Cold data refers to data that is infrequently accessed, as compared to hot data that is frequently accessed. As unstructured data grows at unprecedented rates, organizations are realizing the advantages of cold data storage. For this reason, it’s important to understand the difference between data types to develop a solution for managing cold data that is most cost effective for your organization.

The main reasons for developing a solution are:

  1. To prevent primary storage from becoming overloaded
  2. Reduce overall storage costs
  3. Simplify data management
  4. Efficiently meet compliance and governance requirements

When considering storage for cold data, consider low cost, high capacity options, with data durability. Examples of data types for which cold storage may be suitable include information a business is required to keep for regulatory compliance, video, photographs, and data that is saved for backup, archival, big-data analytics or disaster recovery purposes. As this data ages and is less frequently accessed, it can generally be moved to cold storage. A policy-based approach allows organizations to optimize storage resources and reduce costs by moving inactive data to more economical cold data storage.