What Is Cloud Computing?
Have you ever heard of "the cloud"? You probably have, but maybe you're still not quite sure what it means. Well, no worries because in this post, we're going to dive into the world of cloud computing and break it down for you.
First, we’ll understand what cloud computing is. Next, we’ll dive into the different cloud deployment models. Finally, we’ll understand the benefits and drawbacks of cloud computing. Let’s get started!
So, what’s cloud computing?
Cloud computing is a way to access compute services and resources without having to actually own any of the hardware or software yourself. Instead, you just access everything over the internet. It's like renting instead of buying.
The term "cloud" in "cloud computing" refers to the delivery of computing services over the internet. The term "cloud" is used to describe this delivery model because the services are not provided from a single, specific physical location, but rather from a network of remote servers that are accessible over the internet.
Cloud Computing Services & Resources
So, what kind of services and resources can you get from the cloud? The list is pretty much endless, but some common ones include:
- Compute: This refers to the processing power of remote servers, which users can access to run applications and perform computationally intensive tasks.
- Storage: This refers to the remote storage of data, allowing users to store and retrieve their data.
- Networking: This refers to virtualized network infrastructure, including load balancing, security, and other network-related services.
The beauty of cloud computing is that it offers all these services and resources in a flexible, scalable, and cost-effective way. By accessing everything over the internet, you can get exactly what you need, when you need it, and only pay for what you use.
Cloud computing services are offered by cloud providers. The three dominant cloud providers are Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP).
Now that we have an understanding of what cloud computing is, let's explore the different models of deployment available.
Cloud Deployment Models
A cloud deployment model refers to the manner in which cloud computing services and resources are made available to users. It determines who has access to the cloud and the level of control and security available to them.
There are three main cloud deployment models: public, private, and hybrid.
A public cloud allows anyone with an internet connection to access a shared pool of computing resources. Third-party service providers own and operate public clouds, making them accessible to the general public. Examples of public cloud providers include Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP).
Private clouds are designed for the exclusive use of a single organization. These clouds are typically hosted on the organization's own infrastructure, such as its own data centers, or by a third-party provider on behalf of the organization. Private clouds provide a high degree of control and security. They are ideal for organizations handling sensitive data.
Hybrid clouds are a combination of public and private clouds. For instance, an organization can utilize the public cloud for non-sensitive workloads and the private cloud for sensitive workloads. Organizations have access to the scalability and cost savings of public clouds while still maintaining control and security over their most critical data and applications.
Next, let’s explore the advantages and disadvantages of cloud computing.
Advantages of Cloud Computing
Below are the advantages of cloud computing:
- Cost savings: One of the big benefits of cloud computing is that it can save you some serious cash. With cloud computing, you only pay for what you use. You don't have to shell out for expensive hardware and software upfront. Plus, you don't have to worry about maintenance and upgrades, since those are all taken care of by your cloud provider.
- Scale on demand: Another great thing about cloud computing is that it makes it easy to scale your resources as you need them. Got a big project coming up? No problem, just ramp up your computing power, storage, and networking. Then, when the project is done, dial it back down and only pay for what you need. This level of scalability helps make sure you have the resources you need, when you need them.
- High availability: Cloud providers understand the importance of having your applications available at all times. So they integrate features like automatic failover and load balancing to ensure that their infrastructure is always up and running.
Automatic failover automatically transfers operations to a secondary, functioning server in the event of a failure of the primary server. Load balancing makes sure that traffic is spread evenly across multiple servers so you don't see any downtime.
Disadvantages of Cloud Computing
While cloud computing offers many benefits, it also has a few drawbacks:
- Security concerns: One of the potential drawbacks of cloud computing is security. Since your data and applications are stored on someone else's servers, it's possible that your sensitive information could be vulnerable to cyber attacks, hacking, or data breaches. Therefore, it's important to carefully vet your cloud provider and ensure that they have robust security measures in place.
- Limited control: Another potential downside of cloud computing is that you may have limited control over your infrastructure. Depending on your cloud provider, you may not have full control over software updates, hardware changes, or other technical decisions that could impact your business. This lack of control can also extend to the cost of your services.
Cloud providers often use dynamic pricing models that can change based on usage or other factors. This can lead to unexpected costs. So it's important to closely monitor your spending and understand how the pricing works.
I hope this post has helped you understand what cloud computing is all about. By now, you should have a good grasp of the advantages and disadvantages of cloud computing as well as various cloud deployment models.
Whether you're just starting your tech career or looking to expand your skill set, learning about cloud computing could be a wise investment in your future. So, if you're interested in getting started, be sure to check out the Cloud Learning Path from KodeKloud.