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Why Cloud Storage Is Lousy For Enterprises (and Individuals)

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the straw-for-the-ocean dept.

Data Storage 183

storagedude points to this article at Enterprise Storage Forum which argues that cloud-based storage options have fatal limitations for both businesses and individuals: "The article makes the argument that high volumes of data and bandwidth limitations make external cloud storage all but useless for enterprises because it could take months to restore the data in a disaster. It also appears to be a consumer problem — the author spent three months replicating 1TB of home data via cable modem to an online backup service." Seems like those off-site incremental storage firms could dispatch a station wagon full of tapes, for enough money. Update: Here's another reason, for Sidekick users: reader 1ini was one of several to point out an alert from T-Mobile that "...personal information stored on your device — such as contacts, calendar entries, to-do lists or photos — that is no longer on your Sidekick almost certainly has been lost as a result of a server failure at Microsoft/Danger."

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GET HIGH IN THE CLOUD !! (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29706395)

Get high and enjoy the cloud !!

Re:GET HIGH IN THE CLOUD !! (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706565)

Please do! We love the cloud, and you will too. You will also love our tiered pricing schedules - we think they are genius.

Yours truly,

AT&T

Some of them do (3, Informative)

jimicus (737525) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706397)

Seems like those off-site incremental storage firms could dispatch a station wagon full of tapes, for enough money.

Some of them do, for exactly that reason. MozyPro, for one.

i will keep my files locally (2, Insightful)

FudRucker (866063) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706407)

its too cheap and easy to keep my files locally (more dependable too)

usb thumbdrives, CDr & DVDr even harddrives are large and cheap (both external & external)

i see cloud computing as someone with a bunch of servers owned by somebody that has run out of ideas for making money, and/or with a nose for snooping in to other people's data (i bet the government likes that - the snooping part)

Re:i will keep my files locally (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29706419)

And I keep your files locally too.

In my pants [goatse.fr] .

Re:i will keep my files locally (4, Insightful)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706467)

One of the reasons you backup files is to protect against local disaster.

An example would be the building burning down. Your USB thumbdrives won't protect against that, unless you have a remote place to stash them.

Transporting physical storage devices around is risky: there is a cost of transportation, plus they could get damaged, lost, or stolen in transport.

If the physical location isn't far enough, one disaster could effect both locations.

E.g. an earthquake could effect both places in your area you might want to store the backups.

Re:i will keep my files locally (1)

NoYob (1630681) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706543)

Then the company goes out of business and you lose everything; which, in this day and age, is more likely than a fire, I think. Or, cloud computing company says, "We're upgrading to a new system or we just feel like charging more to keep our "growth" up for Wall Street, you must now pay more: take it or take it because you can't leave."

I think the best solution would be apps and backup data on the cloud while the working data is local - in an open format like XML or something. So, if cloud company XZY goes out of business, at least you could write some scripts to retrieve the data from the local machine and convert it to another app.

Re:i will keep my files locally (1)

Planesdragon (210349) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707001)

I think the best solution would be apps and backup data on the cloud while the working data is local - in an open format like XML or something. So, if cloud company XZY goes out of business, at least you could write some scripts to retrieve the data from the local machine and convert it to another app.

Never, never, NEVER put the only copy of your data in one place. And a cloud service is just "one place."

Re:i will keep my files locally (4, Insightful)

LVSlushdat (854194) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706765)

Thats why I rsync my approx 12GB of data, stuff that changes all the time, nightly to another machine here in the house, and to a USB drive, then once a week, I do an incremental of the second machine's copy to Amazon S3 using Jungledisk... For what I paid for Jungledisk ($20 one-time) and the recurring costs to Amazon (usually under $2.00/mo, depending on how much more I've uploaded and the transfer/requests charges).. That way, I lose the harddrive on my main machine, the most I've lost is one day, and if the house goes up in smoke, the most I've lost is one week. Jungledisk/Amazon S3 beats the hell out of Mozy/MozyPro/Carbonite, neither of which can run on Linux (Jungledisk *can*).

Re:i will keep my files locally (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706963)

A nice solution.. cloud storage is great for individuals, traditional offsite backups are expensive, and given the severity of the disaster, a delay in being able to get to it is much better than losing info, Article authors on crack.. :)

The problem may be US-specific also... in other countries, broadband users get a lot more bandwidth. {{subst:globalize/USA}} :)

Re:i will keep my files locally (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707125)

"One of the reasons you backup files is to protect against local disaster. "

And this is why I hunted online for an airline-grade black box to store my drives in. Fire? I'll lose everything BUT my data.

Local is the most secure location if you have half a clue how to protect things on a physical level.

Re:i will keep my files locally (2, Insightful)

cortesoft (1150075) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707247)

So you have to physically open the safe every time you want to back up you data? That sounds like quite a bit of a hassle to me, and I can imagine you start skipping days because you it is too much work to open the black box, take out the hard drive, connect it, run the back up, put the drive back in the safe, and lock it back up... with an online backup, your backups can take place automatically every couple of hours without having to physically move anything.

Also, what happens if the black box is stolen?

You think details of "next Twitter" safe in cloud (1)

leftie (667677) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707959)

You think important business information that people can make money from is going to be safe in the cloud?

You really believe that?

Re:i will keep my files locally (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707457)

Ok, protecting against fire may be possible, at least if it doesn't get too hot and stay that way too long.. but what about earthquakes, floods, landslites, volcanos, tornados?

Or explosives... never underestimate the possibility of a criminal breaking in.. maybe they come upon the safe or the black box, and think it's got gold in it, or something, so they use dynamite on it.

A blackbox won't do you a lot of good if it gets dislodged from your house and buried in tons of rubble somewhere, also.

Re:i will keep my files locally (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29707527)

If the physical location isn't far enough, one disaster could affect both locations.

Fixed that for you. Please learn the difference between affect and effect [yourdictionary.com] .

Re:i will keep my files locally (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29707873)

Then carry a cheapo USB thumbdrive in your pocket when you go out. And keep one at work / friends house that you can swap for the one in your pocket every week or so.

If a disaster big enough to hit your home, your work and the pocket of your jeans in one fell swoop then I somehow doubt worry about where your data has gone will be in the forefront of your mind.

