Understanding Cloud Storage Fundamentals

The design of cloud storage is very similar to other cloud architectures in terms of self-service, elasticity, and scalability. Cloud storage is a technique of abstracting storage with a well-defined interface so it can be managed in a self-service manner. In addition, cloud storage needs to support a multi-tenant architecture so that each consumer’s cloud data is managed in isolation from other consumer’s cloud data. One of the most important characteristics of cloud storage is how it can dynamically interface with other cloud services such as SaaS, PaaS, IaaS, and BPaaS.

It is not new to think about attaching storage to systems — it has been done since the first systems rolled off the assembly line. Today, most storage environments are connected with systems through a standard interface called SCSI (Small Computer Systems Interface). SCSI is a very mature protocol that is widely adopted because of its reliability and performance.

Four key fundamentals of cloud storage — access protocols, usage scenarios, functions, and benefits — are addressed below:

Cloud storage access protocols

One important issue in cloud storage is the speed and ease of accessing the data when it’s needed. In order for cloud storage to be a viable alternative to on-premises data storage, you need to be able to access your data at a competitive cost and at a time that is appropriate for the situation. Today, there are four types of cloud storage access methods:

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