There has been a generational shift since cloud computing / storage / applications appeared on the IT roadmap. Cloud storage has 3 characteristics. To begin with, the storage service must be over a network. The storage pool should then allow easy scalability without downtime. Last but not least, the storage pool should be easy to manage, especially when scaled.

Cloud storage is a normal extension of software as a service, and online applications such as SalesForce and cloud computing have become very popular due to initiatives by Google, Amazon, and VMware. Wikipedia has defined the architecture of cloud computing as follows:

“The architecture behind cloud computing is a massive network of interconnected ‘cloud servers’ as in a network running in parallel, sometimes using virtualization technique to maximize utilization of the computing power available by server”.

With the advent of Amazon S3, the concept of the cloud was migrated to a storage function. In a cloud storage scenario, many basic hardware devices are combined using software to create a storage pool.

Therefore, cloud storage is not just a storage rental available online. It’s more about architecture, performance, and scaling where you add standard hardware from your preferred commodity storage provider and get shared access over a standard network.

Cloud storage is loosely coupled and nodes do not need to communicate with each other to make it easier for supercomputers to write in parallel to the same file spread across multiple nodes. Being loosely coupled allows good performance for multiple copies of a single file on multiple nodes or multiple files and offers great scalability.

Wondering what good examples are for filling cloud solutions? Well, some of the good examples of cloud storage include file archiving, digital content distribution and service, media streaming or backup, video surveillance, and file storage.

Cloud storage is here to stay and it certainly holds great promise in times of a recessionary economy where corporations can buy gigabytes of storage at a time as opposed to full systems and yet reap the full benefits of the latest technology.