When the internet first went public, casual computer users took several years to collectively understand and accept that data was being stored and recalled from a multitude of remotely-accessed computers. Today, cloud computing is again challenging the collective consciousness to grasp the concept that digital information should no longer be tethered to hardware. It is safer and more efficient, but the digital cloud seeding that is happening across the entire internet is still a baffling concept to many.
Cloud computing lowers the risk of losing data. It is the latest progression in controlling and storing data, and it is helping millions of users to feel safer and more secure. The guiding principle of cloud computing is that greater stability is achieved when data is associated with a collective rather than a location. Before cloud computing came into popular use, manufacturers strove to provide users with data protection by increasing the efficiency and reliability of hardware. Hard drives were made faster, stronger and higher in capacity. Solid state drives and solid state storage grew in popularity, but nothing seemed to be able to fully eliminate the unpredictable susceptibility that hardware always faces in the day-to-day lives of users. That is when the popular wisdom began pushing everyone to create multiple backups on multiple formats.
Soon, it seemed like responsible users were spending half their time backing up data. This frustration over so much wasted time making copies was the driving force behind the origination of cloud computing. The concept is simple. Eliminate the link between a single piece of hardware and a piece of data by creating a way for data to move freely between multiple storage locations. Thus the cloud was born.
Cloud computing is safer against loss than any other current alternative strategy for storing data. There is always the possibility of corruption or destruction with all hardware storage products, but cloud computing eliminates that vulnerability by joining data together for easier movement. Some clouds are expansive and incorporate thousands of servers in large facilities that specialize solely in the storage and maintenance of clouds. For example, when a user purchases an ISP for a website they must choose a host. That decision is typically based on the host’s server capabilities. Some users option to rent space on a single server located at one of the host’s facilities, but this carries with it the inherent danger of hardware failure. Instead, many hosts are now offering cloud hosting, which eliminates this vulnerability.
The way ISP hosts provide cloud hosting is by creating and maintaining a collective comprised of all their clients’ data. It initially sounds risky because it seems like all the data is being stored in one place, but that is a misinterpretation of what is involved. All of the clients’ data is attached to the cloud, but the cloud of cumulative data moves as one entity among all the servers. The programming architects of cloud computing created it to be a perpetually transitory form of data storage. The root concept is that if the information is attached to the virtual cloud instead to the physical server then it is free from the vulnerabilities of the physical world. Therefore, fried hard drives and corrupted processors no longer pose a threat to a properly maintained cloud of data.
While cloud computing within one’s own network will require the use of specific software and the know-how to operate it, there are alternatives for the non-programmer type of computer user. Most popular social networking websites, along with many financial and healthcare related websites, are already storing their members’ and customers’ data in clouds.