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Data Storage Devices: All You Need to Know

Data Storage Devices Infographic detailing SAN storage, cloud based data storage, and local storage

Technology continues to improve, allowing users to store more data in ever more convenient places. As the capacities of data storage devices continue to expand, and Internet connection speeds grow faster, users have more options than ever when it comes to where they keep their data.

Here’s a quick look at three of the most important data storage devices used today.


A Storage Area Network, or SAN, is a local area network dedicated to data. SANs facilitate bulk data transfers and storage. Additionally, SANs differ from common client-server networks in that users don’t need SANs for simple tasks like Web browsing. A SAN specifically handles large amounts of information without suffering significant data loss.

SANs consist of clusters of servers and disk arrays operating across a local network. SANs are ideal for business applications that require data retrieval, duplication, and storage.


Remote data management over the internet, commonly known as cloud based data storage, continues to grow in popularity. Perhaps the most attractive feature of cloud storage is its scalability. The cloud gives you access to virtually unlimited storage for your data, which can expand and contract with your needs.

Watch our CEO explain how to get started in the cloud

Cloud based data storage uses remote hard disks to store massive amounts of data securely. Thanks to modern high-speed internet connectivity, the rate of data transfer from the computing cloud is sufficient for nearly all business and consumer computing needs. Cloud storage allows users to eliminate the physical space necessary for hefty storage hardware. Consequently, cloud based data storage reduces the overhead costs associated with those devices.


Physical media is by no means dead, though in this era of cloud computing, it has certainly lost some of its luster. Hard drives, as well as flash and USB storage devices, remain popular. However, portable media, such as optical storage platforms, continue to decline in relevance as more data moves to the cloud.

The real issue here is that with physical media, if the device fails or is lost (or worse yet, stolen), the data is gone. So, to avoid disaster, we need to back up data from local storage devices to the cloud. This, in turn, creates a redundancy that wouldn’t occur with one of the other types of storage.



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