By Jason Kay
More and more major online players have demonstrated how effective cloud storage can be, most notably Google Docs and Amazon S3 services. Since then, cloud storage has gained a lot more attention. What was once just a fad in storage now has become a staple. However, many people and most businesses still have no idea how cloud storage works, let alone whether or not it would be a benefit to utilize. Here is a quick look at what cloud storage is and how it works.
Cloud storage is actually a small part of a much bigger picture – cloud computing. In general, cloud storage means that you will be storing your data off site, normally through a 3rd party vendor. By using a remote database and an internet connection, you can access all of your data, without having to worry about your own hard drive space. In general, the concept of cloud storage has several potential benefits. The biggest benefit is that there is no limit to how much data your can store. Additionally, you will never have to spend money on additional hard drives or worry about transporting data from one location to another.
How Cloud Storage Works
There are literally hundreds of different cloud storage set ups. Some have been designed for specific purpose, such as only storing a single type of data, whereas others are much more flexible and can handle all sorts of data. Because of this it can be difficult to nail down exactly how cloud storage works, because it can vary greatly. However, let's take a look at a simple cloud storage system and how it functions. At the most basic level, all you need is a single data server connected to the internet. Then a “client computer” or subscriber, would be able to send/receive copies of files over the internet to/from that data server. In short, anytime you store data with a 3rd party storage service via the internet, you will be using cloud storage.
Whether you are creating a cloud storage system of your own or looking for a quality 3rd party service there are two main priorities to keep in mind: security and reliability. In terms of security, there are two areas to focus on. The first is hackers. It is impossible to tell how or when a hacker will try and attack your data, so security will always be an issue. You should also pay attention to physical security, so that nothing happens to the physical hard drive either. Reliability is also an issue. Most big companies that offer cloud storage rely on redundancy to ensure that their service will be reliable. Redundancy is when a company stores the exact same information on several machines simultaneously. This ensures that if something happens to one machine, the data can still be accessed from another machine.
In its most basic form, cloud storage is simply accessing data stored somewhere outside your main hard drive via the internet. From there a lot of variables can change exactly how cloud storage works. However, regardless of how it works, the two main issues to consider when either using a service or operating a service is reliability and security. As long as proper measures are taken, there should never be any major problems.
About the Author: Jason Kay recommends reading reviews and ratings of the best online backup services to choose the right one for you at http://www.remoteonlinebackup.net