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Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Gladinet Cloud and It’s Enterprise Focus

In 2012, Gladinet Cloud continues to differentiate from other online storage solutions.

While most of the online storage solutions provide a folder sync solution, Gladinet provides a drive mapping solution. Drive mapping provides random on-demand access without the wait for full sync to finish, which is a very good fit for VDI environment.

While most of the online storage solutions provide a client device solution, Gladinet provides a file server solution in addition to the client applications. With Gladinet, you can sync a file server share to the cloud and use the share folder over the Internet.

While most of the online storage solution resells Amazon S3, Gladinet provides a plugin-your-own-cloud-storage option in addition to the default Amazon S3 storage. If you have Windows Azure, Google Cloud Storage, HP Cloud storage, Nirvanix, OpenStack Swift and EMC Atmos, you can use Gladinet Cloud.

Enterprise Focus

The above features are very enterprise friendly, such as the use of drive to solve big data problem; the support for file server to synchronize folders and the ability to plug in private cloud options such as OpenStack Swift, Nirvanix and EMC Atmos.

Now with the release of “Gladinet Cloud Enterprise”, Gladinet Cloud focuses even more on the enterprise with the self-installable, self-host and self-brandable enterprise and service provider editions. When it is self-installed and self-hosted, it opens doors for file server storage, NAS Storage, SAN storage and different kind of storage as the backend storage. It also allows native Active Directory integration. Unlike in the public Gladinet Cloud situation, supporting Active Directory has to be done by an on-site agent. When it is self-installed, Active Directory can be connected directly.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Tipping Point for Cloud Storage Migration

Most businesses have heard of cloud storage but haven’t started taking any action towards cloud storage migration. Many CIOs, on one hand are following closely the cloud computing development, on the other hand, are complacent about the existing IT infrastructure and try to avoid disruption to daily operation.

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

The Disruption

Here is a story about how the cloud storage migration happens. Joe is the CIO of a real estate company. A couple weeks ago, the company tape backup was broken. It was quoted around $1800 to get it fixed. So a disrupted event happened. Joe was following cloud storage solutions closely. Since he needs to do something about the backup, why not switch to a cloud storage based solution for backup.

As Joe went further down the path of finding a solution, he found out that most of the cloud storage solutions have sharing and team collaboration features. Since cloud storage solution offers that, and Joe has two company sites to taken care of, why not use the same cloud storage solution for collaboration and sharing, while fixing the backup.

Gladinet Cloud Enterprise for Service Providers

Managed service providers are pretty familiar with selling storage products such as Windows File Server or NAS storage. They are also looking for ways to sell more value-add products around the storage products.

In this sense, having an online access solution that customers can use around those storage products makes a lot of sense. Especially the online access solution can add browser base file manager, mobile apps, desktop clients and file server clients, which cover backup, access, synchronization and sharing, and team collaborations.

Gladinet Cloud Enterprise was released back in October 2012. It can already provide online access solutions to a business, as an on-premise private cloud solution.

Now Gladinet Cloud Enterprise was enhanced to have a service provider edition. In this edition, service provider can create multiple tenants and connect to multiple active directory domains

Admin Panel

From the admin panel, you can create multiple tenants. Each tenant can be an independent company. Each company can have its own user manager or link to an Active Directory domain.

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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Branding Options in Gladinet Cloud

Resellers usually prefer to have their logo and product name on the same Gladinet Cloud web portal, when they refer customers to Gladinet Cloud Team Edition. Now this is a simple form to fill out in Gladinet Cloud.

In Gladinet Cloud web portal, click on the “Management Console”, on the right hand side, click the “Advanced” section. Inside, there is a tab page, on the branding tab, you will see a list of items that you can brand.

branding

Friday, November 30, 2012

Online Access to File Server

When speaking about file server, normally it refers to Windows File Server such as Windows 2003 or Windows 2008. People got used to accessing the file server from the “Map Network Drive …” command in Windows XP or Windows 7 within a local area network. This is widely used in businesses as the Microsoft Network Share.

With the VPN (Virtual Private Network), the access of the Windows File Server can be extended to outside of business premise, such as from home. The method of access is the same. You would right click on the Computer and select “Map network drive …”

Now. Web browser technology is getting better; mobile devices are getting smarter; cloud storage and cloud based services are getting more popular. It is time to ask the question:

Can I access my file server, such as creating folders, upload and download documents from web browsers and mobile devices?  Can I access the file server from desktop client and from file servers in other city, without using a VPN?

With Gladinet Cloud, yes you can!

The product you need is Gladinet Cloud Team Edition. The solution is to install Gladinet Cloud Server on the file server and enable remote access through Gladinet Cloud account.

Step 1 – Sign up for Gladinet Cloud Team Edition

You can go to www.gladinet.com and scroll to the “for Teams” section and sign up for a team account.