Re:i will keep my files locally (2, Insightful)

LurkerXXX (667952) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706497)

The cloud is good for having an additional remote backup for things small enough to restore quickly (after heavily encrypting of course). Don't forget you should have offsite backups of things you really want/need to keep, in case your place gets robbed, burned down, flooded, etc.

Re:i will keep my files locally (3, Insightful)

Mr. Freeman (933986) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707493)

A solution that I've heard of is storing a backup in a safe deposit box in a bank. If your data is stolen from a bank safe deposit box, you've got more problems than the missing data. Suppose that you could only really store weekly backups there unless you want to go to the bank every day. Put two hard drives in the box. When you put one in with your weekly backup, take out the one for the previous week.
Nightly backups could be stored locally.

Banks aren't a safe place to store anything (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29708009)

as recent events have shown

Re:i will keep my files locally (1)

enrgeeman (867240) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707909)

(both external & external)
and both are the same, is that like saying your backup system works because it's on the same drive?

I never trusted the whole cloud thing (4, Insightful)

Ralph Spoilsport (673134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706411)

With storage stupid cheap, and computers continuing to increase in power, I just never saw the advantage to cloud storage. It requires web access. It's slow.

I just bought a terabyte drive for $100 to back up the other terabyte drive I bought several months ago for $160. Now everything is backed up in multiple. And I can access it without getting online. And I don't have to worry about my cloud storage company going out of business and taking all my data with it.

RS

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (2, Insightful)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706463)

A bunch of DVDs, a terabyte hdd or two, dead tree editions of important documents, and a small safe deposit box.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706637)

I would add to that a fire-resistant safe within another fire-resistant safe for CDs, DVDs, hard copies, etc with everything double-ziplock bagged. Then line the whole thing with tin foil. Can't hurt to be overly paranoid, can it?

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

Shadow of Eternity (795165) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707595)

Double-bagging with the ziplocs is standard down here in florida if you want something to last through hitting the fan in hurricane season.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

gzipped_tar (1151931) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707833)

You forgot to radiation-proof the box. Cover the whole thing with a thick layer of lead with the outermost layer 1-meter thick of cement.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

OzPeter (195038) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706469)

Hopefully your second Terabyte drive isn't sitting physically next to your first one. Otherwise you are not getting one of the benefits touted by offsite storage .. namely being offsite

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

lorenlal (164133) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706473)

One advantage is the ability to fetch your files back while you're out... But seriously, the usefulness of that could easily be outdone by a USB stick...

The cloud has its place for applications, and for availability of some services, but I'm with you... The product will never live up to the hype.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706501)

I just bought a terabyte drive for $100 to back up the other terabyte drive I bought several months ago for $160. Now everything is backed up in multiple. And I can access it without getting online. And I don't have to worry about my cloud storage company going out of business and taking all my data with it.

And if your house burns down, you're screwed.

I want a way to get cheap, fully-automated, redundant, off-site backups.

I want it badly enough, that I'm building a solution myself [github.com] , based on the allmydata.org Tahoe distributed file system.

Backups over the typical home user cable modem or ADSL line are guaranteed to be very time-consuming. As a partial solution, my system will do incremental rsync-style deltas (the infrastructure is in place now, but I want to build more confidence in the non-differential backups before turning on diffs), but even with that, large volumes of data just plain take a long time to move. My backup has been running for three weeks and it has about two months to go.

What's the point? Well, this data is important enough that if I have to wait a while to restore it, I'm okay with that. And restore will be much faster. Because of the way the underlying distributed file system works, downloads are "swarming", coming from multiple machines at once, so even though all of the machines my data is backed up to also have slow upstream connections, the aggregate can fill a big chunk of my incoming pipe, which is 18 times faster than my upstream data rate. If I could fill the whole thing, then, a three-month backup should take just five days to restore. I haven't yet to see how long it really takes.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706523)

I want it badly enough, that I'm building a solution myself, based on the allmydata.org Tahoe distributed file system.

Forgot to mention that the distributed file system is a "friendnet". All of the data is stored on the hard drives of friends' and family's machines in their homes. It uses Reed-Solomon encoding so even if some of the machines in the friendnet die, I won't lose any files. And all of the shares are encrypted for security. I don't really care about that; the people whose machines I'm storing my data on would be welcome to look at anything they like, but the privacy assurance is in place for those who need it.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706645)

I just bought a terabyte drive for $100 to back up the other terabyte drive I bought several months ago for $160. Now everything is backed up in multiple. And I can access it without getting online. And I don't have to worry about my cloud storage company going out of business and taking all my data with it.

And if your house burns down, you're screwed.

Seems to me that if his house burns down, he's screwed even if his terabyte of pr0n is backed up "in the cloud somewhere."

Put things in perspective.

Just buy a few hdds, rotate them out, drop them off at a friends, or if you're really paranoid, a safety deposit box., Cheap, off-site, and better redundancy. Also, since the backups are hours instead of months, they're actually going to be useful.

Nothing worse than restoring from old data.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706735)

I just bought a terabyte drive for $100 to back up the other terabyte drive I bought several months ago for $160. Now everything is backed up in multiple. And I can access it without getting online. And I don't have to worry about my cloud storage company going out of business and taking all my data with it.

And if your house burns down, you're screwed.

Seems to me that if his house burns down, he's screwed even if his terabyte of pr0n is backed up "in the cloud somewhere."

Why? He'd just restore it from where it is. Might take a little while, but better than losing it (assuming it's something that matters, not pr0n).

Just buy a few hdds, rotate them out, drop them off at a friends, or if you're really paranoid, a safety deposit box., Cheap, off-site, and better redundancy.

Been there, done that, doesn't work.

Anything that requires manual steps like shuffling drives around probably won't get done, and certainly won't get done very often.

And the redundancy of such a solution would very inferior to what Tahoe provides.

lso, since the backups are hours instead of months, they're actually going to be useful.

Nothing worse than restoring from old data.

That's not an issue with my solution. The backup and upload processes are separated so you can do daily backups in spite of the fact that it may take months to upload all of the data. The system only uploads new/changed files, so even uploading at a measly 20 KBps, you eventually catch up. Also, uploading is prioritized, with preference given to recently-changed files, so even though my backup won't be complete for months, my current working files get already get backed up daily.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (4, Insightful)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706975)

And if your house burns down, you're screwed.

