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Explaining Cloud Computing Services

Explaining Cloud Computing Services

Cloud computing is the process of leasing computing power. For example, you developed an application, so you need servers to store and process data. Instead of buying these servers, you rent them.

You pay for renting a server since you store data, but you don’t pay for the maintenance of these servers. Moreover, you pay for computing services only when you use them.

Developing various applications often come with additional needs and expenses. You may have developed an application that solves some real-life problems or offers entertainment. But that’s just the first step. You have to store and process data. That’s why the development of apps is so expensive. You need servers.

What are the solutions? One solution is to buy servers for storing and processing data. The second solution is to rent these servers by using cloud computing services. Instead of purchasing hardware, you rent it. It’s a cost-effective option.

Supposedly, you have an extensive database. Every month you need to generate reports or statistics based on the data from cloud storage. Yes, you will be charged regularly for the data storage. But you will pay for the usage of computing resources only when you deploy them. Like in the example of generating statistics, when it requires computing resources.

The provider performs the maintenance of this equipment, and the customer only distributes the necessary sources and makes the payment. Check out the article to learn more about key features of cloud computing services and how they can help your business.

Explaining Cloud Computing Services

Key Features

The following features are common for cloud services:

  • Does not require capital investments. Cloud computing saves money. It is a perfect option for startups and startup projects — it is cheaper to rent equipment when there are certain financial constraints. Instead of wasting money on expensive equipment, you can invest funds in something more beneficial to the company. For example, invest in advertising, training of experts, and other more critical areas.
  • Elastic scalability. Imagine that you have purchased a server with 64 GB of RAM and four drives of 4 TB each. Sooner or later, these sources will end. What then? Then it will be necessary to acquire additional components and systems, and that’s more money and time. In the case of cloud computing, you can get unlimited sources for rent. You will pay only as you use the resources — if today you do not need 32 GB of RAM to run apps or generate reports, you don’t pay for this service.
  • The provider takes care of maintenance. Any physical equipment requires subsequent maintenance costs. The cloud provider handles the implementation of the equipment maintenance process, and you can concentrate on your business. That’s how cloud computing services work — you take care of your company, the provider takes care of server maintenance.
  • Easy deployment of resources. Whenever you need to support a customer in any part of the world, you can use cloud services.

Most likely, you have been using cloud-based applications for this whole time. For instance, public postal services, Internet services for creating and editing documents, publishing and editing images, audio and video storage, online games — all these examples are using cloud-based services!. You just didn’t know about that.

What services are considered cloud services?

US National University of Standards and Special Technologies, or NIST recognizes the following types of services:

  • Public cloud. The name already hints that this type of cloud supports everyone who wants to utilize computing resources. This type of service is based on subscriptions. Public clouds are used by application developers to test apps, for sharing data, email services, etc.
  • Private cloud. Its storage is used only by one organization or user. Private clouds are always more expensive due to maintenance needs but are more secure. It’s a perfect option if an organization needs to provide secure services.
  • Community cloud. This model provides access to data and computing services to communities. For example, police departments within a state need to share data, so they get access to the storage since all the departments within the state are a part of one community. No other organization has access to this cloud.
  • Hybrid cloud. It’s a model that combines public and private cloud services to provide better scalability. For example, a company is renting a private cloud, and it provides enough computing resources during 350 days of the year. But during 15 other days, the company has an increased need for computing services. That’s when the company can make use of a public cloud without the need to rent more computing power during the whole year. Such a model is often used to maintain retail websites.

One of the best models in terms of cost-efficiency is the public cloud. Using public clouds doesn’t require a lot of computing resources, meaning a business doesn’t need to spend a fortune on storing and processing data.

The usage of private clouds requires more expenses, but it’s still a more cost-effective option than buying and maintaining servers. Even though this option is more expensive, it’s safer.

Private clouds provide users with more support and security. Businesses often opt for a solution that requires the usage of private clouds for storing and processing valuable data while using public clouds for basic tasks. For example, testing apps, providing email services, etc.

