Between smartphones, tablets and laptops, today we are able to access the Internet from virtually anywhere, with all the pros and cons that this entails. Sometimes, however, we realize that we need a file that is on the computer at home, or we lose one of the devices we mentioned earlier and can no longer access all the documents and information it contained.
Precisely in response to problems of this type was born the cloud that is nothing more than a personal storage space, sometimes called cloud storage, which is accessible at any time and in any place simply by using any Internet connection. However, it should be noted that with the term cloud, in addition to referring to cloud storage, sometimes we also refer to other services offered by cloud computing.
The cloud storage, therefore, does nothing more than synchronize all your files in one place on the network, with the consequent advantage of re-downloading, editing, deleting and / or updating them, without having the need to carry external hard drives, USB drives, or other media that you can lose or forget. In addition to this, the cloud offers the possibility to make valuable backup copies, as well as to share all your favorite files with other users and for a potentially indefinite time, with great advantages in terms of time and convenience.
Cloud, the features
Having computing power and virtually infinite space (as opposed to the wallet to pay), is a great advantage in many areas, especially the work, and that’s why so many managers are looking to bring their companies’ processes and data to the cloud:
- From wherever we are we can perform long and complex calculations, see our photos from ten years ago or work on the same document with people on the other side of the world;
- Our smartphone can be a sort of “remote control” with which we can turn on and off calculations that are performed by a virtual computer 10,000 km away from where we are;
- Our pc may not be particularly powerful, the important thing is that it can connect to our remote computers that will do the real work;
- Our company will not have to have a server room, at low temperature, with staff to manage it;
- Everyone connected to everyone, at all times, also taking advantage of the ever-increasing speeds of connections;
- Our important content is continually backed up for security so we don’t lose anything;
- If we need more space or more power, I buy it and in a few minutes I have it.
Speed. Sharing. Efficiency. Results. These are the pros of the cloud.
Cloud, risks and disadvantages
But, as always, not all that glitters is gold. Using a remote computer, and a virtual one at that, leads to losing contact with the “whereabouts” of my things, which is not trivial in concept.
Even at the security level, there are factors that you need to not lose sight of, such as the fact that you can apply configurations that the cloud platform provides, but the territory is theirs, resulting in potential risks:
- Loss of sensitive data
- Becoming the target of cyber attacks and having problems delivering cloud services.
Obviously these are just the main ones and you don’t eliminate these risks by using your own Servers, but the problem in this case should be addressed from other points of view and would need different skills.
Another issue to consider when talking about cloud is the legislative one, because if we talk about sensitive data, these cannot be physically stored abroad or in countries with which Italy has not made special agreements.
An argument closely related to the disadvantages of the cloud is that of costs that, often but not always, are difficult to predict exactly since they depend on factors such as bandwidth, hours of calculation, etc. …
As we have seen, there are pros and cons regarding this technology, all equally important.
Cloud, why choose it and whom to rely on
Nowadays, subject to legislative review, a cloud solution is preferred for ductility and scalability, but the choice of a company to bring its data and processes on the cloud must be made with awareness. Jumping into the cloud without knowing its pain points is risky.
Another issue is relying on experts to create the desired architecture. A systems engineer who has only ever worked with physical servers will not be able to move to cloud mode in a week. Nomenclature and components are very different. Different cloud platforms that offer similar services can have very different configurations. If you’re not in the business, it’s easy to get lost and following some tutorials will only partially fill in the gaps. In short, as always, the key is to work with professionals who have the necessary skills to develop a cloud architecture that is secure and efficient in every way.
It’s always Servers, but an architecture of 20 virtual machines with different functionality is hard to crack and even just create and maintain if you’re not experienced.