In my last blog, we saw various definitions of Cloud computing, along with conclusive definition as per me. This content will give you a broader perspective of Cloud computing.
Cloud computing as briefed is a computing paradigm with virtual network of remote servers allowing users to store, process and access data; providing on-demand computational services with features like elasticity, scalability, security and redundancy.
Cloud symbol is used to represent an Internet in diagrams and flowcharts. Symbol represents a set of varied devices that are networked together. This is how originated a symbol of Cloud.
Cloud computing is an old concept, although its origin is still a stuff of dispute. Research says, this concept was first implemented in 90’s but its practice as an Elastic cloud started in 2006. Now it is a trend, invading other technologies and rapidly catering many businesses. ESDS Software Solutions Pvt. Ltd. One of the top cloud service providers in India launched cloud services in India in 2010.
Cloud, according to services offered is classified as Infrastructure as a service (IaaS), Platform as a service (PaaS), Software as a service (SaaS).
Types of Cloud services depending upon the application of it are Private, public, community and Hybrid Cloud.
Cloud computing is trending in numerous businesses like IT, Telecom, Health care sectors, Hospitality, Entertainment, eCommerce, Universities, etc. and it has many more areas to sprout in.
Many SMBs are adopting cloud due to its varied and efficient features like Universal access, Cost savings, Flexibility, productivity, choice of customization, environmental and economic benefits.
With the growing popularity of Cloud Computing Solutions - Computing as a Service – business costs to launch new products, services or online platforms have been falling. Instead of large upfront investments in infrastructure, initiatives can begin modest and grow as needed. Thus, investment in personnel for the installation and support of this infrastructure also tends to fall. This means a decrease in the number of jobs IT ? Not necessarily.
Cloud Computing And The Labor Market
Unlike traditional IT architecture, which is based on number of servers (real or virtualized) running in data center infrastructure, Cloud Computing provides an abstract implementation platform, providing processing power, storage and transfer in accordance with the instant need. Many of installing, configuring, tuning and maintenance of servers are disappearing with the migration of applications to the cloud. As a result, some functions tend to be less sought after by companies, while others should gain space.
The Ups And Downs In Functions
Infrastructure specialists are the big losers with the migration of applications to the cloud. The ability to scale machines, configure settings, take care of the network and keep all this running is not worth much when it comes to cloud, as the focus shifts from hardware to software and data. Thus, the demand for these professionals should decrease, accentuating the trend that has already forming since when companies began to migrate internal infrastructure for outsourced data centers.
Other IT professional profiles, on the other hand, tend to gain space. According to Mashable, functions related to data analysis tend to suffer an increase in demand, as with the migration to the cloud undertakings switch sizing efforts, construction and infrastructure maintenance for areas related to its core business. Data mining, Web Analytics and Business Intelligence are the buzzwords of time in this area.
Specialists in software architecture and security must also gain space. Applications running in the cloud can have high availability, but this does not come for free: software architects play a crucial role in the design of new applications to take advantage of that. Also the security experts now have greater responsibility, because much of the data that were once comfortably behind firewalls in private networks, is now in the cloud. Work to secure data increases and, consequently, the importance of these experts to the organization.
Rearrangement In The Market
Like any change, migration of applications to the cloud will cause others in the IT job market, but hardly mean decrease in the total number of jobs in the area. What should happen is an internal rearrangement, with some functions gaining importance and jobs and other losing importance and space. It is for the IT professional be aware of these changes and acquire the necessary knowledge to keep your valued pass in the market, since computing as a service is a concept that is here to stay.
Cloud computing as a definition remains very controversial. When asked define cloud computing, definition is stated liable to a particular application with no unanimous definition, making it altogether vague. Let’s see below few definitions of Cloud computing to get a hint of it:
1) The practice of using a network of remote servers hosted on the Internet to store, manage, and process data, rather than a local server or a personal computer. This is an internet definition of Cloud computing.
2) Cloud computing is a computing term or metaphor that evolved in the late 2000s, based on utility and consumption of computing resources. Cloud computing involves deploying groups of remote servers and software networks that allow centralized data storage and online access to computer services or resources; says Wikipedia!
3) Whatis says Cloud computing a general term for anything that involves delivering hosted services over the Internet. These services are broadly divided into three categories: Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS).
4) Gartner group ‘A forecaster of Information technology’ defines cloud computing as a style of computing in which scalable and elastic IT-enabled capabilities are delivered as a service using Internet technologies.
5) National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), which defines the standard, defines cloud computing as, a model for enabling convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction.
