A dilemma faced by so many individuals and small businesses …Should I rely on my computer’s hard drive? Is an external hard drive for backup purposes necessary? Or should I shift all my data to the cloud? Maybe I should do both?

The good news is that you are asking the question! Make sure your data is backed up …. Hoping things will “just work” is wishful thinking and will bite you someday. Whether you have a terabyte worth of vacation photos or a host of sensitive documents sitting on your computer, you want to keep your data safe, secure and accessible. A big part of achieving these goals is choosing where your data will live.

Let’s discuss the pros and cons of having your data stored on a physical hard drive:

  • Pro’s
    No ongoing costs
    Relatively fast
  • Con’s
    It will eventually fail
    Has to be constantly connected
    Can be easily lost

Let’s look at the pros and cons of cloud storage and what this means for your website:

  • Pro’s
    Access data anywhere on any smart device
    • Frees up IT resources to focus on the core competency of the business
    Up to date – Lets you work with the most current hardware and Operating Systems
  • Con’s
    Unmonitored Access to Data: The relatively open access to data that the cloud offers and the subsequent ease of transfer of this data makes it difficult for an organisation to monitor business data
    Size limitations. Depending on bandwidth availability, every organisation will have a threshold for the most reasonable capacity of data that can be transferred daily to the cloud. These limitations will have an impact on backup strategies
    Internet Connection. Cloud-based storage requires an internet connection and performance is tied to internet bandwidth. If service is disrupted, your employees are potentially idled until the problem can be rectified.


So, which do you choose?

We recommend going with a cloud backup solution coupled with an external hard drive. This is your best bet for always having your data on hand and for getting fast recovery if there is an issue. Just make sure that you are actually performing backups. Also … make sure to check periodically that the backups are actually working!

(source: bigdata-madesimple pioneer-solutions)