Maintain it (indexing and resizing).
There are a number of archive files that are kept in PRC during routine operations. These are outlined in detail in the tip sheet “Archive Structure and Strategy”. Depending on how many programmers and the volume projects, these archives can grow very quickly. A couple of them are searched and selected regularly during the bump and rollout so this can slow things down during these routine operations when the files get very large. One way to speed things up is to create indexes on these files. See the tip sheet “Indexes – PRC Files” for detailed information on recommended indexes. Another thing that is important is file sizing. Most U2/Multivalue companies have a procedure in place for routine file management but often the PRC account is not included. Files that have become unwieldy and fragmented are not just slow but at risk for corruption. Because PRC is so central to everything else going on within IT, corruption in PRC can be a real show-stopper. Be sure to include PRC's files in your regular reviewing and resizing!
There is a place in the preferences screen to nominate a separate directory for all of the PRC archives. This is a good idea because it makes those directories easier to backup and to maintain separately, easier to identify - and if there is a problem with them, they are isolated from the main, functioning PRC account. If this separate directory is not nominated during the initial install they have to be manually moved, then nominated on the preferences screen. We can help with this!
In addition to maintaining the file sizes and adding indexes to some of the files you may also wish to consider purging some of these data files occasionally. Some detailed recommendations are included in the Archive tip sheet, mentioned above. In general we don’t recommend ever purging the project master – those records are small and create a great permanent record of work that has been done, in general. But it may be that you don’t require so many backup copies of programs and other software components to be kept for long periods of time. Some companies tend to purge them every other year or so. It really depends on the amount of space you have and the volume of change. But it probably should be considered at some interval. There is a utility under the Action menu to assist with this. This function was seriously revamped in release 6.9 so it is clearer and easier to use. It works in earlier releases, but if you don’t find it easy to understand feel free to ask us about it.
We will often offer to purge the files for you if we are on the system performing an upgrade. Or we can take care of it for you at any time that you request. The purge utility creates a separate standalone archive and moves records to it. You can then archive those to offline media if you like, then delete them. If you leave them there the next purge will add records to the same file. These purged files could then grow large and unwieldy – so probably should be offloaded and cleared or deleted at some point. But even if they are large and slow, the only time they would be accessed is during the purges, so they will not slow down routine functions.
Using PRC's archived data
Don't get too caught up in waxing, buffing and polishing and forget to take it for a spin! The archives are kept in PRC to help identify work that has been done and to allow you to revert. The two simplest and most common uses are to perform rollbacks and searches. Rollbacks include rolling back/reverting of projects delivered via a rollout to another account on the same server or via an unravel (using the un-unravel) to rollback and revert software delivered via a ravel file to another server. Searches are conducted automatically at various events, can be done manually, of course - and the most global, central way to dig around in the archives is to use the Global Trace (PRC Account>Action menu). This search utility provides meaningful searches of any software component regardless of where the change was made or how it was delivered. Function-key drill-downs to project details and code-comparison's let you view what was done on any past project, compare to its own "before and after" or to what is currently in the application.