thus damage to the profitability and success of the business. Hence, efficient database management capabilities are crucial to the mere existence of many businesses.

The need for database maintenance is unavoidable, so enterprise data availability software solutions have been created to help businesses reduce downtime from hours or days to mere minutes or even seconds. Effective database management applications can reduce or eliminate downtime that renders a database unavailable, giving business owners and developers a flexible and powerful tool to protect the performance of their valuable business operations.

Companies which provide enterprise data availability software and services help businesses manage their databases by offering services such as backup and recovery, automation of maintenance tasks, and fine tuning performance efficiency, among others. With an assessment of current database maintenance practices, enterprise data availability companies can recommend the appropriate system to implement that can solve the database management shortfalls of most organizations, playing a valuable role in the protection and longevity of their clients.

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