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NAS (Network-Attached Storage)

Network-Attached Storage is a data storage system that is connected to a computer network via a dedicated hardware device (NAS device) whose main purpose is file sharing. NAS devices operate as basic file servers in that they store and serve files to the users. Some even offer basic client authentication and file management services. However, they typically don't offer any of the services normally found in a server-centric system such as print, email or database services. They are a convenient method of sharing files among multiple computers. Since NAS devices are designed specifically for network storage they normally contain multiple hard drives configured as RAID, making them easier and cheaper to maintain than a file server.

Cloud Storage

Cloud storage is a method of saving data, via the internet, to a remote database that is maintained and managed by a third party storage service. In its simplest form cloud storage allows users to upload files and folders stored on their computers to a central internet server located on the cloud storage service. This allows users to have an off-site backup of their files and also allows them to access the files from any location via the internet. Users also have the ability to download their files to other devices and even sync data across multiple devices.

Individuals and small businesses can best utilize cloud storage services to store and share relatively small amounts of data between a few users or devices.

Why are External Backups Important?

Computers are an essential aspect of our lives and our businesses. We depend on their reliability to keep our businesses going and to complete day to day personal tasks. This is why backing up data is vital. Lost information can not only be a huge inconvenience but it can cause a major crisis or worse, lead to business failure.

While the fault tolerance provided by RAID configurations provides a fail-safe against hardware failure, they don't provide protection against viruses, malware, accidental deletion, theft, accidents or natural disasters. Regular backups can help protect your valuable data in these events. But where you back up your data is just as important as how you back it up. Hence an off-site or external backup method is always recommended alongside any network storage solution.

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