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Introduction to Cloud computing for home Beginner users

Updated on January 20, 2016

What is Cloud Computing?

Cloud Computing is a newer form of computing which is about using Online Programs hosted on a website to do tasks like Word Processing. Instead of opening a word processor like Microsoft Word, you go to a website like docs.google.com where you can use Google Doc's web-based word processors, spreadsheet programs, presentation makers, and image charts editor installed on Google's server.

Your files are also stored on Google's Doc server, and when you are done typing your documents, or want to back them up to your computer, you can export/download them as Doc, pdf, text, or other types of files readable on most regular software like MS Word, Adobe Acrobat, Notepad, or can be imported to other cloud application services like Microsoft Office 365, or Zoho Office.

The advantage of cloud computing is you can access your files from any internet connected device with a web browser like Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome, and Opera, and a internet connection to edit, download, or publish your files.

Cloud computing apps like Google Drive, Gmail, and Hotmail are free for home users.

Squidoo in a way is like a cloud application. You can write tutorials on Squidoo.com with its built-in text editor and modules then publish them to the Web when you are ready. Squidoo keeps track of how much money and traffic your lenses generate, and pays you a portion of Squidoo's advertising revenue via the Internet with Paypal when it is the payout date.

You also have already been using cloud applications for years if you used webmail, chat rooms, social networks, forums, and blogs since they are all programs and services on the internet.

Cloud Computing = Internet Application Service provider like Yahoo Mail, Gmail, Hotmail, Google Docs, or Netflix.

Cloud computing is also called Software as a Service since cloud computing is more about providing a service like video streaming instead of a program to download and install on a PC to run. All online programs updates, support and maintenance is done by the online program service provider as a service to its users rather then the users having to maintaining and provide support to local programs.

What is Cloud Computing videos - Watch Videos on YouTube to learn about what Cloud Computing is?

YouTube video makers explain what Cloud computing is by using video to eplain how cloud computing works at saving you time, money, hassle, and making your online and computer experience better by not having to manage updates, deal with expensive computer hardware failure and upgrades, and installing programs manually.

Learn about Cloud Computing by reading a book. - Read a book about Cloud computing to learn even more about cloud computing.

Cloud Computing books are great to learn about cloud computing because books have a lot of information pack inside of them about Cloud computing.

You'll need a computer, a web browser, and an internet connection to start using cloud applications.
You'll need a computer, a web browser, and an internet connection to start using cloud applications.

What do you need to get started using Cloud computing programs?

You just need a computer with a computer with an operating system like Windows, Mac, or Linux, and an internet connection

All you need is a computer which runs on Windows, Mac, or a free Linux graphical desktop operating systems like Ubuntu, Puppy Linux, Linux Mint, Fedora, OpenSuse,etc.

You also need a web browser like Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera. Safari, etc to log in to your cloud programs like Google Docs. It is best to use the latest version of your web browser for improve security and performance when using your web apps on the internet.

Google Chrome Web Browser is probably the best web browser for using online cloud apps because it is fast, reliable, easy to use, and auto-updating meaning you do not have to manually install the latest version of Google Chrome, or Adobe Flash player for Google Chrome to experience a fast, and reliable browsing experience.

Lastly, you need an internet service provider to provide an internet connection like Cable, DSL, Wireless Internet to your home or office.

If you plan on using NetFlix, online gaming programs, and other video and music streaming cloud programs, you would need cable, DSL, or Fibre broadband internet.

Sometimes, you would need to download and install Java, Adobe Flash Player, Adobe Shockwave player, Microsoft Silverlight, and have a browser which can display Javascript and HTML5 apps.

For a lot of Cloud applications, you need to make a Google account at gmail.com to have access to Google Docs, and other cloud based services by Google.

If you want to use Office 365 by Microsoft you need to make a Live account at login.live.com .

For other cloud services not made by Google or Microsoft, you need to make an account at the cloud program providers website, or pay money to use the service.

Cloud Computing Advantages
Cloud Computing Advantages

Advantages of Cloud Computing vs. Traditional computing

Cloud computing is inexpensive, reliable, secure, and fast.

