Information Life Cycle Management

Information Life Cycle Management (ILM) is a comprehensive approach to managing the flow of an information system's data and associated metadata from creation and initial storage to the time when it becomes obsolete and is deleted. Application Information Lifecycle Management software empowers your IT organization to cost-effectively handle data growth, safely retire legacy systems and applications, optimize test data management, and protect sensitive data.

Unlike earlier approaches to data storage management, ILM involves all aspects of dealing with data, starting with user practices, rather than just automating storage procedures, as for example, hierarchical storage management (HSM) does. Also in contrast to older systems, ILM enables more complex criteria for storage management than data age and frequency of access.

ILM products automate the processes involved, typically organizing data into separate tiers according to specified policies, and automating data migration from one tier to another based on those criteria. As a rule, newer data, and data that must be accessed more frequently, is stored on faster, but more expensive storage media, while less critical data is stored on cheaper, but slower media. However, the ILM approach recognizes all data must be retrievable and that the importance of any data does not rely solely on its age or how often it's accessed. Users can specify different policies for data that declines in value at different rates or that retains its value throughout its life span.