Cloud Computing Explained

If you’re about to start your journey to the cloud, this post is right for you. You probably might have heard someone talking or mentioning cloud computing, and you’re here to understand what cloud computing is. Let me give a little scenario, you have an organization, with a physical data center where you have servers, switches, storage devices, and networks all set up and ready for business. Imagine you do have an event that comes up once annually that will consume a lot of those resources which will require you to get either more servers or other resources to handle the services you will be providing and after the event those servers will be under use, from the narration you can see that you will have to spend more to handle a one-time service you needed to provide, this method of running software and hardware is what is referred to as On-Premises. What is Cloud Computing? Cloud Computing means storing of your IT resources in the cloud and running them over the internet on a pay-as-you-go basis. I can then define cloud computing as the delivery of on-demand computing services which includes storage, servers, network, database, email, intelligence, analytics, and application over the internet on a pay-as-you-go basis. The cloud is just a big data center (big building with servers) located at a different location and they are networked together and can also be accessed over the internet, they are owned by cloud providers, examples of these cloud providers are Microsoft, Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, VMware, IBM Cloud Services, Salesforce, etc. If we try to connect this to the scenario I gave previously it simply means when you have an event that will require more services instead of buying new servers or storage devices, you can just pay for more resources when you need them, helping you scale your business need.   Type of Cloud Computing When talking about types of cloud computing can be categorized into two: The Deployment Model and Service Model can also be referred to as types of cloud and types of cloud services respectively.   Deployment Model (Types of Cloud) I want to tell you a little story before talking about the types of cloud computing. I remember working in an organization in which I was required to come to the office every working day. I had different options for getting to the office depending on some conditions. The first condition is if I really want to be comfortable and keep my things anyhow I want them then I always choose the option of driving myself to the office but the cons to me going to work with my private car was I spend extra on fuel and maintenance of my car so when I think about this I go with another option which is ordering a ride to come to pick me, this other option was good because I still have a bit of privacy to some extent and at the same time I don’t need to fuel the car and take care of the maintenance which is fair to me but also I have one other option which is cheaper compare to the previous option which is taking public transport but then the comfort can’t compare to previous options I mentioned but then I pay less and I don’t have to think about how the car is been maintained. I will be explaining each of the deployment models but before I do you can always connect the first option I gave to the private cloud, the second option to the hybrid cloud, and the third option to the public cloud. Private Clouds are reserved exclusively for one business or organization. It can be managed on-premises or off-premises by a third-party service provider. Public Clouds are owned by cloud providers, they provide computing services to the public over the internet and are shared by multiple customers. Hybrid Clouds are a combination of both the public cloud and private cloud services or functionalities. You choose which of the data are to be stored on the private cloud and which are to be stored on the public cloud based on organization needs.   Community Cloud is when a group of organizations shares similar services on a sub-private cloud that can be managed internally or by a third-party provider and is designed to meet a specific community need.   Service Model (Type of Cloud Services) Now that we know what Cloud Computing has to do with delivering computing resources then we can now go ahead to see how they are been categorized. Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): it typically provides IT infrastructure resources over the internet such as network, servers, and storage on a pay-as-you-go basis. The customers are responsible for managing the operating system, middleware, and application that runs on the IT infrastructure. Platform as a Service: it provides services for developing, testing, and management of applications. The customer focus on just the coding and building of the application without the need to worry about the underlying infrastructure. Software as a Service: It provides computing service through a software application over the internet, it is typically usually accessed through the web browser. It eliminates the need for the end-user to manage the underlying infrastructure and any other maintenance. Benefits of Cloud Computing Cost Saving: With the cloud, you can now pay for what you use which reduces the cost compared to buying IT resources required to set up an on-premises data center. Security: Data stored in the cloud are secured, and the cloud provider ensures that data stored are kept secure with the use of their broad set of policies and technologies. Scalability: It is easier to scale up and down your IT resources when needed without the stress of physical limitation, with this you can easily meet up with your business need as it changes.    

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