6) The IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA) defines cloud computing in two working drafts. The P2301 (Cloud Profiles) draft highlights different ecosystem of cloud such as cloud vendors, service providers, and users. P2302 (Intercloud) draft provides definition on topology, functions, and governance for cloud-to-cloud interoperability and federation.
7) Short and snappy definition of Cloud computing from all the above definitions, concluded as per me is: A computing paradigm with virtual network of remote servers allowing users to store, process and access data, providing on-demand computational services with features like elasticity, scalability, security and redundancy is Cloud computing.
For more information on Cloud computing read my next post: “Cloud Computing: A Broader Perspective! “
Please share your views and knowledge on Cloud computing, by commenting on this post.
Pitch of cloud has been lately evolved to peaks. In coming years, cloud will acquire entirely new aspect. According to the Google trends, searches for ‘CLOUD’ are growing. Even though, in some business environments, comprehensive awareness about Cloud computing is mislaid.
Cloud can be adopted by any size of businesses. Although, it has certain challenges to bloom effectively, to fit in all sorts. Today’s challenges are tomorrow’s opportunities, as we say. Few important factors involved in cloud computing to make it more effective can be as below:
Availability is the key feature for selection of any cloud hosting service. It is degree of ability of a system to operate, i.e. to generate timely responses for the respective requests. It replicates the need of storage and servers. High availability is an important factor for modern cloud based applications and devices. It is a challenge for maintaining availability of a system by balancing the offset between other system parameters.
Scalability along with high availability is key factor in cloud hosting services;cloud should be auto scalable is the requirement of the day. However, this does not help in improving availability of the system. It’s important to maintain the tradeoff between availability and scalability in cloud computing.
Elasticity is the art of balancing load with cloud computing in real time. When the load is increasing, it must have ability to grow and with decreasing load, ability to shrink. It is important to maintain offset between scalability and elasticity.
For advancements in Cloud computing, different approaches are taken by cloud companies to stand out. This brings new challenges in catering valued services for clients. With latest research, cloud is adopted by varied sectors. It has catered sectors like Health care, Hospitality, Communications, Entertainment, eCommerce, Universities, etc.
Below are few extents where Cloud is budding with virtuous opportunities.
Heaps of data with lots of inequalities exists, in order to process and store this data first it must be organized, this prompts to data analysis, and then arises data processing and storage. In order to provide efficient data management as a service, system must be scalable and elastic.
Health Care organizations are widely adopting Cloud computing services providing with a significant level of comfort in organizational operations. This prompts to effective monitoring of sections with optimum resource utilization. Health care sectors need to carry large data, to which cloud computing provides very cost and resource efficient means of storage, process and access. Security threat is a vital challenge as Health care organizations carry very sensitive
Cloud has stepped in Hospitality fields these days. Hotels have to cart managing of the complete systems efficiently with lots of data as a result, to which management tries to fetch much secured, efficient and cost effective way for management. Cloud provides with very elastic and scalable utilization of resources in Hospitalization.
This just not ends up an opportunities and challenges associated with Cloud, It has raged so immensely in varied of application fields that one cannot cover up the whole stuff altogether. This is just tint of it; things are predicted to be much more colossal in coming days.
We can say, the day is not far when the earth will be covered with clouds.
There won’t be any soul in IT zone, which has not caught up anything allied with clouds. What is cloud? I am sure all of us, who heard very first about clouds (not the one, which we get, showers from) would have asked this question, isn’t it? Let me brief you about cloud/ cloud technology/ cloud computing. Cloud computing is a virtual network where one can store data, process data, and access data as in hard disks, it includes Infrastructure as a service, Platform as a service, Application as a service.
Cloud technology has lately touched altitudes in terms of providing cloud services in various business sectors and it is going to headway more in upcoming years. Clouds are classified as Private, Public and (mixture of both) Hybrid Clouds; and this does not put to an end in its range, many cloud service providers are heading towards customization of clouds for Business integration.
More or the less every cloud service providing company, delivers public and private cloud services also cloud customization with accords to the necessity of businesses. Private cloud is a cloud infrastructure functioned exclusively for one organization. Public cloud is a network with services that is open for public use, it can be free. Hybrid cloud is a composition of two or more clouds (Private or Public).
