Services that store enterprise data in a "cloud" on the Internet raise questions that organizations are just beginning to ask, but for all their limitations, they may be no more risky than on-site storage platforms.
The technology behind cloud storage, as well as cloud computing, lets enterprises tap into IT resources without regard to where they're located. So cloud computing typically means relegating primary or backup data to an undefined repository outside the enterprise rather than a local data center or a dedicated remote site. By using cloud storage services, organizations can save on capital expenses and on complex setup and administration tasks, proponents say.
Putting data in the cloud can also make it accessible from more locations.
Saving work and expense is a key reason why cloud services are expected to grow in the next few years. Last year, 4 percent of worldwide IT spending went to cloud services, and by 2012 that figure will be 9 percent, according to research company IDC. Because of its cost and space requirements, data storage is a prime candidate for a cloud solution, and IDC predicts storage will grow from 8 percent to 13 percent of cloud spending in that same period.
Vendors are stepping up to fill that demand. Amazon.com made an early splash in cloud computing and now includes a storage service, called S3, in its offerings. Nirvanix started offering a cloud archiving and backup service in 2007, and some of the biggest names in storage, including EMC's Mozy unit and Seagate, have also entered the game.
Anyone who's pondering how to deal with a cloud storage provider is already ahead of the game, according to analyst Henry Baltazar of The 451 Group.
"Right now, people aren't really (looking out) for this, because they're still weighing out whether they want to use cloud storage or not. ... It's still a brand-new market," Baltazar said
To Continue Reading: Click Here
Source: PC World
By: Stephen Lawson