Advantages of Using Cloud Computing Services

Without a doubt, using cloud computing services is a better idea than buying and maintaining servers. But why so? Here are some key advantages of using cloud services:

  • Flexibility and scalability.
  • Cost-efficiency.
  • Automatic updates of software.
  • Reduced carbon footprint.
  • Better recovery and backup solutions.
  • The ability to provide services globally.
  • Providing users with better collaboration features.

One of the main reasons why so many businesses prefer using cloud services is flexibility. This feature is especially important for growing businesses. Let’s say you have developed an application. It is popular among users, and the database is increasing as you get more clients/users.

If you buy servers, they offer limited resources as your company keeps growing. Meaning, you have to invest more to get more storage. It requires even more expenses. But if you are using cloud computing services, you simply request more storage space and more computing power.

As you are trying to optimize your business, you need funds. Instead of spending money on extremely expensive equipment, you can invest in growing your company. For example, developing new business directions, hiring more experts, developing more apps, etc. And as you expand your reach, you can also request more computing services.

Moreover, thanks to cloud services, you aren’t limited only to your location. One of the best things about clouds is that you can offer your services to users around the world, which is better from a business perspective. Plus, if the key feature of your company is to maintain a smaller carbon footprint, cloud services are your best bet.

What is Cloud Computing Used for in Business?

If you own a business, you have several use cases for cloud computing. Usually, businesses benefit from storage, cloud backup, SaaS, cloud hosting, and additional services. Let’s dive into the details.

Storage

The most common use of computing services is cloud storage. Businesses can store the data on servers or within data centers (depending on the amount of data). To access data, companies use the Internet. Instead of owning an IT infrastructure, a business is renting it.

These servers or data centers are owned and maintained by cloud service providers. A business owner pays a subscription fee depending on the chosen package. For example, a yearly subscription.

Another option is renting a server or data server, as well as maintaining it. In this case, a business pays for the rack space to the provider.

Cloud Backup

One of the worst possible things that can happen to the business is when the servers go down. It’s a disaster that can disrupt providing services, meaning the business gets no profit, only losses until the issue is fixed.

Cloud services provide businesses with a remote backup. Even if something happens, the servers won’t go down. Moreover, the business doesn’t even have to be involved in creating a backup. Cloud services automatically create backups of data and guarantee access 24/7.

Saas – Software as a Service

Software is expensive. Buying and installing certain applications can cost a fortune, and it also requires additional space within the storage. Instead of immediately paying for the software, you can rent it.

Cloud computing services provide businesses with access to valuable software from a certain location. It’s a subscription-based service, but it’s still cost-effective. You can use the needed software without the disadvantages that come with buying it.

Cloud Hosting

One of the biggest downsides of traditional hosting is the usage of just one server. Imagine running an application on a single server that goes down? Yes, it’s a recipe for disaster.

Cloud computing services offer a great solution – data distribution on several servers. First, such a model runs applications much smoother no matter the number of people using the app simultaneously. Second, if one server goes down, the app will continue operating.

Additional Services

Cloud computing provides businesses with some other services, for instance:

  • IaaS, or Infrastructure as a Service.
  • PaaS, or Platform as a Service.

Infrastructure as a Service is similar to SaaS in infrastructure. Instead of buying hardware, a business can make use of virtual services that fulfill the need for hardware. By using IaaS, a business can facilitate the process of handling the workload. The two most popular services are Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services.

The Platform as a Service function provides a business with a bigger virtual infrastructure. PaaS is often used for building and managing applications. PaaS also opens access to such tools as business intelligence and developer tools.

Explaining Cloud Computing Services

The Bottom Line

Cloud computing services make it a lot easier to develop and run applications. The usage of cloud services allows a business to grow while not overspending on buying servers and data centers. It’s a great solution that opens the door in front of users who want to launch their businesses or apps but don’t have the funds to buy and maintain servers.

Cloud computing allows you to forget about all the troubles related to buying and maintaining servers. For example, you don’t have to worry about servers going down, increasing storage space when you run low, etc. It’s a perfect solution for new and growing businesses.

Ivan Kolesnikov

About the author:

Ivan Kolesnikov

Experienced professional in programming.

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