Cyclical Storage Logic (Personal Data)



  • I know it seems like I am continually beating a dead horse here, but I am really just trying to understand the thinking on ML.

    So, I've decide to go to the dark side, and store all my stuff in the cloud.

    That makes me nervous. What if my account gets hacked? What if somehow MS, Apple, or Google crash and lose my stuff? Etc., etc., etc..

    I have an iPhone and an iPad, and a Mac. (And a PC.) Anyway, I thought ... hey let's just use iCloud and store everything there. That is a good start. No need for backups of my device on my computer anymore,. and all my photos/etc will be online and protected.

    Well, in their very own documentation, Apple says:
    Do I need a Backup?
    iCloud Photo Library stores all of your original photos and videos in iCloud, but we always recommend you keep back up copies of your Library. You can download your photos and videos from iCloud to your computer and store them as a separate library, transfer them to your computer with iTunes, or store them on a separate drive.

    So if my point is protecting data (as opposed to ease of access), how does this help me?

    Same with iCloud backups of the device. I have had issues where something did not work, and the iPhone did a fresh backup once changes were made, thus wiping out the good backup. When I work with an Apple device, I always make a backup of the Apple backup folder. Because it's happened to me many times.

    Again, not trying to argumentative. Just trying to fully under the logic.



  • Cloud makes for an excellent part of a DR strategy but I wouldn't put all my eggs in one basket regardless of the technology involved.


  • Banned

    iCloud is more of a sync between devices (and restore to new devices) service than a true backup service. It has no Retention policies etc.


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill wrote:

    store all my stuff in the cloud.

    This is not a backup. This is a storage location.



  • I changed my post title to clearly indicate we are talking about personal data here, and not on a corporate level. Though I would say SOHO fits into that frame as well in some instances.

    My misunderstanding is still the "don't put any data on your laptop/desktop"/Chromebook argument.

    If I have to back up my cloud storage to my PC anyway,. what's the difference if I just store it to my PC, and then back it up to the cloud?



  • It's possible I am just not 100 clear on uses and situations. Hence my posting. :)

    Perhaps it would be best to break this down like we did with the desktop/server licensing debate.



  • The idea have having zero data on your laptop/desktop is so that it's a complete throwaway device. It breaks, you loose it, it's stolen, etc... you don't worry because all of your data lives elsewhere.

    That thinking has nothing to do with how you protect your data.

    So instead of having your data on your local machine, you store it in the cloud.. that doesn't mean you shouldn't have backups of it elsewhere. There are cloud backup solutions available. You give them your credentials and they pull copies of your cloud storage data.

    Of course you could do that yourself. Have a local NAS at home that you keep a copy of your data on as well as store it in the cloud. The problem comes from the fact that it's not super easy or probably convenient to do that.



  • As I said, perhaps I am just muddling things and use cases.

    In one of my first posts here, when discussing backups for a SOHO client, the following was mentioned:
    "Move everyone to storage through a product like ownCloud, MS Office 365 OneDrive for Business, Google Drive, DropBox, etc. Eliminate the issue completely."

    Which led me to believe this was a viable option for both storage AND bacckup.



  • Yeah, it's hard not to get that impression. Many of those services can be used as the backup solution because of the way they work. SharePoint for example has versioning. I think MS also does specific backups of ODfB and SharePoint - though wither or not you need separate backups is a discussion I see frequently.

    Products for consumers, Google Drive Free, Apple iCloud, etc generally don't offer versioning or any type of actual recovery options, if you want those, you'll need to pay a premium or another service.



  • @Dashrender said:

    Yeah, it's hard not to get that impression. Many of those services can be used as the backup solution because of the way they work. SharePoint for example has versioning. I think MS also does specific backups of ODfB and SharePoint - though wither or not you need separate backups is a discussion I see frequently.

    I wonder if that is really enough, though.

    Does it really eliminate the issue completely?

    Plus as I mentioned the other day, ODfB only versions Office files.



  • @Dashrender said:

    Products for consumers, Google Drive Free, Apple iCloud, etc generally don't offer versioning or any type of actual recovery options, if you want those, you'll need to pay a premium or another service.

    Which is my question ... what am i missing that we're recommending consumers use these services?



  • This has to be a personal call. If you don't feel comfortable, you need to do something more. I'm not really sure what more to suggest.



  • I just don't know why I can't get my head around this!


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill said:

    That makes me nervous. What if my account gets hacked? What if somehow MS, Apple, or Google crash and lose my stuff? Etc., etc., etc..

    You are suffering from flight logic. This is an irrational fear and doesn't make sense. Let's think about this if you didn't do this and stored it at home.... what if your account gets hacked, what if you lose your stuff, etc.? Bottom line is, the risk that you will be hacked or lose your stuff is much greater than MS, Apple or Google getting hacked and/or losing your stuff. So the very fear that you have is exactly the kind of fear that should send you to the cloud, not drive you away from it.

