Cloud storage: features of services and the correct order of use

The technological capabilities of modern computers and mobile devices have long exceeded all imaginable and unimaginable dreams of the inhabitants of past years, as well as the “appetite” of these users, which every year everything grows and grows. Now there are few who can be surprised with a $ 1000 smartphone that has a “stuffing” no worse than most modern computers. Some 10 years ago, computers with a 500 GB hard drive were considered almost luxury elements, not to mention 1 TB or the first variations of SSD drives. And now these 10 years have passed, and ordinary USB flash drives with the same terabyte “on board” or smartphones with 256 GB of internal memory go on sale. But has this amount and other “charms” of modern technology become enough? Of course not! Inquiries are growing, demand is not falling, despite all the financial crises, but perhaps this is for the better, since it is demand that creates supply. And as many analysts say, “Trade is the engine of technological progress.”

Recommendations for the use of cloud storage.

So, such an eyeliner was given not just for the "red word". Within the framework of this article, services that are meant to “satisfy hunger” regarding the lack of free space on hard drives of computers and mobile devices, called “cloud storages”, and in everyday life called “Cloud” are subject to analysis. What are their benefits, is it safe to store data there, which services to choose, and how to set up? These are all questions that will be discussed below.

Development history and features

There is no universally recognized founder of the technology under consideration, since the first makings and more or less substantive ideas dated back to the mid-20th century (1960), when Joseph Liklider essentially laid the foundations for grid computing, offering the world his vision of further development of technical progress . Liclayder is often referred to as the founder, who sowed the seeds of the emergence of the modern Internet. Other experts prefer computer science to John McCarthy, who at about the same time period (1961) suggested that computer technology could and should in the future come to a “communal distribution (sale) system”, which was cool in those years until the beginning of the 21st century. Of course, in the future, various ideas and developments repeatedly sounded, but they only sounded without suggesting specifics.

This changed with the founding of Salesforce, founded in 1999 to implement many interesting projects, including the distribution of CRM systems exclusively by subscription, excluding the actual installation of software on the computers of the end user. Such a computing system is called “SaaS”, that is, software as a service — software as a service. This period can be considered the starting point in the development of modern cloud technologies. A more familiar to the modern user view of the "cloud market" acquired in 2002, with the release of Amazon Web Services (AWS). Then everything went wrong, since many “IT giants” wanted to get their share in such a promising market, which is still going on. The last thing worth noting in the framework of the creation history of the functional under consideration is a fairly well-formulated table, briefly, but clearly demonstrating the three-stage development of Clouds:

Stage nameDurationLecture hall
First risks2002-2011A company willing to take significant risks
Noticeable interest2010-2013Actively practicing companies, and users who have paid attention to the features of commercial projects.
Main trend2013 to the presentMost companies and ordinary users

Briefly, but, as has already been said, it is extremely clear and visual.


The essence of this technology is quite simple. Suppose that you have your own “extra” computer with 500 GB of free memory. You also have 3 more devices that badly needed free space on the physical storage device. Going on the basis of the needs of this troika, you “share” the 500 GB of the first PC that you have, bringing them to the network, but allocating a certain quota for each device, for example, 100 GB. Further principle is clear. The owner of "Clouds" unloads on the gigabytes given to him, the files that he wants to save, thereby creating a copy of them. Perhaps this example is somewhat rough and not perfect technically, but the basis of the work of cloud resources lies precisely in this, only on an incomparably large scale. The remaining technical nuances, of which there are countless, are kept (if possible) in secret, which is quite understandable, as the providers undertake to ensure the safety and complete confidentiality of everything that happens to be in their data centers.


Of course, the idea of ​​abandoning physical media and full access to secure storage from anywhere in the world (where there is Internet access) is extremely attractive, but is it really all about it? The massive use of "Clouds" has long been subjected to constant criticism by information security experts. You should not regard everything that will be said further, for paranoia and the ideas of a worldwide conspiracy, since these are only general questions that should be asked to each user before choosing one or another provider. So, the first thing you should think about is how data centers are protected. Imagine a complex of 2500 apartments, each with an area of ​​50 square meters, packed to capacity with server cabinets. No, this is not the territory of some futuristic housing complex, this is just one Apple data center. All that is transferred to the storage of Apple (and another provider), is physically on the media available in such complexes. The largest data centers are guarded not worse than the most secret military installations, and some of them are even recognized as strategically important.

The second question is who still owns the data copied to the repository. As mentioned above, all the information transferred to storage is located on the servers of the provider’s company, but whether it has the right to dispose of it. Here is the main question. For example, in the terms of use of Google Drive it is stated that “All intellectual property rights in relation to ... materials remain with their owner. Simply put, everything that was yours will remain so. ” You yourself determine who objects are available on the disk. We do not provide your files and data to third parties except in the circumstances listed in our Privacy Policy. But in this very policy there is a clause regulating the procedure for transferring your information to third parties on behalf of the company itself:

We may provide personal information to Google affiliates and other trusted companies and individuals for processing on behalf of Google. Such processing is carried out in accordance with our instructions, privacy policy and other applicable privacy and security requirements. In particular, third-party companies can provide user support.

But there are even more ambiguous provisions:

We may provide personal information that does not allow you to be identified to all users and our partners, such as publishers, advertisers, developers, and rightholders. For example, we provide this information so that users can explore the usage trends of our services. In addition, we allow individual partners to collect information from your browser or device using their own cookies and other technologies and use it to display advertising and evaluate its effectiveness. That is, taking into account all the above, it becomes clear that one way or another, but your data fall into the hands of third parties. The questions, what they do with them and whether you can be identified by them, no longer carry key importance, just the fact is enough.

