Imagine that you start your own company. As you were always fascinated to travel to different places, you decide that it’ll be a unique travel agency—because from booking flight tickets to hiring a travel guide—it’ll handle everything.
What technical resources will your company need?
The most important asset your company has is its website. The website needs a web server on which it will run. It also needs a database that stores all the data that the website collects from the users that visit it. In addition to it, your developers need tools and software to build new applications for your company.
For the safety, your IT team needs to regularly backup your website so that you can restore it during a mishappening and backing up requires a storage media such as tape, flash drive etc. Inside your company, your employees will be using Outlook, excel sheets, word documents, power point, and other applications for daily tasks. You need a bundle of Microsoft Office 365 for each of the employees.
Despite these resources, you need dedicated server rooms, and space for other infrastructure. It doesn’t end here. You also need to hire people that can manage them like your company manages people’s travel.
It is a costly, time-consuming, and tedious task. Using Cloud Computing saves you from all this trouble.
What does it mean to use Cloud Computing?
Using cloud computing means you still use all these technical resources, but you use them over the internet. None of these resources are physically present in your office premises like they were before. Instead, the resources are hosted by the service provider from which you purchase cloud services. Since they host the resources, they also take care of them. You don’t need to invest in administration. It’s still not the best part of cloud computing. The best part is you don’t need to purchase resources in bulk. Rather, you only pay for the resources that you use. It is called pay-as-you-go basis.
What are Cloud Computing Services?
SaaS: The most suitable example of SaaS or Software as a Service is Google Doc. You need no download or installation to use it. All you do is register yourself on the website and you can access it by entering your credentials. When you save a document or make changes, it gets saved to the cloud—an infrastructure hosted and managed by Google that you use over the internet. Unbeknownst to the physical location of the infrastructure—stored in the cloud—SaaS enables a user to access software and applications through a web browser or any other programming interface. Other examples of SaaS are Salesfoce.com, SendGrid, etc.
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PaaS: PaaS stands for Platform as a Service. Here the word platform implies the underlying infrastructure on which your developers can build applications, or your company can deploy applications used by your employees such as Microsoft Exchange. The infrastructure involves middleware, operating systems, APIs etc. PaaS helps developers focus on the undergoing development of applications where service providers take care of the infrastructure on which the development is taking place. Classic examples of PaaS are Cloudbees, Microsoft Azure, and IBM BlueMix.
IaaS: IaaS or Infrastructure as a Service provides the actual computer resources such as servers, storage volumes, and networking resources on a pay-as-you-go basis. You don’t have to purchase a large set of networking equipment and invest in maintenance, warehouse, and management. You can use them while they are in a different geographical location giving you network access and utmost protection. This means even if your office is affected by a natural disaster, your resources are still safe. Rackspace is the most classical example of IaaS.
With the worldwide emergence of Cloud Computing for all the good reasons, it has become a need-of-the-hour. Last year, Gartner predicted that the global cloud revenue will reach to $206 billion. With more companies moving their IT infrastructure to cloud, the numbers are likely to grow as we move forward.
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