Getting started with using Cloud Computing is inexpensive because there are a lot of popular free reliable cloud applications like Google Docs, Office 365, ZoHo Office, etc which are free for consumers to use in a home setting. You also don't have to pay many cloud companies to store your data, so you can download a copy of your work to your computer, and keep one version of your work on online storage accounts like Google Docs, and you have two back ups of your files for free.

In my experience, I never lost a document I stored on Google Docs. It has always been there when I log into Google Docs from any computer with an Internet connection. I also do not have to worry about someone stealing my computer, and losing all my documents since all my files are stored safely on Google Doc's online file storage.

Internet based applications are also very fast since after I log into my account, I just click on the document I want to work on, and I can start working on the document almost instantly without waiting for it to take a long time to load like traditional desktop word processors on slow computers.

Cloud Computing for doing your office, and home work videos - See how Cloud computing can speed up your office and home work tasks, and make it more enjoyable,

Watch YouTube videos on Online Office suite Cloud Applications like Google Docs, Gmail, Microsoft Office 365, Zoho Office, and other cloud applications can make typing out a report, presentation, spreadsheet, and chart for work or school easier, faster, and cheaper then going out to buy an expensive office suite which costs hundreds of dollars, use tons of hard drive space on your computer, and slows down your computer while you open them on a slower computer, or may not even run because you do not meet the minimum requirements.

While with a cloud based office suite, all you have to do is make an account on a website, pick the type of document you want to make, and start typing your document, and use your web browser to print your document when done, or export it as a PDF, doc, or other file.

You also do not have to worry about your hard drive crashing, and losing all your work since your work is saved online automatically when you are using Google Docs, or other cloud office suite. You can also make a copy of your document on your hard drive for extra backup on your home hard drive.

Fun Cloud Computing Programs you can use on the web videos - Fun Cloud computing Apps you can use on the web via Cloud computing

Watch videos of the fun and entertaining Apps which take advantage of cloud computing to entertain millions of users world wide.

Cloud computing is more then just letting you type out your reports, and documents easier. Thanks to faster internet speeds, more powerful web servers, and improvement in web programs, you can now use online applications to watcfh videos, listen to music, edit pictures, make music, edit video, and even play actual computer games streamed from you from the web without worrying about compatibility issues, and lack of disk space like traditional desktop programs.

Cloud based Operating Systems which totally rely on the cloud - Google Chrome OS, JoliCloud, Microsoft Azure, and iCloud are full cloud operating systems.

Google Chrome OS, JoliCloud, Microsoft Azure, iCloud, and EyeOS are full cloud operating systems which rely on your web browser, and internet connection for doing everyday tasks like office work, video streaming, and more.

You need to make an account to use these services in most cases at their website. For Chrome OS, and iCloud you need to buy special hardware.

Cloud Antivirus programs to make your Windows based computer even more secure - Cloud based antivirus can detect viruses in Windows and remove them making Windo

The advantages of using a cloud based antivirus is it is lightweight, and you do not need to update the virus definitions like regular antivirus. Whenever you are connected to the internet, and your cloud antivirus website via the cloud antivirus app, you'll be using the latest antivirus definitions which will scan your computer for viruses in real-time like most desktop based antivirus programs.

You can also use them alongside your regular antivirus programs for even more protection from virus, spyware, and malware programs without worrying about them conflicting with each other in most cases..

Online virus scanners can find viruses which your desktop antivirus missed or did not detect because the antivirus makers did not update your antivirus definitions, your antivirus did not check for new definition files, or you no longer can download new definitions for your antivirus because your antivirus subscription has ended, and you forgot to renew it, so you are not protected from newer viruses.

Changing your computer's DNS server for faster Internet Speeds - Changing your domain name system server address on your computer can make your internet a littl

A Domain name system server translate human friendly domain names like johnsonyip.com into an IP address like 192.0.32.10 which your computer and internet server can recognize.

DNS like Google DNS, Open DNS, etc can be consider cloud based applications since they are located on the internet, and is a service which everyone on the internet uses.

By Changing your domain name system server to a faster Domain Name System server. You could experience faster page loading times for web pages, online apps, and services.

Google DNS is the fastest DNS server in my experience.

You can use a program called Namebench which you can download at http://code.google.com/p/namebench/ to see which is the fstest DNS name system server for your internet service provider.