Its phase of ‘pay per’, we see pay per second in mobile services, pay per click in online advertising, pay per hour in cyber cafes, pay per dish, ride, movie, etc. and now ‘pay per consume’ in cloud computing, isn’t it sound good? Yes! Why to pay extra if you are consuming very less than what you are paying for it? Many cloud providers in India like Google, eNlight from ESDS, etc. are providing pay per consume service, which is a service efficient innovation in cloud services providing elastic cloud service. eNlight cloud provides scalability, pay per consume, cloud management, flexibility for clients very efficiently along with Exuberant Support.
Briefing all advantages, you get a complete customized solution provider for your cloud. You can save your unnecessary expenses spent on unused span of services and gain significant productivity in your Business!
In this age of rapid upgradation and the need for progression, electronic devices are easily prone to get outdated. This results in sums of e-waste. World’s e-waste is anticipated to grow 33% by 2017 according to the global reports. Accumulation of e-waste prompts to resource shortage and environmental contamination, making it a disquiet to give a thought upon and take opted steps towards ‘Virtualization’ to make greener tomorrow!
Virtualization can be the simplest and cost efficient step taken to reduce e-waste. It comes hand in hand with the aid of reduction in CAPEX (Capital Expenditure) & OPEX (operational Expenditure) resulting in ‘TOTAL PROFIT’. Virtualization as the concept specifies an act of creating something (such as Computer Hardware, OS, Storage, etc.) virtually, to facilitate one with the similar comfort of operations as provided in the physical environment, but of course with aid of advantages.
Virtualization has three levels:
Hardware level virtualization: In this hardware is virtualized similar to the physical machine. It is also called as system level virtualization in which Physical machine is called as host and the virtual machine is called as Guest. It has three types of virtualization:
(1) Full Virtualization: Hardware is completely simulated with the software called as hypervisor which directly interacts with the hardware to allow virtual machine reflect every aspect of physical machine. Every individual virtual machine runs of different platform unaware of another virtual machine, one virtual machine may have Linux as OS and other may have Windows.
(2) Partial Virtualization: Hardware is not completely simulated, only some part of target environment is simulated. Hence, few modifications in guest instructions may be required to suit virtual environment. It is highly reliable in sharing computer resources between multiple users with different virtual environments.
(3) Para Virtualization: Hardware is not simulated but similar software interface is provided to the virtual machine. Every virtual machine operates individually in different environment, but guest instructions need to be modified to suit virtual environment.
Hence, Hardware virtualization results in reduction of IT Hardware such as CPU, Memory devices, Storage devices, Network devices, etc. ultimately resulting in lowering of IT e-waste and power consumption.
Application level virtualization: It hosts multiple Applications in separate environment than lurking OS. Ex. Suppose an application needs to be run on different OS environment i.e. other than the host OS, then virtual machine runs the required OS for that application being host on the same OS. This result in ease of maintenance and upgradation, free from any OS restrictions and reduction in required cost to carry machines physical environment for respective OS, and provides flexibility for the user.
OS level virtualization: It hosts multiple virtualized environments inside one OS ground Ex. Required OS can be run through virtual machine without altering original OS. This results in reduction of Physical machines in an organization required for different environments and cost related to it, along with reduction in power consumption prompting to energy saving.
Example of virtualization can be explained with ‘Server virtualization‘ in which several virtual servers run on single physical server to completely utilize the hardware resource of physical server.
Virtualization being a blessing for organizations provides cost and productivity effective outcomes also equally contributes in going green, by serving:
With the knowledge of benefits of Virtualization, it is indeed An Environmental Asset, proving a boon for optimal utilization of IT resources and resolving environmental issues, arising due to IT e-wastes, rise in power consumptions and space utilization, globally, towards greener tomorrow!!!
Analyzing the Indian companies from 2005, we can notice a big paradigm shift in relation to the culture of proprietary technology equipment. This means that there was breach of the resistance option of renting rather than buying. With credit difficulties, especially with the 2007 crisis, corporations were forced to see new possibilities. Then we noticed that the model called Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) fit in nicely in this new scenario, because in addition to efficiency, it is quite functional from the financial point of view.
Today, many major companies already work under the IaaS model. In fact, we are living the beginning of time to the glory of IaaS and believe that the peak demand will occur in the coming years, given the economic growth of the country and the sporting events to be hosted here.
Regardless of how they are being organized, these events are already forcing Indian companies to fit in physical infrastructure. We will need new airports, stadiums, bridges etc. These works require a strong back office, for companies providing services need to quickly assemble IT environments with flexible services. Our restructuring economic environment is enabling companies to see themselves with the plans in the long run. This brings some comfort and optimism to our area.
