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What is Cloud Computing a.k.a. "The Cloud"?

What is Cloud Computing? The "Cloud" is a very widely used term in the IT world of today. Although most have heard it, many do not fully understand how it works.

15 Mar, 22 by Antoniy Yushkevych 11 min Read

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Cloud computing delivers on-demand IT resources such as databases, networking, servers, storage, intelligence, software, and analytics for providing flexible resources, faster innovation, and scale economies. Many people and organizations are using cloud computing as it offers multiple benefits and features at lesser costs. 

Cloud computing has different types, so if you want to know everything about cloud computing, then read our guide as we have included complete information grading it. 

Despite the name, the cloud has nothing to do with the white fluffy things you see floating in the sky. In IT, the cloud describes a global network of servers, each with its unique function. Unlike a server, it is not a physical thing, but a vast network of servers spread worldwide. All these servers operate as a single ecosystem. The cloud has many uses, such as storing and managing data, running applications, or delivering content and services like video streaming and social media. These services can all be accessed online from any internet-capable device. 

Just about any IT resource can be stored on the cloud, be it a software program, a service, or even an entire infrastructure. We can split cloud technology into two main parts, cloud storage and cloud computing. Today we will discuss the latter. Nowadays, cloud computing is quite a vague term, as it can mean different things.  

The cloud enables you to run heavy and memory-intensive tasks on virtual machines without purchasing a new expensive machine. Cloud technology provides a variety of services such as computation, software, and data access and storage resources without informing cloud users where the data is coming from or where it is being stored.

There are numerous cloud providers, such as Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure, and others, from which you can purchase services and integrate them into your products.

Cloud services speed up Big Data and business intelligence computing operations, enable software modernization via microservices, and are essential for an e-commerce software engine. It has the effect of streamlining and simplifying business applications, shortening time to market, and effectively meeting customer demands.

Nevertheless, three main categories of cloud computing services can be split into:

  • Software as a Service (SaaS): Software is licensed on a subscription basis and is centrally hosted.
  • Platform as a Service (PaaS): Delivers hardware and software tools (usually needed for application development) to users over the internet.
  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): Self-service models for accessing, monitoring, and managing remote data center infrastructures.

Now let’s go into more detail about the aforementioned cloud computing services and some of their advantages and disadvantages.

A cloud service provider is an organization or company that is in charge of delivering various cloud services to its customers in the form of different services such as IAAS, PAAS, and SAAS. A customer can purchase the service from the cloud provider and integrate it into a product without worrying about the hardware requirements or the installation process.

Customers can expect a high level of technical expertise, high-quality hardware, and software, strong cybersecurity, a responsive support system, increased security, increased storage capacity, increased data transfer speed, and increased processing power from a cloud computing service provider-a provider of cloud services.

Cloud service providers usually charge on a pay-as-you-go basis. Customers are only charged for the services that they use. For example, a company will be charged based on the amount of memory it uses or the number of minutes spent on a service.

Cloud computing offers multiple benefits, so let's have a brief look at the major benefits offered by this system. 

  • Cloud computing can save your cost. 
  • Cloud computing offers security, mobility, and flexibility for the system. 
  • Cloud computing provides features for disaster recovery and quality control.
  • Cloud computing offers automatic software updates and sustainability. 
  • Cloud computing has enhanced collaboration, easy management, and loss prevention. 
  • Cloud computing offers unlimited storage capacity and on-demand self-service. 

We have mentioned three types of cloud computing; let's discuss the complete details of this cloud computing.

Software as a Service (SaaS)

It is a software distribution model where providers host applications created specifically for SaaS use and make them available to users over the internet. Customers receive network-based access to a single copy of the software. The applications’ source code is universal for all users, and thus when new updates are rolled out, everyone receives them simultaneously. Users’ data can be stored locally on their machines, on the cloud, or both.

