The ultimate guide to cloud-based file sharing
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Because cloud technology changes and evolves so quickly -- and has so many acronyms -- it can be tough for IT administrators to keep up with new cloud file-sharing definitions.
More and more employees are using cloud-file sharing services for work, so IT, vendors and marketers are responding in kind with new tools, such as IDaaS, SaaS and EUC platforms. If you've never heard of those terms or you don't know the difference between SoMoClo and SoLoMo, you're not alone. Check out these cloud file-sharing definitions to start sorting things out.
Identity as a Service is a kind of single sign-on for the cloud. It's an authentication infrastructure that a third-party service provider builds, hosts and manages. Usually, companies buy IDaaS as a subscription service. For an additional fee, cloud file-sharing service providers sometimes also host apps and give subscribers role-based access to certain apps or virtual desktops through a secure portal.
Vendors use the term "end user computing" platform to explain to customers how and why businesses should bring desktop and application services together. EUC platforms deliver services in a way that leaves users unaware of whether the service is managed locally or in the cloud.
Software that runs on a remote Web server -- as opposed to on a mobile device, PC or an on-premises server -- is known as "cloudware." Using this delivery model lets users subscribe to an app instead of buying it, so employees will always have the most recent version of that application.
Cloud storage is a service model where data is managed, backed up remotely and delivered to users over the Internet. There are three main types of cloud storage models: public, private and hybrid.
When several organizations with common computing interests -- such as regulatory compliance and performance requirements -- share a multi-tenant infrastructure, it's known as a "community cloud." Such clouds let organizations reap the benefits of the public cloud, but with the added privacy and security of a private cloud. Participating businesses can administer the community cloud, or choose to leave that up to a third-party managed service provider.
"Bring your own app" is the name given to employees' use of cloud services and third-party applications in the enterprise. Employees bring their own devices to work, so it's only natural that they also would bring their own applications. Allowing BYOA can increase employee productivity and satisfaction, but when consumer technology accesses the corporate network and stores company data outside the data center, it raises security concerns. If an employee loses his device or it's stolen, administrators can wipe it. But if that user has stored data in the cloud, the options are very limited for protecting that data from theft or breach of the cloud environment.
The amalgam of 'social," "mobile" and "cloud" technologies, SoMoClo allows users to access their data and applications anytime and from anywhere. For IT, SoMoClo is an employee-driven movement that means data and apps can live almost anywhere, can be accessed from limitless endpoints and can be shared easily.
Not to be confused with SoMoClo, SoLoMo is the convergence of "social collaboration," "location" and "mobile" technologies, and is something that marketers commonly use. SoLoMo applications let advertisers -- such as Foursquare, AroundMe and Yelp -- push notifications to customers who are physically nearby, using gamification to keep potential customers engaged. SoLoMo is also emerging in search engines as a way to give users location-based results.
Software as a Service is a software distribution model where vendors or service providers host applications and make them available to customers over the Web. There are two general kinds of SaaS. In the hosted application-management model, a provider hosts commercially available software and delivers it over the Internet. In the software on-demand model, the provider offers customers Internet access to one copy of an app that was created for SaaS distribution. Saas simplifies administration, patching and application version management for IT pros.
A hybrid cloud is composed of at least one public cloud and at least one private cloud. A hybrid cloud is a cloud environment through which an organization offers and manages some resources internally and contracts others from external providers. For example, a company might use a public cloud service to archive data, but still use an on-premises storage system for customer data.