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Step 2 – Download Gladinet Cloud Server

For the file server that you want to have online access, you can download Gladinet Cloud Server from the Gladinet Cloud web portal after you login.

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Step 3 – Install Gladinet Cloud Server

After you installed the Gladinet Cloud Server, you can right click on the “Gladinet Cloud Drive” and attach local folder to your “Gladinet Cloud” account.

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Step 4 – View the File Server Folder Online

In web browser, you can see folders with this icon (folderpc). The folder name will look like this:

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This tells that the folder is an attached folder from jerry-HP2 machine. It doesn’t matter where the machine is or behind firewall, you will be able to access the machine from web browser, mobile devices or from other file server (e.g. in a different city) or from remote desktop PC.

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For More Information, Please visit :

Gladinet Cloud Server White Paper

Online Access to File Server White Paper

Thursday, November 8, 2012

File Server Content in the Cloud

Migrating an existing file server to the cloud is an important use case. This article talks about the Gladinet Cloud Server solution that can help migrating your file server content to cloud seamlessly.

The Challenges

Public cloud storage solutions have become increasingly convenient as they enable anywhere access to files and folders for web browsers, desktops and mobile devices, with sync and share capabilities. It is also very easy for team members to collaborate over the Internet.

However, your file server sitting in the office local area network (LAN) still provides the key file storage functionality and team collaboration functionality through network shares. You would like to adopt cloud storage technology and the new use cases it enables. But simply, you can't get rid of your file server. Additionally, you want to make your file server easily replaceable but it just has too much data to have an easy solution.

The situation is even more complicated when you have multiple file servers on multiple sites, where inter-site collaboration is desired.

The resulting challenge for large and small businesses is to provide convenient access methods to file server content over the Internet; and unifying the namespace from distributed file servers for central access, while at the same time, migrate file server content to cloud storage so the file server becomes increasingly replaceable.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Gladinet Cloud Enterprise Quick Start Video

There are many ways you can use a Gladinet Cloud Enterprise installation.

If you are an Enterprise, you can use Gladinet Cloud Enterprise to enable mobile access to your enterprise file server;

If you are a company adopting private cloud storage such as EMC Atmos or OpenStack Swift, you can use Gladinet Cloud Enterprise to turn your private cloud storage services into a company-wide file sync & share and team collaboration solution, with browser access, mobile access and various desktop access;

If you are a service provider managing Windows file server, MS Exchange and other services for customers, you can give each customer a Gladinet Cloud Enterprise server, which will give each customer a managed file sync & share solution.

So it is very cool, the only question is how to get started. There are various documentation and white paper on http://www.gladinet.com/CloudEnterprise/ to help.

Now here is a quick start video, which will provide a closer and more in depth look to help you get started.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Managed File Sync & Share Solution

You are familiar with managed and hosted service since your company in one way or the other may be using a managed service such as MS Exchange, MS Lync, MS CRM, file storage and disk space.
If you are a service provider yourself, you are even more familiar with these since you are managing hosted solutions for your customers. You may have MS Exchange server, MS Lync, CRM server and MS Windows 2008 server in your data center where you manage and service your customers.
Now, have you heard of managed file sync & share service? Where you can install a server or a group of servers in your data center; you then manage this service either yourself or for your customers?
If you are looking for a solution like this, you found one in Gladinet Cloud Enterprise. To make sure it is the right solution for you, just use the following quick cheat sheet, which contains a list of features you need. If you find a feature that meet your requirement, you check it off. If you find you are checking most of the features in your list, talk to Gladinet and they are ready to help!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

A Quick Tour Around Gladinet Cloud Enterprise

Gladinet Cloud Enterprise is a Windows Installer Package (MSI). It packaged the commercial Gladinet Cloud into an installable package so you can have an on-premise Gladinet Cloud. Now you can have sync & share, collaboration and web browser access, desktop and file server access all under your enterprise data and policy control. Good for security.
This article is a quick tour around the install and setup process of the product. The package is built on top of Microsoft Web Platform, i.e. IIS 7/ASP.NET/.NET Framework 4/SQL Server 2008 (Express). Gladinet Cloud Enterprise can be run on Windows 2008 32-bit & 64-bit machines for production environment. For developers and testers, they can also run it on Windows 7 32-bit/64-bit machines. It is recommended that the Gladinet Cloud Enterprise been installed on a clean Windows machine.

