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I'm investigating email service alternatives for our non-IT company with 20 employees. The Google Apps for Business FAQ writes:

Google Apps for Business supports your business if you need additional archiving, message discovery, and litigation-hold services. You can add our Google Message Discovery service to your Google Apps for Business account after signing up:

  • For $13 per user account per year, add 1 year of archiving
  • For $33 per user account per year, add up to 10 years of archiving

Does this mean that email isn't saved forever, and that they'll charge us extra for storing it longer? "Message discovery" sounds like they'd be charging us for the search function. Am I misunderstanding something?

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migrated from answers.onstartups.com Jan 14 '12 at 16:31

What you can do as a user is archive and search the emails from your inbox, while the archiving and e-discovery tools give the administrators the possibility to archive and search the messages from all users in a centralized manner, not only user by user.

Archiving and e-discovery, powered by Postini, provides the ability to:

  • Allow administrators to search a centralized email archive
  • Set email retention periods for up to 10 years to comply with corporate policies
  • Implement litigation holds to preserve email messages
  • Identify and export email messages for further analysis & review

From the Archiving and e-discovery tools for Google Apps help page.

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