Network attached storage (NAS) appliances are an essential aspect of modern IT networks. They often hold an organization’s most critical data and applications. However, as more IT management tools shift to the cloud, more IT admins are interested in cloud authentication for network attached storage solutions.
A cloud identity management platform that can manage user access to NAS devices would be highly advantageous for IT organizations that are looking to move IAM to the cloud while retaining an on-prem file server. JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service® represents a particularly powerful example of a cloud platform that can manage NAS access. However, before we discuss the benefits of this cloud identity and access management (CIAM) platform, we should discuss the benefits of NAS appliances and why cloud authentication for network attached storage solutions would be helpful.
Traditional Authentication for Network Attached Storage
Network attached storage solutions are computer appliances designed for large volumes of data and applications. They provide centralized storage that can be accessed by any number of computers connected to the network. NAS devices can even offer advantages compared to cloud storage alternatives (i.e., Google Drive, Dropbox, Box), especially with larger file sizes or IT environments where bandwidth is limited.
Samba file servers and solutions from providers like Synology, QNAP, and FreeNAS are common examples of NAS appliances. Some of them have served IT admins well for decades. For example, Samba was first released in the early 1990’s as an open source iteration of the SMB/CIFS protocols that allowed Unix-based systems (including NAS appliances) to communicate with systems running early versions of Microsoft® Windows®. Samba file servers in particular have been popular storage solutions ever since, primarily because they can be easily integrated with all versions of DOS, Windows, OS/2, Linux, and more.
Samba file servers and NAS appliances are certainly valuable assets. The issue for modern IT organizations is that authentication to NAS solutions has historically been provided by complicated on-prem identity management platforms like Microsoft Active Directory® (AD). Of course, this wasn’t an issue when AD was first introduced in 1999, given that NAS (Read more...)
*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from JumpCloud authored by Vince Lujan. Read the original post at: https://jumpcloud.com/blog/cloud-authentication-network-attached-storage-nas/