Cloud computing is not an all-or-nothing option. In the past decade, the industry has matured to a point where there are almost a dozen different options to move your data and processes to the cloud. In this post, we will cover the five major options and will talk about the enterprises for whom each of these options are best suited for.
This is the most common form of cloud setup, where third party service providers give you shared computing resource in their datacenter for an hourly fee. The physical servers at the data center are turned into many virtual server instances, each of which can be run by a different enterprise. Virtual machines can provide you the best utilization of resources by keeping the machines from going idle. This setup is suited for workloads that are highly varying (most websites, blogs) and for smaller enterprises that do not need the flexibility and control of a private cloud. It is very cost-effective, though it might not be suited for high performance computing.
Private cloud is a dedicated system of servers, managed for a single enterprise. The servers can be either maintained on-premise or off-premise at a third party location. The private cloud provides you greater control and performance, besides providing you greater security for your data and applications. This installation is best suited for industries that are highly regulated (defense, healthcare, etc) and enterprises that run strategic applications that require a high performance.
Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)
In a virtual private cloud option, enterprises can use pay-as-you-go hardware from third parties, while still using their own private IP address space, subnets, router table configuration, etc. This is a more cost-effective option than a private cloud installation with less upfront and ongoing costs. This is suited for enterprises that require the performance and security of a private cloud, but still can’t afford to have a dedicate private cloud.
Hybrid clouds combine the best of private cloud (security, control) and public cloud (flexibility, cost) installations. In a hybrid cloud installation, the enterprise maintains a private cloud that takes care of the normal workloads and utilize the public cloud during peak workloads and dealing with less sensitive data. This is best suited for organizations dealing with data of various sensitivity and with highly variable workloads.
Bare Metal cloud installations provide you dedicated hardware at an hourly rate. In traditional cloud installations, where the machines are typically virtualized it can be a problem when you want to have compute intensive operations requiring local resources like databases. For instance, if the other virtual instances in the same machine are hogging the disc storage, your applications might get slower. Bare Metal installations help you avoid that problem and is best suited for more compute intensive applications that have a more predictable workload.
By Balaji Viswanathan
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