What is Cloud Computing?
Cloud computing is the on-demand delivery of compute power, database, storage, applications, and other IT resources via the internet with pay-as-you-go pricing.
Whether you are using it to run applications that share photos to millions of mobile users or to support business critical operations, a cloud services platform provides rapid access to flexible and low cost IT resources. With cloud computing, you don’t need to make large upfront investments in hardware and spend a lot of time on the heavy lifting of managing that hardware. Instead, you can provision exactly the right type and size of computing resources you need to power your newest idea or operate your IT department. You can access as many resources as you need, almost instantly, and only pay for what you us.
The company providing these services is referred to as a cloud provider. Some example providers are Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and the Google Cloud Platform (GCP). The cloud provider is responsible for the physical hardware required to execute your work, in addition to keeping it up to date. Every business is unique and has different needs. To meet those needs, cloud computing providers offer a wide range of services. Typically, these services include:
1. Compute power : such as Windows and Linux servers or web applications.
2. Storage: such as files and databases.
3. Networking: such as secure connections between the cloud provider and your company.
4. Analytics: such as visualizing telemetry and performance data
How Does Cloud Computing Work?
Cloud computing gives you access to servers, storage, databases, and a broad set of application services over the Internet. A cloud services provider such as Amazon Web Services, owns and maintains the network-connected hardware required for these application services, while you provision and use what you need via a web application.
Benefits of Cloud
The cloud allows you to innovate faster because you can focus your valuable IT resources on developing applications that differentiate your business and transform customer experiences rather than managing infrastructure and data centers. With cloud, you can quickly spin up resources as you need them, deploying hundreds or even thousands of servers in minutes. The cloud also makes it easy and fast to access a broad range technology such as compute, storage, databases, analytics, machine learning, and many other services on an as-needed basis. As a result, you can very quickly develop and roll out new applications, and your teams can experiment and innovate more quickly and frequently. If an experiment fails, you can always de-provision resources without risk
Before cloud computing, you had to over provision infrastructure to ensure you had enough capacity to handle your business operations at the peak level of activity. Now, you can provision the amount of resources that you actually need, knowing you can instantly scale up or down with the needs of your business. This reduces costs and improves your ability to meet your users’ demands.
Deploy globally in minutes
With the cloud, you can easily deploy your application in multiple physical locations around the world with just a few clicks. This means you can provide a lower latency and better experience for your customers simply and at minimal cost.
The cloud allows you to trade capital expense (data centers, physical servers, etc.) for variable expense and only pay for IT as you consume it. Plus, the variable expense is much lower than what you can do for yourself because of the larger economies of scale.
Types of Cloud Computing
Cloud computing is providing developers and IT departments with the ability to focus on what matters most and avoid undifferentiated work like procurement, maintenance, and capacity planning. As cloud computing has grown in popularity, several different models and deployment strategies have emerged to help meet specific needs of different users. Each type of cloud service, and deployment method, provides you with different levels of control, flexibility, and management. Understanding the differences between Infrastructure as a Service, Platform as a Service, and Software as a Service, as well as what deployment strategies you can use, can help you decide what set of services is right for your needs.
Cloud Computing Models
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
Infrastructure as a Service, sometimes abbreviated as IaaS, contains the basic building blocks for cloud IT and typically provide access to networking features, computers (virtual or on dedicated hardware), and data storage space. Infrastructure as a Service provides you with the highest level of flexibility and management control over your IT resources and is most similar to existing IT resources that many IT departments and developers are familiar with today.
Platform as a Service (PaaS)
Platforms as a service remove the need for organizations to manage the underlying infrastructure (usually hardware and operating systems) and allow you to focus on the deployment and management of your applications. This helps you be more efficient as you don’t need to worry about resource procurement, capacity planning, software maintenance, patching, or any of the other undifferentiated heavy lifting involved in running your application.
Software as a Service (SaaS)
Software as a Service provides you with a completed product that is run and managed by the service provider. In most cases, people referring to Software as a Service are referring to end-user applications. With a SaaS offering you do not have to think about how the service is maintained or how the underlying infrastructure is managed; you only need to think about how you will use that particular piece software. A common example of a SaaS application is web-based email where you can send and receive email without having to manage feature additions to the email product or maintaining the servers and operating systems that the email program is running on.
Cloud Computing Deployment Models
A cloud-based application is fully deployed in the cloud and all parts of the application run in the cloud. Applications in the cloud have either been created in the cloud or have been migrated from an existing infrastructure to take advantage of the benefits of cloud computing. Cloud-based applications can be built on low-level infrastructure pieces or can use higher level services that provide abstraction from the management, architecting, and scaling requirements of core infrastructure.
A hybrid deployment is a way to connect infrastructure and applications between cloud-based resources and existing resources that are not located in the cloud. The most common method of hybrid deployment is between the cloud and existing on-premises infrastructure to extend, and grow, an organization’s infrastructure into the cloud while connecting cloud resources to internal system. For more information on how AWS can help you with your hybrid deployment, please visit our hybrid page.
Deploying resources on-premises, using virtualization and resource management tools, is sometimes called “private cloud”. On-premises deployment does not provide many of the benefits of cloud computing but is sometimes sought for its ability to provide dedicated resources. In most cases this deployment model is the same as legacy IT infrastructure while using application management and virtualization technologies to try and increase resource utilization.
Some Popular Cloud Service providers are:
Amazon ( AWS)
Google Cloud Platform (GCP)