Tag Archives: cloud storage

What are the Pros and Cons of Cloud Service for SMB?

Small to medium businesses now enjoy using online backup services. This is all thanks to bigger bandwidth at lower costs. Cloud storage has become a popular option compared to external hard drives and portable media.

Any cloud service for SMB is just like other company tools. It has its own sets of pros and cons.

PROS

It is reliable.

Cloud providers innovate to safely store and save company data. Most services are certified to safely backup, compress, encrypt, duplicate and store files. Providers also manage and monitor your data round-the-clock.

This level of efficiency has financial benefits for SMBs. The cloud provider is responsible for the backup structure. Because of this, the SMB has less to worry about and spend on.

It is scalable.

A cloud service for SMB takes advantage of the vast scalability of online backup. Here, there is no need to shell out more funds. Most providers use a pay-as-you-go system, which greatly cuts budget problems. This method allows businesses to make operational costs easier to manage.

It gives easy access.

Cloud services are a godsend to SMBs. They lessen maintenance needs for their disaster recovery methods. Offsite file copies are accessible from any place or any device. This provides security and added insurance in case of emergency or disaster.

CONS

Data seeding takes time.

The first full data backup can be time-consuming. Of course, this also depends on the storage capacity of the service provider. It may affect production systems of the business during data seeding. This may happen during full recovery of company data as well.

There are size limits.

There are cloud service providers that offer “unlimited storage”. However, most have a limit for daily bandwidth availability. This size limitation may impact backup procedures when the business expands.

Ending a contract takes time.

Ending a cloud contract often involves a lengthy process. This is also true for trial runs. Some cloud service for SMB providers even charge a fee for cancellation.

There are security risks.

Most backup packages provide airtight security. But relying on a third-party service when it comes to sensitive company data can be an issue.

SMBs need to make sure they do business with a reputable service provider. This will allow them to fully enjoy the benefits of online backup.

How Can You Retrieve Deleted Files from a Cloud Storage?

Cloud storage services provide a universal service: upload your files and keep them safe. However, accidents happen and the wrong documents can be deleted. Lucky for you, these files aren’t usually gone forever.

There are plenty of cloud storage services today, but the three most visible names for users are Dropbox, Google Drive, and Microsoft OneDrive. Let’s take a look on how these three cloud giants retrieve deleted files.

1. Dropbox

You can’t find a Trash or Recycle Bin on Dropbox. The files are “deleted” but are not moved to a different folder. More precisely, the files are just hidden. To recover a deleted file (or remove it permanently), just go to its original folder and unhide the document.

Click the small trash icon in the upper-right corner of the screen. Your deleted file will appear in gray. To retrieve the file, just click the “Restore” button. Naturally, if you want to remove the document permanently, just choose the “Permanently Delete…” button.

Dropbox hides deleted files for up to 30 days.

2. Google Drive

Google Drive features a more traditional way of deleting files, and that’s through the Trash folder. Every deleted file from anywhere on your Drive will be sent to the Trash.

To restore a deleted file, click the “Trash” symbol seen on the sidebar. Select the file you wish to get back by right clicking the menu and choosing the “Restore” option. To delete it permanently, choose “Delete Forever.”

3. OneDrive

Microsoft’s cloud storage moves deleted files rather than actually getting rid of them. The deleted files are sent to the Recycle Bin. Similar to Google Drive, just click the file you want to retrieve, and right click to “Restore.”

Of course, there are tons of cloud storage services out there, but this should give you a general idea on how to retrieve or permanently remove deleted files.

How Necessary is it to Own a Cloud Storage?

We all have something online that we want to keep safe all the time. This can be a bunch of family photos and videos, a folder full of original classic songs, or a stack of corporate documents. We need these data intact, secure, and accessible as much as possible. Thus, the growing number of different cloud storage services.

It is necessary to own a cloud storage for several reasons:

1. It keeps your data secure.

Anything can happen. Your seemingly fine computer can burst into flames in a snap. Your office on the third floor may be safe from the flood, but not from the fire. You can accidentally drop your USB drive into a pool of water. When any of these happen, your online data will be jeopardized. Instead of taking the chance, secure yourself with a personal data guard and use an online backup service.

