What to Look For in an Online Storage Cloud
If you are tech-savvy or are up to date with the most recent trends in technology, then you most likely know what cloud computing is or have at least heard of it.
If you haven’t, then here are the basics: the cloud is a network of servers that are connected via the Internet to store, access, and manage data that would be traditionally stored on local devices such as hard drives, CDs, DVDs, or USB drives.
While in the old days, backups were done using physical storage devices that you personally owned, these days, an online cloud storage is often the preferred method of keeping your files in a secure place.
But not all cloud storage services are created equal. Before committing to a paid cloud service, you need to choose one that you can trust not to mishandle your data. Choosing wrong may lead to the loss of your data or even putting it in the wrong hands.
Features You Want From Online Storage Cloud
Obviously, the first thing you want in an online storage cloud is enough space. This means subscribing to a plan or package that will allot enough space for your data. How much space is enough space? That is up to you. While you can make your cloud storage unlimited, this comes at high costs. While an unlimited plan may be a worthwhile investment for some, most users would be over spending.
Instead, it is best to evaluate how much data you really need. Take a look at your files. How much of that do you really need backed up? Does all that belong in a cloud? Once you understand how much data you will be putting in the cloud, then you can make an informed decision.
If you are having trouble making this evaluation, then you can consult with the IT professional in your organization. This person is most likely very knowledgeable about your current needs and what your future storage needs will be.
There is always the possibility that you will run out of space. This is why you have to look for a provider that will give you a scalable plan, one that you can upgrade without a lengthy process. This means that once your online storage cloud hits its cap, you can simply buy more space with a few clicks of your mouse.
Why is this important? Scalability is crucial for businesses that are seeing growth or expecting growth in the near future. This is because as a businesses grows, so too do its customer base and the amount of data that it needs to store and manage.
You do not want to be in a situation where your storage solution has hit a cap, crippling your business and stalling its growth. While it may seem like an extreme scenario or one that your business is unlikely to face, you never know when you will hit the jackpot and your business will suddenly face exponential growth. In order to be sure you are ready to face this type of potential situation, you want a scalable solution.
You also want your online storage cloud to be easy to sync. This way you can access it from multiple devices, as long as you are online.
Redundancy is another consideration. Just because a cloud server has a smaller chance of shutting down than your hard drive, it does not mean the chances are nonexistent. You want your data to be backed up in several machines, ideally far apart so that even if one location shuts down, you lose nothing.
Your Online Storage Cloud Working with Your Server
There are many providers that offer both online storage clouds and server hosting services. In case this is what you are looking for, it is important that you find one that can integrate the two services. You can keep your hosting server virtual, making it not too expensive, with a cloud that will boost its capabilities and performance. Servers and cloud storage services working together give you practical benefits like even better scaling.
When you are choosing a cloud storage provider, try to make a list and see which ones really meet all your requirements. Start crossing off the ones that do not. From the ones that remain, see which is the most cost-effective. A cloud storage solution is an investment, but it does not have to be one that will bankrupt you. Be smart about this decision, and you can improve how your data is backed up and make the cloud work for you.