Step 1: Prepare Microsoft Web Platform

You will use the Microsoft Web Platform Installer to prepare for the Microsoft Web Platform. You can install IIS/ASP.NET/SQL/.NET Framework all from the same Microsoft Web Platform Installer.
Since the Microsoft Web Platform Installer is a one stop shop for all the Microsoft Web Platform components, it is fair straight forward to install all the required components by checking the checkbox next to the components.
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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Introducing Gladinet Cloud Enterprise

Today Gladinet released Gladinet Cloud Enterprise. It is an installable cloud storage solution for enterprises concerned about security, control and compliance. It contains all the Gladinet Cloud Team Edition features you see on www.gladinet.com and packaged into a Windows Installer (MSI) package. Typically it is a 5-10 minutes installation and configuration process and it will be up and running immediately.
Since the package can run onsite, there are some additional feature sets, such as deep Active Directory integration so existing Active Directory users can start using the Gladinet Cloud for Enterprise directly.
Another additional benefit is that it allows using Enterprise’s own file server storage, or private OpenStack Swift storage, or private EMC Atmos storage as the backend storage. While, at the same time, if an Enterprise is comfortable with their own Amazon S3 account, Google Cloud Storage account, Windows Azure account, they can choose to use these as the backend storage for the Gladinet Cloud package.
It is also as scalable as the public Gladinet Cloud. If you need to support tens of thousands of servers, the Enterprise just need to install more worker nodes into the server farm.

Why Gladinet Cloud Enterprise

Dropbox and box popularized the kind of public cloud storage sync & share solution, with team collaboration features. Enterprises need same kind of solution but enterprises doesn’t want to lose control of data to some third party storage site. So a combination of public cloud storage features and private enterprise hosting and security makes a lot of sense.

How To Deploy?

Gladinet Cloud Enterprise can be installed completely on-premise or it can be installed inside the DMZ zone as show in the picture below.

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Mobile Clients for OpenStack Swift

In the past articles, we covered OpenStack Swift web front-end so you can access through a web browser. We also covered how you can have a desktop client that connects to OpenStack Swift from your PC or Mac desktop.
This article we will discuss mobile clients, such as iOS App, Android App and how they connects to OpenStack Swift.
Two years ago, you saw Gladinet products had direct access capabilities to OpenStack Swift. Direct access gives you file-by-file view of what is in the OpenStack Swift instance. However, direct access also limited the access client’s capability to the OpenStack Swift’s programming interface, such as read/write/delete operations.
As we continue to enhance the products and continue to understand user’s requirements, we saw a gap between the direct access method and what users really want. Users are very familiar with the direct access method, since floppy drive and hard drive. In this sense, the direct access method to cloud storage  doesn’t provide much value when it is compared to direct access local hard drive. Users are asking for new functionalities that cloud storage has but local hard drive doesn’t have.
openstack2_256Users are telling us that they need to have web browser access to their OpenStack Swift instances, with the capability of doing Sync and Share, with the capability of a mapped local drive on PC and on Mac, with the capability of iOS app and Android app access. They wish they can have drop box or box like functionalities that work with their own OpenStack Swift instance.
To satisfy these requirements, we will need to add a layer on top of OpenStack Swift as we called it, the BASIC layer. (Backup, Access, Sync & Share, Identity, Controlled Collaboration). The BASIC layer adds additional programming interface to OpenStack Swift so it does change notification, version control, quota record and other essential functionalities.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Folder Share Solution based on OpenStack Swift

openstackSharing folders across the Internet is a very good use case for cloud storage. As a service provider, you maybe thinking about a folder sharing solution that you can use for your existing user base. If you have cloud storage service yourself such as OpenStack Swift, EMC Atmos or whatever it is, you can use Gladinet Cloud to achieve what you want for a folder sharing solution.
This article focuses on OpenStack Swift. Once you understand how it works, it can work for your other kind of cloud storage service as well.
We will walk through manual configuration of an OpenStack swift account with Gladinet Cloud. This is a step that can be fully automated later on. By configuring it manually, it shows how OpenStack Swift and Gladinet Cloud works together.
Step 1 is to acquire a Gladinet Cloud Team account from www.gladinet.com.
1TB Cloud Storage - Secure Access, Sync and Collaboration - Google Chrome_2012-10-03_13-19-38

Gladinet and HP Cloud - 1TB HP Cloud Object Storage

Gladinet and HP Cloud started a round of joint promotion with 1TB free HP Cloud Object Storage for your Gladinet Team Edition account. The regular Gladinet Team account comes with 100MB storage. The storage will be based on HP Cloud Object Storage. This will bring the total storage to 1.1 TB when you sign up with a new Gladinet Team Account.
You will see the promotion in multiple places. You will see it from both Gladinet’s home page and also HPCloud home page.  It is on Gladinet partner page. It will show up on Gladinet blog and later on, other places as well.

