Cloud Computing and Its Benefits

What Is Cloud Computing?

In a simple language, Cloud Computing is the delivery of hosted services over the internet. It enables organisations to consume a compute resource, such as a virtual machine (VM), storage or an application, as a utility like electricity instead of having to build and maintain computing infrastructures in it.


Benefits and Characteristics of Cloud Computing

Cloud computing has several benefits for businesses and end users. Few of the main benefits of cloud computing are as given below:

Self-service provisioning:

Users can spin up compute resources for almost any type of load on demand. This eliminates the important need for IT administrators to provision and manage compute resources.


Organisations can scale up as computing needs increases and scale down as demands decrease. Hence this eliminates the need for massive investments in local infrastructure, which may or may not active.

Pay per use:

Compute resources are measured at a granular level by enabling users to pay only for the resources and workloads they use.

Workload resilience:

Many Cloud service providers implement redundant resources to ensure resilient storage by keeping users' important workloads running across multiple regions.

Migration flexibility:

Businesses can move certain workloads to or from the cloud or to different cloud platforms as desired for better cost savings or to use new services as they emerge.


Deployment Models of Cloud Computing

Basically Cloud computing services can be private, public or hybrid and these are explained as below:

Private cloud services:

Private cloud services are provided from an organisation’s data centre to the internal users and this model delivers the versatility and convenience of the cloud by preserving the management, control and security common to local data centres. The common private cloud technologies includes VMware and OpenStack.

Public Cloud Services:

This Public cloud model, is a third-party cloud service provider that delivers the cloud service over the internet. These services are sold on demand, typically by the minute or hour, though long-term commitments are available for many services. The top Public cloud service providers include Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, IBM and Google Cloud Platform.

Hybrid Cloud Services:

It is the combination of public and on-premises private cloud, with orchestration and automation between both. Businesses can run mission-critical workloads or sensitive applications on the private cloud and use the public cloud to handle workload bursts or spikes in demand.

The main goal of a hybrid cloud is to create a unified, automated, scalable environment that takes advantage of all a public cloud infrastructure can provide, while still maintaining control over mission-critical data. 

Multicloud Model

Organizations are increasingly uses a multicloud model, or the use of multiple infrastructure-as-a-service providers. This model enables applications to migrate between different cloud providers to operate concurrently across two or more cloud providers.

Organizations adopt multicloud for various reasons like they could do so to minimize the risk of a cloud service outage or to take advantage of more competitive pricing from a particular provider.


Types of Cloud Computing Services

Cloud computing has changed over time and it has been divided into three broad service categories such as infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS) and software as a service (SaaS).


IaaS Model:

IaaS providers supply a virtual server instance and storage and APIs that enable users to migrate workloads to a VM. End users have an allocated storage capacity and can start, stop, access and configure the VM and storage as desired. They offer small, medium, large, extra-large and memory for various workload needs.

PaaS Model:

Cloud Service providers host development tools on their infrastructures. End-users access these tools over the internet using APIs, web portals or gateway software. It is used for general software development, and many PaaS providers host the software after it's developed.

SaaS Model:

It is a distribution model that delivers software applications over the internet where users can access SaaS applications and services from any location using a computer or mobile device having internet access. An example of a SaaS application is Microsoft Office 365 for productivity and email services.


Cloud Technologies and Services

Cloud providers are competitive, and they constantly expand their services to differentiate themselves. This has led public IaaS providers to offer far more than common compute and storage instances.

Take an example such as serverless, or event-driven computing is a cloud service that executes specific functions, such as image processing and database updates. Traditional cloud deployments require users for establishing a compute instance and load code into that instance.

With serverless computing, developers create code and provider loads and executes that code in response to real-world events hence users don't have to worry about the server or instance aspect of the cloud deployment. Users only need to pay for the number of transactions that the function executes.


Cloud Computing Security

Security is the primary concern for organisations look thoughtfully for cloud adoption especially public cloud adoption. This service providers share their underlying hardware infrastructure between numerous customers, as public cloud is a multi-tenant environment.

Lots of organizations bound by complex regulatory obligations and governance standards are still hesitant to place data in the public cloud due to fear of outages, loss or theft. As logical isolation has proven reliable, and the addition of data encryption and access management tools has improved security within the public cloud.


History of Cloud Computing

Since 1960s Cloud computing traces its origins back, when the computer industry recognized the potential advantages of delivering computing as a service or a utility. It wasn't until the broad availability of internet bandwidth in the late 1990s that computing as a service became practical for organisations.

Salesforce offered one of the first commercially successful implementations of enterprise SaaS in the late 1990s. Today, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform and other providers have joined AWS to provide cloud-based services to individuals, small businesses and global enterprises.


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