Title: PArch: a cross-organisational peer-to-peer framework supporting the aggregation and exchange of storage for efficient e-mail archival

Authors: Ankur Gupta, Lalit K. Awasthi

Addresses: Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Model Institute of Engineering and Technology, Camp Office: B.C. Road, Jammu, J&K – 180001, India. ' Department of Computer Science and Engineering, National Institute of Technology, Hamirpur, Himachal Pradesh – 177005, India

Abstract: The necessity and convenience of e-mails cannot be overemphasised in a business or personal context. Due to the critical information that e-mails often carry, they need to be saved for future reference. However, mail servers and clients have limited storage capacity, requiring e-mails to be archived on secondary storage and retrieved when required. From a technological perspective, the huge amount of e-mails that need to be stored is a major problem, given the limited size and cost of storage. Moreover, governmental regulatory requirements may require organisations to archive e-mails for extended periods of time. Thus, organisations need to invest heavily on creating the necessary storage infrastructure, such as Network-Attached Storage (NAS), Storage Area Networks (SAN) or disk arrays, which provide dedicated storage for e-mail/data archival. However, Small and Medium Businesses (SMBs) may not have the necessary resources to ensure the secure storage and fast retrieval of e-mails. This research paper presents Peer Archival (PArch), a novel cross-organisational Peer-to-Peer (P2P)-based framework which utilises the enormous potential offered by P2P networks to provide an efficient and low-cost solution to the e-mail archival problem. The proposed architecture is unique in that P2P networks have not been previously used to address such organisational needs. Experimental results from a prototype implementation demonstrate the feasibility of the approach.

Keywords: business information systems; peer-to-peer networks; P2P; network-attached storage; NAS; storage area networks; SAN; disk arrays; email archives; small and medium-sized enterprise; SMEs; peer archival; PArch; peer enterprises; enterprise resource sharing; enterprise resource collaboration.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBIS.2010.029482

International Journal of Business Information Systems, 2010 Vol.5 No.1, pp.102 - 116

Published online: 30 Nov 2009 *

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