Seems to me that if his house burns down, he's screwed even if his terabyte of pr0n is backed up "in the cloud somewhere."

Why? He'd just restore it from where it is. Might take a little while, but better than losing it (assuming it's something that matters, not pr0n).

He's GOT NO FUCKING HOUSE! How is that *not* screwed?

Or is he going to restore his house "from the cloud?"

The cloud is a dumb idea. It was originally supposed to be everyone's computer, as a distributed system, not some client-server shit that these companies are trying to intermediate themselves into as a substitute for coming up with something better.

In other words, your computer and thousands of others would devote some bandwidth and storage to backing up chunks of each other's data, sharing where appropriate, making available to the wolrd+dog where appropriate. Files that you want backed up would be broken up into redundant little pieces, and distributed among your peers, and in return, you'd do the same for others.

When it comes time to restore, you'd restore from the various chunks out there, and since there's lots of redundancy, and lots of bandwidth (since each box is only contributing a small chunk), restores would be as fast as your downlink.

Instead, the cloud has been taken from its' natural setting by companies who want to be for-profit gate-keepers, even though, by their very nature, they will do a worse job (less redundancy, not geographically spread out, etc.)

The web really should become read/write, like it was supposed to be in its' original design.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

Maudib (223520) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707343)

How is S3 not read/write?

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707697)

He's GOT NO FUCKING HOUSE! How is that *not* screwed?

My data is more important than my house. My house is insured, and can be replaced. Much of my data is irreplaceable.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707723)

In other words, your computer and thousands of others would devote some bandwidth and storage to backing up chunks of each other's data, sharing where appropriate, making available to the wolrd+dog where appropriate. Files that you want backed up would be broken up into redundant little pieces, and distributed among your peers, and in return, you'd do the same for others.

When it comes time to restore, you'd restore from the various chunks out there, and since there's lots of redundancy, and lots of bandwidth (since each box is only contributing a small chunk), restores would be as fast as your downlink.

That is what I'm trying to build. The "thousands of computers" introduces lots of challenges, perhaps the largest ones non-technical. So I'm starting by trying to build tools to make groups of friends and family able to provide these services to one another.

More precisely, the Tahoe project is trying to provide the tools for distributed file systems across small to medium-sized groups of machines. I'm just trying to provide an effective backup solution on top of it.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707185)

Guess what else won't work? Your house just got burned down so your data lines are GONE.

Better to have physical copies in a safe fire-proof place that is easy to access. Anything else is too slow, too expensive, and too inefficient.

Especially if it comes to time-critical/sensitive data.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707797)

Guess what else won't work? Your house just got burned down so your data lines are GONE.

Bah. Data lines are easy to find. Hell, nearly every hotel in the country has free Wifi. I buy a laptop, I install some software, I type in my key, and I have instant access to my files.

Better to have physical copies in a safe fire-proof place that is easy to access.

Well, if last month's version of the data is good enough...

Keep in mind that there is no such thing as a fireproof safe. Safes offer varying degrees of fire resistance, rated in terms of time at temperature. Should the temperature be higher, or last longer... you're screwed.

Much better to keep the key to your offsite backups in various places -- one copy in your safe-deposit box, one copy at your mom's house, etc. Then automate your backups so that they're never more than a few hours out of date.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707203)

Also, in case you haven't read the full sumamry - note this big failure of offsite storage: http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/10/10/t-mobile-sidekick-disaster-microsofts-servers-crashed-and-they-dont-have-a-backup/ [techcrunch.com]

Offsite is pointless. Cloud is pointless. Local is GOD.

Wow. Just wow. (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707277)

Oops. I accidentally the whole SAN.

That must be embarassing.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (4, Insightful)

swillden (191260) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707749)

Also, in case you haven't read the full sumamry - note this big failure of offsite storage: http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/10/10/t-mobile-sidekick-disaster-microsofts-servers-crashed-and-they-dont-have-a-backup/ [techcrunch.com]

Offsite is pointless. Cloud is pointless. Local is GOD.

Good link, wrong conclusion.

Offsite is important, and REDUNDANCY is critical.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707143)

"And if your house burns down, you're screwed. "

God, it's as if people have never heard of insulated FIRE PROOF SAFES or Airline-grade black boxes.

So much advice and knowledge about digital security yet absolutely none regarding physical security.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29707355)

Yeah because I have all my NAS in a fireproof safe. Cooling is a bitch though.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

olsmeister (1488789) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706505)

You need to separate yourself (as a /. reader) from the other 99.8% of the population. Backing things up locally is economical, practical, logical, and (here's the kicker) requires some knowledge and dedication.

What is the draw of the online backup service? Do you remember the the chicken roaster that Ron Popeil (sp?) used to sell? It wasn't the machine that made the sale. It was his tagline: "Set it, and forget it!"

Most average people aren't going to set up RAID arrays or Syncback or install additional hard drives into their system to hold the family vacation photos.

It sounds like you have your shit together. And for that, I applaud you. But I suspect that 20 years from now, we'll be hearing all about the pictures, songs, documents, whatever, that were lost when "our computer died." So I agree with your post. I just think that by equating your own circumstance (knowledgeable computer user correctly locally backing up important data, vulnerable only to a fire, flood, etc) to my Auntie Em (someone told her the digital cameras are the shit, just download all the important pictures to your hard drive) is not adequate.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

arminw (717974) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707265)

...But I suspect that 20 years from now...

The media you store your data on will be unreadable and the file formats indecipherable. I have some really old wedding photographs of my great great grandparents from the time when photography was quite new. (1890) I seriously doubt, that very many, if any, computer files, including pictures will be readable in the year 2120 by whatever technology if any, that is available then. If you want to preserve any pictures or other worthwhile data for posterity, better print them on archive quality paper and store that in a suitable environment. Images on paper survived the ravages of time, sometimes for thousands of years. It is not likely that the reading equipment, human eyeballs, will not be available in the far future. Maybe old wax cylinders and 78s may still be playable with a cactus thorn.

