Local Storage Versus Cloud Storage.. Which Is Better?

The decision on where to store files, photos, music and videos is always personal. This may seem an obvious statement (and also a decision), but it is not.

Having everything on hand, as well as on a hard drive? Play all services in the cloud storage ? You cannot say that one way is better than another (even because, in the end, everything will be on a HD, right? Whether your or third parties). How can we point out the differences between each model?

Let’s start by physical storage, “at home”. It has a price. The investment to be made depends on how many people will need the space, if more than one user, or how much space you need to store your digital files. An external hard drive with good capacity may be sufficient, but you may need a server or a NAS. And the value of each of these devices is quite different.

Physical storage can be the choice for those who do not have “100% confidence” in third party services or afraid to let their information be administered by others. The responsibility is entirely on the data user, as well as maintaining backup and recovery systems of such data. It is also good to remember to keep the hard drives out of the sun light or excessive heat, do not get it wet, do not drop it on the floor and care about other basic manipulation.

Advantages of guaranteed privacy (especially if you keep it in a safe place and adopt tools protection such as passwords and encryption, for example) and speed in accessing data, both for download as upload, thanks to the USB interface.

Another positive thing is – if an external disk is enough – it can be taken with your files and you can access them at meetings, travel and dinners at the homes of friends without using the internet or anyone typing your password in a browser obviously. Or without the risk of losing USB sticks along the way.

Storage in the cloud is usually much cheaper, but not free. Some of the services simplify – a lot of – the lives of users of certain products, such as iCloud, Apple, just to name one example.

It is much easier to share files with others or access data from anywhere in the world that has a high-speed connection with Internet, regardless of operating system used. The cloud works 24 × 7. But you will totally depend on this connection.

If it is slow, or is saturated with users, you will not be able to load a simple picture, hear a song or tinker with an important presentation (plain text files are not usually the problem).

Interruptions in global networks, problems with satellites, solar flares and other factors can also interrupt Internet availability – and with it, access to your stuff.

At places, like here in India, where there is discrepancy between the download and upload speeds, may account for a few hours of your time to post a video in high definition or send it to someone.

Additional advantages of the cloud, requires no purchase or installation of equipment, or even care about the environment; comes with its own systems, backup and recovery, and the user need not think about it, the upgrade of software services is automatic and transparent to the user, in most cases.

Generally, your data is being well looked after by provider of cloud services. You just need to be aware of the movements of the market and the company, to find out, at what time you need to migrate your files to another service (as it happened with Flickr users, for example).

If you search advice about which model to adopt, the answer must come from yourself. What are your needs? If you ask someone who adopts the motto “safe than sorry”, his answer would probably be: adopt a hybrid model. A little local storage and a bit of cloud storage does not hurt anyone – and always worth remembering that no matter how “cloud service” is used.


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