Alachisoft StorageEdge - Online Documentation

Feature Highlights

Externalizer simply externalizes the BLOBs from database to external storage using EBS/RBS providers. If a storage profile in Externalizer is web application specific, EBS provider is used and if it is content database specific, then RBS provider is used. Externalizer can have multi tiers to store BLOBs. Each tier in Externalizer must have a Storage pool associated with it.
      Versioning Retention Policy for Externalizer
      This feature enables the user to specify which versions of the documents should be kept on which tier. Following options are given.
                -     Keep the current version only.
            -     Keep the current major and minor version only.
            -     Keep current major and all its minor versions.
            -     Keep last n number of major and its all minor versions.
      Usage based retention policy
Along with “Aging based” retention policy, there is a new policy introduced in 3.4 that is “usage Based” retention policy. This can be used to move document(s) on any other tier if the number of the accessed document(s), between two consecutive BLOB transfer jobs is greater or lesser than defined number. This could be very useful in a situation where document(s) on a cheaper storage is accessed more frequently then this will be moved to an expensive or high performance storage tier.
Archiver hoards the copies of SharePoint documents with their metadata. These documents cannot be accessed directly neither they use EBS or RBS. Archiver profiles are not multi-tiered but they use Storage Pools to add required storage. These profiles can be configured to keep the copies of the documents for a specific period of time. Documents will be deleted according to defined retention policy whereas “never delete” a document option is also there. Each Archiver profile has frequent Archive content job which can be scheduled hourly, daily, weekly or monthly. This job copies all the BLOBs that are either in content database or Externalizer. Archived BLOBs are never cached.
Linker basically links the legacy file shares to SharePoint document libraries without uploading the file to database. Each Linker profile must have at least one storage device associated with it. The files from storage devices are linked by running a Linker synchronization job. Every time when a job runs, it links the new file(s) added to the SharePoint document libraries.
Dual Mode Linker
Now all newly uploaded BLOBs can be linked with linker profile using dual mode linker. Dual mode linker links all the lately uploaded BLObs to the linker profile.
Database Mirroring
If SharePoint content database is mirrored, StorageEdge will automatically start using failover database server when primary server is down or inaccessible. Similarly, StorageEdge BLOB store database can also be configured for SQL mirroring.
Storage Pools
A storage pool can contain one or more storage devices. Devices can be added to storage pool(s) at any time. Each storage device in a pool has its priority and the data is stored on device with same priority in a round robin way. Data is stored on low priority device only when high priority devices are read-only or data storage on them has failed. Each Externalizer profile and each tier in Archiver profile is associated with a storage pool.
Image Combining (Dynamic CSS Sprites)
StorageEdge includes the image combining feature that helps improve your application performance. StorageEdge is able to dynamically generate CSS sprites to further reduce HTTP round trips between the client and web browser, giving you even better performance.
File Shredding
File System adapter now supports file shredding. Now you can remove files from external storage without fear of, to be recovered again. file shredding basically removes files beyond recovery.
Support for Distributed File System
Since DFS shares can be addressed same as any other file shares, with StorageEdge users need only to point their BLOB store location at the DFS share where they want their SharePoint BLOBs to be located.
StorageEdge Monitoring Tool
StorageEdge Monitoring Tool allows you to monitor the performance counters published by NCache and StorageEdge for the entire farm. It also allows you to view SharePoint logs of all the WFE's of the farm on a single farm node. It greatly simplifies monitoring of your Cache, BLOBs, List and Jobs activity.
Additional Tools
  • Archives Explorer:
    This tool allows you to explorer the archived files.
  • BLOBInfo:
    This tool allows you to find actual document name with a BLOB GUID you will provide.
  • BLOBStressTool:
    With this tool you can test BLOB caching under heavy load.
  • Configure Adapter:
    Configuring the Control Adapter is necessary for setting up List caching and Content Optimization.
  • NCache Monitoring Tool:
    It is a powerful graphical tool designed to simplify monitoring StorageEdge performance. It allows you monitor BLOB, List and ViewState Caching in real time and see how StorageEdge is improving SharePoint performance.
  • Configure BLOB Store Database:
    This will allow you to configure BLOB Store Database
Content Optimization
Content Optimization feature allows us to reduce the payload that gets transferred over the wire in form of ASP.NET ViewState, JavaScript and CSS. Following are the features of Content Optimization.
  • Cache ASP.NET ViewState on the server preventing it to travel back and forth between client and server allowing optimal use of bandwidth and faster download of the page.
  • Combine and minify multiple JavaScript and CSS files into a single css file and cache it for reducing the number of requests the browser makes on per page visit. This reduces page rendering time and reduced server traffic. Minification removes redundant white space from JavaScript and CSS and obfuscated JS code to reduce the file size and allow faster download of the files
  • Integrated UI in Central Administration for easy management.
  • Performance Counters for monitoring
    Delay Deletion of BLOBs:
Externalized BLOBs can be configured to stay on external store at least for n number of days after the corresponding documents are deleted from SharePoint. However, it is not ensured that BLOBs will be deleted right after n number of days.
Session Caching
        Cache ASP.NET session and reduce the load on SQL Server (Which is used by default for sessions in SharePoint).
  • Integrated UI in Central Administration for easy management.
List Caching
This feature allows you to save the output of different lists displayed in Calendar View, Gantt View, Data Sheet View or HtmlView and prevent database query that retrieves the data of list from Sql Server.
  • We can select different type of expiration for different lists.
  • Integrated UI in Central Administration for easy management.
  • Performance Counters for monitoring
        Re-evaluate Filters Job
When BLOBs are already externalized to storage tiers and a filtering policy for a tier is updated, user is asked whether he wants to run this job to re-evaluate the filters for already offloaded BLOBs on their tiers or not. If an externalized BLOB does not match the filter on its own tier, it will be evaluated on all other tiers. If no tier accepts the BLOB then it will remain on the same tier.
      Consistency Check Job
This feature makes sure the consistency of data between Externalizer and SharePoint database. It checks whether the data is consistent in SharePoint library and externalized storage device or not.
See Also
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