HPCloud Object Storage is based on OpenStack Swift, with KeyStone integration. The KeyStone part is known as HP Identity Service. Gladinet Cloud has an open plugin architecture so it is fairly straightforward to plug in HPCloud Object Storage as one of the default storage.
HPCloud Object Storage provides a place for customers to store data. Gladinet Cloud provides a way to access, backup, sync & share, with team collaboration, allowing end users to access HP Cloud Object Storage from various end point devices such as PC, Mac, Windows File Server, iOS, Android and BlackBerry devices.
HPCloud can look into its customer base and channel to see who likes to use a sync & share solution based on HPCloud Object Storage. Gladinet can look into its customer base too to find joint customer.
For more information about HPCloud and Gladinet joint promotion, visit http://www.gladinet.com

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Mobile Access to Your Enterprise File Server

Mobile trend and the cloud computing trend are somehow connected. On one hand, we are seeing companies seeking cloud as a way to provide new access and backup methods. On the other hand, they are also looking for ways to enable mobile device access to their enterprise file server.
This article focuses on the mobile access side, while documenting an implementation that does both mobile access and seamless cloud migration for your file server.
The basic idea is that you attach your file server folders to your Gladinet team account. Once it is attached, it is like a distributed file system over the cloud. After that you can use your iOS device, Android device or Playbook device to access your file server through your Gladinet team account. Also in the background, the file server folder content is migrated to your Gladinet team account.
Now let’s get started.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

OpenStack Swift with a Web Front-End

openstackOpenStack is getting popular. There are many companies working on OpenStack now to help services providers or enterprises with their own instance of OpenStack. Let’s say you are one of the companies that has an OpenStack instance with Swift object storage.  Now the next step is to find an easy way for your users to use it.
You may have  a wish list of how you can access the OpenStack swift object storage, including accessing it from web browser interfaces; accessing it from iPhone and iPads, accessing it from Android devices , PCs , Macs and so on.
With Gladinet solutions, the above methods are all good and ready. This article will discuss accessing OpenStack Swift Object Storage from web browser interface, just like you would with a file manager like Windows Explorer.
Fast forward to the end, you will have Gladinet Cloud Cluster installed next to your OpenStack instances, providing access directly from your own data center. Or you can have Gladinet host the cluster for you and connect to your OpenStack instance from the Internet.
Now, since you are at the proof of concept phase, you would like to give it a try. You can try Gladinet Team Edition,  bringing in your own OpenStack account. To get ready for this,  your OpenStack instance needs to have an Internet DNS name and IP address.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Gladinet Team Client for Blackberry Playbook

Earlier this month, Gladinet Team client for android 2.2 was repackaged for Blackberry Playbook and submitted to Blackberry App World.  This will work for Blackberry Playbook OS 2.0 and above.
Free Gladinet Cloud - Download Gladinet Cloud - Free Apps from BlackBerry App Wo_2012-09-06_11-24-26
From now on, when Gladinet Team client for Android is update, the blackberry playbook app will be updated too.

Related Posts

Android Client for Gladinet Cloud Team Edition

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Accessing Your File Server from Cloud

Here is another use case keeps coming up from customers using Gladinet Cloud. As one potential customer asked:
“We search for a solution for our team. We have a file server with Active Directory for our projects, with a team of users travelling around. We need the files and folders accessible for team members outside of office, while other people working on the same project can continue to access files and folders from within the office.”
Above is the main use case requirement, then he follows with the second requirement:
“We don’t want the work to be solely in Web Interface, nor do we want applications to provide sync after users come back into office.”
The second requirement can be translated into:
  Please provide real time direct access for both users in the office and users outside office.
This usually requires a VPN like solution so remote user can login to the file server through VPN.  However, in the cloud era, there is a better and cheaper solution, with more functionality, such as backup, version control and mobile device access, while reducing the cost of setting up a VPN in office.

Accessing Your File Server from Cloud

We call this use case “Accessing Your File Server from Cloud”. To start, you will need to get a Gladinet Cloud Team Edition account first from www.gladinet.com
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Monday, August 20, 2012

Team File Sync & Share Solution for OpenStack

Earlier this month, Rackspace announced the release of Rackspace Private Cloud Software, powered by OpenStack and code-named Alamo. The new offering is designed to make it easy for organizations to install, test and run a multi-node OpenStack-based private cloud environment. It is an offering designed for services providers and enterprises.
OpenStack has two components, compute and object storage. This article focuses on the object storage, code named swift, as it is related to building a team oriented file and folder sync and share solution, working together with the Rackspace Private Cloud Software.
File Sync & Share solutions are pretty common on the public cloud as one of the most common application of cloud storage. For example, Box and Dropbox are the most successful ones promoting file sync and share solution over public cloud. Many service providers will now look to OpenStack and also look for a dropbox-like or a box-like solution for their own private cloud,  OpenStack Object Storage implementation.
Gladinet Cloud provides the solution for these service providers or enterprises looking for a self-hosted file sync & share solution. In regards to private hosting, Gladinet Cloud has the following pieces of components

