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A patent filed by inventor Hui Zhao on November 29, 2010, was published online on November 12, 2013:
Reducing Data Duplication in Cloud Storage
US 8583599 B2
Data duplication may be reduced in cloud storage. First snapshots of one or more remote volumes may be received via a network. Responsive to and/or based on the first snapshots, unique clusters and duplicate clusters may be identified among the valid clusters of the remote volumes. The unique clusters and single instances of the duplicate clusters may be stored in a backup file, such that the backup file is devoid of duplicate clusters. Second snapshots of the one or more remote volumes may be received via the network. Responsive to the second snapshots, the clusters in the backup file that are no longer valid may be utilized to store the valid clusters in the one or more remote volumes not yet stored in the backup file.
FIELD OF THE INVENTION
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
Cloud storage describes Internet-based data storage, whereby shared storage resources are provided to networked computers and other devices. Generally speaking, cloud storage can make data more available and reliable relative to local storage approaches. One benefit of cloud storage from the standpoint of a user is the lack of storage space limitations. From the standpoint of a cloud storage provider, however, storing duplicate data increases the cost of mass data storage. As such, it is desirable to reduce duplicate data in cloud storage. In addition to the cost of mass data storage, storage of data in cloud storage generally needs to be more efficient than storage of data locally due to data transmission rates across the Internet.
One aspect of the invention relates to a cloud storage system. The cloud storage system may be coupled with one or more computing devices via a network. The cloud storage system may allow the computing devices to store and retrieve data (e.g., backup data, application data, etc.) remotely via the network. The cloud storage system may eliminate or reduce duplicate data received from the computing devices and stored by the cloud storage system. In some implementations, data clusters associated with a single backup file stored by the cloud storage system may be utilized to represent data stored from one or more data volumes of one or more remote computing devices. Among other features, by identifying duplicate clusters included in the one or more data volumes of the one or more remote computing devices, the cloud storage system can store one copy of those duplicate clusters in the single backup file thereby reducing duplicate data. The cloud storage system may include electronic storage, a processor, and/or other components.
According to various implementations, the electronic storage may comprise electronic storage media that electronically stores information. The electronic storage media of the electronic storage may include system storage that is provided integrally (i.e., substantially non-removable) with the cloud storage system and/or removable storage that is removably connectable to the cloud storage system. The electronic storage may store software algorithms, information determined by the processor and/or other information that enables the cloud storage system to function as described herein.
The processor may be configured to provide information processing capabilities in the cloud storage system. As such, the processor may be configured to execute one or more computer program modules. The one or more computer program modules may include one or more of a snapshot retrieval module, a cluster identification module, a mapping module, a backup module, and/or other modules.
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