Changing your DNS to Google DNS also can make your internet more reliable meaning you get fewer page not found errors when browsing the web, and you would be safer since you won't be redirected to a virus site if the DNS server got hacked. Some DNS servers like Norton DNS, OpenDNS and Comodo DNS also automatically block sites with viruses, malware, anf spyware on it, so you'll be safer online.

Using Online Backup to backup your computer files to online storage - Avoid losing important files again with online cloud backup services

If you have a lot of files which are important to you, it is best to back them up to online storage since you'll still have your files even if your computer gets destroyed, or stolen.

You can just re-download them again from your online storage accounts. DropBox, Mozy, Ubuntu One, Microsoft Live Skydrive, and Google makes a lot of ways for you to easily back up your files to their online storage files quickly.

Online Storage can save you hundreds or thousands of dollars in data recovery service when you need to recover your data from a dead computer. You also do not have to worry about not being able to recover your files from a dead hard drive.

Using Cloud Storage to access your bookmarks, usernames and passwords from anywhere - Services like LastPass, Yahoo Bookmarks, Google Bookmarks, and other simil

This lets you log in to your account, and access your bookmarks, or passwords for your online account from any computer with a web browser, and a internet connection by going to Lastpass.com, Yahoo.com, or Google.com to log in by using your password and user name for your account to easily access your bookmarks, user names, and password which is password protected online, so only you can access them, and won't lose them when your computer breaks since it is safely stored online.

It can be more secure since regular users can't access your usernames and passwords for your online account like traditional autofill software for internet browsers. They would need to log-in to your Lastpass.com account by knowing your lastpass.com e-mail you used to register it, and your password which is very hard to guest compared to just turning on your computer, and web browser to have access to all your bookmarks, usernames, and passwords on traditional autofill software which is not user name and password protected like Lastpass, Google Bookmarks, Yahoo bookmarks, etc.

There are also services like Digg, StumbleUpon, Reddit, and other bookmarking sites which make it easy for you to share bookmarks with everyone on the website. It is a good way to promote your websites, and other websites you enjoy.

Vote for the Cloud application you use most in your daily life.

Vote for which web program you use most.
Vote for which web program you use most.

What Cloud application do you use the most in your daily life?

See results

Recommended computers for Cloud computing at home - List of computers which don't cost a lot, but can run most cloud computing programs decently

It is true you can run Cloud Apps with a lot of slower computers. However, it is better to use a newer computer since it has more RAM for running RAM intensive cloud programs like Facebook games like Farmville, Citvville, and Fishville which can use up a lot of RAM in my experience since it uses Adobe Flash Player which can be a really memory intensive programs. NetFlix also uses Microsoft Silverlight plug-in which is similar to Flash, so it is best to pick either a Windows or Mac computer which can use Netflix. Plus, modern web browsers like Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Internet Explorer can use a lot of Memory and CPU resources when browsing the web, or when a lot of tabs are open, so it is best to pick a faster computer, so your web browser, web browser add-ons and plug-in programs, and other desktop programs like Antivirus, media players, and instant messengers don't slow down your web browsing and online programs experience.

Plus, a lot of online games like World of Warcraft still require a fast computer to run smoothly, and at a decent video quality level.

A Computer with 2GHz or faster CPU, 2GB-3GB or more of RAM, 200GB or larger hard drive for backing up your files you made and edited to the cloud to your hard drive for safe offline storage, and basic onboard video and sound should be good enough for most of your needs with running Online Cloud Apps, and regular desktop apps. Windows 7 Home Premium also a good operating system for surfing the web with because it is fast, and more secure then Windows XP and older versions of Windows.

You can also buy a Netbook for cloud computing, but they might be kind of slow when playing basic non-flash intensive Facebook games, and watching HD video online. They are only good for Google Docs, Web browsing, YouTube, and social networking. But, probably not so good for playing HD video, large flash games, Streaming gaming services like Onlive, or Cloud programs which requires a desktop program like DropBox, Skype, Windows Live Messenger, and more since desktop programs sometimes uses a lot of RAM, and CPU cycles.