Cloud computing, which uses the SaaS model, is essential for most modern businesses, as there are applications that are fundamental to running them. These include email, sales management, financial management, human resource management, and billing. With all of these being available through the cloud, businesses no longer need to build their infrastructure to install and run applications.

As the IT industry moves to SaaS, there are some important potential disadvantages to using it. Customers rely upon providers to deliver the software, keep it up and running, and implement security updates. In cases of service disruptions or security breaches, the software might become unavailable to use. Unwanted changes to the applications could also occur, leaving the customers stuck using the new version of the software or picking a different SaaS provider.

Platform as a Service (PaaS)

PaaS is a cloud computing model in which a provider delivers hardware and software tools to users over the internet. It is most common for these tools to be used for application development. The PaaS provider hosts the hardware and software on its infrastructure. Typically, a business does not use PaaS to replace its entire IT infrastructure but relies on PaaS for services such as application hosting or Java development. The provider creates an optimized environment where users can install software and data sets. 

This allows users to focus on app development without worrying about building and managing the underlying infrastructure and services. Since most PaaS products are focused on software development, they often offer to compute and storage infrastructure, text editing, and code compiling and testing services. It is also very comfortable for development teams to collaborate regardless of geographical location, as it is a cloud computing service.

Although PaaS is a very efficient service for application developers to use, it also has its downfalls. Since information is stored off-site, data security is not lightly taken when choosing a cloud provider. The client must verify that the right measures and data practices are set to keep the information confidential.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

IaaS provides virtualized computing resources over the internet. The cloud provider hosts the infrastructure components typically in an on-premises datacenter. They include servers, networking hardware, and the hypervisor layer. There are also services provided related to the aforementioned infrastructure components.

Despite its long history and modern-day widespread use, cloud computing is still in the early adoption stages. Many businesses are still unsure of which apps to move to the cloud. Nevertheless, studies’ prognosis states that users will likely grow exponentially as more and more organizations get comfortable storing their data elsewhere than on on-site servers.

Public Cloud: This Cloud deployment model allows public users to access cloud services remotely via the internet. They can be subscription-based or pay-per-use. IBM and Google Cloud are two major public cloud providers.

Private Cloud: It is almost identical to the public cloud; the only difference is that computing services are only available to a single organization. As an added security measure, private clouds include additional firewalls.

Hybrid Cloud: It combines elements of both public and private clouds. It enables the organization to use the features of both models in accordance with their needs.

Security

Cloud computing provides excellent security for our data. Since the data is stored in distributed systems, it can be easily accessed even if your computer is damaged. Moreover, you are not worried about the protective measure against viruses or hacking attacks as the cloud service providers already take all these measures.

Cost-Effective

Capital expenditures are not required for the services. Cloud computing does not have a high hardware cost. Furthermore, you only pay for the services you use.

Collaboration

Cloud applications encourage collaboration by allowing different groups of people to interact virtually and exchange information through shared storage. This skill contributes to improved customer service, effective communication among internal team members, product development, and reduced marketing time.

Reliability and Scalability

Cloud scalability refers to how well your system responds and adapts to changing demands or when the number of requests to your product increase, which is the most significant advantage of cloud computing. Organizations of all sizes can benefit from the power of auto-scaling when it is properly implemented. It is more efficient and ideal for businesses with varying storage and bandwidth needs. Cloud computing reliability is critical for businesses of all sizes.

It was complete information upon cloud computing, including its types and their details. As we have mentioned earlier, cloud computing is a unique system that offers on-demand delivery of IT resources like databases, networking, servers, storage, intelligence, software, and many more. You can use cloud computing as it offers multiple benefits and if you like our guide, then please visit monovm’s official website as we provide multiple services. In case you want to contact us then drop a mail on sales@monovm.com and we will connect with you as soon as possible. 

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Antoniy Yushkevych

Master of word when it comes to technology, internet and privacy. I'm also your usual guy that always aims for the best result and takes a skateboard to work. If you need me, you will find me at the office's Counter-Strike championships on Fridays or at a.yushkevych@monovm.com