1. Gladinet Cloud Cluster

Gladinet Cloud Cluster is a multi-node scalable software service that is currently powering the www.gladinet.com. It is software on top of the Windows Web Platform (IIS/SQL/.NET/WCF) that provides additional services such as file sync and share on top of OpenStack instances next by. Gladinet Cloud Cluster is available in a Windows Web Platform deployment package that can be installed by Windows Web Platform Installer.
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Android Client for OS 2.3+ Available in Google Play

Two weeks ago, Gladinet Cloud Team Client for Android OS 4.0/4.1 was released to Google Play market store. This week, same android client is ready for OS 2.3+ (API 8 and up). Next step will be to port this android 2.3 based app to Blackberry Playbook.
If you bring up Google Play market app from your Android 2.3+ devices, you can find Gladinet Cloud in the Google Play store.
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Thursday, August 16, 2012

File Sync and Share among Your Distributed Offices

Recently, another potential customer request came in. The customer has 3 offices located in different regions, all in the US. They have a need to share Microsoft Office files such as Word, Excel, Power Point files from each office into a central location to store all the master files. They need to be able to lock files so people from different offices don’t overwrite into each other’s change. They need to have version history of the files in case files are accidentally deleted.  They also need to integrate the solution with a mapped network drive in Windows Explorer. The good news is Gladinet Cloud for Teams has all those required features.
We have seen this repeating theme keeps coming up, which also helped shape the current version of the Gladinet Cloud for Teams. Gladinet cloud for teams is made exactly for this purpose – file sync and share among your distributed offices.
To start, first you will need to acquire a Gladinet Cloud for team account from www.gladint.com.
After the setup, you will be at the Gladinet Cloud web browser interface.
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Android Client for Gladinet Cloud Team Edition

android1Gladinet Cloud Android App has been released to the Google Play Store since last week.  It is an important addition to the Gladinet Cloud for Teams. After the Web client, Windows client, File server agent, Mac and iOS app support, now it is Android app. You can enjoy a native android app when browsing Gladinet Cloud from your android devices.
The first release targets Android devices with OS version 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and above (4.1 - Jelly bean). The support for Android devices OS 2.3.3/2.3.5 will come very soon at the end of August 2012.
When you search for Gladinet in the Google Play Store, you will see Gladinet App showing up.
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Saturday, July 28, 2012

Google Drive inside Desktop Virtualization

An interesting use case came up recently. It is an university environment, with two popular technologies involved in the setup. One is VDI – Desktop Virtualization. The other is Google Drive.
Desktop virtualization provides an easy to manage way for universities to deploy desktops to students. Most of the students have their own device such as laptop. With VDI, the students can run a virtual desktop loaded with university-licensed software for class related activities.
Google Drive provides an easy way for students to store class related materials and projects. Most of the students have Google Drive installed on their laptop so the class materials can stay inside Google Drive.
Problem arises when students want to access Google Drive inside the virtual desktop. The Google Drive’s full-two-way sync operating mode doesn’t work well inside Virtual Desktop because the virtual desktop gets recycled when the student’s session is over. Full two-way sync is time and resource consuming and not necessary.
A random access network drive mapping will be a better access.  In this case, Gladinet drive mapping technology, integrated with Google Drive API works well in this environment.
To give it a try, you can install Gladinet Cloud Desktop Professional inside the virtual desktop and save as a snapshot image.
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Friday, July 27, 2012

Convert Local Storage to Cloud Storage

There are many ways to convert local storage to cloud storage. For small data size, some will just do a simple drag and drop upload. For medium data size, some will setup two-way sync to cloud storage.
For large data set, above methods are not practical because it takes a long time to transfer data from local to cloud.  Some service providers provide bulk injection, allowing you to mail storage media like a hard drive to them and they will do the conversion in their data center.
This article will discuss a way that can achieve bulk injection-like effect (so data is immediately available) but without mailing out your hard drive.
As a summary, you will need a Gladinet Cloud team account. After that you will install Gladinet clients such as Gladinet Cloud Desktop on Desktop PCs or Gladinet Cloud Server on file servers.  From the Gladinet clients, you can then attach local folder to your Gladinet Cloud account. Gladinet clients and the Gladinet web service collaborate to create a virtual link for the data to flow.  The attached local folder will be immediately available as if it was part of the cloud storage.
Now here is the detailed steps. First acquire a Gladinet Team account from www.gladinet.com
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After it is done, you will be at the web portal of your own account.

OpenStack Swift Client with KeyStone Support

openstackIf you are setting up OpenStack Swift Object Storage, you may need a quick and easy way to connect to your OpenStack Swift instance, such as a desktop client, with the possibility of mapping a network drive to your OpenStack Swift container.
This article discusses Gladinet Cloud Desktop client and how it can be used to connect to OpenStack Swift cloud storage, with KeyStone support.
You will first install Gladinet Cloud Desktop professional or starter edition.  At the end of the installation, it will ask you to mount at least one cloud storage.

