Where have all the emails gone?
Here's his take on the testimony of the senior White House IT officials:
If, in fact, the bulk of the White House email records are now stored in bundles of rotting PST files, all at or above their maximum safe load-level, well, that ain't good in a very big way.
For the record, the 2 gigabyte limit (and the 1.6 gig practical limit) isn't a secret. Most IT managers running Outlook are very aware of this, and we, here at OutlookPower have written about it numerous times. So to use PST files as a Presidential Records Act archiving methodology is an undeniable worst-practice. [OP]
One of the most interesting questions in this whole controversy is why the White House replaced a functional email archiving system in the first place. The standard excuse is that the Clinton administration was using Lotus Notes and Lotus Notes is obsolete, so therefore the Bush administration had to switch over.
Gewirtz doesn't mince words:
Let me be clear here. Lotus Notes is anything but dead. Lotus Notes is an active, vibrant messaging technology with many strengths far in excess of Outlook and Exchange. To characterize Lotus Notes as either wooden wagon wheel technology or Betamax tapes is so far off from the technical and commercial reality as to be ludicrous.
And here's where it gets dangerous. If you think Lotus Notes is an obsolete technology, then migrating off of it, even in a build-up to war, might make sense. But when you realize that Notes is anything but obsolete, then you must ask deeper questions, like why did a migration occur at such a critical time, or did the White House IT staff know so little about messaging technology to make such a mischaracterization? [OP]
Read the whole thing.