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8 FAQs About Cloud Storage Solutions

David Eichkorn
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While data breaches garner a lot of attention, there’s a business concern that isn’t spoken of as often that can affect anyone and cause irrecoverable harm to a business: data loss.

If your company relies solely on hard drives or on-premise storage, your data may be lost or damaged and, without Cloud storage, your business may be unable to retrieve any of it. If you’re new to the world of storing documents and other data on the Cloud, you’re likely wondering how it works.

Here are the top questions we’re asked about cloud storage solutions and — good news for you! — the answers, too.

1. How does Cloud storage work?

With Cloud storage, the files and data you need are placed on highly secure remote systems stored in a provider’s facility rather than on your computer’s hard drive or local server. Internet access allows you to connect your computer or device to the remote cloud solution to retrieve what you need.

2. What types of Cloud services are there?

All Cloud solutions provide scalable solutions for your business technology needs. Storage is one of the most widely used Cloud services and is commonly used for cost effective long term archiving of data and disaster recovery. Software as a Service (Saas) Cloud solutions, like Microsoft Office 365, provide application licensing, email, hosted communications and cloud storage to collaborate in real time. Platform as a Service (PaaS), such as AWS or Azure, can link you to IBM’s Watson, an application program interface (API), and even offers a complete online programming environment.

3. How challenging is it to switch from physical servers to the Cloud?

Without guidance from an experienced professional, switching to the cloud can be incredibly challenging, time consuming and costly. There will be inevitable customizations that need to be made to the Cloud storage system to fit your business needs, and navigating those tasks on your own can be burdensome. Overall, the greatest challenge is planning out the right balance of Cloud services vs. on-premise technology to meet your business needs. Another migration challenge is teaching employees how to use the new technology. Enlisting expert consultants to assess your needs, develop a migration plan and train employees helps the transition go more smoothly.

4. What Cloud service is right for me?

That’s hard to say. If you’ll be storing a lot of data, or large data files (e.g., videos, audio files, etc.), you’ll want to consider focusing on a Cloud storage solution that has cost effective options for large amounts of data storage. This way, you’re never worried about how many terabytes you’ve used or how many gigabytes you have left. If the business need is focused on mobility, then you’ll want to consider the options that support BYOD. If high availability is the primary focus, you’ll want to consider the Cloud provider’s ability to utilize data center redundancy.

5. How is the Cloud backed up?

That depends on the Cloud system you have in place and your provider’s capabilities. Different providers offer different strategies to protect their systems. It’s important that you consider the risks associated with the potential loss of those Cloud services and make sure the provider you choose has the right components in place to meet your unique risk mitigation needs.

6. We’ve gone paperless. How can Enterprise Content Management (ECM) work with the Cloud?

ECM can be integrated very easily into your Cloud storage! We offer Laserfiche server hosting with full backup and Microsoft security patch support through our Docs-on-the-Cloud hosting service. No changes are needed to your Laserfiche licensing or VAR agreements. Click here for more information.

7. What are the benefits of Cloud storage versus on-premise servers?

Besides the cost differences, Cloud storage offers access to your data from a remote location, increased security and control over data versus individually controlled computers, and protection from hard drive failure that affects 140,000 machines each week. Cloud storage also has the ability to grow with your business. Start out only paying for the capacity you need and quickly add storage as you scale your business.

8. What’s the cost difference of Cloud storage and on-premise servers?

Undoubtedly, Cloud storage can offer cost savings via both reduced hardware capital and IT staff. However, depending on the amount of data you’re storing and any levels of security compliance requirements for highly sensitive data, on-premise servers may have an overall lower cost of ownership.

No matter how you choose to store your data, it’s critical to protect it. If you’re concerned with data security or data loss, reach out to a professional at the Gordon Flesch Company. We’re happy to help find solutions that work for you.

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