Each type of cloud storage has its pros and cons. Here is how to make the right choice for your business. Nowadays running programs and storing information on the cloud has become a standard practice.
As per sources, Companies that leverage the cloud grow 19.3% faster than their competitors. Therefore today, more than 95% of businesses are running applications or using cloud storage.
But do you know that there are various types of cloud-storage solutions which are suited to different business needs? When determining your cloud storage needs, consider the path that is leading you to the cloud-storage solution. Here are the three decision paths most customers are on:
- Workload-oriented path: Businesses here consider cloud storage because of an application operating on a cloud.
- Storage-first path: This usually involves data that is archived, backed up or that needs to be shared companywide.
- Data-first path: Information stored in this field has greater value and that cloud storage will enable businesses here to more fully mine that data for its value
Regardless of your path, there are choices for cloud storage: Public, Private and Hybrid. Each has its advantages and disadvantages.
Before you explore your options or re-evaluate your current cloud storage use, consider the following:
- Do you want cloud storage for emergency backup or disaster recovery or daily use?
- Do you have periodic surges that need additional space?
- Does your business involve heavy consumer or employee collaboration? Is it vital to minimize lag time?
- How important is security? Are there special compliances you must meet?
- How does your data interact with different departments and programs?
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Public Cloud Storage
In the case of public cloud, another company owns and operates the servers. It handles security and may work to meet data standards for specific compliances. It then rents out space on its servers, charging according to disk space, bandwidth, and special concerns.
Public cloud storage is quite cheaper as compared to the on-premises storage. It is very profitable especially when you take into account upkeep and periodic hardware upgrades. Further, most cloud-storage services accommodate periodic surges. In case, if you need extra storage and bandwidth during a busy month, you can procure it immediately.
Some of the most common cloud-storage services, such as Dropbox, are PCI DSS compliant. They have security protocols in place to protect your data and backup in a second location. Some companies have additional, industry-specific compliances.
One of the disadvantages of public cloud is that you have to share server space with other businesses which may lead to some problems. Although these services provide a secure and isolated spot for each tenant, even the unlimited plans generally have some limits. In case you need some extra storage or bandwidth, your account can be throttled or you may have to pay additional charges. You may even experience greater lag time as programs and users contact the cloud for data.
From past few years, speed isn’t the point of concern for many companies. However, if your business experiences an extreme activity or depends on super-fast transmissions, this factor cannot be neglected.
This storage option is particularly favored by businesses that have steady activity and do not have much proprietary information that requires extra security.
Private cloud storage is same as the public cloud storage wherein the information is sent and accessed via the internet. However, unlike public cloud, the server housing the information is located on premises. This allows you to have a good control over its security and access while being able to access information from anywhere.
Similar to the public cloud storage, one can host multiple tenants. But the tenants may be specific departments in a company rather than multiple companies. If you purchase and run the cloud solution yourself, you still incur the problems of hardware upkeep and upgrades. However, there are many companies that now offer to host your private cloud for you. They maintain a server dedicated only to your company, either on-premises or at its server farm. If you need to scale up, it may be cheaper than purchasing your own hardware. It would be faster which will simply take contacting the company rather than getting approval to purchase equipment.
Where on one hand, public cloud storage technology and services are now improving, on the other hand, private cloud servers are declining in popularity. However, companies, especially on the enterprise level, still use private servers for extra security, real-time calculations, and responsiveness. Plus, governments need the isolation.
Finally, a public cloud storage solution simply won’t work for some solutions because the business is not easily linked to the internet – oil rigs or submarines, for instance.
Hybrid Cloud Storage
As its name implies, the hybrid cloud employs both a private and public cloud to host your data. It’s becoming the most popular choice for businesses of all sizes, but especially with enterprise-level businesses. It is safer for data preservation during an outage. One advantage to the hybrid method is the flexibility. There are several business models for hybrid cloud adoption depending on how your company uses its data.
- Host active data on the private cloud with backup to the public cloud.
- Host proprietary data on the private server and less sensitive data to the cloud.
- Choose the best cloud by department: HR and eCommerce, for example, may be on a public cloud while R&D stays in a private cloud.
Whichever option and deployment method you choose, you still have the advantages and disadvantages of each service. It’s imperative to do a cost-benefit analysis so you go in with eyes open. Cloud computing and cloud storage solutions save money by reducing maintenance and upgrade costs and enabling you to match storage purchased to current data needs. Even beyond saving money, it can empower your business to use the data in ways it could not when stored in isolated hardware solutions.