Gladinet Cloud Desktop Professional/Starter

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There are two entries related to OpenStack Swift KeyStone. One entry is shown above. The other is shown below.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Cloud-Based Distributed File System

Distributed File System (DFS) in the context of Microsoft Windows is a very familiar feature for Windows Server administrators. As a summary, it can organize many distributed SMB file shares into a single DFS namespace (DFS root), providing location transparency and redundancy.
dfs
In the cloud storage era, we can extend the distributed file system concept to cloud storage. With cloud storage, it is possible to unify your multiple file servers from multiple sites into one single namespace. Gladinet Cloud is one such namespace that can unify all your servers from different places and provide cloud-storage replication for redundancy.
If you were a Windows administrator, you will start building your DFS at creating a DFS root first, then you will bring in different SMB network shares into your DFS tree. In Gladinet, you will start by creating a Gladinet Team Edition account, with default Gladinet Storage, or plugin your own cloud storage account, such as Amazon S3, Rackspace Cloud Files and etc..

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Mount a File Share with Amazon S3

Many clients want to use Amazon S3 directly, and yet want to make it transparent to the users. As far as the administrator or the CTO is concerned, he wants to have direct control of the Amazon S3 account that his company is using. At the same time, he wants the employees in the company using the company Amazon S3 account transparently without any additional learning curve.
This article documents many ways you can use Gladinet solutions to get it done. We will divide the use case into big, medium, small. Three use cases. Each use case may have a different matching solution.

Big Use Case

You have multi-site file structure and you have a need to setup team folder, version folder, web-based access, mobile device access,  in addition to mounting file share to your amazon s3 account.
In this case, the best fit is Gladinet Cloud Team Edition, with your Amazon S3 account plugged in as the root folder of your company cloud drive. At www.gladinet.com, you can select Team Edition, then select plugin my own account and then Amazon S3.
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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Use Cloud Storage to Unify Multi-Site File Structure

Cloud Storage is great for IT administrators trying to maintain file structure across multiple sites. File Structure from one site can be attached to the cloud so it can be viewed and used from the other sites.
This is a use case we learned from a Gladinet customer. Gladinet Cloud and Gladinet Cloud Server helpped to reduce the file structure on 3 different sites down to one.
This article will review this use case and the basic setup. Assuming you are in the role of an IT admin, managing file servers from 3 different sites and your job is to make sure all 3 servers are available to all 3 sites.

Gladinet Team Account

First you will need a Gladinet Team account. When you log into your Gladinet Cloud account from the web browser, you will see the root of your “Gladinet Cloud Drive”, which is also your global namespace. Later when you have folders attached from your 3 file servers, they will show up in this namespace. Conceptually, this is similar to the DFS (distributed file system) root.
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Monday, July 2, 2012

Local File Server + Cloud-Based Team Folder

Local File Server for team collaboration is a very familiar use case. Typically a local IT administrator set up a file server in a Local Area Network(LAN) environment, such  as in a branch office. The whole office then use network shares to share files. For example, below is a picture of a Shared folder in Windows File Server 2008. The local folder’s name is TeamFolderLocal and it is published as a network share.
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Cloud-based team folder is also a very familiar use case. In Gladinet Cloud, the administrator can setup a team folder so anyone that has assigned read/write permission can access the team folder. Below is a picture of a team folder inside web browser.
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Both use cases are pretty common. Now, what if the two use cases can be merged into one? If you have a locally shared network share, can you make it into a team folder shared inside web browser? On the other hand, if you have a team folder inside web browser, can you make it into a network share on file server?
Gladinet Cloud Server is the middle ware that bridges the team folder use case both ways.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Different Kind of Folders on Gladinet Cloud

When you log into Gladinet Cloud web portal, you will see your files and folders immediately, in a Windows Explorer-like interface. Once you tried all the Gladinet Cloud features, you may find different folder icons such a  list of icons below. You may be wondering what kind of folders each icon represent and what kind of features are available for each.
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Not All Folders Are Created Equal

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Cloud Storage for Active Directory Users

As a continued discussion from previous blog – Migrate your file server to the cloud, this article discuss how to migrate active directory users to the cloud as well.
When you have an existing file server that you are migrating to cloud storage, in a hybrid access mode, you would like to keep the active directory users too. Hybrid mode means the local file server and cloud storage are in sync, allowing you to both accessing the local file server the old way, while accessing the same file server content from the cloud in the new way.
When you are accessing the file server the old way, the user identity is validated by active directory. When you are accessing the file server from the cloud, you would prefer the same active directory user allowed to access. This is the background context of the article.

