Cloud computing refers to the phenomenon of providing services over the internet. A typical cloud computing platform consists of physical computer machines, hard disks, SSDs, and proper networking contained within globally distributed data centers.
It is indeed a pay-as-you-go model that scales to provide its users with computing, storage or throughout operations as per requirement. In short, you can say that “Cloud” is a general term used for all of the services a company offers us with the aid of the Internet.
There are dozens of advantages of cloud computing. I am discussing very popular ones here:
Pay as you go benefit
You have to pay only for the resources you are using in a cloud-based system, and thus it is called a pay as you go model. In traditional hosting, you pay in advance for the services which you are not sure you are completely going to use. Buying 100GB disk space for a year or 4GB RAM capacity and you are unsure whether you will really be in need of that for the next consecutive 12 months. On the other hand, cloud computing gives you flexibility and ease of paying only for the resources you utilize. Thus, you are saving a lot of money which can be used to fulfill other needs.
With cloud computing you can get rid of a wrong prediction.
While deploying an application, typically, you are not 100% sure how many resources it will require. The disadvantage of this is, you end up either buying additional resources or you will not buy them, which will either cost you more or you will compromise on app functionality. Cloud computing provides you with the exact resources required to smoothly run the app and guarantees maximum uptime than a traditional host.
Ease of adding new resources.
Cloud computing ensures better speed and stability of the application by providing an option to add additional resources with a single click. You can increase or decrease the RAM and processor and also set the storage space according to your needs, thus providing a high level of scale-ability in the least possible time with this elastic behavior. This feature of cloud computing is highly beneficial for test environments where companies can not buy separate hosting for each test. They just run a new instance in the cloud and scale the resources according to their requirements.
Cloud computing providers like Amazon Web Services provide virtual private clouds, also called VPC, that give a better level of encryption, security policies, access control, and API keys for sufficient identity and prevent account hijacking. A VPC is a sort of network segmentation which provides isolation for your resources. In this manner, if one of your resources got unauthentic access, the hacker would not be able to penetrate into other resources.
Cloud computing offers services to give you ability to manage security in an efficient manner. These services are indeed virtual or software based tools meant to protect incoming and outgoing data.
Cloud computing ensures Maximum uptime
Cloud computing has become so powerful with services like load balancers, which ensure maximum uptime as compared to traditional hosts. A load balancer distributes the load across multiple servers, thus, for instance, if a server fails, it picks up the application from another server and serves it to the end user. New servers can easily be added or removed according to site needs at that time, as they are completely scalable and redundant. The server to which traffic is currently pointing is called the active server, and other servers are called passive servers.
Cloud computing is an ideal environment for development and testing.
An application can be developed and tested on a passive server in a cloud environment and then be deployed easily. Any customization related work can also be carried out in the same way and new instances can be created for this purpose. You just have to create a snapshot of the current instance and create a new instance through this snapshot. A lot of software companies are shifting to the cloud just for this amazing feature.
Cloud computing provides a greater level of redundancy thus in case of a hardware failure, it will not impact the application uptime and data lose chances are very rare.
Major types of cloud computing:
A typical organization/company is the sole owner of a cloud platform in the case of a private cloud. In other words, you can say that a private cloud is a limited computing architecture which serves a small number of people. Resource pooling and sharing is still possible. This cloud service is setup in the same building where the organization resides. For example, in a university, cloud services are shared between management, teachers, students, etc.
This sort of computing service is shared between many organizations which have shared concerns, like mission/goal, policy, security needs, etc. As an example, you can think of an NGO which has an office in each city which has similar needs and can come around on a single cloud server residing in the head office.
The public cloud facility is available to the general public and is owned by a company selling cloud services like Amazon, Google, Rackspace, etc. These services are provided equally to all sets of customers, and everyone is free to acquire services on a cloud platform.
A hybrid cloud is a combination of one or more of the above cloud service types. It may happen that a company can utilize private cloud services to hold its very sensitive data and can make use of public cloud services for front-end applications. A hybrid cloud makes use of the same tools and technology.
This infrastructure is a composition of two or more clouds which are tied together and enable information portability to gain efficiencies and business benefits in true terms. The cloud computing architecture is highly scalable because of its distributed nature.
There are various types of clouds: public clouds, community clouds, private clouds, etc. The latest analyst reports suggest that the cloud market will continue to grow exponentially. Worldwide, companies are investing in cloud services or strategically intend to do so in coming years. In cloud computing, a central server administers the system, monitoring traffic and client demands to ensure everything is running smoothly.
A brief introduction of popular Cloud service providers:
What is google cloud?
According to medium.com:
Google Cloud Platform (GCP) is a collection of Google’s computing resources, made available via services to the general public as a public cloud offering.
Like other cloud-based platforms, the Google Cloud Platform consists of computer sets, hard disks, physical and virtual resources which become a service. Google owns a lot of zones, combined together as data centers deployed around the globe. The major regions include the Central US, East Asia, and Western Europe. The major services which GCP offers are computing and hosting, storage, big data, networking and machine learning.
What is aws cloud?
Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the most popular cloud computing platform owned by Amazon. Amazon was the pioneer in launching a cloud computing model in 2006, where it utilized an already built infrastructure in the company which was handling all sorts of retail transactions. The major offerings of AWS are infrastructure as packaged software as a service (SaaS), infrastructure as a service (IaaS) and platform as a service (PaaS).
What is iCloud?
iCloud.com is an Apple platform meant to store and share photos, documents, apps, music, and videos across all devices. You first have to create an Apple ID on a Mac device, and then you can signup and use iCloud. The beauty of this cloud-based platform is that if you create a photo album on one device, it gets automatically shared across all your iOS devices, Apple TV and Apple Watch. Like Office 360 and GSuite, iCloud also includes a web version of important apps like Mail, Calendar, Notes, etc. If you have a Windows-based PC and want to use iCloud on it, you can only get access to iCloud drive, which is a storage service, and a few other apps.
What is Microsoft Cloud?
Azure is the cloud based platform offered by Microsoft which is highly scalable and agile. The working of this enterprise-grade service is just like other cloud based systems with the added advantage of improved security but challenges are still there. Firewall deployments can be managed through a centralized security system.
Resources provided by cloud computing
Cloud computing was once confined to the need for programmers to extend software, but has developed into mainstream business applications that are accessed via the web browser. An example of that is senior living marketing. Cloud computing will allow marketing agencies to store vast amounts of information related to their past, current and future marketing strategies in their businesses. Through this data, they will be able to evaluate information and gain the ability to make on-the-fly decisions and make adjustments to the marketing strategy in real time.
When it comes to clinical assessment tools–think about all the tests and scales, surveys and quizzes, interviews and evaluations–that physicians, nurses, psychologists, and other practitioners use to determine the condition of a client or a patient–both objective and subjective data are required to make a proper diagnosis. By placing the data on the cloud, it’s not going to waste and will be easily available.
Behind every digital campaign is a great agency, and thanks to the Internet, it is now easier for the digital marketing agency to start the campaign. They have come a long way to innovate in the area of digital marketing with their own flair and aesthetic work. They used technology to support a new TV series, a community-based initiative, gum innovation, and more. Technology is always evolving, so it’s up to all of us to try and keep up. By integrating with cloud computing, you will be able to better keep up with developments and benefit from the tools it offers.
Cloud computing provides lots of benefits, and thus, one can concentrate more on developing and marketing a product rather than thinking about its deployment, maintaining and securing it. But switching from a traditional host to a cloud server is not an easy job and requires expert-level knowledge to make this transfer.