Our TechTuesdays session on September 24th focused on what happens during large deployments of Salesforce or Oracle database clusters. Typically, before any such deployment takes place, stringent testing of the integration environment needs to happen to ensure that the production environment functions as smoothly as possible.
The only way to do this is to create a copy of the production data in the testing environment, and test out all the integration mappings there before pushing into production. At present, when using Salesforce, developers have two options:
Either approach carries with it a lot of time, cost, and/or risk. With developer-only sandboxes, test data sets are not representative of their final production datasets and as a result, can omit a lot of crucial integration scenarios. With full sandbox copies, costs skyrocket tremendously, and can lower the ROI of a Salesforce deployment.
An alternative solution instead, is to copy over only a subset of the main production data, and mask any personally identifiable or confidential information (such as credit cards, social security numbers, or dates of birth). The main demo component of TechTuesdays focused on this aspect.