Three applications for Microsoft® Exchange® Server EDB and PST exploration

LegalTech has been an explosion of services and technologies.  There are three floors of software, hardware and service vendors.  There are so many vendors you wouldn’t think the market could support them all in the next 12 – 24 months.  In fact, much of the conversation for this year amongst my peers has been about consolidation and evaporation.  Professionally, I don’t think we’ll see the growth of products and services slow down through LegalTech 2009, unless a significant economic change occurs.

The reason I believe the products and services will grow through 2009 is based on a keen quadrant that Stephen Whetstone, Esq. talked to me about in an interview in January, Legal risk management requires a corporate strategy, mindset and commitment.  The quadrant most legal technology vendors and services providers don’t discuss and are likely will not touch at this event are the low litigation, simple IT environments.  These companies and their legal technologists aren’t walking around LegalTech looking for products and services as their legal and IT woes just aren’t that bad.  However, when woes come up, they’ll need tools to help quantify their risk.

Quantifying risk requires one to understand who was involved, when and perhaps why.  There are point evaluation tools for companies needing to do this in a one-off fashion.  I believe these tools could also be helpful in companies where new litigation arises monthly and their IT infrastructure is relatively simple.  Here are three good tools to consider:

  • Autonomy Aungate Investigator/Early Case Assessment (ECA) – This tool requires Autonomy IDOL indexes.  It will read all underlying data structures captured by the indexes.  Information sources include archive and PST data.  Using this tool as a one-off resource would be great for PST data, but it does not support directly mounted databases.  Autonomy representatives confirmed this tool can be used without deploying the IDOL platform throughout your organization.  Pricing information is not available, but will vary depending on how you want to configure the Aungate user interface. (www.autonomy.com)
  • Lucid8 DigiScope – From the makers of GoExchange, Lucid8 offers DigiScope, an application that will mount your EDB and PST files without requiring Microsoft Exchange to be online.  This product supports mounting and exploring multiple Exchange databases and PST files.  So, if you are an organization that doesn’t archive, but has a few tapes restored and EDB data into which it needs to look, pick up this tool and test it out.  Although this tool may not be suited for continuous and ongoing litigation management, it’s certainly exposes email data without requiring a lot of messy application infrastructure.  Pricing for this product starts around $595 and tops out around 10K, volume discounts apply. (www.lucid8.com)

  • Ontrack Firstview – Kroll Ontrack has been providing Exchange tools in the form of PowerTools for a number of years.  One of their latest products, Firstview, works a lot like Lucid8.  Firstview has a visual mapping interface that will show you connections between mailbox users within a single or multiple databases.  Showing the one-to-one or one-to-many email communications between users are only possible using a visual interface.  Kroll Ontrack shared some pricing for this tool and users should expect to pay between $1000 to $10000 depending on how long you want to use the tool. (www.krollontrack.com)

Any way you slice it, these three tools could be installed with minimal disruption to your data center and infrastructure.  If you work for a company with some legal litigation, no archiving and a need to review older EDBs recovered from tapes, these tools should be in your future.

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