NAS vs Cloud — What’s the Difference and Which Is Better?

What Is Cloud Storage?

  • Private cloud storage — a storage mechanism for storing organizational data on internal storage servers by implementing cloud computing and storage technologies. It provides the usability, scalability, and flexibility of the storage architecture.
  • Public cloud storage — a service model that provides data storage on a pay-per-use basis.
  • Hybrid cloud storage — a type of data center infrastructure that combines private and public clouds, along with on-premises resources, and can share data across all environments.
  • Community cloud storage — a shared cloud computing service environment that is targeted to a limited set of organizations or employees.

What Is NAS?

NAS vs Cloud



Ease of Use


Setup and Maintenance

Backup and Reliability

Storage Limitation

Pros and Cons

  • Flexibility and ease of access — stakeholders can access assets stored on the cloud from a location and device of their choice without the hassle of downloading or installing them.
  • Remote management support — cloud storage paves the way for remote management.
  • Fast scalability — one of the main benefits of cloud storage is that you can provide new resources with just a few mouse clicks, without requiring any additional infrastructure.
  • Redundancy for backup — in the event of a natural disaster, accident, or cyber attack, the cloud ensures that your data is safely stored in a remote location. Data redundancy means replicating the same data in multiple locations and that is essential for a backup mechanism.
  • Cost savings — cloud storage can greatly reduce your costs in hardware devices, storage facilities, and power supplies.
  • Outage and downtime risk — cloud platforms managed by external providers can have outages that make data and applications stored in these environments inaccessible. In this way, you need additional redundancy for your most critical data.
  • Security issue — public cloud environments are shared by multiple tenants, which can increase your security vulnerabilities.
  • Supplier lock-in risk — if all your data is stored in a single public cloud platform, there’s a risk of vendor lock-in and potential inflexibilities.
  • NAS is a better choice for users who need to transfer file data to multiple clients over a network. — NAS devices work well in environments where data must be transmitted over long distances.
  • Easy deployment — NAS hosts, clients, and other devices can be widely distributed across an enterprise network environment. NAS can provide reliable file-level data consolidation because file locking is handled by the device itself.
  • It can be used in efficient file sharing tasks — different hosts and clients access NAS data using file sharing protocols to implement file sharing.
  • Data backup or storage occupies network bandwidth — the NAS device is connected to the client over an enterprise network. This will inevitably affect other network applications on the enterprise’s internal network.
  • Sharing network bandwidth is a major problem that limits NAS performance. Therefore, the data transfer rate of the NAS system is not high.
  • NAS scalability is limited by device size — it is very easy to add another NAS device, but it is not easy to seamlessly merge the storage space of two NAS devices, because NAS devices usually have unique network identifiers and storage space expansion is limited.
  • It can only provide file storage space, but cannot fully meet the requirements of database applications.
  • Upfront installation and equipment costs are high.

MiniTool ShadowMaker

Bottom Line:

NAS vs Cloud FAQ

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