2. It lets you work anywhere.

More and more companies employ homebased workers. Because online backup storage is located off-site, you only need an internet connection to get your files. This means you can do your work and access your remote files even if you’re on a tropical island or up in the mountains. Also, if you fail to bring your enormous computer to your working holiday, your laptop, tablet or smartphone will do. A remote backup service allows you to access the cloud with more than one device.

3. It makes collaboration easier.

With a remote storage service, you no longer need to wait for your colleague to go back and read the email messages of the group and write his reply. Most online backup services today provide a real-time collaboration feature. This means anyone in the group can make changes in a group file or comment over group data, real-time.

These are just three reasons why it’s necessary to have your own cloud storage service. Try it out and experience the benefits yourself.

What are Ways to Secure Your Cloud Storage?

Whether your files are stored on iCloud, Dropbox, or any other remote backup service, they can always do with a bit more security. No matter what kind of assurances your cloud storage provider gave you regarding data protection, it’s just impossible to make your data 100 percent safe. Lucky for you, there are steps you can do to make your files secure.

1. Strengthen your backup service password.

Having a strong password, not just for your off-site backup service, is a step that shouldn’t be overlooked. Your password is the gateway to your important documents. If anyone can guess what it is, then you basically denied the purpose of using a cloud storage service.

Make your remote storage PIN different from your other passkeys. Every once in a while, change your old password to a new one. If it’s available, enable a two-factor authentication. This is not foolproof, but it’s the closest thing to 100 percent password protection.

2. Audit your connected devices.

Check all the connected gadgets and applications with access to your remote backup service. Typically, you can find this information in your cloud storage’s security settings. Once you’ve launched the file, review your connected computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone. Also, check which apps are also integrated into your storage. If there’s a gadget or an app you no longer use, remove it from the list.

3. Check your cloud storage provider’s stance on privacy.

Dig a little to assess how your provider manages the privacy of their clients. Look at how committed they are to protecting data. Verify the level of accessibility your provider gives themselves to your data and ponder if you’re comfortable with it or not. If you find something that doesn’t sit well with you, contact your provider and ask questions.

At the end of the day, it’s both a responsibility of yours and your service provider to ensure your data is safe and secure all the time.

Why Cloud Storage Compresses Images

Many people believe that when they upload their image files to a cloud storage, they are saving the same photos originally from their device – be it a computer, smartphone or tablet. They also expect to be able to download the files – as they are – later on. This is not always the case. A handful of cloud backup storage suppliers alters image files, normally compressing the photos to lessen storage space.

Photo Files Compression

Every time you take pictures using your mobile phone, there are specific software and hardware presets that establish the size of the pictures and the size of the image files. Most of the time, the image files can be sizeable. And the only way to reduce their actual proportions and the file size is to compress them.

Even if you rarely use your mobile device to take photos, you’ve probably already had some exposure with compressed photos. .JPG is one of the most commonly used extensions online, particularly on various photo-sharing platforms like Instagram. Practically all smartphones and tablets save the images you take as .JPG files. These files are then translated into “lossless compression” which means the quality of the photo is not compromised.

In numerous instances, you’ll find an obvious subpar clarity in compressed images. A good example of this is an image downloaded from Facebook. If you’ve done this before, you might have noticed the image’s poor quality when you print the image, or even if you just repost it. The reason behind this is image file compression.

There’s nothing illegal or wrong with this practice. However, if you’re a photo enthusiast or you want your pictures pristine and of high quality, it’s better that you find out if your cloud storage provider compresses photo files. If so, are you fine with this action? What compromise can you make to ensure your photos stay the same, but still have enough space for your other multimedia files?

