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You are the IT admin of a 50-student team and you are thinking of providing cloud storage for each of the 50 students. Each will have around 10G cloud storage space. Each will have both home access and on-premise access to the storage. This is a typical use case for students in your department looking for places to store their project files and term papers.

Why Cloud Storage?

As the admin, you are looking for a low cost solution without the burden of maintenance. For 10G, the cost is around $1.5 per month per person for storage and some more for bandwidth. The cost is pretty low compares to someone has to maintain an in-house file server.

Why Amazon S3

When it comes to cloud storage,  Amazon S3 is the leader in this category in 2010. It has been in the market for the longest and has the biggest deployment.

Gateway to S3

Cloud gateway can mean different things to different people.

The most common one means file server replacement. The gateway replaces a traditional file server and the 50-student team still access a file server to save/load documents. The file server has cloud storage attached. In this deployment, the gateway is much less important than a traditional file server and can be replaced since the main storage is the cloud storage. There is not much maintenance

It is also common to refer cloud gateway to anything that can send data in and out of cloud storage. In this sense, any desktop client tool, backup tool are gateways. For example, when we talk about home access, it could mean a desktop client that connects directly to cloud storage instead of VPN back to the on-premise file server that connects to cloud storage.


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More Stories By Jerry Huang

Jerry Huang, an engineer and entrepreneur, founded Gladinet with his close friends and is pursuing interests in the cloud computing. He has published articles on the company blog as well as following up on the company twitter activities. He graduated from the University of Michigan in 1998 and has lived in West Palm Beach, Florida since.