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Top 5 data storage best practices include Teams, containers

From Teams storage limits and cloud security out to the edge and container-native storage, this roundup of best practices provides a review of recent advice articles.

Top data storage best practices in 2021 reflect another year when IT continued its focus on managing through circumstances that relate to the coronavirus pandemic.

Microsoft Teams continues to be a main collaborative tool for employees, but there's a storage aspect to this software that organizations must monitor. In addition, with many employees still working remotely, edge data storage planning matters more than ever.

Newer storage technologies, such as containers and decentralized systems, have grown in prevalence. These technologies are complex and may require helpful guidance on top products and process.

Here are the top advice columns from 2021. Read and learn these data storage techniques to help keep your business humming along.

Manage Microsoft Teams storage limits

While many people only use the simple chat function in Microsoft Teams, storage administrators know that behind the scenes it's actually a complicated platform. Teams uses several different parts of the Microsoft 365 SaaS application to store its data, for example SharePoint Online for file storage and Exchange Online for contacts.

As a result, be sure to understand the storage limits within Teams and 365 to avoid surprises down the road. With these collaboration tools in such wide use, it's easy to see how businesses could hit those limits. The good news: It's possible to add storage within the Microsoft 365 platform.

Keep cloud storage secure

Cloud storage has surged during the pandemic, so it is reasonable to assume that your business stores a lot of data in the cloud. And once data moves to the cloud, it usually stays there.

Cloud security has improved, but it can still be risky. Several data storage best practices will help improve cloud safety, including encryption and strict access controls.

Visit the container store

Containers have all the resources they need to run a software application. Their portability is their selling point. Container-native storage runs inside a container cluster and can run anywhere in the public cloud or on premises. It's similar to hyper-converged infrastructure, in that it combines storage, servers and virtualization into one platform.

Since container-native storage is relatively new to the scene, it's important to do homework on container vendors. There are still many newcomers to this market. There's also some major cash exchanging hands -- for example, Pure Storage acquired container management specialist Portworx for $370 million in 2020. Know the latest in this hot and rapidly changing market.

Take a break from traditional storage and decentralize

Decentralized storage is an emerging trend and fast gaining in popularity. Decentralization breaks encrypted data up into fragments and stores them across multiple locations, thus the name. Like container-native storage, there are many startups in this field. It's also a relatively new technique, so understand decentralized data storage best practices to stay ahead.

Choose your provider wisely. Filecoin, Sia and Storj are three of the top names, but it's an expanding field, so watch for new blood.

Plan for the edge ... and for storage overall

While some employees have returned to the office, many remain remote and will likely stay that way. Because they might be located anywhere, "the edge" is a big target. So be sure to have an edge data storage plan. Data protection and compliance are just two of the necessary considerations.

Finally, execute a general data storage plan, that is, if one doesn't already exist. This relates to the edge storage planning in a way -- with data all over the place, from the data center to employees' laptops to the cloud, it's crucial for organizations to have a grasp on storage management. Those data storage best practices include planning out the who, what, where, when and how.

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