Compressed Images on Cloud Storage

When it comes to cloud backup storage, every byte of space matters. The bigger the data a cloud space storage provider can accommodate onto its servers, the higher their profit. This is one of the main reasons many cloud storage providers normally compress image files, which, compared to text files, are large. The issue here is that clients hardly ever know this custom until they experience problems with the quality of their stored images once they’ve posted or printed them.

Thankfully, not all cloud space storage services practice this custom. For instance, Dropbox doesn’t alter image files by any means. You can easily upload images to your cloud account and download them later on with no quality and resolution loss. The same holds true for the program’s mobile app.

Every cloud storage provider differs with regards to compressing image files. Go through the agreement, particularly for mobile apps, as well as the provider’s Terms of Service to determine if your online backup service compresses photos when you upload or download them from the cloud.

What other reasons can you think of that makes the compression of image files necessary on cloud storage?

What are Some Great Personal Cloud Storage Options?

People sometimes think that only professionals and businesses need cloud storage. After all, these people and businesses are always at risk of losing sensitive files (and a whole lot of money) should their data be compromised.

But when you think about it, even your personal files can be considered as sensitive and valuable. After all, these personal files hold the kind of value that no one would truly be able to put an amount on.

And it’s not even just the amount of security that’s the issue. Professional files can become outdated and will eventually be replaced by more relevant ones. When it comes to personal files however, it’s not just something that you can delete after a year. Especially when it comes to photos, videos, and other similar files, you would want to keep them for as long as you can.

This is where the need for personal cloud storage comes in.

It’s a good thing that cloud storage services are not just limited to professional and business packages. Because service providers understand the needs of consumers on a personal level as well, there are some that would fit individual needs perfectly.

Here are 4 personal cloud storage options that you can choose from:

1. Google Drive

personal cloud storage optionsGoogle lets you create a single account that you can automatically use for all of their products and services. This means that if you have a Gmail account, then you automatically have access to your own Google Drive. It gives you up to 15GB to be shared across all your files, emails, and other Google products you’re using. Aside from the web version, you can also download it as an app.

2. Microsoft OneDrive

If you use Word, Excel, and other productivity tools from Microsoft, then OneDrive could be a logical choice for you. You can save any kind of file of up to 10GB per file, but the free account only gives you up to 15GB worth of storage space all in all. It does allow you to expand your personal cloud storage if you pay extra, giving you up to 1TB of space if you want.

3. Dropbox

The design and interface is very simple to use, and you can save and sync files on your computer or on your mobile app. There is no limit at all to the file size that you want to upload, making it perfect for those who love syncing movies, videos, and other heavy files. Although the basic account only gives you up to 2GB, you can extend that if you complete different tasks like inviting people to use the system or going through the starter tutorial. You can also purchase more space.

4. Box

Not to be mistaken with Dropbox, the Box allows you to fill up to 10GB worth of personal cloud storage. However, you can only upload files of up to 250MB in size. The free account also does not allow you to retrieve earlier versions of files. You can go all the way and have 100GB worth of space and upload files of up to 5GB though, as long as you pay $10 a month, which is not bad at all.

With these four personal cloud storage options, you can finally save all the files you want and be able to access them no matter where you are and what gadget or computer you use.

How to Deal with Slow Upload Speeds On Cloud Storage

You may have solved your storage issues, but that doesn’t mean you’re getting off scot-free. Sometimes, just when you feel you’ve found the best cloud storage solution for you, you suddenly hit a new barrier – slow upload speeds and syncing speeds.

slow upload speeds

You can’t just go ahead and blame your cloud storage provider though, as there are a lot of reasons for your slow upload speeds. Here are a few tips that would help you speed things up a bit from your end:

Check your bandwidth use.

What else are your working on aside from the cloud upload?

Remember that your upload speed is not applicable per app or program that you’re using. The total speed and bandwidth is divided among all the programs you have running, so better check on anything else running at the same time as this could be dragging your upload speed down.

If you want to upload files faster, stop all other activities that could be eating up your bandwidth. Better yet, time your uploads and syncing at a time when no one and nothing else is using your bandwidth so that you can maximize its speeds.

Check the size of the files.

