You’ve seen it in marketing materials, your smartphone’s menu options, and even on social media and gaming, but why is ‘cloud’ a buzzword right now?
Cloud technology has quickly risen to prominence in internet infrastructure over recent years, and many systems use cloud-based hosting to store your most important files.
What is the Cloud?
The ‘cloud’ refers to a dynamic form of a web server that is capable of scaling to meet users’ and systems’ changing needs, on-demand.
Whereas a traditional web server is a static, unchanging platform to host files online. Cloud servers can be added-onto in terms of both size and resources to meet customer needs.
Why the Cloud is Everywhere
Cloud-based technology is built to be fast, secure, and accommodating. Since cloud infrastructure is virtual, it can be deployed over a vast amount of physical web servers in a variety of locations.
This allows for super-fast data retrieval, which is handy if you’re looking to download games, photos, movies, or other large data files over the Internet.
Common applications of Cloud hosting systems
Smartphones, including iPhones and Android-based phones, rely on cloud systems to store videos and images that won’t fit on the internal memory system.
If you regularly take high-def videos on your phone, then you can expect a prompt to move future files to a cloud storage system, saving you the hassle of making manual backups or deleting files.
Games and other software now use cloud systems to store primary files, making it more efficient for downloaders across different regions to access and use shared files.
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The cloud also applies to businesses and shared projects on the web, who rely on the ease and readiness of cloud tech to share updates to projects with multiple contributors.
Cloud hosting for websites
Another is where cloud systems are often applied is in the storage of public websites.
When you visit a website with your browser, you’re calling for files from a specific web server. Many web servers are now running on cloud-based platforms so that they can scale and meet the needs of dynamic web traffic patterns.
This is particularly useful for sites that see fluctuations in traffic or sudden spikes in visits from viral content.
Cloud-based website hosting works similarly to traditional web hosting but typically offers boosts in speed and performance, as well as different pricing structures.
Since your usage of a cloud server may vary significantly from month to month, many cloud providers charge on a per-user basis.
Aside from being fast, secure, and scalable, there are a few different reasons that cloud systems are becoming so ubiquitous.
Clouds are highly efficient because they allow for resources to be distributed as needed. This eliminates the waste of idle resources often seen in other types of more static hosting platforms.
Eliminating such waste not only reduces utility bills for cloud providers but allows machines to be utilized to their maximum potential, which helps reduce overall e-waste.
Since cloud platforms are virtualized, it is easy to build redundancy into a cloud infrastructure. One risk of any file hosting system is that files could go missing, either because of corruption due to software issues or due to natural disasters, such as flooding, sometimes at data centres.
Cloud tech mitigates this risk by making it easy to build redundant copies of each server at a different physical or even geographical locations.
Uploading files to a cloud server is no different than uploading to a traditional server, and in many cases, cloud servers are faster than competing systems.
With cloud-based technology, you can feel more secure about your file storage, easily share projects and files with others, and even store your most important personal data directly from your phone, computer, or gaming console.
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Image Credit: Rabia Elif Aksoy