Another favorable factor in relation to the IaaS model is that, with the pressure to decrease in IT budgets, companies are seeking new alternatives to maintain their functional and updated assets in accordance with the need of its core business. In addition, the model developed for dilution and reducing compliance costs should house in its concept, especially the estimate of expenditure made in hardware, software and peopleware in a fully managed environment. It is also worth noting that the unification of various services not only reduces the costs of managing multiple contracts, but also reduces the solution time for users. These are all advantages of IaaS model.
The integration of this service is complete and transparent and will purchase the equipment from the manufacturer to configure for each user. That is, the control, maintenance and management throughout the lifecycle occur in a clear way. The customer has the whole operation running on back office and sees strategically. So for that reason, user does not care, for example, with stock parts, spare machine at its headquarters and other scattered subsidiaries – all this is the responsibility of IaaSCloud Services Provider engaged.
With this structure offered, it becomes easier to understand why it is advantageous to employ this type of specialized service. From the moment you have this logistics composition, storage, style, purchase volume with manufacturers, you can use it in a shared manner. It is essential to point out that when the customer places an IaaS contract, he is not only buying the ability to use the hardware and the management of it, but also support for this hardware. What does it mean? It means that when you need some technical support service, whatever the problem is, the user will only have to trigger the IaaS provider that, in most cases, you can solve the problem remotely. If not, the machine will be replaced by another in the SLA, which is a commitment to deadlines rigidly established in the contract, to service users and which, if not met, the provider will be subject to heavy fines.
Help desk and IaaS
The IaaS model can house taylormade project – sized – ie hierarchical in order of priority. For example, the client determines that the IT department has an SLA of six hours, the president of the company is met, no more than two hours and the other areas in 12 hours. Following this definition, planning according to customer’s need is mounted, and will be priced based on these specifications.
Another ranking concerns the importance of the devices on the network. For example, a microcomputer of a manager is very important, but not as much as a high-availability server or a network of active tipping the internet, or even a mail server that is stopped, or the CEO can have connection. All this is clearly determined and outlined and the IaaS provider must fulfill to the letter.
One example: Let’s say a hospital rent 200 machines, one of which must be within the cardiac operating room. It commands a certain capital equipment for an operation. If, suddenly, this machine for a minute goes down, can jeopardize someone’s life. So provider’s role is to develop the model to ensure that in that room, there is not just one machine, but two. If, by chance, one stop, other comes into play. The IaaS projects have this characteristic to predict contingency throughout the business process, and not only in the implementation and maintenance.
In the traditional model, if a company has 200 employees and only 200 machines are there and if any of them break, the employee will have no access to network services for equipment repair. In the IaaS model, if eventually happen a problem with the equipment, the SLA will be met. Thinking in this way, the internal user and the company is much more advantageous because everyone wins agility, the company does not lose productivity; and the service is now highly professionalized by a specialized external team.
The bases of the IaaS model predict quick solutions to technical problems, because the thread of the service is availability.
Regarding costs, it is necessary to evaluate the focus which will be used as the value. If there is only a comparison of the cost of purchase and the cost model without doubt the IaaS is considered more expensive, because we are not just talking about a machine, but also software, support staff, availability of financing, interest rate and management. However, viewing and adding all the variables involved in a contract and the management of the park, surely the IaaS ends up being cheaper and advantageous.
Today, IaaS is proven functional and companies can become more comfortable as their operating range; this strengthens the model and makes it a trend on the rise. But like any new that comes in IT, the IaaS must first prove its worth, what has been happening more clearly in the last year. We believe it is only a matter of time before the good results that are delivered daily to IT executives and finance bring security for other companies to try this new paradigm.
When it comes to server virtualization, the return on investment is always an incentive. With the right strategy and a long-term planning, companies are able to reap the benefits of virtualization and also make the cloud hosting servers most efficient. To achieve this, it is worth remembering six best practices, according to Gartner, to be followed by companies to virtualize.
1. About to start now, start small and think big while some consultants can recommend large-scale virtualization, Gartner warns that, from the point of view of costs and management, starting with small tends to be the best option. There are two very different stages in virtualization projects. The first focuses on server consolidation, cost reduction and increased use of the available hardware. The second is more strategically important, more complex to implement and brings more value to the user. In this phase, the focus shifts to delivering new services and increase the quality and speed of the same.
2. Require rapid return As the market evolves rapidly, organizations need to create business cases with rapid return. The Gartner recommendation is that, the return comes in at most six months.