    It's called a flight or airline fear because it is the same reaction that makes people want to drive instead of flying - an irrational belief or hubris that by "being in control" they can outperform the odds. This, of course, isn't true, but it feels that way. It is a very strong emotional reaction. I've even been told by people (in ML I believe) that they would prefer to die in control than survive with someone else at the helm!! Think about that for a second, that is a strong emotional reaction to have that preference.

    Yet we know that if the goal is surviving that taking a plane from NY to LA is orders of magnitude safer than driving the same trip. Same with the cloud, you are getting an irrational panic response to giving up control, but that is all that it is.


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill said:

    So if my point is protecting data (as opposed to ease of access), how does this help me?

    Because you took your primary storage from "almost certain to fail" to "almost certainly not going to fail." Have you ever known iCloud to lose data? Have you ever known someone to drop their phone?

    You can't compare the two. One is like never happened. The other, happens millions of times a day and has happened to lots of people that all of us know and nearly all of us personally.


  • Service Provider

    @JaredBusch said:

    @BRRABill wrote:

    store all my stuff in the cloud.

    This is not a backup. This is a storage location.

    Exactly, if you STORE all of your stuff in a hosted location, then you still need a backup somewhere. Maybe you get a service that has that built in or maybe you do it yourself, but you don't get to skip the basics just because it is hosted. Hosted can improve each of the pieces (I recommend dropping the word cloud as it has no meaning in this discussion) but isn't a panacea either.

    Remember, storage and backup are different concepts.


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill said:

    @Dashrender said:

    Products for consumers, Google Drive Free, Apple iCloud, etc generally don't offer versioning or any type of actual recovery options, if you want those, you'll need to pay a premium or another service.

    Which is my question ... what am i missing that we're recommending consumers use these services?

    Do you recommend that consumers have versioning when they do NOT use hosted services? Or are you expecting far more when hosted services are used than when they are not used? I don't know any consumers getting versioning at home.


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill said:

    As I said, perhaps I am just muddling things and use cases.

    In one of my first posts here, when discussing backups for a SOHO client, the following was mentioned:
    "Move everyone to storage through a product like ownCloud, MS Office 365 OneDrive for Business, Google Drive, DropBox, etc. Eliminate the issue completely."

    Which led me to believe this was a viable option for both storage AND bacckup.

    Depends what you are looking for. ODfB and Dropbox are not comparable, those are very different services. ODfB is backed up as part of the O365 enterprise offering. And remember, ODfB is NOT cloud, it's just a normal service like Exchange, SQL Server, Sharepoint, etc. You can buy it hosted OR you can run it yourself, too.


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill said:

    If I have to back up my cloud storage to my PC anyway,. what's the difference if I just store it to my PC, and then back it up to the cloud?

    1. Flexibility. This makes people work like it was a decade ago and cripples them as far as functionality compared to their peers.
    2. Risk. You are moving to relying on your backups (basically assuming that they will be used) rather than using them as a last resort. You are making one half of your data protection strategy have basically no protection. So your backups go from "nice to have" to "absolutely critical all of the time."
    3. Ease of Use. Dealing with physical file storage is a thing of the past for consumers, why make their computing environment so unnecessarily complicated?
    4. Sharing. People are used to easy file sharing today. This takes that away.
    5. Security. End user devices are insecure both technically and physically. They are the highest risk data leakage points. Put nothing on them and there is nothing to steal beyond the physical box. Store stuff there and they become worth more to thieves and more painful to the user to lose.
    6. Restoreability. ALL of your discussions around recovering end user desktops exists solely because of the storage of data there. Fix that and you get cascade of fixes in other area.

    Reverse your question.... storing on your PC is archaic and problematic. Why would you put your files on the local machine when you don't have to? What's the reason for considering that model today?



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    Because you took your primary storage from "almost certain to fail" to "almost certainly not going to fail." Have you ever known iCloud to lose data?

    I've known it to get files stored to its service exposed.


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill said:

    @scottalanmiller said:

    Because you took your primary storage from "almost certain to fail" to "almost certainly not going to fail." Have you ever known iCloud to lose data?

    I've known it to get files stored to its service exposed.

    What do you mean, I don't follow?



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    What do you mean, I don't follow?

    The nude picture hacking. Of course, that was a hacking job, but it was made possible by a loophole in their system.

    Granted, it is probably magnitudes higher security in general than a home user's PC, but just gives an example of what I mean.

    Though I would agree it's probably safe to say there is less of a risk of exposure (no pun intended) with MS or Apple or Google than on my uncle's home PC.



  • @scottalanmiller said:

    1. Flexibility. This makes people work like it was a decade ago and cripples them as far as functionality compared to their peers.

