Getting Started with Cloud Computing — What is Cloud Computing?
Definition of Cloud Computing
Cloud Computing, from the name, suggests a technology that is related to automation and computers. The word “Cloud” is often heard as something seen in the atmosphere as an accumulation of water droplets and moisture. In Cloud Computing, this word also has a typical reference to an amount of storage of data servers to serve the computing necessity of a system.
Computing refers to the processing power or the agility of the servers stored to meet up the on-demand requirements. Cloud Computing is an on-demand networking platform of servers stored over the Internet to manage and process data instead of using traditional physical storage media. Data stored over a cloud platform is highly secured and easily accessible as a result the workload of an IT-resources is eased and hence they can focus entirely on the core infrastructure of their business.
Need for Cloud Computing
Cloud Computing is quite the latest technology by its standards and still, there are questions about why to use Cloud Computing? The main motive behind this technology is to replace physical servers with online servers and reduce the workload of managing a server. Traditionally, on-premise resources were used where the underlying cost of managing the data was exceptionally huge and complicated. The traditional on-premise resource managing system failed on multiple occasions due to less man-power to manage or the purpose of using those servers was undermined. Companies or users owing to the dedicated on-premise servers could not focus on their core competency hence their infrastructure kept failing quite often.
The primary disadvantages of switching from on-premise resources to Cloud Computing are as follows:
- On-premises data-centers need to be managed and as the amount of data flooding increases, more amount of people need to be hired to safeguard the resources.
- The core competencies of a particular infrastructure get compromised and it leads to havocs around the workplace. For example Company X invests a certain amount to open up a startup to write technical content for newsletters. Suppose, ‘X’ has made a website that is flooded with a large amount of content every day. After a month, he hires a data analyst who manages all the web-trafficking and data auditing. After two months, the analyst resigns the job and all the work done by him is halted due to no experts in company ‘X’. As a result, ‘X’ loses all the previous data and his company becomes bankrupt. Hence, the inter-dependencies and the diversion of his main focus from content production to data management leads to the downfall of the start-up
- Security of the data is a major issue and leaking of sensitive data from servers has been one of the trivial cyber-attacks that most users face in the 21st century.
The limitations or the drawbacks that arise from the on-premises resources lead to the growth of Cloud Computing. The mitigation of on-prem resources has been done in the following manner:-
- Cloud Computing tycoons such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Alibaba Cloud, Google Cloud Platform (GCP) have vouched for dedicated platforms that would manage the servers and govern the data resources of anyone who wishes to utilize the services.
- It promises to take care of all the resources, databases, and security that simply allows an individual or a corporation to comply with their core strategies.
- Cloud Computing (CC) shifts the paradigm of IT companies of hiring experts to manage servers instead, the CC firms hire experts to trade with the clients using their services.
Types of Cloud Deployment Models
Cloud Computing offers three types of deployment strategies and each of them have been explained as follows:-
- Private Cloud:- It is a type of model where the resources are deployed in on-prem Data Centers (DC) using virtualization and management tools. It is fully managed by the user where the Cloud companies cannot intervene. This is used in places such as Government sectors such as Hospitals, Railway Stations, and sensitive locations such as Defence centric areas. The cloud acts as a private deployment tool to store the data and the clients opting for it are fully responsible for its security and OS patching.
- Hybrid Cloud:- This model is quite popular among multinational companies where they choose to give access to some part of their data to the Cloud Computing companies and they are responsible for the remaining amount of services. It is generally used to form a bridge between the existing resources that are not in the cloud and the cloud-based resources. It is mainly used by Banks, FinTech firms like Deloitte, and Large Professional Service Providers.
- Cloud:- It is a fully utilized and managed service where the underlying hardware, the security, and the resources are controlled by the Cloud-based companies. It follows the principle of “Lift and Shift” which refers to the migration of a non-cloud based resource to fully cloud-based utility. Various organizations such as startups, SAAS offerings, or private amenities have lately started to migrate to fully controlled cloud offerings.
Advantages of Cloud Computing
Cloud Computing offers six advantages that are necessary for a user to understand before switching to Cloud framework:-
- Trade Capital Expense for Variable Expense:- Instead of spending a lot of money on Data Centers before knowing the actual usage, CC offers the “Pay as you go” offerings where the client can pay only for the exact amount of resources they are using with no upfront commitments.
- Benefit from massive economies of scale:- Usage from hundreds and thousands of customers get aggregated in the cloud hence the individual client gets high variable savings. It is sharing the cost with other clients to lower the individual cost.
- Stop Guessing about Capacity:- This refers to client guessing their usage or their data storage at the end of a billing cycle. This could lead to either over-estimating the price and wastage of resources or low-estimation of price, leading to instant purchasing of resources. Cloud Computing eliminates the guessing policy and thereby it scales according to the usage of a customer at the end of the billing period.
- Increase Speed and Agility:- CC enables IT- resources to be available within minutes instead of spending hours or even weeks for the solutions to be implemented. It increases the agility of cloud-native firms because the cost of production is lowered significantly.
- Stop spending money running and maintaining Data Centers:- It allows customers to reinstate their focus on their business instead of worrying about the underlying infrastructure. Cloud will take care of the resources including networking, cooling racks, Data Centers, and powering servers.
- Go Global in minutes:- This allows the users to deploy their applications in any region around the world in just a few clicks. It also dispenses low latency and a better user experience for its customers at a very minimal cost.
Types of Cloud Computing
Cloud Computing (CC) is broadly classified into three major subgroups:-
- Software as a Service (SAAS):- It is a complete product that is entirely managed and run by the service providers. The user does not have to worry about any of the underlying functionalities or the maintenance of the service instead can only concentrate on the usage. It is provisioned for customers only. Example: Gmail, Office365, Dropbox.
- Platform as a Service (PAAS):- It allows the customers to focus only on the management and the deployment of the applications without worrying about the hardware or the OS Patching software services modules. It removes the workload of provisioning, configuring, or understanding the core infrastructure. It is mainly used by Developers. Example: Heroku, Apache Stratos, AWS Elastic Beanstalk.
- Infrastructure as a Service (IAAS):- It provides basic networking or storage spaces for cloud IT to deploy their resources and manage them. IAAS provides the highest level of flexibility in terms of management and control of the whole cloud architecture. The customer still doesn’t need to worry about the hardware or the Data Centers that are only managed by the Cloud. It is mainly built for Administrators. Example: Microsoft Azure, AWS, Cisco Metapod.
Concluding from the fact that the impact of Cloud Computing in the 21st Century would be tremendous and as a result, the opportunity to migrate to fully cloud-based solutions would prove extremely beneficial to developers as well as companies. This article has focused upon the introductory values of Cloud Computing and its comparison with the traditional on-premise resource management system.
- AWS Certified CCP- freecodechamp.org; Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3hLmDS179YE
- Software Advice; Link: https://www.softwareadvice.com/resources/cloud-erp-vs-on-premise/
- AWS Certified CCP Training Bootcamp by XAAS Technologies; Link: https://www.udemy.com/course/intro-to-aws-cloud-computing/
- Cloud Flare; Link: https://www.cloudflare.com/learning/cloud/what-is-the-cloud/