I also doubt that anyone would be interested in whatever trivialities are stored on your computer hard drive today, even 50 years from now. Since much of our civilization, if not most of it, is recorded digitally these days, it will be lost to historians 500 or more years from now. People living in the year 4000, will know less about us than we know about ancient Rome.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

Ralph Spoilsport (673134) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707431)

People living in the year 4000, will know less about us than we know about ancient Rome. I totally and completely agree. Our civilisation is Atlantis: we will disappear and the neolithic survivors of the coming die off will spin myths about our vaunted abilities.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

mbadolato (105588) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706559)

With storage stupid cheap, and computers continuing to increase in power, I just never saw the advantage to cloud storage

Looks like even the one benefit (offsite storage) isn't necessarily a benefit either. All Sidekick owners say "Thanks Microsoft and T-Mobile!! [techcrunch.com] "

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

lawpoop (604919) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706567)

Yeah, but what if, god forbid, lightning strikes and blows all your electronics, a hurricane, tornado, or tree fall strikes your office, it burns down, etc. etc. I see a benefit to off-site storage, and the easiest way to do that is electronically. You may not want to use a cloud service as your way of creating and accessing business data, but you do want *some* kind of cloud storage.

And this is *not* instead of local backup, this is in addition to.

Safe deposit box (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706681)

I see a benefit to off-site storage, and the easiest way to do that is electronically.

The second easiest way is to sync to an external hard drive and stash that in a safe deposit box or other off-site location. This can even be faster and cheaper for large data sets before the artificial restrictions on last-mile bandwidth disappear, and it avoids the problem of a backup provider going out of business.

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

Carcarius (989981) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706771)

The idea of cloud computing has merit, in that you can store your data on multiple storage facilities in secure data centers and limit your own responsibility (and liability) by not having to purchase/maintain the systems yourself. However, and this is the big deal with cloud computing... you don't own the infrastructure. Someone else does and this can cause a huge problem down the line when your data gets locked up or lost. If you are a decent sized corporation with some money and lawyers, you can fight the cloud vendor and protect yourself to some extent. It would be unwise for the individual to use cloud computing for anything more than email because individuals have less rights than a business who has lawyers to sue and fight for them if their data is lost "in the cloud". So, aside from the technical possibilities such as using fiber, IPSec, MPLS, or some other media/protocols to improve performance/security of data transmission to/from the cloud to your organization, the serious concerns of availability come into play. No company who would take cloud computing or IaaS as a business will take all liability. Caveat emptor is still in play. I am personally not ready to store my important data "in the cloud". Businesses may be able to get away with it if they have good lawyers.

Cloud == Bad Data Outsourcing Decision (1)

syousef (465911) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707105)

100% agree. ...and if it was on the "cloud" you wouldn't have access everywhere. Only where the net access wasn't filtered to disallow it.

Plus forget about companies closing down, you'd be at the mercy of the company that now owns your data anyway. If they decided to hike up their rates before you could remove it all, you'd have two choices. Pay up, or lose your data.

Get a 3rd drive though and store a copy of your data off site, updating periodically (maybe once every month or two, or if something you really can't afford to lose comes up).

Cloud is just bad data outsourcing mixed in with thin client. Usually people who go on about how fantastic it is have a cloud to sell ya (and the Golden Gate bridge too, if you're gullible enough).

Re:I never trusted the whole cloud thing (1)

MtViewGuy (197597) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707393)

Cloud computing makes sense for email and for off-site critical backup of your most important files.

But if you do a lot of sophisticated work at your computer, it's best to have locallized storage because access to data is a LOT faster and you don't have to worry about if the Internet suddenly goes down, losing acces to your data "in the cloud."

Amazon is testing something related (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29706417)

http://aws.amazon.com/importexport/

A little pricey, but handles the "station wagon full of tapes" issue.

Re:Amazon is testing something related (1)

nicolas.kassis (875270) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706435)

Was going to say, but as far as I can tell they aren't much more expensive than some off-site facilities and you get a online backup that's accessible for small restores.

Re:Amazon is testing something related (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706549)

That's cool... They should try to make export easier and faster though, the extra shipping round trip is sure to add latency; they should have the drive, and just load it with data, and send it to you, rather than involving you shipping the drive to receive data..

Rather than having to send them a device, they ought to sell an "AWS Data loading carrier" and "AWS Import/Export" hard drive module. Amazon sells all sorts of things, they should be able to handle this.

In other words, I'm saying they should sell specific hardware for use with import/export, and no other hardware can be used, without paying a big extra fee for a "custom import/export job".

So to do the export.. you simply agree to buy/rent a SAS or SATA hard drive from Amazon the drive's attached to a mobile dock carrier to perform the export, and they ship it to you with data preloaded.

If you bought the AWS import/export mobile dock and have one in your workstation/server, you just plug the drive straight into the front of your PC.

To do imports, you just buy AWS modules, plug it in, copy data to it, prepare it per their directions, and send to Amazon.

And they just plug the drive in, same day, and execute the import instructions.. No need to fiddle with external drives, cables, or PSUs. Dealing with actual drives is a lot faster.

Once the load is confirmed, they'll test the drive drive, and it's theirs afterwards, don't waste extra shipping round trips, it's expensive to ship things additional times, and can cause damage.

The idea is sound. The implimentation is f---ed. (0)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706423)

...because it could take months to restore the data in a disaster.

It takes months to restore data from a box of harddrives? Sounds like a problem with the backup policy, not the technology.

It also appears to be a consumer problem -- the author spent three months replicating 1TB of home data via cable modem to an online backup service.

There's nothing technological preventing this from happening faster. Bandwidth limitations are artificial -- Comcast and most other cable service providers could easily provide fifty times more bandwidth to their customers, but they won't, because they're afraid you'll also use it for streaming HDTV and tell them to go stuff it with their ad-laden broadcast offerings.

Re:The idea is sound. The implimentation is f---ed (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29706607)

Comcast and most other cable service providers could easily provide fifty times more bandwidth to their customers, but they won't, because they're afraid you'll also use it for streaming HDTV and tell them to go stuff it with their ad-laden broadcast offerings.

