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Learn from Your Peers: South San Antonio ISD Prepares for Legal Discovery and Open records Requests with GWArchive

Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Messaging Architects

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Posted: 16 Oct 2007

For the past couple of weeks GroupWise expert and GWArchive architect Greg Smith offered advice on email retention in the education sector and discussed a typical email archiving scenario for educational institutions with GWArchive. Today, we are featuring a real-life case study from K-12 Education on their experience with GWArchive.

South San Antonio ISD Prepares for Legal Discovery and Open records Requests with GWArchive

The South San Antonio Independent School District encompasses 21 square miles in the south and southwest portion of San Antonio. Portions of the school district adjoin Lackland Air Force base and Kelly USA. Approximately 10,000 students attend the school district, which consists of 2 high schools, 4 middle schools, and 10 elementary schools. Students are also enrolled in the Career Education Center and Alternative Center. The faculty and staff servicing South San Antonio ISD rely on Novell GroupWise for all their collaboration needs.

The relationship between South San Antonio ISD and Messaging Architects began about 4 years ago when the school district deployed GWGuardian into their messaging system. Overnight, the nightmare of managing the onslaught of spam was eliminated with a solution that runs itself, requiring zero administration.

In October 2006, South San Antonio ISD made the decision to adopt a centralized email retention policy and deploy an email archiving solution. To be on the safe side and to eliminate the need to rely on end user intervention, they opted to retain 100% of the email messages going through the school district's email system for a period of 7 years.

"Even though we hadn't been mandated by law to introduce email retention, we decided to be proactive and implement this project as we undertook the consolidation of our GroupWise Post Offices," continues Mary Welch. "There had been several occasions already when I was asked to produce old emails and the process of restoring them from backup was a nightmare. It would take me half a day to finish restoring one account, not to mention the time spent looking for the email in question. Besides, relying on backup for electronic discovery purposes is a bad idea. Not only is it extremely time-consuming, but a backup is only good for a shorter period of time; then it gets overwritten. What happens if an older email is requested?"

Once again, South San Antonio ISD turned to Messaging Architects for help. They were able to solve their need to be able to access and restore messages easily and quickly with a deployment of GWArchive. The GWArchive Policy engine allowed the school district to set the respective archiving policy that automatically provides 100% retention, thus enabling the organization to be prepared for any eventuality.

Initially, the main driver for the deployment of GWArchive was being able to comply with open records requests and cases of electronic discovery. However, GWArchive's integration with the native GroupWise WebAccess interface, with which the school district's teachers and staff are already familiar, will allow Welch to take advantage of GWArchive's full capabilities and further reduce the overhead on her GroupWise message store. As a next phase of the archiving project, users will be able to review their archives directly from the archive repository keeping the school district's email server highly available.

"By deploying GWArchive for our email retention management, we have certainty that we will be able to fulfill any open record request quickly and painlessly, as well as to produce email in cases of legal discovery without having to incur high costs or loss of time. GWArchive's advanced configurations give me a lot of flexibility that I will be taking advantage of in the coming months" concludes Welch.

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