These excerpts were provided not to scare you and discourage the use of the technology considered in this article, but to clarify that before trusting your personal, possibly compromising data, you should become familiar with the terms of use of the service. It is also worth understanding that ensuring the functioning of redundant centers costs enormous money. Therefore, if some service offers you free / unlimited, or “penny” access to their storage, then you need to ask yourself the question: what do they actually function for? In this matter, gratuity should only scare away.

Top 5

As mentioned earlier, there are many different resources and providers who have bothered to occupy their own niche in the "cloud market". Of all this diversity, only the top five should be distinguished, which will be discussed further. It would not be superfluous to note that the representatives of this top got there for the quality of the services they provide (as tested by time), versatility and cross-platform, “cleanliness” and security (as far as possible in the considered market of services).

Google Drive

It is worth starting with a project from Google, which has long been recognized by deserved users. Google Drive is as user-friendly as possible, supports most modern standards, and also keeps objects as close as possible to the original resolution. In addition, it is free on all platforms.


This project from a world-famous Russian company has some nice chips from the loyalty system, which distinguishes it from other competitors. A detailed list of current stocks, which are always in abundance, can be studied by following the link // The availability of a web interface and software for most modern platforms makes Yandex.Disk as versatile and convenient as possible.


The product from Microsoft has gained less popularity than the above options, which in no way affects the quality of the product itself. In the desktop version, you can fully use the capabilities of the storage without an active Internet connection, which is extremely useful for those users who experience the "constant breaks" and insufficient speed. As a solid bonus, there is an additional 1 TB for the purchase of Microsoft Office 365.


Apple took great care of their users by launching a good service for owners of equipment marked with the well-known apple. Yes, if it can be called a minus, then this service is available only as part of iOS and Mac OS, which significantly reduces the user circle. In addition, only 5 GB of free space is available.


“Dropbox” is more focused on sharing data placed on the company's servers. At the initial stage of registration, only 2 GB of free space is provided, which is extremely small considering the current requirements and needs of users. But this circumstance is more than offset by various promotions and bonuses, which allows us to increase the available volume as soon as possible. For example, each friend invited by you will bring you an additional 500 MB. So, of course, many may disagree with this top of the top 5 cloud services, presenting, for example, that the most famous incident is associated with Dropbox. In June 19, 2011, due to incorrectly configured access permissions on Amazon S3, a huge amount of confidential information was compromised.

One of the most scandalous can be called a leak of just under 200, 000, 000 personal data of American citizens. This information was collected by an analytical group on the eve of the elections. In addition, almost any resource anyway, but appears in any chronicles related to the sale or loss of personal data. Whether they are fiction is already a rhetorical question in many ways. Therefore, it is worth noting once again that before trusting your data to any resource, it is necessary to familiarize yourself with the terms of use and correctly structure / select the information transferred to them for storage.

How to register and access

A brief analysis of the main issues and nuances of registration and loading of objects is based on the example of the most popular service “Google Drive”. As already mentioned above, a key feature of the technology in question is the availability of data from anywhere in the world where there is access to the Internet. Therefore, the most optimal application of Google Drive is the synchronization of the cloud to all available devices from which or to which it is planned to load / unload information from the Vault. The most popular combination of "computer-smartphone", which should be considered further.

Registration and download

The first thing you need to work is an active account that you can register on the site “//”. After registration, go to the "Downloads" section and download the installer for all devices planned for use, for example, "For computers" and "For Android devices". The application is also available for download in Google Play and the App Store. It is possible to work fully on a computer with the service in question in the web version on the site “//”, which is the most convenient option for “everyday” requirements.


After the first launch, the user is provided with 15 GB of free space, which should be used with maximum benefit, and not download everything that is horrible. So, in order to upload a file to the repository, you need to do the following:

  1. "For the Web version":
    • Log in to your account and click on the "+" button.
    • Select “Upload Files” or “Upload Folder” and select the objects whose safety is your priority.

    • You can also pre-create the folder you need, open it and load all objects directly into it.
    • An alternative would be to simply transfer the desired file / directory using the mouse to the active browser window, where My Disk is open.
  2. "Version for PC":
    • After installation, the application icon appears in the tray.
    • Open it and enter the login and password of your account.

    • At the second stage, the application will prompt you to select folders whose contents will be automatically copied to the “repository”.

    • From now on, the entire contents of the selected folders will be automatically copied.
  3. "Version for Android":
    • Open the Google Drive app and log in.
    • Open the "My Disk" directory and click on the "+" button, which is located in the lower right corner of the screen.

    • Select the category and file / folder you need and wait for the download to complete.

Providing access

After the implementation of the above actions, everything that was placed in the "Cloud" will be available for use only for your account, which is not always required. At any time, you can make access settings and grant the right to view and download files to other users of the Google system, for this purpose (on a PC):

  • Right-click on the desired file or folder and click on “Sharing”.
  • Select the type of permissions granted, for example, editing or viewing, or access by invitation only.
  • In the "People" box, enter the email address or the name of the contact that you are opening, and click "Done" to confirm the settings made.

It should be understood that even if you delete your own file, it will continue to be available for use by reference. Therefore, for its complete destruction, you will need to open the "Trash" and delete the file directly from it.


As can be seen from the foregoing, there is nothing difficult to use the services in question. In most cases, the whole process is automated, which is very convenient and efficient. The last thing that needs to be repeated is the conscious / thoughtful use of cloud storage, which will be the best way to ensure the confidentiality of your data.