Copyright AKAVEIL Technologies LLC all rights reserved
Written by D. Gowen
What is OneDrive?
When files are stored in the cloud, the internet is being used to save files to someone else’s servers in a remote location in data centers under the control of that service provider. OneDrive is a Microsoft product available either for free or via a paid subscription. Therefore, when saving to OneDrive your files are now on Microsoft servers in Microsoft data centers. The free OneDrive is only 2 GB (gigabyte) of cloud storage. The paid subscriptions vary, but when bundled with the Microsoft 365 the default storage is 1 TB (terabyte) for an individual user account’s storage. That’s a lot of storage!
An individual’s OneDrive is for that person’s use, whereas a business OneDrive (SharePoint) is intended for access by many. This enables shared files, real-time and/or synchronized collaboration for all the users within an organization. However, with administrative capabilities, user accounts, permissions, and security levels are managed across the organization. Microsoft 365 business subscriptions include a 1 TB OneDrive per individual account user within the organization and 1 TB for the SharePoint across the organization.
Why use Cloud Storage?
1 – The era of digitization has brought us to the IoT (Internet of Things) where internet access and usage is commonplace in our everyday lives. Social media, smart phones, immediate access to information, live streaming, and Wi-Fi everywhere have improved and enabled our lives. Why then would you leave your saved files on a local computer at home? What if you need access from a computer while at the office or from your smart phone while running errands for example? By storing files in the cloud, they are accessible wherever connectivity to the internet is available and from any device.
2 – You can also use cloud storage as a backup for locally stored data on your laptop or smart phone. For example, by uploading pictures from your smart phone to the cloud. Where you have identical copies of the same content stored on two different storage resources they serve as a backup for each other. It’s smart to have local data backed up to the cloud. If a threat or damage to physical devices occur, the content is easily retrievable from the cloud storage (i.e. OneDrive).
3 – File synchronization within OneDrive enables keeping the same file in both locations updated with the most recent modifications. This works for copies stored on the local hard drive and on the individual’s OneDrive. For SharePoint files, collaboration and multiple changes being made to the same file by multiple users, SharePoint manages the control of changes across all the users and the latest iteration of the file.
4 – You might also save files or any type of content to the cloud to free up limited space on your other devices. You have control if you wish to share any or all of your OneDrive content. You can share folders and files with others inside or outside of your subscription. Typically, links to the cloud folder or files are shared for easy access. You decide who, what, how and when to share with others. Security is essential to protect data from harm, loss or theft. Therefore, Microsoft ensures the OneDrive account holder has controls via administrative rights (permissions) to grant or revoke access as needed.
5 – The cloud is also scalable. This means the subscriber decides to add more storage if or when needed. The amount of storage and the payment scale accordingly. Microsoft has the data centers, servers, storage resources to the ready should you request more resource consumption. This takes the worry and hassle out of remembering to buy a new computer, USB storage or add storage to servers etc. Typical productivity software (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) used to create or modify files are bundled with OneDrive for use from any device as well. Create, open, read or modify files from OneDrive on a mobile device, from the office, or home. Today’s mobile on the run work / life and remote trends require conveniences like OneDrive and Microsoft 365 applications.
SharePoint = Business OneDrive
For many years, business has recognized the strategic advantages of on demand scalable resources from cloud-based services. Email, data, and infrastructure migrations to the cloud are common today. The elimination of on-premise hardware, storage, and maintenance is less costly for business, and less time consuming on humans to build, maintain and support.
Within organizations, people work together to collaborate towards common goals which often involves sharing files or editing files together in real time. SharePoint is the cloud storage for the company. All the users associated with a company account (tenant) may be given specific or general permissions to access that which is necessary for their job, roles, or projects.
Since 2017, the newer collaboration online service, Microsoft Teams, is a cloud-based product that enables collaboration via chats, phone / video calls, meetings on a whim or pre-scheduled, and channels where agreed team members collaborate. Posts, files, and other specific types of data are accessible in the channels. Guess what? Those files are seamlessly stored on your SharePoint (OneDrive for business) via the Teams interface.
As always with the business subscriptions, access to files on SharePoint can be provisioned to external people if required. The administration of a business tenant (cloud services) for Microsoft products is where all that security happens. Trained IT administrators help the business to manage user access, secure authentication and administer the correct rights (permissions) across the organization.
The Bottom Line
Just like phones have evolved to smart phones being mainstream. Cloud storage is mainstream. Personal, family, school, business, career – makes no difference. Cloud storage makes the most sense. Larger files are more common than ever. Video, photo, presentation, multi-media benefit from transfer services via cloud-based storage. Organize your digital content for efficient and effective storage.
Learn more about OneDrive and Microsoft licenses. Whether you have an internal IT team or not, we are ready to assist, answer questions and progress your journey to increased productivity, security, data assurance and convenience.
AKAVEIL Technologies is home to industry experts who offer consulting, design, implementation, maintenance, and support services. We can partner together at any level necessary to improve your business in the achievement of its goals. As a Microsoft partner we possess experience and understanding of the various products and license plans. We work directly with each business as a trusted advisor to assess and recommend the best fit now and scalable into the future. Remain competitive and grow your business with AKAVEIL.