Cloud Computing – What Is It

Article Posted in the Florida Bar’s Family Law Section Monthly Newsletter
December 2011 Edition
by Susan Hilliard Gibson, Webmaster & Writer

Cloud computing very simply said is a way of delivering IT Services without the rigid boundaries of a normal IT infrastructure.

How is it done?

  • Through Cloud Storage

Cloud infrastructures can easily scale up the number of virtual instances, because they are all independent.

Cloud storage is basically an online storage area. Dropbox.com is an example of a cloud app at work, also Google apps such as docs, calendars, etc… that’s the cloud or SAAS (Software As A Service, (ie) off the desktop and accessible anywhere through the Internet).

Some other examples of cloud storage setups are Apples iCloud, Microsoft Private Cloud, Cloud Vextex, IBM Cloud Computing, HP Cloud, Rackspace Cloud computing, Symantec Cloud, Box.net or Amazon S3 (Amazon Simple Storage Service) . A lot of cloud storage setups use the Amazon cloud storage infrastructure as their backbone. It provides fully redundant data storage infrastructure that can be accessed at anytime from any location using their Internet connections. You can store and retrieve data from the cloud.

Once an Internet protocol connection is established among several computers, it is possible to share services with anyone in the cloud.

A typical IT infrastructure keeps all the servers, apps, and data storage backups in their local data center. When a company uses cloud computing all of their data and apps are stored within the cloud thus allowing more flexibility and allowing them to access their documents and apps from any location through the Internet. Multiple individuals can share and work on apps, documents together within the cloud.

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