As a Comcast subscriber I really don't see that as their reasoning. A 720P tv show with ac3 audio and h264 video is around 1.1gb for a 45minute show. Thats around 430kB/s, or 3.3megabits per second.

In my area, Comcast has 3 tiers:
Economy: 1/0.3 for $24/mo
Performance: 15/3 for $42/mo
Blast: 20/4 for $52/mo
Ultra: 30/7 for $62/mo
Extreme: 50/10 for $100/mo

You can say they're overpriced. You can say they should offer more. But you really cant make the argument that they're preventing HDTV streaming. Anything above the Economy package has WAY more than enough bandwidth.

Re:The idea is sound. The implimentation is f---ed (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29706683)

In my area, Comcast has 3 tiers: 1. Economy: 1/0.3 for $24/mo 2. Performance: 15/3 for $42/mo 3. Blast: 20/4 for $52/mo 4. Ultra: 30/7 for $62/mo 5. Extreme: 50/10 for $100/mo

Well in my area, people know how to count.

Re:The idea is sound. The implimentation is f---ed (1)

GaryOlson (737642) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706887)

Anything above the Economy package has WAY more than enough bandwidth.

Storage networking assumes a symmetric bandwidth pipe. One half of that symmetric pipe uses the bandwidth listed as the maximum possible upload speed -- the number after the /. For cloud based storage to work for a large portion of the connected systems, the Ignorant Lame Egotistical Carriers have to provide significant symmetric bandwidth at an affordable price. I don't see anything symmetric or affordable in what you listed.

Re:The idea is sound. The implimentation is f---ed (1)

genericpoweruser (1223032) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707547)

*Gasp!* I wish I could have those speeds at those prices! I have 10/1 for $77.50/mo...

Re:The idea is sound. The implimentation is f---ed (1)

Khyber (864651) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707241)

"It takes months to restore data from a box of harddrives? Sounds like a problem with the backup policy, not the technology."

Considering how we're talking about cloud storage, which would require a good connection able to handle large amounts of data.

At current USA ISP offerings, there is no way in hell to get a fast backup made or restored.

sigh... (2, Interesting)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706455)

the author spent three months replicating 1TB of home data via cable modem to an online backup service.

Surely the 100$ the author "saved" by doing that could not have been worth the three months it took? That's about 140 kbps... You could buy yourself a 100$ TB drive and have a local system set to back up and restore your data whenever you need and it won't take 3 months for the data to get there and back. *And* you have control over your data and its security. *And* it would probably be cheaper anyway in the end.

Re:sigh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29707585)

I would also like to kindly point out another problem- What happens if your house burns down *during* the three months it takes you to back up your data?

Cloud computing in general is unreliable (0)

HalAtWork (926717) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706477)

One part of the cloud can go down and affect many other services that rely on it. Unless we can freely interchange services - which conflicts with the notion of proprietary services in general - cloud computing will only work when the stars are aligned. Feature sets can change, and services that depend on these will need to be updated to reflect that, but it's hard to cooperate even within the same company, much less within such a chaotic system.

Much like blogs that link to each other (or URL forwarding services for that matter), if one part of the chain goes down, you can't get to what you need. You just can't base a reliable business on that type of architecture.

Fundamental Problem (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29706571)

Is this necessarily a fundamental problem or just an artifact of current systems? Seems like in the short term, this is correct, but in the long term, this sort of thing will disappear.

Amazon already addressed ths problem (5, Informative)

Unknown Relic (544714) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706617)

For a while now they've had their AWS Import/Export service. It's still in beta and only available to people in the US, but it won't stay that way forever.

http://aws.amazon.com/importexport/ [amazon.com]

Need to transfer 1TB of data? Mail Amazon the data on a drive, they load it, send you the device back. Sure beats uploading for 3 month with a cable modem. Have more data than that? You can send them up to an 8U drive enclosure, and more than that if you make special arrangements.

Re:Amazon already addressed ths problem (1)

zerocool^ (112121) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707765)

And that's a solution that solves the grandparent's problems, specifically that cable modems really aren't that fast - not when compared to enterprise bandwidth. But there's still huge demand for off-site storage for enterprise in the cloud.

At Rackspace Email, we use Amazon S3 for data backup (link to blog [rackspace.com] ). Depending on what step you're at in an email's life, and whether or not you count raid, we've got between "a few" and "a bunch" of copies of your email in our datacenters; but just in case, we also ship it off to Amazon (with an eventual consistency model) so that if something happens to our stuff, or you delete it accidentally, or whatever, we can pull it from S3. It takes a while to pull a 5GB mailbox from Amazon, but it's not that long - not when you've got enterprise pipes.

I think it's really a question of a ratio of data to bandwidth. The internet, you see, is not a big truck, it's a series of tubes. If you dump data onto it over time, expecting to be able to retrieve it instantly, you're going to have a bad day when you find out those tubes aren't big enough for your horse racing bets. Where was I going with this?

I dunno, there should be some sort of maxim; something along the lines of "you shouldn't store more information in the cloud than you can pull down in 24h given your current bandwidth". Or else, you're going to have an unsatisfactory experience.

On the other hand, there are plenty of times that even end-user consumers should investigate cloud storage. Jungle Disk (full disclosure: rackspace acquired JD) is a little piece of software that interfaces between an end user and either S3 or rackspace cloud files, and in windows, just adds a drive letter to your "My Computer" where you can dump files to the Cloud. For a couple of bucks, you can store (for example) a reasonable MP3 collection.

Whatever, this whole article seems to be a troll. There's definitely a huge demand for Cloud services, and SaaS in general. It's growing (industry-wide) by leaps and bounds. See the state of the cloud [jackofallclouds.com] for more info.

Re:Amazon already addressed ths problem (1)

adolf (21054) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707955)

Well...maybe. As a consumer, I don't care if it takes a few days to get my data back.

If my house burns down and I lose a terabyte of pr0n, I'll have enough other problems to worry about while I wait for a download to finish up or for a metaphorical station wagon full of tapes to arrive.

Meanwhile, though, S3's storage is pretty expensive for that sort of data on a consumer level, at $150 per month for 1TB of storage. For those prices, on any sort of lengthy term, I can easily justify the time and expense of putting together my own network backup solution (parking a cheap NAS box over at a friend's house, for instance), and still have enough cash left over to build a second one so that the same friend can back his stuff up to a NAS box at my house.