The larger the file, the longer it takes to upload. This is why it is important to find out the size of the files you’re trying to upload to the cloud so that you can have a general idea of how long it would take for the process to complete.

You could try compressing your files to make the smaller. You can use your operating system’s default program to do this, or use a 3rd party program such as WinRAR or 7-Zip.

Check your distance from the datacenter.

Yes, you’re subscribed to a cloud, which can be virtually accessed from anywhere. However, location still plays a huge role here as every single file you send towards the cloud would have to be stored at physical datacenters located in different areas, depending on how wide your provider’s coverage may be.

Find out where the nearest datacenter is. If you are still experiencing slow upload speeds despite doing everything else from your end, then it’s a possibility that your data is being sent to a location that’s a lot farther that you think.

Learn how to prioritize files.

The more files you’re trying to upload in one go, the heavier the burden and the slower the process becomes. Try to figure out which files are most important and back them up first. If possible, you can do the upload per batch so that you can at least control how much data is being sent at any given time.

As for the less important files, you can always save them for later, or you can keep them in physical storage for now.

Cloud storage is definitely a convenient option when it comes to securing your data. As long as you know what factors affect the speed by which your files are stored, you can do your part in controlling the situation and make things as efficient as possible.

How to Integrate Various Cloud Storage Services on Your Chromebook

For heavy Google service users, using Chromebook make sense. However, the Chrome OS device is significantly less suited to users of other cloud storage services like OneDrive and Dropbox. This is because in the past, Google Drive was the sole cloud service recognized by its file menu. But not anymore. With a simple installation process, it’s now possible to view and open files from your chosen non-Google cloud service straight from the file menu of Chrome OS.

cloud storage services

Set-up Installation

Step One – To start, open your Chromebook and initiate the “Files” app. Choose “Add New Services” at the page’s sidebar. The system will present several third-party add-ons that you may install. Each add-on is tied up with a specific cloud provider. Apart from the main storage providers available like Dropbox and OneDrive, you can find other functions such as SFTP and WebDAV net connections.

Step Two – Choose the cloud storage service you want and then click the “Install” button. This step will add the service you chose to your Chrome OS. When you see a pop-out window, click on “Mount.” This will generate a log-in screen that will launch the sign-in page for the required credentials for the cloud service providers. When you sign in, a new folder will show up. Press it to view all the directories and folders stored in that cloud account.

Once the set-up installation is finished, your documents will be available equally as they would appear on a regular computer. At this point, locating the right data or media file can be found straight from the “Files” menu.

One Downside

The one downside to consider with this setup is that the “Files” menu links you to the other cloud server through these add-ons, instead of saving your files locally. This means the full size of the files on your hard drive will not store automatically. The restriction means you need to have an online connection to access your data.

Chromebooks are typically light in terms of hard drive space, so although this may annoy some users, this is just a part of the cloud-first approach of Chrome OS. Should you require offline touch-up features, either drag-and-drop the document into the Chrome OS “Download” folder or manually store the copy in your “Downloads.”

Disconnect the Service

If you want to disconnect one or all your chosen cloud storage services, simply click the arrow beside its cloud name located in the “Files” menu. This step will unmount the cloud service, although it will not get rid of the software from your Chromebook. If you decide to reconnect your “Files” menu to your preferred cloud account once more, simply search for the app in the application drawer.

This new cloud service set up installation will not replace the features you can do in Windows. However, it’s a great new technique for accessing the task you need from the non-Google cloud. What non-Google cloud storage services do you use? Share your thoughts below.

Why is Owning an Online Backup Service a Good BI Strategy?

Companies spend thousands to millions of dollars to gather different types of data regarding their product, customers, and employees. All of this raw information can be mined in order to produce usable analytics to support and enhance business decisions. Needless to say, securing this data is paramount.