Windows System Utility Software to make your computer more secure and faster when using online applications - List of offline software for making Windows faster

If your Windows computer's settings are not properly optimized, your web browser, chat programs, and online games will run slower then usual because of disk fragmentation, temporary files, and other problems which is related to Windows which can slow down your PC. Unfortunately, Windows is also vulnerable to virus and spyware programs which make your computer very slow and unsafe to use. It is best to pick an antivirus with a high detection rate, and does not slow down your PC while protecting you from virus and spyware infection. Also, use system utility programs to optimize Windows settings for maximum performance from your computer hardware.

Vipre antivirus + antispyware protects your Windows based computer from virus, spyware, malware, and phishing programs and websites which you can encounter when you visit infected websites which download, and install bad programs on your PC which make your PC unsafe, unreliable, slow, and unpleasant to use. The best thing about Vipre is it has a high virus detection rate while not slowing down your computer like Slower antivirus which use a lot of system resources.

TuneUp Utilities makes it easy for you to tweak your internet, web browser, networking, and system settings in Windows to make Windows run at its best even on a slower computers.

Diskeeper 2011 is a great automatic defrag software to keep your computer hard drive defragmented automatically, so you experience faster start up times, and file access times.

Best Mobile computers and tablets for Mobile Cloud computing - Which Mobile computers and Tablets are best for running cloud online programs?

The Apple iPad 2, Samsung Galaxy Tablet, Blackberry Playbook, iPod Touch, and Windows 7 Slate PC are best for running mobile cloud programs like DropBox, and Google Docs.

The reason these mobile computers and tablets are great for running cloud online programs is because they are well supported, and already work with a large amount of online programs which are already on the market today.

An iPhone 4, Google Android Smartphone, BlackBerry Smartphone, and Windows Phone 7 phone also makes a good mobile computer for using online Apps, but make sure to use the built-in WiFi adapter instead of your cellular signal since if you go over the bandwidth limit, or cap, you may have to pay expensive overage charges from your Cell phone service provider.

Myths about Cloud Computing, and the truth.

Myths people like to spread about Cloud computing on the web, and why they can be considered myths or not true in all situations.

Note: these Myths can be true in some situation, but if you use a well established cloud computing service provider like Google, Microsoft, ZoHo, Yahoo, Amazon, etc, they are less likely to happen to you, and is rarer to happen.

Cloud Storage is insecure and a privacy concern.

Truth: Cloud Computing can be more secure then your actual computer when there are enough security measures installed or being used like password encryption, 2 step verification like Google's 2 step verification which uses a code to send to your cell phone for you to use to login to Gmail, so people who stole your password can't login if they do not have your cell phone or tablet. Your computer can be less private then an internet based program like web mail since if a robber stole your computer, he can easily access all your computer's files by taking out your hard drive and plugging it into his computer as a secondary hard drive, or just turning it on to access your data while if someone steals your computer which does not use Auto-login, or non-password protected password managers, they can't login to your web mail account unless you were careless enough to store your password in a text file on your desktop.

By using programs like Panda Cloud Antivirus, Immunet Cloud Antivirus, Norton Safe Web toolbar, AVG link Scanner toolbar, Mcafee Site Advisor, Google DNS, Open DNS, Comodo DNS, and other programs which rely on cloud computing to provide you with up to date definitions for blocking harmful files, and websites from scamming you, infecting Windows or Mac PC, and stealing your date, your home computer can be even more secure then just using no antivirus or an antivirus which is outdated, missing important features, and using old definition files because your antivirus subscription expired, and you do not have the money to buy a new subscription, or your too lazy or your computer failed to update to the latest virus definition to protect you from the latest virus, and spyware threats.

Cloud computing is unreliable.

Truth: Cloud computing can be more reliable since Google, Zoho office, and web mail services backs up your files to multiple hard drive, and properly maintains their computers and servers to minimize or stop down time. If your computer breaks, or your internet went offline, you can just get a new one, go to school, the library, and other place with working PCs, and internet service to continue working on your documents. This is a better situation then your computer crashing, or a power outage causing you to lose your work, and having to start all over from the beginning because your computer is broken, or you never saved your work before a power outage.

Cloud Computing is slow.

Truth: It is as fast as your internet connection, so if your ISP is fast YouTube, and online gaming runs faster. In my experience, Google Docs, and online office programs run faster, and crash less then offiline office programs like Microsoft Office.

Your data is stuck on the web, and you can't get it back easily.