Re:Amazon already addressed ths problem (1)

upuv (1201447) | more than 4 years ago | (#29708175)

So I've gone to the trouble of putting my business data on a drive ready to ship to Amazon. AKA it's a backup now.

Why don't I just ship the drive to a physical storage facility that I pay next to nothing for? Why do I need this in the cloud?

If my "shop" burns down, aka local disaster, I've got issues that are going to be higher priority than having access to my 3 week old data now. Cause there is zero chance Amazon's cloud is going to have an updated copy of my hard drive on-line over night.

Yah I need to have my core business data handy. VERY handy. A local backup is the way to go. The best strategy is to have local corp agents have encrypted copies of it on their laptops. This can be completely automatted with a simple script. The automation rules out most of the human screwups and laziness.

So I got core business at my finger tips. I have my legacy data in storage. I'm set.

Cause once you have to start shipping drives around the data on it is legacy. And there are cheaper ways of handling legacy data.

Cloud computing providers (5, Funny)

jamesl (106902) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706633)

Boeing and Airbus are the worlds largest suppliers of cloud computing and have proven to be very reliable. Crashes are infrequent and while they can be disasterous for those directly involved they are a very small fraction of all customers. Generally replacements are on line the next day.

Other than the name "cloud" what's new? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29706653)

Haven't people rented server space for over a decade now? As for backup... One at home, one on your briefcase, and one in a remote location makes sense to me. If you trust the rented server... use it, but don't count on it.

Not Really, Henry (1)

Jawn98685 (687784) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706667)

Granted, if one has in production a data store of 1PB, and is relying on cloud storage as the backup medium, a restore of that 1PB of data will take a frightfully long time in a DR scenario. Not that there aren't many, many shops with that much data (and more) in use every day, but I'd suggest that they are the exception. I know we are. We deal with less than a TB in live production data, at most. Much of that we could live without while it is restored, because our architecture is designed with that filer-Internet-cloud network bottleneck in mind. The point is you don't have to (and shouldn't) treat cloud storage like a tape drive or a hard drive. It is something else, with certain advantages and disadvantages. To make a blanket "it sucks" statement is more than overly simplifying the issue.

Point Missed Altogether (1)

rcolbert (1631881) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706669)

I think the author is making a technical case about what is really a business matter. Most enterprises have legislative or regulatory requirements that prevent them from using the cloud. This is true here in the US (HIPPA, SarbOx, PCI-DSS, etc.), and even more true in Europe where it is a criminal offense to store certain types of data out-of-country. Companies simply must know where their data is and enforce strict controls upon it.

The article makes a few points that range from obvious to really obvious. First, backups are good. Second, offsite backups are good. The cloud isn't a big player in either from an enterprise perspective. In a traditional or legacy mode, a company backs up to tape and ships data offsite. Alternatively, some companies are using deduplication and WAN replication to move data offsite from one facility to either another facility of their own, or a 3rd party location hosting equivilent deduplication storage. The pricing and performance in the Cloud stop making sense in data measured in Gigabytes. Enterprises are surpassing hundreds of Terabytes, and moving deep into multiple Petabytes of storage. Cloud and Enterprise are at opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to storage on a security, capacity, and cost perspective.

The data center (cloud) is more reliable (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29706685)

Professionally managed redundant storage in a secure facility is more reliable than the typical home setup.

It is NOT a good idea to keep your backups with your original data. The chance of the disaster (fire, theft, water damage, etc.) that takes your data also taking your backups is greatly mitigated with offsite storage.

Hard drives fail if you are only using one drive for backup there is a not insignificant chance that some part of your backup will be damaged or have bit rot. The only way to know for sure is to restore. The only safe way to do that is with an identical machine. Otherwise you will discover your backup is bad when you test, by restoring and destroying your original.

The other problem is upload bandwidth. Surprise it takes a long time to upload a terabyte! Some simple math could have saved a lot of time. No sane person wants to have their internet connection used 100% for weeks to get that first backup.

Most current online backup companies (Carbonite, Mozy, etc.) only backup a small subset of "Important" files. This isn't a REAL backup. It is a copy of some files or as they call it a backup of important files.

What we need is the ability to do full backups quickly. We need a way to backup data without sending the data.

I think this company solved the problem and could be the Google of online backup. www.hybir.com

It isn't an exclusive or (1)

richmaine (128733) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706725)

You don't have to choose one or the other. I don't understand why so many presumably smart people here (well, ok...) pick on a problem of some backup method or other and then conclude that it is therefore not a choice. If you really care, you have multiple backup methods - not just multiple copies, but multiple methods. They then compensate for each other's weaknesses.

Well, security issues can be another matter, as having multiple methods doesn't help your security if one of them "leaks". But I'm talking about just being able to recover the data.

I use about 4 different backup methods - some regularly and some occasionally. Apple's Time machine is real handy and I have it on all the time. That's one local copy. Mozy Pro gives me something remote in case the house burns down or whatever. It also auto-runs regularly. If I'm about to do something with extra issues such as an OS upgrade, I first make sure I have a fresh full clone using SuperDuper. And files that I particularly care about I tend to have copied onto multiple machines. If any of those methods goes belly up for some reason, I've got the others. It takes three major failures (ok, only 2 if one of them is my house going) in quick sequence to loose anything - more to loose critical stuff.

For my mother-in-law, I have her set up with Mozy (free version works because she doesn't have over 2 GB of stuff that needs backup). That's because it will happen without her attention, which is really, really important. And it also happens without me having to remember to take care of it for her regularly. She doesn't have computer stuff critical enough to need much more. If Mozy goes, I'll set her up with something different. If her computer dies right around the same time as Mozy does, then she'd loose stuff, but she'd get over it.

Re:It isn't an exclusive or (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29708005)

Exactly! I use Backblaze, and it is my wife's computer that I setup with the free version of Mozy, but otherwise exactly the same scenario. I'm not _storing_ stuff in the cloud, I'm _backing up_ to the cloud. I also have a local backup, incremental on the really important and dynamic stuff and of course - d'uh, the actual version on my machine. If I lose absolutely everything (house fire), Backblaze will ship me a big hard drive full of my data. If Backblaze suddenly crashes and burns I still have all of my data and backups. Sure Backblaze could fold at the same moment that my house burns down in some freak coincidence, but the same could be said about _any_ backup strategy.

