What is the cloud? Where is the cloud? Are we in the cloud right now? These are some of the questions you have probably heard or even asked yourself. The term “cloud computing” is literally resonating everywhere. Let’s Dig into more on Cloud computing concepts technology & architecture
Cloud computing means remote storing of data and programs over the internet instead of a local hard drive. This goes back to the olden days of flowcharts and presentations showing gigantic server-farm infrastructure, where the Internet would be shown as a small puffy cloud, accepting connections and doling out information as it floats.
Cloud computing got its name from the same puffy cloud symbol. It’s not just about your hard drive when it comes to cloud computing. Storing or Running data from the hard drive is called local storage and accessing this becomes easy as it is quickly accessible. For a long time, the entire IT sector was working off the hard drive and this had to innovate and become better.
How does cloud computing work?
Cloud computing works by allowing client devices to access data from remote servers, databases, and computers. An internet network connection links this front end (Laptop, Server, browser, network, and cloud software applications) with the back end(databases, servers, and computers).
Cloud computing examples
Google Docs, Microsoft Office 365: Users can be more productive because they can access work presentations and spreadsheets stored in the cloud at any time from anywhere on any device.
Email, Calendar, Skype, WhatsApp: Provide users with access to data remotely so they can access their personal data on any device anytime.
Zoom: Zoom is a cloud-based platform for AV conferencing that records meetings and saves them to the cloud.
AWS Lambda: Lambda based on the pay-as-you-go model allows developers to run code for applications or back-end services without having to provision or manage servers.
Cloud computing vs. traditional web hosting
Cloud Computing is different from traditional web hosting on the following grounds:
- Users can access large amounts of computing requirements on-demand on short notice.
- It is elastic — a user can have more or less of a specific service as they want anytime.
- The service is fully managed by the provider leaving the consumer to have nothing apart from a computer and internet access).
Cloud computing characteristics
Self-service provisioning: The users can spin up resources such as servers, networks, storage, etc. eliminating the dependency on IT administrators to provision and manage them.
Elasticity: Companies can easily scale up/scale down based on the computing needs eliminating the need for massive investments in local IT infrastructure.
Pay per use: Compute resource utilization is properly monitored, enabling users to pay only for the resources and workloads utilized.
Migration flexibility: Organizations can move certain workloads to or from the cloud platforms as desired or automatically for optimum savings.
Broad network access: A user can access cloud data from any geographical location with any internet-enabled device.
Multi-tenancy and resource pooling: Multi-tenancy lets multiple customers share the same physical infrastructures/applications without compromising on privacy and security of data.
Cloud computing benefits
Cloud computing enlists key benefits for businesses and end-users;
Cost savings: Organizations don’t have to spend massive amounts of money buying and maintaining equipment, utilities, or building large data centers, IT Teams handle these operations to accommodate their growing businesses.
Mobility: Storing information in the cloud means that users can access it from anywhere with any internet-enabled device. Users need not carry a pen/Hard Drive or multiple CDs to access their data.
Disaster recovery: Storing data in the cloud ensures access to that data in the event of a device crash. The same data can be recovered quickly in the wake of an emergency like natural disasters or power outages.
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Cloud computing use cases
- Testing and development – Ready Test Tailored environments can help in meeting deadlines and milestones.
- Big data analytics — remote data centers through cloud storage are flexible and scalable and can provide valuable data-driven insights.
- IaaS – It helps businesses to host IT infrastructures and access flexible computing, storage, and network resources.
- PaaS — helps companies develop, run and manage applications in an easier and more flexible way, at a lower cost, than maintaining a platform on-premises.
- Hybrid cloud — Organizations would be able to use the right cloud (private or public) for various workloads and applications, allowing them to improve cost and performance based on the situation.
- Multi-cloud – It uses multiple cloud services to help subscribers finalize the best cloud service for diverse workloads with specific requirements.
- Storage — Large amounts of data can be stored remotely and accessed easily.
- Disaster recovery — offers faster recovery than traditional on-premises disaster recovery at much lower costs.
- Data backup — cloud backup solutions are independent of factors like availability and capacity.
Cloud computing security
Cloud computing is a form of computing where users expect their data in the cloud to be safer than it is on their local drives and servers. In spite of provisioning proper cybersecurity measures, they are vulnerable to data breaches, DDoS, and other cybersecurity threats.
Customers subscribing to the public cloud have less control as their data and apps are hosted by the public cloud provider. Customers have the option to go the private or hybrid cloud route to gain more control over their data.
In IaaS, the customers would be responsible for securing their data, applications, OS, and user access. In PaaS, the customers should be aware of their data, user access, and apps. In SaaS, the customer is going to be responsible for their cloud data and user access.
Cloud computing vendors
3 largest public cloud service providers, who have established themselves as dominant fixtures in the industry, are:
- Amazon Web Services (AWS)
- Google Cloud Platform
- Microsoft Azure
In Conclusion, Cloud computing may be a little bit like the Wild West, where it can throw up a surprise as rules are made up as you go, and you hope for the best. But Cloud Computing is here to stay for a long time and it’s got a huge revenue generation potential whilst offering ease of use to its subscribers base.