    I'll give you that. It is certainly nice to be able to access the same file on my PC, my XBOX, my iPhone ... whatever.

    1. Risk. You are moving to relying on your backups (basically assuming that they will be used) rather than using them as a last resort. You are making one half of your data protection strategy have basically no protection. So your backups go from "nice to have" to "absolutely critical all of the time."

    How so? Because the probability of loss with a MS cloud solution is much smaller than the risk on my own personal PC? (Hard drive loss, theft, etc.?)

    1. Ease of Use. Dealing with physical file storage is a thing of the past for consumers, why make their computing environment so unnecessarily complicated?

    I think this is a push. Hitting save and having it go to the Document folder is pretty easy. Having to download a program, make sure it works (I've had to re-install ODfP a few times, myself) and knowing to navigate to that location seems to have more steps.

    1. Sharing. People are used to easy file sharing today. This takes that away.

    Agreed, this is easier.

    1. Security. End user devices are insecure both technically and physically. They are the highest risk data leakage points. Put nothing on them and there is nothing to steal beyond the physical box. Store stuff there and they become worth more to thieves and more painful to the user to lose.

    How does having it in thee cloud make it more secure? Take OneDrive for example. It downloads all the files to my local machine. Does it allow you to wipe the data in the event of a theft? (This is a real question ... I have no idea. Does changing the passowrd prevent access to the locally synced files on your PC?)

    1. Restoreability. ALL of your discussions around recovering end user desktops exists solely because of the storage of data there. Fix that and you get cascade of fixes in other area.

    Agreed, but not sure how it is any better (restorabilty wise) than to just send all the data to CrashPlan, and restore that way.



  • @BRRABill said:

    @scottalanmiller said:

    What do you mean, I don't follow?

    The nude picture hacking. Of course, that was a hacking job, but it was made possible by a loophole in their system.

    Was there more to this than the system showing the password reminder on screen? or people/celebs having easy to guess passwords?

    Granted, it is probably magnitudes higher security in general than a home user's PC, but just gives an example of what I mean.

    Though I would agree it's probably safe to say there is less of a risk of exposure (no pun intended) with MS or Apple or Google than on my uncle's home PC.

    Actually I won't agree with this. Why? Because identity theft/virus infection/data leakage isn't high enough to make people in general change their behavior.
    Now that said, Apple, MS and Google, you're data is probably safer in general because of things like damage or theft of your equipment.



  • @Dashrender said:

    Actually I won't agree with this. Why? Because identity theft/virus infection/data leakage isn't high enough to make people in general change their behavior.
    Now that said, Apple, MS and Google, you're data is probably safer in general because of things like damage or theft of your equipment.

    Right, I mean more on the system level.

    Easy passwords are easy passwords.

    Though it seems every reputable service now has 2FA, so that's also something not found at the home level.



  • @Dashrender said:

    Was there more to this than the system showing the password reminder on screen? or people/celebs having easy to guess passwords?

    I think it was a combination of weak passwords and Apple security flaw.



  • For my personal data, I have my desktop data backed up to a second drive via CrashPlan (this is free, by the way!), and my laptop backs up to a folder on my desktop. I then have Crashplan Unlmited plan to back up all of my data to their data center. I am covered no matter what device is stolen / explodes / releases the magic smoke. I am also covered if my house suffers from pretty much any disaster.

    @scottalanmiller does have a good point about targets being more valuable if they actually store data.


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill said:

    @scottalanmiller said:

    What do you mean, I don't follow?

    The nude picture hacking. Of course, that was a hacking job, but it was made possible by a loophole in their system.

    What loophole? Last I heard Apple was not a factor at all and it was purely people leaving their passwords too easy. That case was actually pointed to as "why the cloud was not a risk" because it remained so secure and the weak point was the weak point regardless.


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill said:

    @Dashrender said:

    Was there more to this than the system showing the password reminder on screen? or people/celebs having easy to guess passwords?

    I think it was a combination of weak passwords and Apple security flaw.

    People kept claiming that, but it was found to be nothing but people trying to discredit Apple. There was no vulnerability found nor any reason to believe that there was one once they tracked down what had happened.


  • Service Provider

    @BRRABill said:

    Granted, it is probably magnitudes higher security in general than a home user's PC, but just gives an example of what I mean.

    Though I would agree it's probably safe to say there is less of a risk of exposure (no pun intended) with MS or Apple or Google than on my uncle's home PC.

    Actually it is a GREAT example of.... why cloud is secure. Because to discredit it people actually have to use examples where the platform wasn't at fault in any way. You are correct, it is far more secure than the alternatives. Far more. Not just more secure, but with a flawless track record (in this area.) People work hard to make up reasons why it is insecure but they are, thus far, all misdirection.


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