Basic Setup

The basic setup is a Gladinet Cloud Team account and a Gladinet Cloud Server installed. Gladinet Cloud Server is part of the Team account. As long as you have a team account, you can download and install as many cloud server as you need.
When the Gladinet Team account is ready, your web browser portal is going to look like this, with your cloud storage files and folders showing up in the browser. If it is a new account, it may look empty since you haven’t put files and folders in yet.
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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Migrate Your File Server to the Cloud

When you have a file server and you want to consider moving to the cloud with cloud storage, it is not as simple as moving a house from point A to point B. You need business continuity because the file server is the collaboration point that needs to continue to run.
You don’t want a full two-way sync solution between your file server and cloud storage either, because the volume on the file server is usually bigger than the data on a consumer PC. So when a two-way sync solution is popular for consumer, it may not be as good for a file server in small business because of bandwidth consumption.
You need a hybrid solution. In Gladinet’s term, you will install Gladinet Cloud Server on your file server and attach folders to the cloud. If you are familiar with two-way sync solutions, you can think of attaching folder to the cloud as an optimized two-way sync solution for file server, with on-demand random access and background sync.
Now let’s get started.
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Monday, June 25, 2012

Folder and File Sharing with IBM SmartCloud Storage

The previous two articles discussed different access methods to your IBM SmartCloud Object Storage and Team Folder collaboration features. This article introduces the Folder and File Sharing feature with your IBM SmartCloud Storage.
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Functionality wise, Folder and file sharing is similar to team folder collaboration. There are 3 major differences.
(1) Team folder is managed by administrator for the team; while Folder sharing is managed by each team member.
(2) Team folder can only be published to known team users; while folder sharing can be shared to external user on a read-only basis, in addition to sharing with internal team users.
(3) Team folder is always collaboration on a folder level; while folder and file sharing can share on a single file level.

Team Folder with IBM SmartCloud Object Storage

Last article discussed several access methods you can have with IBM SmartCloud Object Storage. This article discusses how to have a team folder in the IBM SmartCloud Object Storage so everyone can share.
Assuming you already have an IBM SmartCloud Object Storage account and a Gladinet Team account and you are already checking out the different access clients, such as web portal, desktop drive, file server volume and mobile app. Next step is to check out the team folder and its related features.

User Management

For team folder related features, first you need to have a team, which means users. There are several ways to create team users. You can create manually or you can import active directory users from your existing infrastructure. You can click “Manage My Cloud” and then “Manage User” to invoke the user manager.
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For manual creation, you can do it any time you are ready. For import active directory users, you will need to first install “Gladinet Cloud Server” into one of the file server inside the domain (active directory). The “Gladinet Cloud Server” can take on the role as a proxy authentication server to import active directory users.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Easily Access Your IBM SmartCloud Object Storage

IBM SmartCloud Object Storage is targeted for Enterprise Cloud Storage. Most of the time, it is used for disaster and recovery or as an alternative media storage option. This series of articles discuss other common use cases – team collaboration and file server replacement. The use case will allow you to roam around freely and yet always have access to your files and folders in the IBM SmartCloud, whether the access is direct web browser access; desktop client access; file server access or mobile device access.
First you will need an IBM SmartCloud Object Storage account and a Gladinet Team Edition account. Got www.gladinet.com, select Team Edition. In the next page, select “Plugin my own cloud storage account” first, then select “IBM SmartCloud Object Storage”.
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In the next page, you will enter your IBM SmartCloud Object Storage account information.
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Saturday, June 23, 2012

Team Collaboration Solution Based on Nirvanix Cloud Storage

Gladinet Solutions has been integrated with Nirvanix Cloud Storage since 2009. It started 3 years ago with simple desktop integration between Gladinet Cloud Desktop and Nirvanix Cloud Storage so you can use a mapped network drive to connect to your Nirvanix Cloud Storage account.
As Gladinet solutions evolve from a single desktop client to a comprehensive set of online storage solutions including web interface, desktop client, file server volume and mobile app, it also brings all these value-add services to Nirvanix.
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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Amazon S3 Based, Full Control Online Storage Solution

s3logoThere are many, many Amazon S3 based online storage services. What is the difference, you may ask? What is Gladinet’s niche? What is the market segment to fill?
The most popular online storage use case nowadays is the combination of web interface, desktop clients from PC and Mac, mobile clients, together with team folders support and peer-to-peer file sharing. Many online storage services do this.  The market niche is how to provide the functionality, while giving customers full control of the whole infrastructure stack from the bottom to the top.
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Monday, June 18, 2012

Recent Gladinet Cloud Feature Updates

new_gladinetGladinet Cloud was designed from scratch for team account, with many team users. As such, more and more team-oriented features are moving into the Gladinet Cloud as teams grow bigger and bigger within Gladinet Cloud.

