Created by the famous tech giant, Google Vault is the compliance and ediscovery application that allows IT administrators to retain, hold, search, and export data from G Suite, at least the data that’s stored in Gmail, Hangouts, Google Drive (including Shared Drives) and Groups.
In recent years, Google Vault has been a favorite email archiving solution among US government organizations and school districts, if not for its features, then because it was offered for free as part of their regular GFE package.
Choosing a free, cloud-based email archiving software provided by one of the Big Four sounds like the most logical way to go, especially for public schools with limited budgets.
But is it as affordable as it seems? And what are the possible repercussions of having an email archiving software that, at first glance, contains all the features one might need – archive, legal hold, Boolean and wildcard search, export and audit?
A more detailed look at Google Vault uncovers a couple of serious issues – users are citing problems such as unreliable export, the fact that Vault can only archive Gmail messages rather than work with multiple email platforms. Moreover, if organizations have the need to archive content other than email – social media, content from chat apps or mobile – Vault would not be able to support that.
On top of that, it’s practically impossible to restore messages from Vault to original mailboxes. Finally, rumor has it that Google Vault will no longer be free as of 2020. This piece of news, coupled with Vault’s high cost per user and the lack of key archiving functionalities might prompt organizations to start looking for a Google Vault alternative.
If you’re one of them, we have compiled a list of potential alternatives you could test by getting a demo or a free trial.
Barracuda is among the leading email archiving solutions in the market, and comes with a number of complementary services including email security, firewalls, network and application security, as well as data backup functionalities.
Barracuda’s key archiving feature, Barracuda Message Archiver, allows users to expand their storage capacities through stackable appliances as well as to carry out combined searches. Another of Barracuda’s strong points is easy access via mobile and desktop, as well as free hardware refresh (though this depends on your pricing plan). Barracuda also offers cloud storage capacities to be used as a second tier storage.
On the down side, Barracuda’s search speed and load times are often low and exporting large amounts of data tends to be an issue. In addition, customers have complained about clunky interface and not-intuitive screens.
Storage and pricing: Barracuda’s storage ranges from 500GB to 66TB, with prices starting at approximately $3,500 per terabyte.
See a detailed comparison between Jatheon and Barracuda here.
Smarsh has been a global leader and a recognizable name in the archiving industry for a while now. The company mainly focuses on the public sector and the financial services industry.
Smarsh gets points for the variety of services and capabilities it offers (various packages and the capacity to archive social media, text messages and websites) and the ability to export data to multiple formats. As a cloud-based platform, Smarsh offers bottomless storage that can be scaled up and down based on the organization’s needs.
However, customers often complain about the speed of search, unavailability, unannounced maintenance, and lack of technical documentation and training. On top of that, Smarsh has a very complicated pricing structure that may leave you paying several times more than what you initially believed (and much more than what you’d pay for competitor solutions).
Storage and pricing: The price for implementation varies based on company size, and there is an additional fee for ingestion of legacy data and end user access to personal archive. Smarsh seems particularly ineffective and unpredictable in terms of cost for large organizations – implementation only can amount to $10,000, while the import of legacy data starts at $10 per GB.
Jatheon has been on the market since 2004 and offers both on-premise and cloud solutions that can archive email, social media, calls, sms, IM and voice messages. The on-premise solution, Jatheon Archiving Suite, earns points for its hardware config, search capabilities and handling large exports. The company also offers free hardware replacement after 4 years as well as a solid expansion, cloud backup and disaster recovery plans.
Watch a brief overview of Jatheon Archiving Suite here.
The cloud-based solution, Jatheon Cloud, was unveiled in 2018 and has a fresh user interface that can be used by admins and end users alike. Apart from that, Jatheon’s cloud product has been praised for its search and export capabilities, ease of use and innovative approach to feature design.
Both products are backed by 24/7 tech support and contain unique features such as customizable user roles, tags and comprehensive, yet easy-to-use advanced search.
Watch a brief overview of Jatheon Cloud here.
Some negative aspects of Jatheon’s offering include the lack of encrypted backup, the inability to redact sensitive data and the fact that social media archiving isn’t available as a standalone product.
Storage and pricing: Jatheon has 6 appliance models ranging from 6 to 96TB. Prices start at approximately $3000 per terabyte with discounts for longer prepaid periods. Jatheon Cloud starts at $2 per user per month if prepaid for four years.
Intradyn is another key player whose solution can archive various types of data – email, social media and text messages – and is available in three deployments: on-premise, cloud or virtual.
Intradyn’s Email Archiver is a solution that has good compliance and ediscovery capabilities and is often praised for features such as the user interface, retention policies, redaction and backup.
The obvious downside is that Intradyn relies on stubbing for storage reduction and cannot export files to PST directly. This means that users might have difficulty handling large PST exports and would need a third-party app to ensure a smooth PST export.
Storage and pricing: Intradyn may not be the best option if you are a large organization looking for an in-house solution, as their hardware is not the most reliable and the maximum storage capacity is 8TB. The prices for their cloud-based product start at $4 per user per month.
See a detailed comparison between Jatheon and Intradyn here.
Recently acquired by LandStar, Inc. (now Data443), ArcMail is a recognizable industry name whose flagship product used to be the ArcMail Defender – an email archiving appliance that is now available as a cloud or hybrid solution for email compliance, ediscovery, governance and business continuity.
Although initially known as one of the industry leaders, in recent years Arcmail has received criticism for its poor technical support, old technology used in their search functionality, troubles with export and backup capabilities, as well as an old-fashioned user interface.
Storage and pricing: The ArcMail Defender is available in sizes ranging from 1 to 32 TB. To learn about ArcMail pricing, potential customers are required to request a quote.
See a detailed comparison between Jatheon and Arcmail here.
In conclusion, if your organization is on the hunt for a cost-effective Google Vault alternative product that will give you more control over your data and contain a richer feature set, these alternatives might provide better value for money.
Jatheon is a global leader in email, social media and mobile communications archiving and ediscovery with 15 years of experience with on-premise archiving and a new, latest-generation cloud email archiving solution. To learn how Jatheon can help you choose and implement the right archiving solution for your business, contact us or schedule your personal demo.