Is Cloud Storage the Best Way to Store Files ?

Stuff Behind Cloud Storage Services

When someone mention he keeps his files in the cloud, it is more than storing his files remotely at some unknown servers. Cloud storage involves complex setup of computers, routers, processors and networking hardware. All the hardwares are link up together to execute programming language and applications. As the results, these gigantic servers farm infrastructure are accepting connection from all over the world, process, analyze and thus, doling out informations back to users.

When you accessing your company hard disk through Intranet connection while you are on vacation, this is not cloud storage. When you are utilizing the cloud storage, you are not limited to any location or network group. It does not require you to attach any hardware if you were to access cloud storage.

In order to be considered as cloud storage, you are accessing your digital files through Internet connections. There is not limitation on platforms and devices as long as you are on-the-line, you can store and retrieve your files anywhere you go. You can find cloud storage in 3 different format:

Public cloud
A service provider that follow the common standard of cloud computing model, to produce resources, such as application, programs, storage that available to general public over the Internet. These resources may be free or subscribe as usage. For example, Google app engine.

Private cloud
This computer architecture usually works behind enterprise firewall. This model appeal to an organization that wants more control over the data than they can get by using third party hosted.

Hybrid cloud
This stands between the two mention above. For example, Amazon S3 from Amazon company which the organization offers and controls some resources in-house and has others provided externally.

All the above cloud storage is the product as the result of cloud computing.

Know before you jump into cloud storage

There are few areas I need to highlight before you decide to store your files in the cloud. You need to understand the downside and the risks involves to make sure if cloud storage is the best option for you. Consider the following:

Data may be expose to third party
Data security remain the biggest myth when it comes to cloud storage. Provider claim that the data is encrypted at the server end. Often, the provider is the party who hold the key and not the user. In the fact that over the years, Internet big boys such as Google, Microsoft, Yahoo has admitted giving metadata to government upon request.

You need Internet connection
It is highly depends on internet connection if you are storing your data on the cloud. It is totally different with locally attached storage like usb or external drive, you still can access to them even though you are at some rural area. Apart from that, Internet speed is another important factor when you decide on cloud storage. You wouldn’t want to take forever to download a file, will you?

Company reliability and credibility
Even though some company provides you free cloud storage, sometimes it can cost you more when you suffers from downtime, data loss or unwanted intruders that past security incidents. It is advice to do some research on the background of the company and also their partners before you make any decision. Is best to subscribe to their trial plan when you first engage with the company.

Best choice from the Market

mozy

Mozy – Mozy offers you 2GB online backup storage. If you need more storage space, you need to upgrade to paid plan. Mozy allows you to restores your files through virtual drives, web downloads or DVD. You can specify a personal encryption key. However, Mozy does not backup external drives.

carbonite
Carbonite – You can enjoy carbonite free trial for 15 days. Same like mozy, you are allow to set your own encryption key for security purpose. If you need cloud storage for business, Carbonite offers a very attractive plan and is the famous among business environment. The flip side is, you have to purchase a new plan if you need to backup a different computer.

Idrive

IDrive – The cool thing about IDrive comes with a free offline backup option which is stands out from others competitor. Furthermore, if you have mapped drive, IDrive is convenient for you. If you choose IDrive, you have to paid the yearly fees, because there is the only option available for you.

justcloud
Justcloud – Same as carbonite, Justcloud offers you 14 days free trial. The best thing is, Justcloud is free. You can enjoy the full features even though you are using trial account. There offer the great discount and by far the cheapest entry price for cloud storage. The features offer by Justcloud is enough for personal usage, if you need extra features, you need to subscribe for more.

My two cents for online storage

Like everyone of you, I am very careful when I choose my first cloud storage company because you are indirectly giving out all your valuable or sensitive data away. Company background and its partners is one of the consideration. I need a reliable and trusted company, is simple as that. Looking into another reason, plan and pricing, is always feel safe to start with an affordable plan because you can always stops if the level of satisfaction is not there. I don;t like any hidden features at all, I will choose a company that give me full features having said that it is not premium plan. If you still not sure, read the cloud storage review here.

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5 Reasons Why Cloud Storage is Important

Most likely you have heard the term “Cloud Storage”. Cloud storage is a virtual location where all the data are kept remotely on the web. This infrastructure setup link many servers together in the data center and protected by  high security software to prevent any anonymous Internet attack. Internet users like you and me, will keep the precious information on the cloud.

Read the 5 reasons below why cloud storage is important:

  1. Cloud may be the safest place to keep your data.
    • Cloud storage providers offer data encryption while transferring your data from local device to remote server. Data being kept inside the server are encrypted with key. This point is more secure compare to any hard disk where you can access all the information once is connected.
    • Physical storage might have a chance of stolen or damage. If you truly looking for solution to protect your data physically or virtually, cloud storage is the way to go.
  2. Collaborate data make easy.
    • Compare to physical hardware, cloud storage make data collaboration a lot easier. Many cloud storage providers will built in file sharing features along with their services. Co-worker can make changes on their own and changes made will be transfer to the cloud. Everybody will notice the update version of files.
    • Features that benefits the collaboration such as file versioning, commenting options, syncronization, file sharing, real time document editing and etc. This save a lot of time and hassle when working together.
  3. Cost savings for your business
  4. You probably already using it.
    • Without your notice, you already adapting into the cloud. The web services you using all the while is a part of the product of cloud storage. You may not realise the emails you using, iTunes, banking facility, facebook, etc. all are cloud-base as well.
  5. Huge opportunity that you can’t resist

You have more reasons to use cloud storage, leave your point at the comment section. If you not agree, tell me.

 

I am NOT getting enough space to store my data

Like many of us, I store my documents, pictures, songs and movies in my hard disk. Nowadays, file size in getting larger with high definitions video and millions pixels of pictures quality, finding larger hard disk really give me headache. I have a few external drives and categories them to store my files. However, I found this is not to good solution. It is never ending process of looking for larger disk space to store my files. Until I have come across the article from Wikipedia Article “What is cloud storage ?” 

For example hosting a website, you put all your data, picture, video, music on the space that given by the hosting company. This works pretty much the same concept  ! You are given a space in the company data center to store all your files. Your data will be stored on server remotely and accessed from the Internet, so called “cloud”. Usually the data center is maintain, operated and manage by third party. Cloud storage provider will built on the storage servers using visualization techniques to provide their service to client.

Stanford University is investigating in cloud storage to find a better way to store the data. Many university services has a large amount of data to store, and IT services should leverage the cloud.

Cloud storage is the answer to me and I won’t worry about my hard disk space anymore ! I will just store my data to the web. I know I can access them anywhere I go. Although there flip side of cloud storage, I strongly believe cloud storage technology is improving and the future of Internet is all about Cloud.

Cloud Storage

There are few points to take home:

  • Cloud storage is a term for storing data to the web
  • Cloud computing is internet-based computing for large groups of remote servers which results as cloud storage
  • Using cloud storage, you can access your information quicker, easier and more secure.
  • Services such as Yahoo mail, google document, youtube, flickr is using cloud computing. You allow to store data online and access web service from any location.