Gladinet Cloud
File Server Integration

Migrate File Servers to Cloud Servers
and free them from your LAN!

 

Hybrid Local Storage, Cloud Storage Solution

Secure online access and team collaboration with your file server

Introduction

This white paper describes Gladinet Cloud Server (Server Agent) which can be used by businesses to enable remote users an easy access to head quarter file server while preserving the normal file locking and file sharing through the file server.

Problem Statement

You are a small business with anywhere between 3-100 employees. Most of the employees are in the same office, some are on the road or work from home. You need a file storage solution to accommodate file sharing and collaboration need.

Traditionally, the Windows File Server has served well in the local area network. With everyone map a network drive to the network file share, you can do collaboration and file sharing with all the file locking support to avoid file corruption.

What about remote users? You don’t want to get started with the VPN. First it is not easy to setup. Second, it is not easy for remote user to understand and use. Third, most user just want to use a web browser to upload and download files for light usage. Connecting VPN, connecting to network file share, just to view and modify a couple files, that is too cumbersome.

What about online solutions such as Office 365. Most online solutions don't have team collaboration concept and don't lock files properly when there are multiple users collaborating on the same file. Sometimes the files are corrupted or multiple versions were created, which makes it hard to resolve conflicts.

Gladinet Solution

Gladinet Cloud solves the problems by creating a hybrid local storage and cloud storage access solution. File servers from different locations can contribute folders to a global distributed file system namespace in cloud storage, inside user's account. The global distributed file system namespace can be accessed from web browser, desktop PC , mobile devices or other file server.

How it Works

You have a local file server such as Windows File Server, so all the users local to the network will continue to use the network share from the file server. Windows File Server does the locking very well. so no corruption and local performance is great.

From the file server, you can install a file server agent (a cloud server component), that is capable of "Attaching Local Folder" to cloud so the local folder and cloud folder will have replications of each other. So you can have remote online access for remote users.

For the remote users, they access files from outside directly to the cloud (and the cloud optionally can look back to the local file server for latest changes) for file, inside a team folder with distributed locking turned on. So local access, and remote access will have locking mechanism to help out concurrent access.

Benefits

File Locking File Locking will continue to work from the local file server and for the remote access. This is great for team collaboration, avoiding overwriting each other's changes.
VPN Replacement Remote users can access the file server contents directly from cloud storage service. It greatly improves the performance and greatly improves usability, thus improves productivity.
Mobile Access Not only can employees access the file server through traditional Microsoft Network, they can also access the same file server content through iOS/Android/Windows Phone/Windows RT mobile devices.

Implementation #1

The first implementation has the Gladinet Cloud running on www.gladinet.com with default Gladinet storage. The Gladinet Cloud Server will be installed on the file server that has folders to share. You can get online access to file server folders once you attach a folder from the file server to your Gladinet Cloud account.

Implementation #2

The second implementation will have Gladinet Cloud running on-premise. You can have web browser access to file server folders in the LAN environment. If you put the Gladinet Cloud in the DMZ zone, you can also enable secure online access across the Internet.

Summary

Traditionally, you only have CIFS/SMB drive mapping access to file server. With VPN, you can extend the access to remote locations. With Gladinet Cloud Server, you can have any device, anywhere secure access without VPN, which makes employees more productive and focus more on running the business and focus less on the access methods like IPSEC/VPN.