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How To Choose The Right Cloud Services For Yourself

How To Choose The Right Cloud Services For Yourself

Cloud computing is a good way for companies to manage their data storage and other IT needs, as it offers versatility at a fairly reasonable price. All the work required to effectively run a cloud-based network and manage data can be outsourced, enabling you to focus on more important things. Small businesses, business ventures in their early stages and even up-and-coming companies can benefit from having the convenience of cloud computing at their disposal. It can be a great way to cut costs and save a lot of time that can be better spent, but you need to define your specific needs and look for the right cloud services that will benefit your business the most. Let’s look at some important things you need to consider when looking for these types of services.

The different types of cloud service

It is important that we understand the three main variations of cloud services so that we can see the bigger picture and how cloud changes the way we do business with others and how we manage running a business on an internal level. Here are the three primary Cloud business models.

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Types of cloud services

    1. IaaS – Infrastructure as a Service

    Having a Cloud infrastructure has a lot of advantages. In most cases a user is allocated with a virtual server that is hosted on a network of physical servers from which each individual virtual machine draws its resources. In order to run their applications, users install operating systems according to their individual preference. The amount of resources each individual virtual machine can access is controlled by the user and it is usually charged on a pay-per-use basis.

    2. PaaS – Platform as a Service

    This is a solution for developers mostly. The cloud providers that give PaaS services usually provide an operative system with a database, a web server, etc. This gives developers an environment which they can use to develop and test their software without worrying about hardware maintenance, manual resource allocation, software installation and maintenance, etc.

    3. SaaS – Software as a Service

    By using Cloud clients, users can access remotely hosted software (along with its database). This is usually “on-demand software” for the use of which customers are charged on a per-use basis, although not exclusively. In some cases users are charged through a monthly or yearly subscription fee.

    Tech support

    The primary purpose of all these cloud services is to make your life easier. This is why it is essential that good tech support is provided since, if you run into some trouble, you will want a quick resolution of all issues with minimum effort. A 24/7 support should be available at least in e-mail form but I personally feel more secure having an option of contacting the support team via phone. This way, if a more complicated problem arises, I can have direct contact with somebody competent who can help me with any problems I may be experiencing.

    Security, updates and uptime

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    Cloud security

      By using cloud services we are actually storing data somewhere else and we are putting the security of that data in the hands of the provider. That’s why the primary concerns of any individual or business is exactly how secure their data is and how it is managed. Security should encompass both data backup in case of hardware or software failure and protection from unauthorized third-party access to data (this includes viewing, copying and modifying the data).

      Software also needs maintenance and above all else, updates. The Web has a tendency to change and this creates a need for updates that resolve conflicting issues with new software.  Any software that you receive from the provider should be updated by him or her as well so as to be as fresh and compatible as possible.

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      Uptime is very important with all three cloud services models. You need to be sure that your provider has a high uptime guarantee—99% is usually the norm. Not having access to essential software, applications or losing your website to poor hosting can cause serious problems, especially in situations when the downtime last longer. Checking reviews for web hosting providers and checking out the forums of SaaS Cloud providers is a necessity before any serious long-term investments are made. You need to make sure that they are reliable and there is nobody better to tell you about this than their previous and current users.

      Conclusion

      Relying on cloud services to resolve the IT needs of your business is a good choice since, in the majority of cases, you get top-notch resources, incredible stability and great control over your finances. Business start-ups can benefit greatly from the payment method since they can expand their resources based on their growth and thus get a great quality and price ratio. The main thing you need to pay attention to is the reliability of the provider you choose, and you are probably going to see a high return on your investment after some time.

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      More by this author

      Ivan Dimitrijevic

      Ivan is the CEO and founder of a digital marketing company. He has years of experiences in team management, entrepreneurship and productivity.

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      Last Updated on February 15, 2019

      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

      Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

      Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

      Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

      So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

      Joe’s Goals

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        Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

        Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

        Daytum

          Daytum

          is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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          Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

          Excel or Numbers

            If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

            What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

            Evernote

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              I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

              Evernote is free with a premium version available.

              Access or Bento

                If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

                Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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                You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

                Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

                All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

                Conclusion

                I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

                What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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