Cloud vs External Drives

Discussion in Software PC & Mac started by Peninha • Feb 28, 2014.

  1. Peninha

    PeninhaWell-Known Member

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    Space cloud is cheaper than ever and some operators even offer large spaces for free. Do you think it's still worth it to have an external drive or can we put all our stuff in a free cloud?
     
  2. pahagwl

    pahagwlActive Member

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    Even though, storage on the cloud is becoming more popular and cheaper, I still would not recommend to be completely dependent on cloud for your storage needs. This is due to the reason that you can access your data on the cloud only through an internet connection. It is not possible to have a fast internet connection at your disposal everywhere. And also the reliability of the cloud services are also important. So, i would recommend everyone to store their important data on an external hdd.
     
  3. Denis Hard

    Denis HardWell-Known Member

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    I'd settle for an external HDD anytime. That's because I'd hate to upload large media files to the net and have to re-download them when I need to watch a movie or listen to the music. I could only use cloud storage as back-up.
     
  4. Peninha

    PeninhaWell-Known Member

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    Those are good points, we need an internet connection to access the cloud and the upload/download times are much higher than with and HDD. I've replaced my pen drives though, for relatively small files I put everything in the cloud.
     
  5. delusional

    delusionalActive Member

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    I use both. I have several external drives that I use to store large files. I also use cloud storage services to store documents and other small files. I especially like the versioning support of Dropbox.
     
  6. DrRipley

    DrRipleyExpert

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    Yes, I think there will always be a need for external or physical hard drives, even as cloud based storage becomes more and more efficient. The main reason being that internet still isn't available everywhere you go, and even if it were so, I think it's much safer to keep our files where we can physically take care of them as opposed to giving the responsibility to a company that we never know what will happen to years down the line. That said, cloud services certainly does still have its uses, and I personally just store all my secondary files there, by which I mean files that take up a lot of space on my computer and drives but I really wouldn't be too sad if they are suddenly gone.
     
  7. Peninha

    PeninhaWell-Known Member

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    Yes, the more I read and think about this thread I am coming to the conclusion that they are complementary services and not concurrent ones and the prove of this is that almost everyone has a cloud space and a external drive and we use it for different purposes. Cloud space is gaining ground I think though.
     
  8. rossonomous

    rossonomousActive Member

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    At work we use both systems. External drives which are taken out of the office and cloud drives for easier access.

    Although cloud storage is popular, it's still good to be able top have a physical hand on important data too.
     
  9. Peninha

    PeninhaWell-Known Member

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    What do you mean external drives taken out of the office? You can borrow the drives from there?

    I have an external drive loaded with photos, movies and songs that is connected to my TV, hours of entertaining just sitting there waiting for my click. :)
     
  10. ghostwheel

    ghostwheelMember

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    I'm seeing a trend towards professionals using cloud based services and I think, once set up, it offers a rather convenient way to access and store files from anywhere.

    I would however, only keep the most important of documents into multiple external drives (ie. company financial records etc), generally due to privacy and security reasons.
     
  11. Peninha

    PeninhaWell-Known Member

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    Privacy is a big issue that is true and as for professional uses you are right, it's much more convenient to have everything in a cloud or server rather than to have to carry and insert disks, it's rare to see that these days. Don't know about the cloud though, depending on the companies they will prefer to have everything on secure private servers.
     
  12. Guru

    GuruMember

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    Don't put all your eggs in one basket. Store your most important files on both local storage disks and cloud services. Have some files on a disc, USB, two computers and two cloud services to be extra safe. This is the procedure I use for my most valuable data.
     
  13. Peninha

    PeninhaWell-Known Member

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    I do that as well with my most valuable data, which in my case are just my pictures starting back in 2007, I have them both in my laptop and in my external drive, but that's pretty much it, I am a believer regarding all other information lol. I feel safer though, because those pictures are really irreplaceable.
     
  14. firestarian

    firestarianMember

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    I believe I will always prefer external hard drives, they are just more reliable to me. If I am somewhere with a bad internet connection, downloading or streaming a file would be impossible. However with a external drive I can be good anywhere, I keep a 500GB drive loaded with classic movies for a rainy day without internet connection. I use Dropbox for some files I need to be able to access everywhere, such as a copy of my banking information, photocopies of my license and such. It is handy to be able to pull it up on my phone anywhere.
     
  15. Eagle910

    Eagle910Active Member

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    Cloud storage is dependent on an internet connection. Not to mention the privacy issues that come along with storing your files on someone else servers. I prefer external hard drives. that way my files are available to me at all times. No internet connection needed. External hard drives also keep my files safe, and sound in my possession.
     
  16. Guru

    GuruMember

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    Most reliable services like Dropbox will keep your files secure and they always take backups of your files. I feel safer with my files in their possession than mine. Hard drives don't last forever, and they could easily gets lost, broken or stolen. Have both.
     
  17. Peninha

    PeninhaWell-Known Member

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    Yes, that is true too, as long as the dropbox file is synchronized you don't need to access the net to access the files. A lot of bad things can happen, so having both services is better and they do have distinct purposes in a way, but both make our lives easier.
     
  18. Oakster

    OaksterActive Member

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    But isn't that what synchronizing is? The server downloading a version to your machine so that you can run it? I think if you have very large files in the cloud you will notice longer synchronization times, which would make sense in that case.
    I prefer an external drive for larger files, I always download them at home anyway so I don't need to access them anywhere else, for smaller files that I might need at work, I'll use a cloud service rather than a thumb drive though...
     
  19. Peninha

    PeninhaWell-Known Member

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    I meant, imagine you upload a file at work and you need to access it at home, you need the internet at home to synchronize the file or else you will only have the previous version of it, you won't be able to access dropbox server to get that file.
     
  20. crimsonghost747

    crimsonghost747Active Member

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    I will always have a harddrive. Always. While a cloud might seem appropriate, there are always things that can go wrong. With an external harddrive... apart from your house burning down, it should always be fine. Also you can be sure that your info is safe and that no one has access to it. Last but not the least, you can access everything you need even if you aren't connected to the internet.
     
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