Yes, I could just get some more drives and store them offsite, but let's face it - that is enough of a hassle that my backup would never be terribly current, while Backblaze is backing up my new data constantly.

Thinking differently (1)

paulhar (652995) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706737)

If the data is processed and lives in the cloud then bandwidth is no longer a major issue. As an example:

In one world you could have the Exchange servers backups pushed out to a cloud provider. This would result in many hours to get the data out there, and the challenge of restoring it in the event of a problem. As the OP indicated.

Or...

Push the Exchange server and it's data into a "cloud" provider. Now the clients access the data from the Exchange server in the "cloud" and the "cloud" provider provides DR copies of that data at their network bandwidth to their correctly managed data centers. The cloud provider could manage that Exchange server on your behalf or just provide the infrastructure.

Now when some disaster strikes the DR is performed in the "cloud", at local speeds.

I.e. Why have any local services at all? [assuming security is covered elsewhere... a traditional challenge that exists even in internal datacentres where the local internal admin can access data they shouldn't be able to and backups they shouldn't be able to]

If you're using your applications entirely in the cloud suddenly it all looks a bit of a different problem. How do I get my apps into the cloud, how do I move my apps between cloud providers, how do I ensure my cloud provider is delivering an SLA that is appropriate for my business.

So...who is pushing cloud computing? (1)

MpVpRb (1423381) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706747)

Cloud computing looks like a technology that users really don't want or need.

It's promoted by those eager to turn a one time purchase into a revenue stream. From the seller's point of view, would you rather sell a $100 hard drive, or a $29.95 a month service.

It's supported by the same "hive-mind" of pundits who thought pen-based computing was the next big thing.

Users want control, freedom and low cost.

The "weasels" want a locked-in, never ending, revenue stream.

Re:So...who is pushing cloud computing? (1)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707137)

Really? How did I end up with an S3 account then? I guess Jeff must have slipped something in my coke when I wasn't looking.

My current backup there costs me about 10 cents per month. It includes almost everything I did in college, as well as my current programming and other projects, sans the final renders of stuff. I'm planning to go through my photo collection to pick up the good ones (burst mode is great, but results in many more mostly redundant photos to wade through) and when I upload those, I'm still expecting to pay less than 50 cents per month.

Now, if I were to buy an external hard drive for this purpose, let alone a tape drive, I'd be out of at least 80 bucks while using less than 10% of the capacity. While I could fill the rest of the drive with porn and warezed movies, this wouldn't change the calculations significantly as thous things don't have that much value to me, and can be easily replaced anyway. And even if I spread the costs over the five year life of the drive, it's still more expensive than S3. I also expect that Amazon will lower prices with time, while I'd be still out of the (more valuable) $80 I for the drive.

iDisk is a testament to that... (1)

herojig (1625143) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706763)

iDisk is a testament to that...I've been waiting for months to sync a few measly gigs of data using that $99 service.

DRBD - the author did it wrong (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29706779)

"the author spent three months replicating 1TB of home data via cable modem to an online backup service."

What a waste of time and effort. There's a simpler way, but it depends on your provider.

All the author had to do was to set up DRBD on his VM. DRBD supports "truck mode" (as in never underestimate the bandwidth of a truck full of tapes - or USB keys, for you young ones).

Just have the cloud provider set up a USB key, and sync it up with DRBD. Then have the cloud provider Fed-Ex the USB key. Amazon will do this; I don't know about other providers. Once you have the USB key, just sync it back up with DRBD.

I absolutely amazes me of all the bright people who are using cloud services (including PhD's doing research) overlook this simple method.

Save your bandwidth for the updates. Do the heavy lifting with the tools that are out there.

Individuals' Solutions are Simple (2, Insightful)

coaxial (28297) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706789)

Just buy an 2TB drive and stick in a drawer at work.

I have a friend that signed up for some cloud storage backup and spent months backing up his less than a terabyte. Such a sucker.

Bad implementation, not bad technology. (1)

asdf7890 (1518587) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706833)

We have our backups offsite too. On externally hosted servers that we directly control in a heavily security vetted DC (some of our clients are banks who would demand nothing less even though the backups in question contain non of their operation data aside from emails containing project/spec/contract documents and such) rather than a "cloud" arrangement, but it would still take quite some time to draw the whole lot down over the connection we currently have.

But that isn't a problem because this has been planned for. There are many options to help out here:

  • Obviously we could find a better connection to download the data through (my home link is much better than the office link, thanks to geography) - if that office complex burns down then its connection is not going to be part of our set of problems
  • Most of the backup payload is not anything we are likely to need access to that day. While this doesn't reduce the time taken to get all of it back to local storage it does mean that day-to-day operations can restart very quickly and if something from the archives is needed before they are entirely brought down we have per-file access to the backups so people can grab groups of urgent files manually.
  • There is also another not-very-regularly-updated-but-non-the-less-it-exists offsite backup on external drives. Assuming that isn't in the office being updated at the time the office burns down, that would be most useful - we could update it form the "real" offsite backup using the wonderful rsync protocol to just transfer changes since it was last updated.

Really, if restoring from your backups is a major problem then you didn't plan your backup strategy well. And you probably didn't ever do a test restore before now either (otherwise you'd be prepared for the time/hassle rather than it surprising you) which earns you a "serves your right" slap on the wrists - a backup procedure that does not have a tested restore procedure is insufficient.

DG:women Handbag & man long T-shirt (-1, Offtopic)

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Use all the options! (1)

volsung (378) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706893)

I don't see this as an either/or proposition. Backing up protects you from data loss, which comes in many forms:

* Sudden hardware or software failure
* Silent hardware/software failure (or user failure) resulting in corruption you only discover later
* Theft/fire/natural disaster

At the same time you want:
* Easy backup procedure (if it is too hard, you won't do it)
* Fast restore procedure

A sensible backup plan needs to address all of these needs. Incremental tape backups with rotation to an offsite vault is one option which covers most of these things, but isn't particularly easy or automated. RAID is very easy and convenient, but only covers a very narrow range of hardware failures. (If you listen closely, you can hear the screams in the distance of a RAID user who just lost data to software-induced filesystem corruption. Hence the mantra "RAID is not backup.")

