Whenever a reference is made to “cloud this” or “cloud that” (for example “cloud computing”, “cloud storage” or “cloud backup”), the majority of people who aren’t used to thinking about the structures of the Internet have a really vague understanding of what “the cloud” is. To add to this confusion, Elon Musk wants to launch 4425 satellites into Earth’s orbit in an attempt to “rebuild the internet in space” – putting the Internet above the actual clouds (where at least some of the population believe the Internet to be).
What is the Cloud?
Why Is It Called the Cloud?
The exact origin of the term is not clear, but the most favourable is that in science, the term “cloud” is used to characterise a large assemblage of objects that visually look like a cloud from a distance. It’s an abstract term of “things” clustered together in one space. It can also be attributed to the fact that a diagram of networks sometimes resembles that of an image of a cloud.
The General Understanding of The Cloud
The Cloud should by now be a household term in most countries. Granted, some countries are not as technologically advanced as others and as technology progresses some people are left behind. That being said, let’s assume most people have knowledge about the cloud or cloud computing practices.
The Actual Definition of The Cloud
Some would say the cloud is just someone else’s computer. That definition isn’t far off in some cases but the most accurate description would be that it is just a data centre full of identical hardware bits that store and process data. So, the cloud doesn’t really refer to “over the internet connection”, but more “to a remote data storage and processing place”.
Let’s assume you use a computer and software. Cloud computing just means that instead of all the hardware and software you use being situated on your desktop or laptop, or on your company’s network, some of it is located and hosted at an offsite data centre and accessed over the Internet. This is usually offered as a service by another company who manages the storage and processing at the data centre.
You can understand how this revolutionary change in the market has simplified computing tasks, like backing up data, by replacing tape backup with cloud backup. We all know that it is important to back up data, but with cloud backup there are many advantages.
Offering best practice advice for the cloud as a whole would take a very long time (the cloud itself is too varied). So, here’s some best practice advice if you’re considering cloud backup, which we just happen to be experts in.
Best Practices with Cloud Backup
Bearing in mind that cloud offerings, like cloud backup, are usually offered as a serviceby a cloud backup company, here are three things that you should keep in mind when choosing a cloud backup service provider:
- Data Security. This is obviously one of the most important things to vet: how safe will your data be? Make sure you choose a cloud backup provider with a good reputation and military grade encryption technology. The cloud must be safe.
- Data Access. A good cloud backup provider will grant you access to your data, anytime, anywhere. Recovering data should not be a pain, and instant access to data is a MUST!
- Readily Available Support. This is something that most companies tend to neglect. It is important to keep the human face in the proverbial cloud. With everything being automated, digitised, and being artificially intelligent these days, it’s nice to sometimes just pick up the phone and ask a fellow human being for help when needed.