Cloud Computing Architecture Explained
Clouding computing is no more considered as an emerging technology. Now, it’s a reality and this low-cost computing power is gaining popularity among businessmen, especially medium and small size, and governmental organizations, as people are realizing the power of cloud environments.
What is cloud computing?
Though there is no official definition and straight forward way to explain what exactly cloud computing is, but it can be expressed in general as the following statement:
“cloud computing is such a type of computing environment, where business owners outsource their computing needs including application software services to a third party and when they need to use the computing power or employees need to use the application resources like database, emails etc., they access the resources via Internet.”
For instance, you have a small business, where you need a few small servers for database, emails, applications etc. Normally, servers need higher computing power. On the other hand, PCs or laptop needs lower computing powers and are much cheaper than servers. Moreover, to maintain a client-server environment you need to have a highly skilled network maintenance team. If you decide to avoid the need of purchasing servers and thus cut-off the need of keeping an operation and maintenance team, then going for clouding computing is a very cost-effective solutions. Because in a cloud architecture, you neither have to install nor maintain servers. Just by paying a fixed amount of monthly charge you can outsource your IT infrastructure into a third party IT managed service data center.
In short, in a cloud computing architecture, all the applications are not stored in a company’s hard disk, rather it resides in a third party computer and when a company needs to use application software, and they access it via Internet.
Example of cloud computing:
A very simple example is Yahoo mail and Gmail, both are using cloud computing. When you send or receive email, you never need any application software installed in your computer. You just need an internet connection to send your emails.
- the operating cost of cloud computing is much cheaper than having a company’s own personal IT infrastructure and managed team
- Security and privacy is the only concern in cloud environments, because all your files, emails, database are hosted in a third party servers in their premise
Types of cloud computing
Considering the installation of network infrastructure a cloud environment can be broadly categorized into three types- public cloud, private cloud and hybrid cloud.
Public cloud- this is the most popular type of cloud system and is considered as a main-stream cloud system by cloud computing experts. In public cloud system a third party data center provide both disk space and computing power for all the application software. Amazon web and Google apps is the two most popular public cloud computing service providers.
Private cloud- unlike public cloud, you need to set up your own data center and also bear all the installation & maintenance cost, and have complete control of all your data. This system provides more security and privacy, but it is more expensive cloud solution to public cloud.
Cloud Computing Service provides
You must be familiar with Google apps. Actually, Google Appengine is a could compute service-this is also known as Google’s business solution. You can get more about Google’s cloud solution at: http://www.google.com/apps/ . Other big names in cloud computing service are: Microsoft, IBM, Amazon, HP and DELL.
Cloud Computing Service Architecture
Mainly, three types of services you can get from a cloud service provider.
1. Infrastructure as a service- service provider bears all the cost of servers, networking equipment, storage, and back-ups. You just have to pay to take the computing service. And the users build their own application softwares. Amazon EC2 is a great example of this type of service.
2. Platform as a service-service provider only provide platform or a stack of solutions for your users. It helps users saving investment on hardware and software. Google Gc engine and Force.com provide this type of service.
3. Software as a service- service provider will give your users the service of using their software, especially any type of applications software. Example-Google (GOOG), Salesforce.com (CRM), NetSuite (N)
Why cloud computing?
The main advantage of using cloud computing facility is that customers do not have to pay for infrastructure installation and maintenance cost. As a user of cloud computing you have to pay the service charges according to your usage of computing power and other networking resources. Moreover, you no more have to worry about software updates, installation, email servers, anti-viruses, backups, web servers and both physical and logical security of your data. Thus, cloud computing can help you focus more on your core business competency.
Cloud Computing Explained
Basics of Cloud Computing
Problems with Cloud Computing.
Though from operation and maintenance point-of-view cloud computing is a great cost-effective IT solution for business of any magnitude, but it has at least two major concerns-technical developments, security and privacy. Since cloud computing is relatively a new technology in comparison to other existing computing solutions, it still has lots of scope of becoming a mature system as a reliable and cost-effective computing technology.
Since due to outsourcing all the important data resides in a third party premise, there is always a concern about the trust-worthiness of the cloud service providers. Any security and privacy violation can be fatal- keeping this in mind many business owners are still to be convinced about the security and privacy issues of cloud computing.
More sensitive data are banking and Governmental data. Just think about a classified document of any Govt. agency getting leaked or users credit card information falling into the hands of cyber criminals. As soon as cloud privacy issues are more and more organized and strict rules and governance for cloud operation are in place, the more and more business will feel safe to opt for cloud computing.
Despite some serious privacy related drawbacks, cloud computing is a lucrative choice to improve productivity in any business environment, where IT is in high demand. To raise the security and privacy of cloud service providers, there need to be more co-operations between world governments so as we can develop a unified global rules and guidance for running a safe cloud computing service.