“We need to refresh the test bed data more often but can’t do it in timely and cost effective manner”.
Does this sounds familiar?
Change is unavoidable, but the reasons to push it further into the future are plentiful. There are many obstacles to overcome in making more frequent test data refreshes. Many shops now run 24×7, or pretty close to that, so obtaining consistent data is almost impossible. Copying tables when the data structures of the source and the target are different is a laborious task. Using image copies introduces its own set of limitations. Even seemingly trivial subset selects can require manual intervention and be error prone. Many organizations have implemented strict sensitive data masking policies that must be observed while refreshing test data. The security that surrounds production makes extracting data for test beds lengthy and time consuming. In addition to these technical issues, IT must address the high cost of long running UNLOAD/LOAD jobs.
Here is a top ten list of suggestions for reducing the anxiety, time and cost of refreshing test data.