Even if you’re not a systems engineer in your firms’ IT department, you have likely seen, heard and read about “the Cloud” and its impact on the IT landscape. However, what the Cloud “is” can vary by how it’s used and how various related technologies are deployed. One area where we find disagreement is in relation to storage – where cloud storage and cloud backup, recovery, and restore (referred to as cloud BURR) sometimes gets used interchangeably.
Since each Cloud solution has a number of unique attributes and features, we thought we would help bring some clarity to the discussion on how the Cloud – Cloud storage and storage in the Cloud – can help your business.
• Cloud storage is a cluster of highly scalable servers with a simple web services interface that can be used to store and retrieve any amount of data, at any time, from anywhere on the web. Cloud Storage, from an end user perspective, is nothing but an unlimited amount of online disk space that is secure; usually available to store, backup and restores data.
• Storage in the Cloud is when a user or an application accesses a system across the public Internet or VPN. The accessed application is co-located with local storage, which can be any kind of storage — DAS, SAN, NAS, or object. The cloud application masks that storage from the user.
Conceptually, we can see the overlapping nature of each solution, but it’s important to note the differences and their benefits. In particular, Cloud storage has the capability to address some of the most pressing data management issues today – how to support nearly exponential business data growth. Some other benefits of Cloud storage include:
• Scalability to handle massive amounts of data (up to multiple exabytes)
• Performance that grows with capacity
• Making stored data on-demand mobile to geographically distributed locations
• Allows for self-service and policy based capacity/performance on-demand
Most importantly, the type of storage your business should adopt needs to be based on your unique situation because it is certainly not a “one size fits all” solution. Given the explosive growth of business data and the various retention requirements of your business, including regulatory mandates, choosing the right solution can make all of the difference.
If you have any questions about how the Cloud and the differing storage methodologies can help your business, give us a call at 212.564.4922 and don’t forget to check back soon for our second posting in this series when we discuss Cloud Backup Recovery and Restore (Cloud BURR).