I Need a Place to Store My Stuff
In one of his comedic sketches, George Carlin talked about the whole point of life was to acquire new stuff. With the acquisition of new possessions, a place to store them becomes necessary, thus bigger houses are purchased to provide more space for storage of our possessions or companies are paid for storage spaces. The same can be said about computer information, as data accumulates storage needs increases. To satisfy that need, larger hard disk drives are bought, flash drives, optical disks or solid state drives are other alternatives. However, in 2007 cloud storage and cloud computing became popular as another way to store and process data (Banerjee, 2011). What is the Cloud?
“A Cloud is a type of parallel and distributed system consisting of a collection of inter-connected and virtualized computers that are dynamically provisioned and presented as one or more unified computing resource(s) based on service-level agreements established through negotiation between the service provider and consumers”, (Buyya, 2008). The cloud is also described as a large pool of easily usable and accessible resources (such as hardware, development platforms and/or services) that can be dynamically configured to adjusted to variable load (scale), allowing for optimum utilization, which is exploited in a pay-per-use model, (Vaquero, Rodero-Merino, Caceres & Lindner, 2009). While there isn’t a clear and widely agreed upon definition of what the cloud is, both definitions mentioned almost identical as collection of resources, offered to customers on a scalable model where services are provided based on the needs of the customer. One such service is storage on the cloud. Cloud Storage
In the Information Technology sector today, many companies are required to handle a large amount of data, such as web sales, mobile data or information from social media sites. Such large amounts of data proof costly to store locally as construction of a private data center would have to budget for rental of space, power charges, purchasing of necessary electronic resources and many other areas. To lessen the cost many companies now utilize the service of storing data on the cloud. Similarly backing up data has always been a major aspect of computer security, important data would be stored on magnetic tapes, optical disks or external hard drives. The increasing popularity of the cloud has virtualized data back up as many now utilize the cloud as their preferred method of backing up their data. “A cloud provides the vast amounts of storage and computing cycles demanded by many applications. The network-centric content model allows a user to access data stored on a cloud from any device connected to the Internet. Mobile devices with limited power reserves and local storage take advantage of cloud environments to store audio and video files. Clouds provide an ideal environment for multimedia content delivery”, (Marinescu, 2013). Based on Marinescu’s statement and what the cloud is, cloud storage can be defined as the process of storing data of the cloud which takes away the hassle of worrying about the hardware required and makes the stored data accessible from any location that has an internet connection.
Types of Cloud Storage
Like any other large, complex system there are different classifications to cloud storage. There are four major classifications of cloud storage, namely; private, public, personal and hybrid cloud storage. Each varying based on the security, services and access provided to the end user.
In private cloud storage or internal cloud storage, all the components reside within the firewall of an organization, which is either maintained by an IT department or delivered by a service provider (Xu, Sandorfi & Loughlin, 2010). The cost to maintain private clouds are usually much higher than using a public cloud as cost for space, cooling and maintenance of facilities have to be taken...
References: Linda Xu, Miklos Sandorfi and Tanya Loughlin, Cloud Storage for Dummies, 2010
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