Network (blah, blah, "cloud," blah) backup services are a great option for cheap offsite backup that is extremely convenient and continuous. But you should supplement it with some kind of local, fast backup as well. That way you can recover quickly from hard drive failure and corrupted filesystems, but still have a Plan B if your house floods. (Or if you local backup turns out not to be broken when you need it!) Moreover, many network backup services will mail a hard drives for a fee if disaster strikes and you need to restore everything.

In my case, I use CrashPlan and Time Machine to do this. CrashPlan backs up changed files every 15 minutes to several offsite locations. I also plug a Time Machine disk into my laptop periodically to make a local snapshot. Restoration is quick in the common case, but I also have coverage for extraordinary events as well as backups when I travel without my external disk.

Best effort or real solution ?? (1)

Archfeld (6757) | more than 4 years ago | (#29706991)

How long will your choice of media last even in the pitch dark ? If the data is really worth backing up it is worth restoring from on a regular basis to check for validity. Even long term storage media like mainframe tape only warrants for 12 months and then you need a re-write to 'clean' media. Most businesses satisfy themselves with a 'best-effort' and then just live with the loss. Only those places mandated by strict law or those with a huge potential financial loss ever really deal with the situation.

The Cloud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29707019)

...was a great hustle we all coulda got it in on w/ eyeOS

Microsoft........Danger?! (1)

segedunum (883035) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707021)

That really is a damn unfortunate name for a company, or a subsidiary. I had to read the article carefully to confirm that wasn't a joke.

Microsoft = Shit! (1)

curmudgeon99 (1040054) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707159)

Though I am not an owner of a Sidekick, this is just another in a long line of screwups and bad software by Microsoft.

Re:Microsoft = Shit! (1)

cryfreedomlove (929828) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707321)

Though I am not an owner of a Sidekick, this is just another in a long line of screwups and bad software by Microsoft.

Then why do so many free people make a voluntary choice to purchase Microsoft products?

Re:Microsoft = Shit! (0, Flamebait)

curmudgeon99 (1040054) | more than 4 years ago | (#29708189)

They think it's the safe choice--deluded fools! Personally, the last time I made that choice was 1998. They just have such a long track record of screwing stuff up. My company just switched all developers to Macs, by the way. Eventually, everybody will have gotten the message that Smart People Don't Choose Microsoft...

Clouds will improve (1)

presidenteloco (659168) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707319)

Many people here sound like the "that horseless carriage is useless" crowd.

Fiber to the endpoint or near the endpoint, with ridiculously high speed wireless for the rest,
will increase. This may be driven by IPTV, who knows, but it is inevitable.

Clouds will become more sophisticated.

They will not be reliant on any single point of failure. Many cloudy infrastructures (like Google)
are already pretty good at that. Much better than your crappy single backup hard-drive.

With luck, clouds will become a layer (stratus?) independent of single hosting companies. Moving clouds.

You can stick with your buggywhips if it will make you feel better.

Poor...Poor naming choice (1)

funehmon (648132) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707381)

Anyone thinking that the people at "Danger" are rethinking their decision on a company name?

Frys had 1 TB external for around $80 (1)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707399)

It was an email special. When drive space is that cheap you can have complete redundant backups and store one off site.

I don't see a problem with using a cloud storage provider for redundant off site backup. At least you'd have the data, even if it took a week to restore. If you could prioritize the restore, important and active customers first, everything else later, that might not be all that bad.

Why didn't he see this coming? (1)

dangitman (862676) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707449)

After all, you're buying a service from a company called Microsoft/Danger. What could possibly go wrong?

Mozy & Carbonite (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707483)

We use both Mozy and Carbonite in our home.

Carbonite has the benefit of backing everything up in real time (a 10 minute delay anyway).

Mozy has the benefit of speed, they backup 10 times as fast as Carbonite.

We use Carbonite to backup our family photos, music collection, documents, etc.

Mozy backs up everything, it took 3 months to backup 4TB of data, but it did the job. Carbonite would take several years to do it because they slow down the more you backup.

The downside to both of course is that if we ever had to restore the data, it would take forever. The upside is that most of that data is not needed quickly. The stuff that would be needed right away could be gotten in a few hours.

It would be nice if either service offered the option to run a backup on DVD-R and mail it to them, then do updates online. However I don't think either service was really meant for 4TB backups for $50/year, even if they do say "unlimited". :)

Home backup, versus COLO backup (1)

physburn (1095481) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707507)

For home backup, i can't see anything, being better than keeping a spare hard drive somewhere. You can even get USB plugable box so no excusses for lamers. If you COLOing or have a dedicated server the question is, do you pay for a backup box at your hosting provider or do you backup to another remote location. For COLOs you've got a lot more bandwidth than a home user. My 4GB/s provider, means that the example 1TB restore would only take about 40 minutes, which is easy. And if the backup storage is $10 per month versus $100 more a spare box at your hosting provider you can see it makes sense for the cloud storage solution.

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Cloud Computing [feeddistiller.com] Feed @ Feed Distiller [feeddistiller.com]

T-Mobile Sidekick Press Release (2, Funny)

mr_lizard13 (882373) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707601)

All your data are lost by us.

YUO FA1L IT! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29707635)

is inRgesting [goat.cx]

My argument against cloud storage: Bell is my ISP (2, Interesting)

Interoperable (1651953) | more than 4 years ago | (#29707677)

They charge $2.50/GB if you go over your monthly transfer limit. If I lost my data and needed to replace it quickly (assuming I for some reason chose to back up multimedia in the cloud and then suddenly needed all my DVDs at once) it would cost considerably more than buying a highly redundant RAID array.

All your data belongs (2, Funny)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 4 years ago | (#29708103)

to anyone who can out code MS...
From modem using UFO hunters to Russians with adsl, to grandmas with FTTH.
MS failed with your desktop, failed with the net, failed in London, and now you want to trust them with your personal data on the net ???
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