Cloud computing offers many advantages for investment firms. This technology enables the sharing of resources in a way that dramatically simplifies infrastructure planning. Let’s explore the major cloud computing infrastructures and the methods in which they are deployed.
With cloud computing technology, large pools of resources can be connected via private or public networks to provide dynamically scalable infrastructures for application, data and file storage. Additionally, the costs of computing, application hosting, content storage and delivery can be significantly reduced. Firms can choose to deploy applications on Public, Private or Hybrid clouds.
What are the differences between these three models, and how can you determine the right cloud path for your organization? Here are some fundamentals of each to help with the decision-making process.
Public clouds are owned and operated by third-party service providers. Customers benefit from economies of scale because infrastructure costs are spread across all users, thus allowing each individual client to operate on a low-cost, “pay-as-you-go” model. Another advantage of public cloud infrastructures is that they are typically larger in scale than an in-house enterprise cloud, which provides clients with seamless, on-demand scalability.
It is also important to note that all customers on public clouds share the same infrastructure pool with limited configurations, security protections and availability variances, as these factors are wholly managed and supported by the service provider.
Private clouds are those that are built exclusively for an individual enterprise. They allow the firm to host applications in the cloud, while addressing concerns regarding data security and control, which is often lacking in a public cloud environment. There are two variations of private clouds:
- On-Premise Private Cloud: This format, also known as an “internal cloud,” is hosted within an organization’s own data center. It provides a more standardized process and protection, but is often limited in size and scalability. Also, a firm’s IT department would incur the capital and operational costs for the physical resources with this model. On-premise private clouds are best used for applications that require complete control and configurability of the infrastructure and security.
- Externally-Hosted Private Cloud: This private cloud model is hosted by an external cloud computing provider (such as Eze Castle Integration). The service provider facilitates an exclusive cloud environment with full guarantee of privacy. This format is recommended for organizations that prefer not to use a public cloud infrastructure due to the risks associated with the sharing of physical resources.
The following graphic shows the difference between customer private clouds and provider private clouds.
Hybrid clouds combine the advantages of both the public and private cloud models. In a hybrid cloud, a company can leverage third-party cloud providers in either a full or partial manner. This increases the flexibility of computing. The hybrid cloud environment is also capable of providing on-demand, externally-provisioned scalability. Augmenting a traditional private cloud with the resources of a public cloud can be used to manage any unexpected surges in workload.
Photo credits: VMware, Gartner