What is cloud computing?

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First of all, let’s see the definition of cloud computing. Often abbreviated as cloud, it corresponds to access to IT services via the Internet. Typically offered on a subscription basis, these services range from data storage to business intelligence, security, networking, and software applications.

As you explore the world of cloud computing, you may want to familiarize yourself with some of the words, definitions, and choices available to you. Here you will find some of relevant information, including explanations of the terms SaaS, PaaS, IaaS and public/private/hybrid cloud. The cloud offers many advantages that we will first review.

The 4 main advantages of cloud computing

1. Reliable: Safe, secure, and available 24/7. The cloud computing system is accessible from anywhere with excellent response time. It runs on secure servers where data is copied and backed up remotely.

2. Flexible: The computing power depends on the user’s needs. As a user, you can add or remove servers, network or storage. You can also expand your activities to new geographies quickly and easily.

3. Inexpensive: No upfront costs for hardware or infrastructure and the time IT staff spend maintaining and updating systems is reduced.

4. Updated: The cloud computing systems always have the latest version of platforms, databases, and software applications. Also, they can easily include emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) or the Internet of Things (IoT).

IaaS, PaaS, SaaS: the different types of cloud services

There are three main categories of cloud computing services: SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS. Some providers combine these services, and others offer them separately.

What is SaaS?

SaaS (Software as a Service): The software is hosted remotely on a server. Customers can access it anywhere and anytime, from a web browser. The SaaS provider ensures of backups, maintenance, and updates. SaaS solutions include Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Customer Relationship Management (CRM), project management, etc.

What is PaaS?

PaaS (Platform as a Service): A cloud-based application development environment that provides developers with everything they need to build and deploy applications. With PaaS, developers can choose the cloud features and services they want on a subscription or pay-as-you-go basis.

What is IaaS?

IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service): Allows companies to « rent » computing resources, such as servers, networks, storage, and operating systems, on a pay-as-you-go basis. The infrastructure is flexible, and customers don’t have to invest in hardware.

Private, public, hybrid cloud: the 3 types of cloud computing deployment

There are three types of cloud computing deployment: public cloud, private cloud, and hybrid cloud. Many companies combine several approaches and set up a multi-cloud environment.

1. Public Cloud: When a company deploys a public cloud, the hardware, software, and underlying infrastructure are owned and managed by a service provider, which offers its services only over the Internet. So the company access these services through a Web browser.

2. Private Cloud: The services are maintained on a private network protected by a firewall. This offers more security and control. The company can create a private cloud in its own data center or subscribe to a private cloud hosted by a provider.

3. Hybrid Cloud: A hybrid cloud computing model combines private and public clouds to share data and applications. Hybrid clouds connect applications and infrastructure with cloud-based resources and private resources that are not in the cloud. This approach provides greater flexibility and more deployment options and allows to keep sensitive data in a traditional data center or private cloud while taking advantage of public cloud resources.