3. Virtualize the right applications. Not every application is good to be virtualized. Typically, applications with high demand of inputs and outputs become inefficient on virtual machines. Focus applications in older, smaller, and packaged.
4. Set your storage strategy. Deciding how and where to store images and applications is critical in determining how much agility companies gain from virtualization. This must be taken into account.
5. Understand the issues related to software virtualization grew fast, but many providers are still reacting to this trend. Stay tuned for policies of ISVs.
6. To combine virtual machines efficiently, it is much more important to find a way to dynamically reallocate server capacity than having a perfect consolidation map and static. Be able to handle the load balancing dynamically is the key to the success of this type of project, especially in its early stages.
More and more companies migrate to the cloud computing model. For the most part, seek to generate savings for organizations. In part, too, are concerned to have more efficient processes.
Just so, the different models of cloud, need to be evaluated carefully. When defining the cloud model to be adopted, the organization must be familiar with the differences and similarities between them, especially with regard to security aspect.
For example, the model SaaS (Software as a Service), designed to provide access to applications, groups and user policies which can only be used to ensure that certain users have access to selected information on organization’s CRM database.
In relation to the PaaS (Platform as a Service), whose main objective is data protection, is magnified when used in conjunction with virtual data storage, and in cases of unavailability of other cloud, it plans and calculate safety for balanced distribution of services for the platform at the time of any outages, and study of the appropriate encryption mode for account safety.
In the case of IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) model, the CSO (Chief Security Officer) have to worry about arranging a corporate governance framework within which the transactions occur.
To assist CSOs to how to deal with different models, the following list enumerates challenges linked to each form of work in the cloud:
Challenge # 1: Protect personal information before transmitting them to the cloud. There are many laws and many policies that prevent sensitive data which is transmitted to third-party systems – such as the cloud case. So the very cloud providers suggest that packages with sensitive information is sent in encrypted form or is removed. At that time, the question arises on how to perform encryption or deletion of data before sending them to the provider.
It is known that the encryption process is an operation that consumes valuable CPU resources. An alternative for this is to hire a broker to do the encryption of data between workstations and the provider. Optimize confidential data identification process at the time of shipment.
Challenge # 2: No need to create hundreds of mirrors of sites in the cloud. There is no need to duplicate the data unnecessarily, large companies with thousands of employees all over the place have a dilemma that they need to create hundreds of mirrors of sites in the cloud.
The ability to allow access is based only on local platforms logins to ensure connection to the cloud-hosted services, eliminates this need. The problem increases when there are multiple credentials / passwords for each user. This situation generates significant costs and risks for companies and can thwart the organization. Just calculate the work involved in managing passwords for ten thousand different employees and anticipate that each of them forget the password at least once a year.
Enable single sign for local systems and the cloud platform can help you to mitigate associated risks and costs. After all, it is easier to remember just one password. It also generates less work for IT in time to stop a user from access – an operation will only make it impossible to login with such credentials in local platform and cloud.
Challenge # 3: Conduct audits and take cloud platform with on-demand contracts (pay as the cloud platform is used) means to deliver financial executives a form of control of investments. This tool is usually provided by the provider itself, but in cases of external audits or disputes with service providers, it is worth keeping monitoring indoors.
To account monitoring, companies can hire an intermediary, as proposed in the matter of data encryption (above). The service should actively monitor the allocation of resources and aid organizations to stay within the rules and regulations of governance.
According to research based on an analysis of more than 100,000 e-commerce stores, 50.3% of the traffic in virtual shops are from mobile devices (being 40.3% from mobile phones and 10% from tablets) and only 49.7% from computers. It may sound crazy, but the fact is that mobile commerce is already a reality.
Also according to research, the Google search traffic comprised 18% of traffic from computers and only 12% for mobile phones. These data seem to show that computers are being used for research products, while mobile devices for spontaneous purchases, which are instigated from Social Media, Email Marketing and SMS Marketing.
The increase in purchases on mobile devices also brings another exciting trend, which we are calling “always buying”.
According to research, the traffic on e-commerce sites from computers is traditionally peaked between Monday and Friday and disappeared during the weekend. Since mobile traffic behavior has a somewhat opposite peaks occurring during the weekend.
So when you combine mobile, tablet and computer, traffic to online stores, you will find noticeable peaks. In other words, purchases are something that people are always doing.
It’s no secret that it’s better meet the need of consumer to navigate through touch and let them make a purchase from their tablet or mobile device, than losing a lot of sales. Something that cannot be good especially when you are trying to make the first sale to this client.