Back to Basics: Types of Cloud Computing

Cloud computing technology is taking business by storm. Many companies have adopted cloud computing, and others have been left to wonder, “What is the secret to a successful business in the 21st century?” For those that may have been waiting for the opportune moment to adopt a business-changing, revenue-generating technology, this is it! Of small businesses owners using cloud computing resources, 58 percent agree that cloud has given them better control of their data, according to a survey conducted by Netmetix in 2012. Cloud computing will put you back on level playing ground with your competitors and, when used appropriately, will ultimately make you the better choice for your customers. 

Public Cloud

The use of public cloud in business has blossomed as the first step into cloud computing. It is a shared environment, or multi-tenant model of compute resources. There is a strong appeal to this model of cloud computing because it allows you to obtain the benefits of cloud, such as file sharing and disaster recovery, without the need to purchase costly infrastructure. It furthers increased business efficiency and scalability because of its elastic nature.

Private Cloud

Businesses that decide to pursue a private cloud environment purchase their hardware and choose where to host it. This can be on premise within your company, at an off site location or even in a satellite location. Private cloud computing brings with it a price tag that is much higher than that of public cloud computing, but gives you more control over the security of data because it is a single-tenant structure. It is also the preferred method for businesses within industries that require additional security measures to meet federal regulations, such as finance and medical, because your tech team is required to maintain the infrastructure.

Hybrid Cloud

The final method to obtain cloud computing is through a hybrid cloud solution and is the best of both public and private cloud solutions. Businesses that choose to use both the public and private components of this cloud service model keep their mission-critical data in the private cloud environment and then use the public cloud environment for the remainder of their data. Because of the ability to sell the public cloud component of this model, it can also be a steady source of revenue for your business.

SaaS

In a SaaS environment, cloud computing is used to deliver software on demand to your end users. This is how applications, like email servers and document sharing servers. Many people use these everyday without giving a second thought to the SaaS environment they are running, but it provides valuable tools that would force us to rethink the way we conduct business today without.

PaaS

The Platform-as-a-Service cloud computing model provides a computing platform, like a Microsoft server, for end users. These PaaS environments give end users flexibility for the overall usage of their VM and the programs with which it is used. A PaaS model allows you to obtain the applications you need without maintaining an underlying hardware layer. It gives you true control over your unique compute resource needs.

IaaS

An Infrastructure-as-a-Service model allows a cloud service vendor’s technical staff to maintain the hardware components of your cloud environment. This alleviates the need for your team’s in-depth knowledge of cloud computing maintenance and frees them to work on other mission-critical issues. IaaS models allow full range of motion for your business as it continues to grow.

There are a variety of ways to obtain a cloud computing environment. Choosing one that best suits your company’s needs is a critical decision to attain the resources you needs without stretching your wallet. A good cloud computing model will save your business money and precious resources.

Image courtesy of: ohsweb.ohiohistory.org