What is the Cloud?
Simply, the Cloud is online storage and backup. Although these two things have been around on the internet for many years – the Cloud is a much more integrated approach, with solutions and tools for businesses.
How can it help me?
You can keep copies of your work on remote servers. Having a second hard drive is good for backup, but what if a catastrophe cause both the computer and the second hard-drive to fail? You can lose everything.
You can collaborate on projects with other people. Only those with the username and password can access the files.
You can backup your website – such as a WordPress or Joomla site – and send the backup straight to the Cloud.
Can I run a business online through the Cloud?
Yes, definitely and many large businesses do. One of the big advantages is that the businesses do not have to buy servers (and provide space, electricity and maintenance for the servers) for their terabytes of data.
There are hefty costs involved if you have a lot of data to store. However, an increasing amount of small businesses use free cloud storage for aspects of their work.
Free Cloud storage
With Dropbox, you get 2GB storage for free.
Saves versions of your files – so if you over-write a file on your computer (and haven’t we all made that mistake!) you can get the lost file back from your Dropbox account. It keeps old versions for up to a month.
Works with mobile phones such as iphone, Android and Blackberry.
Box offers 5GB of free storage. That’s 3GB more than Dropbox. I’ve heard users say that like Dropbox for its simplicity, so perhaps it has an edge there.
You can sync files to Box, turn files into online workspaces, post comments and assign and manage tasks.
BackBlaze promotes itself as the only online backup that doesn’t require you to choose files and filetypes. That’s sounding good – because simple is good
And if you need to upgrade from free to umlimited storage, $5 per month sounds awfully cheap. Maybe too cheap – although the BackBlaze people seem to have it figured out.
Also – BackBlaze can find your lost or stolen computer. Well, that’s unexpected, but kind of cool.