Saving all general and confidential business records into a single server is not a good idea. A simple mistake, an accident, or a crash can wipe out all these information. Imagine having the business records in a physical server inside the office building, and then having a fire break out, completely destroying everything. There is no way to get the physical data back. And if the company doesn’t have any sort of storage backup, the business will crumble. A Business Intelligence (BI) strategy to avoid this unfortunate event is to use an online backup system to secure the company’s files and records.

online backup

Cloud storage is a relatively old concept enhanced by new technology. The basic idea is to run applications and store files through a third-party provider. Resources are shared to maximize the efficiency of the entire network. What this means for a company is the security that they no longer have to worry about losing important data due to unforeseen events. The cloud can keep all data safe by doing regular, automatic backups. This is a next-generation BI strategy that can ensure the security of the company.

What Makes Cloud Storage a Reliable Solution?

It simplifies the entire process of backing up data. Certain components such as hostnames, directories, and permissions that were needed before to accomplish a backup are now removed in the cloud. The company would need less time and effort to store their data.

This solution is very flexible as well since it is a scalable strategy. What this means is that whenever the users need to change anything, the solution can adapt to it, regardless if it’s an increase or a decrease in size.

Accessibility is also improved through this technology. It allows a user to access the data needed wherever he may be or in whatever computer he is using. The only requirement is to have an internet connection and access details. This is perfect for organizations with people who are always on the go or out visiting client sites.

Overall, the use of this storage solution is also a cheaper option. Less effort is needed to maintain it which means less money spent on people doing the administration to back up the company’s data. It is an easy-to-use, self-service storage, but highly efficient, too. Furthermore, users only pay for certain services and components that they need.

With all of these benefits, it is no wonder why more and more companies are now relying on a cloud online backup system to protect their businesses. It is an added layer of security in order to ensure that they never lose all the important data gathered through the years.

What kind of BI strategy does your company implement with regards to cloud storage? Share your stories below.

What Cloud Storage Apps are Best for Musicians?

It seems like everything is now affected by digitalization. Virtually all things are run by computers, and almost every profession is in need of a gadget. Even artists are now going digital, particularly those involved in the music industry.

Musicians use and produce vast amounts of data daily. In order to get inspiration, they have thousands of songs stored in their players. They also record music and videos of their performances. Some singers even use tablet computers as their lyric books while performing.

The problem here is that a lot of musicians only store all these data on their smartphones or tablets. This can be a very bad idea since losing the device means losing a lot of their work. This is the primary reason why a cloud storage app is a must. Their music apps can do an online backup and keep their work safe and secured even if they lose their gadget.

Cloud storage

Here are four of the best storage apps in the long list of music-centric online backup services today.

SoundCloud

This is one of the most popular cloud apps for musicians worldwide. SoundCloud offers three hours’ worth of storage for free. It also features a “Share” function, making it easy for the user to share his work to his other social media channels. While the free use provides a number of benefits, the perks of premium accounts sweeten the deal more. Premium users enjoy an analytics service that tracks listeners along with their geographic locations.

DJ Backup

This is a storage app that allows its user to backup and share all kinds of music-related files. It also supports collaboration with other users from all over the globe without the risk of losing data, thanks to the high-quality security attached to the application. The backup service is automatic, so users don’t need to worry about doing it manually.

Gobbler

Offering unlimited cloud storage, Gobbler also features a rapid transfer system. This means that no matter how huge the backup is, the online storage tool can manage it. It also has a military-grade security system. But perhaps the best feature of this system is its compatibility with almost any audio workstation.

SugarSync

Although this one is not necessarily targeted for musicians, SugarSync has become quite popular in the said niche, too. It can facilitate automatic backup and sharing of digital files. It also allows collaboration that can be processed offline if all users are already synced to the cloud. The storage provider offers a 30-day free trial as well.

There are other options available for online backup, but these four are the most popular for both aspiring and professional musicians. Each storage service keeps their projects safe and secure. All four has the functionality to share their music to others worldwide via integrated social media sharing functions. Furthermore, all these storage services present a collaborative function with other artists. This means an easier way to create more music and a simpler method to receive feedback about their own work before they release them to the public.

Do you have a favorite online backup tool for your music files? Share your comments below.