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“If everyone else is jumping off a cliff, would you?” If the cloud has you weary about “making the jump”, here’s the ultimate pro and con list before making your decision to jump.

The cloud is a mystery to most. The cloud is this enigmatic, undefined idea that seems like a relatively new concept but has been around for decades. The Department of Defense was using cloud computing systems in the 1970’s, and IBM deployed data centers for cloud solutions shortly after.

Watch our video on making the move to the cloud.

Decoding the Mystery

Broken down into simplest terms, “the cloud” is a series of computers that are connected via the Internet. So why is the cloud-shrouded in so much confusion and mystery if the definition is so simple? Easy! Technology isn’t so simple. Because the computers that make up the cloud can’t be seen or touched, many questions remain for users.

The simplicity of the cloud is also the complexity of the cloud. Here’s why:

  • The computers that make up the cloud are invisible
    • Pros:
      • No machines to purchase or upgrade
      • No staff required to pay to maintain
      • No closets that must be dedicated to server storage
    • Cons:
      • Computers that can’t be seen or touched buck the traditional IT model and enter the realm of the new and unknown
      • Leaving storage and maintenance to an external resource whose credibility and expertise need to be validated

You see that the cons are actually pros, right? First, the “new and unknown” is exactly the arena you enter into with each new machine or software upgrade, new relationship, or new staff hire – whose credibility and expertise needs to be validated through a reference check. So, you see how you enter into the same process whether it’s a cloud solution or an internal resource?

Who’s the expert?

The purpose of technology is to simplify our lives, but the technology itself isn’t simple. This is why technology is best left to experts. Those with expertise in cloud solutions are knowledgeable in the areas you need, like:

  • Encryption
    • Protection of information by converting into code that can’t be accessed or processed by those without authorized access to the data
  • Monitoring
    • Checking data logs and user access to make sure unauthorized users haven’t accessed data
  • Security Patches
    • Any device that connects to the Internet has an inherent risk of breach. Encryption and monitoring help prevent unauthorized access, but if a weakness is detected – meaning that a “loophole” has been found that would not otherwise prevent unauthorized users – a patch is released that would “patch” the possible security “hole” and shore up security.

Still not convinced?

Colorado Computer Support is contacted nearly every day by businesses who are hesitant to move to the cloud, and afraid to move away from their exchange server.

  • What is an Exchange server? A Microsoft Exchange Server is a server that exclusively runs Microsoft Windows Server operating systems, and acts as a mail server to host email communications, calendars, and the type of data that a user would expect to find within Microsoft Exchange, the predecessor to Microsoft Outlook.

An Exchange server is stored inside an office – usually in a climate-controlled closet – hosting all of a business’ professional emails. That much is easy to understand.

The Exchange server acts as a hub to which all computers at a business connect for emails, calendars, and meeting schedules. Still with us? Ok, good.

It’s safe to say that if the Exchange server for your business fails, you’re in trouble. Why would it fail? Any number of possible reasons, like:

  • Power outage
  • Natural disasters, like hurricanes or earthquakes
  • Fire or flood
  • Catastrophic systems failure from internal issues, like faulty wiring
  • Data breach or cybercrime

Based on this, it’s also likely you back up this data to prevent catastrophic data loss.

If you have data back-ups, your business does this in at least one of two ways, if not both:

  • Hard copy
    • An example of this storage method would be like a disc
  • Stored online
    • Likely in an encrypted file storage location
    • This is essentially cloud storage

Did you just realize that your business may already be utilizing the cloud in some way?

The cloud is becoming more widely used in business, and based on everything you’ve read so far, it’s becoming easier to understand and be less weary of making the leap. The good news is, demystifying the cloud makes it easier to make the jump. The better news is, businesses don’t have to rely on expensive Exchange Server upgrades with the move to the cloud! With options like Microsoft Office 365 or Google’s G Suite readily available as cloud solutions, with plenty of options for email, calendar, scheduling meetings, and also data and file storage and built-in collaboration tools, the cloud is a much more economical solution today. The computers that store these email and calendar solutions can’t be seen or touched, but they aren’t also burdensome to purchase and maintain – and with subscription-based plans, upgrades are included in your price!

Simple solution

Making the migration to the cloud simply means that the data and information currently hosted on your Exchange server will be moved to your new cloud solution for permanent storage, physically residing inside a data center stored in someone else’s (vast) climate-controlled room, transitioning the responsibility for maintenance and the cost being absorbed by the cloud solutions provider.

How does this save you money? It doesn’t seem like it would make sense that the cost burden is on the cloud solutions provider and yet the cloud solution is a lower-cost option for you. The provider is able to take advantage of offering one concept: space on a computer. By simplifying their business model, providers can pass along savings to cloud service subscribers.

The bottom line

Contact Colorado Computer Support to see how migrating to the cloud for your email and data storage can save you time, resources, and – most importantly – money.

Don’t forget to check us out for more of the latest information and technology news.

Certified and Verified Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB)

Colorado Computer Support is a local IT company certified and verified service-disabled veteran-owned Small Business. When you use our IT services in Colorado Springs, you can be confident that you are dealing with a Colorado Springs company owned by a disabled veteran and that they will be able to provide you with the best possible IT support.
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