Tech Tuesday: Cloud Storage

Each Tuesday, pleasureinlearning brings you Tech Tuesday.  Come back each week for more ways to become efficient and effective in your use of technology. 

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The storage of files on the Internet is called cloud storage.  Eventually this will almost entirely replace the storage of user files on local media like the hard disk and flash drives.

You are already familiar with cloud storage if you use SkyDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox, or even Google Music.  Some organizations have “network drives” or websites that store team files. These services function similarly to personal cloud storage.  All of these services allow files to be uploaded an accessed from most Internet-connected computers.

The rise of cloud storage gives users a significant pair of advantages.

  • Files are available from any computer with an Internet connection.
  • Files are safe from local hardware failure.
  • Files are easily shared for viewing or editing.

I use cloud storage for my family budget.  I prepare the budget monthly and submit it to my husband for discussion.  On my personal computer I have software installed that automatically uploads my files to my cloud storage location.  Because my budget stored on the Internet using cloud storage, I can access it from any computer.  I can even share it with my husband so that he can access it when he is overseas for work.  I never have to worry about our budget being lost if my computer crashes because my budget is saved “in the cloud.” It’s a beautiful thing!

If you are new to cloud storage, may I recommend SkyDrive?  SkyDrive is a Microsoft service that allows you to store your files on their servers.  You can also install software on your personal computer that automatically syncs your files with the local computer.  You get 7GB of storage for free. If you purchase an Office 365 subscription it upgrades you to 27GB.  This is plenty of space for most users.

Microsoft has even integrated its Office suite.  Right in your web browser you can create or edit documents with a free stripped down version of Word, Excel or PowerPoint.  They even have a button so that you can open your document using the full version of Office on your computer.

Try it today!

If you’d like to know more, try the SkyDrive Overview.

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