Truth: A lot of web based programs let you download your files in common file formats like PDF, DOC, PPT, TXT, CSV, MP4, HTML, and other common file formats which you can open with offline programs like MS Office, or upload to another online service provider.

Cloud computing take a way jobs.

Truth: It can produce more jobs since it lets the common everyday folk work online for a living. For example, Squidoo.com lets stay at home moms, students, retired people, the unemployed, etc make money online by writing a lot of useful articles which could help people in their real job, or find jobs by writing articles on how to apply for college, write a resume, network with other working professionals, make money online, start a business, or sell stuff online. Google Adsense, Adbrite, Amazon, eBay, Cafepress, YouTube, Craigslist and other online corporations which rely on cloud computingh help fund a lot of people's websites, and let small business owners advertise their services for dollars a day.

Cloud and Grid web hosting help a lot of website owners be able to host a high traffic website for 30-100 dollars a month without spending hundreds or thousands on a dedicated web server to host their high traffic web sites which they use to earn money from selling products, and services to online consumer.

I personally earned thousands of dollars online over the past few years from Adsense, Amazon Affiliates, writing online and selling advertisements on my websites.

Cloud Computing is Expensive

Truth: I as a home user been using Google Docs, Facebook, YouTube, Web mail, and other online services, and I haven't paid a penny to Google, and other online program service provider since most cloud services are free for home users, and businesses to use.

Cloud applications are not customizable.

Truth: If you ask the online service provider to customize a software for your needs, they might be willing to if you pay them or the customizablity is already built-into the program.

Cloud Computing uses a lot of bandwidth for users

Google Docs, and Office programs located in the cloud does not use a lot of bandwidth since they are just websites for editing office files like documents, and spreadsheets, but online back up, video streaming, and audio streaming can use a lot of bandwidth if you use them a lot. But, for doing text and picture based tasks like typing e-mail, image editing, and other basic tasks it should use as little bandwidth as visiting Gmail.com, Blogger.com, and other static text and picture content based sites.

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    • thomasfrancis profile image

      Thomas Francis 2 months ago from Los Altos, USA

      Great article.

    • nikkilaker profile image

      nikkilaker 2 months ago

      Great article, those myth's are very useful and it's now easier to migrate to the cloud than you might think. If you enjoyed this read you might also find this useful. https://www.infinitygroup.co.uk/blog/cloud-migrati...

    • profile image

      Speedster-IT 5 years ago

      If anyone reading this article would like to try cloud hosting fro free contact me : http://www.speedster-it.com/cloud-hosting-trial/

    • profile image

      htlgroup 5 years ago

      @htlgroup: for more cloud services info visit:http://www.htlgroup.co.uk/

    • profile image

      htlgroup 5 years ago

      @htlgroup: for more cloud services info visit:http://www.htlgroup.co.uk/

    • profile image

      htlgroup 5 years ago

      very well said!through cloud computing there will be no worries about servers,you can access from anywhere in any computer.

    • profile image

      madhu2219 5 years ago

      Nothing so well could be explained about Cloud Computing Technology.. It's great!

      Hard work is definitely rewarded.

      For more info visit this lens http://www.squidoo.com/all-about-cloud-computing-t...

    • johnsonyip profile image
      Author

      Johnson Yip 5 years ago from Canada

      @anonymous: I agree, that ISP bandwidth limit will make cloud computing not as popular because a lot of ISP broadband provider are also TV cable providers, so Cable based ISP don't want costumers to subscribe to NetFlix, or Hulu Plus since it is a direct competitor with the ISP's Cable TV business and Skype is a competitor to a ISP's Internet Phone business/VOIP. Google is currently offering very high speed internet with plenty of bandwidth in Kansas City, Kansas, so bandwidth is not a problem in Kansas. The Cloud program service providers probably also have to be the internet service provider, or agree to be business partners with cloud services which use a lot of bandwidth like NetFlix, Hulu Plus, Skype, and Pandora Online Radio. In Canada, there was a proposed bandwidth limit by the major ISPs, but the government and people of Canada are petitioning to prevent the bandwidth limits from going through since it is not in the consumers best interests.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      Great explanation! As far as cloud computing is concerned, I am a bit wary of how things will go when ISP providers start limiting our bandwidth or charging more for it. Could you, perhaps, comment on that?