Delegate Administrator

In the past, there are two types of users, the administrator and the normal team user. Now there is a delegate administrator that can help administrator to setup team folder, manage users in the team and all these administrative works.
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Monday, June 11, 2012

Team Collaboration Solution Based on SoftLayer Object Storage

logoWhen it comes to team collaboration, most people will say SharePoint. However SharePoint was based on local area network. Some will say Box, but it doesn’t have open backend to plugin your own storage account. So if you have a SoftLayer Object Storage account and you need a team collaboration solution, what can you do?
Gladinet Team Edition filled this niche by providing a web based team collaboration solution with comprehensive access clients, based on SoftLayer Object Storage.
It is easy to sign up, go to www.gladinet.com and select Team Edition. At the next page select “Plugin my own cloud storage account” and select “Open Stack” since SoftLayer Object Storage is based on OpenStack.
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Sunday, June 3, 2012

Access SoftLayer Object Storage from Local File Server

Access cloud storage from a local file server is different from accessing it from a desktop machine.
First the software on the file server needs to run as a background Windows server, while the software on the desktop can be a desktop application running inside user’s logon session.
Second the software needs to mount the cloud storage as  a virtual file system volume, while on the desktop, there are many more ways to map a network drive.
This is the third article in the SoftLayer Object Storage series, covering how to access SoftLayer Object Storage from a local Windows Server. In the previous two articles, we covered how to connect to the cloud storage from desktop, with a network drive and with backup functionalities.
This article is similar to the previous two in that it covers the stand-alone case so SoftLayer Object Storage is connected directly from the file server. Later articles will go in to more advanced team edition features , such as how data can flow from Desktop to File Server, from File Server to Web Browser Interface, from Web Browser Interface to iOS clients.
As prerequisites, you need a SoftLayer Object Storage account, you will also need a Gladinet Team Edition account to use the Gladinet Cloud Server.
Gladinet Cloud Server can be installed on Windows 2003/2008 (32-bit/64-bit) machines. For testing and trial purpose, you can install on Windows 7 as well.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Desktop Backup Solution for SoftLayer Object Storage

logo This is the second part of the SoftLayer series of articles, documenting features from Gladinet products and services that allow you, as an end user to more easily use SoftLayer Object Storage, without the need to do any programming.
Before we get into the more advanced Team Edition that includes PC client, Mac client, web browser interface, mobile client with file sharing and team collaboration features, this article stays with the stand-alone desktop client use case.
In the last blog, it discussed drive mapping feature. When you have a network drive that is connected to SoftLayer Object Storage, you can do drag and drop and ad-hoc backup and data transfer.  Sometimes, you prefer to have a more organized way of backup local folders to the cloud, such as mirroring a local folder into SoftLayer Object Storage or have snapshots taken and store that into the cloud.
As in the last blog, you will install the Gladinet Cloud Desktop as a stand-alone application. In the Gladinet Management Console, you can go to the Backup section by clicking the dropdown button on the top left and select “Advanced Backups”.
Here you will see “Two Way Sync”, “Mirrored Backups”, “Cloud to Cloud Backups” and “Snapshot Backups”
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Friday, June 1, 2012

Map a Desktop Drive to SoftLayer Object Storage

OpenStackLogoSoftLayer Object Storage was introduced earlier this year. Since it is based on OpenStack Swift Object Storage, Gladinet has a suite of solutions ready to use, ranging from a desktop client to web browser based file explorer to mobile clients. From a functionality perspective, there are features like backup, sync, peer sharing and team collaboration (Covered in the previous blog – Add a BASIC Layer on top of OpenStack Swift)
There will be a series of articles documenting the solutions that works with SoftLayer Object Storage.
This first article will show the easiest way to get it going, connecting to SoftLayer Object Storage from your Desktop, with a mapped network drive.
All that you need is the Gladinet Cloud Desktop Starter Edition, a free download. After you download and install it. It is all ready to go.
You will also need your SoftLayer Object Storage account credentials ready. You can login to your web based SoftLayer management console
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You will see your account credential there. As shown in the bitmap below, the Account Credential is for v1.0, not for KeyStone v2.0.

A BASIC Layer on Top of OpenStack Swift

OpenStackLogoThe BASIC layer, on one hand, refers to the basic end user needs when it comes to cloud storage.
The BASIC layer, on the other hand, refers to the sum of Backup, Access, Sync/Share, Identity and Controlled Collaboration.
End user won’t use OpenStack Swift storage directly because the interface is too primitive (such as read/write/delete objects). With a BASIC layer stacked on top of the OpenStack Swift, the basic needs are met and now it is ready for end user to use. It means the BASIC layer helps to sell OpenStack Swift Object Storage.
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So What is in a BASIC Layer?