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One of the fundamental resources needed for the systems and software development of today is storage, along with compute and networks. Whether you use on-premises, cloud, or hybrid systems, data persistence always depends on storage components. To guarantee that your services, apps, and data pipeline get the best outcomes possible, selecting the right storage choice is crucial. The proper storage choice not only improves the functionality of your services, applications, and data flow but also helps in the establishment of a project that is cost-effective.
There are three main storage-related services offered by Google Cloud: Persistent Disks for block storage, Filestore for network file storage, and Cloud Storage for objects. The platform’s fundamental services serve as the foundation for most Google Cloud services and, consequently, for the systems you create on top of it.
Persistent Disks (Block Storage)
In both cloud and on-premises systems, block storage is the standard type of storage. All virtual machines in Google Cloud leverage a Google Cloud Persistent Disk, which offers block storage (Google Cloud Compute Engine). Imagine that persistent disk as simple USB drives to understand them in the simplest way possible.
A Google Cloud Persistent Drive, which is very similar to a disk on your local computer, can either be an HDD or an SSD, with the latter being better for high I/O performance. There is also the option to select their location and the level of availability required: they can be Regional, Zonal, or Local. While offering the best I/O performance, these local disks are only present on the hardware where the virtual machine is running, and despite this, they are rarely suggested due to their low availability and redundancy.
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Filestore (Network File Storage)
As the name implies, network file storage offers disk storage across the network. This makes it possible to create systems with several parallel services that can read and write files from single disk storage mounted over a network.
Network file storage is offered by the fully managed Google Cloud service called Filestore. Similar to block storage, network file storage is not a recent invention for the cloud and is also widely used in conventional on-premises data centers.
Cloud Filestore has a minimum size requirement of 1 TB and a maximum size ceiling of 63.9 TB for file sharing. A Cloud Filestore instance is only accessible in one zone and does not have a failover mechanism in case the zone in which it is located becomes unavailable. That implies that users should prepare for downtime in the event of an outage. Since Cloud Filestore does not yet have a snapshot feature, users would be responsible for performing backups. However, users of both service options have a strong 99.9% availability on average.
Cloud Storage (Object Storage)
The Google Cloud object storage service is referred to as Google Cloud Storage. It offers several extremely intriguing out-of-the-box capabilities, such as object versioning, and fine-grain permissions, which can simplify development and lower operating costs.
Having this kind of storage is extremely uncommon in conventional on-premises systems, where capacity is more constrained, and communication is quick and exclusive. Its value proposition, to put it simply, is that you can retrieve and upload whatever file you want using a REST API, and this can extend infinitely with each object scaling up to the terabyte size. In Cloud Storage, different objects are grouped in unique “namespaces” called buckets. Although a bucket can store many objects, each object will only be associated with one bucket.
Utilizing the numerous storage classes and the ability to apply Lifecycle Management Rules to data buckets can have a significant impact on price and ongoing operational expenses.
Since security is one of the important aspects when it comes to storing data in the cloud, encryption algorithms are used, and cloud storage is more secure than local storage. The cloud-stored documents and data are only accessible to authorized users, such as you and your team. This provides an additional layer of security.
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1. Which is better, block storage or file storage?
ANS: – Block storage is more adaptable than file storage since it functions like a hard disc in the server. It is simpler and easier to handle file storage. While file storage is suitable for data sharing among small teams, block storage is a popular networking architecture used by businesses for business-critical applications.
2. What is Google's object storage called?
ANS: – Cloud Storage is a service for storing your objects in Google Cloud. You store objects in containers called buckets.
3. What can size per object be stored in Cloud Storage?
ANS: – The maximum size limit for individual objects stored in Cloud Storage is 5 TiB.
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