# Object storage for archiving data

As an alternative to copying data back to your client machine, users may prefer to upload their data to a cloud-based object storage service instead. Cloud storage solutions such as AWS S3, Dropbox and SWIFT have command-line tools which can be used to connect existing cloud storage to your research environment. Benefits of using an object-based storage service include:

  • Data is kept safe and does not have to be independently backed-up
  • Storage is easily scalable, with the ability for data to grow to practically any size
  • You only pay for what you use; you do not need to buy expansion room in advance
  • Storage service providers often have multiple tiers available, helping to reduce the cost of storing data
  • Data storage and retrieval times may be improved, as storage service providers typically have more bandwidth than individual sites
  • Your company, institution or facility may receive some storage capacity for free which you could use

Object storage is particularly useful for archiving data, as it typically provides a convenient, accessible method of storing data which may need to be shared with a wide group of individuals.