Forest Service needs an archive update

USFS wants to modernize the process of storing, retrieving and deleting data.

What: The U.S. Forest Service has issued a request for information about ways it could manage its legacy data, which is currently scattered throughout the country and mostly archived on tapes.

Why: USFS officials want to modernize the process of storing, retrieving and deleting information to reduce the time and costs associated with handling stored data.

Much of the data resides on more than 100,000 archived, non-duplicated tapes stored in third-party facilities. USFS is holding onto the tapes mainly because of retention policies, but periodically there is a need to retrieve information that exists nowhere else.

"The broad geographical distribution of these storage media in multiple facilities no longer serves a purpose and is adding both cost, time, and risk when tapes must be handled and shipped to the legacy system for restoration," the RFI states. "In addition, having this storage media dispersed across these locations adds significant complexity to our business and operational management processes involving these facilities."

USFS officials are looking for an archive service that can provide a more efficient process with shorter delivery times and the ability to search and filter information prior to delivery. They also want to eliminate the need to maintain USFS' legacy IT infrastructure to restore information.

The archiving service must also be scalable to accommodate volume expansions or contractions through the life of the service and provide tiered storage options to "accommodate varying data value and access needs for low-priority storage media as a means to minimize costs."

Responses are due by Feb. 5.

Click here to read the RFI.

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