Basic Checklist For Cloud Computing Customers

Basic Checklist For Cloud Computing Customers

Transition to the cloud could be one of the most important decisions you make in your IT infrastructure management. Thus, it is important that you do it the right way. I have collected a list of the basic things you should consider, before signing a contract with your cloud service provider:

1. Pricing
  • What is the initial setup fee?
  • What are the ongoing fees?
  • Are there any usage fees (charged according to bandwidth used or number of users)?
  • Is there a cap on how much the provider can increase the rates by? If the provider increases the rates beyond the cap, does it provide valid grounds for service termination?
  • What is the total cost of your existing IT infrastructure discounted to the present value? Is it higher than the total cost of the cloud infrastructure?

2. Availability

  • What is the uptime guaranteed by the provider?
  • How does the provider calculate the uptime?
  • Is there any compensation for not satisfying the uptime guarantee?
  • What is the cost per minute of your service downtime? For instance, if you run an online store, you could include the lost sales, cost of increased support calls and an estimate of the loss of brand goodwill.

3. Data Storage

  • How sensitive is your data?
  • Where are the data servers located?
  • What encryption methods are used to secure the data?
  • Are there any guarantees to protect your data against leaks?
  • Who can access your data in the data center?
  • Is the provider allowed to use data and/or metadata? For instance, in Gmail your email content can be read by Google’s algorithms for advertising purposes.
  • In what formats is the data stored? Are those formats easily convertible to the data storage format you use in-house?
  • How often are backups scheduled?
  • Do they use any kind of RAID architecture to improve reliability?

4.Performance and scaling

  • What are the specifications of the discs, RAM and processors used in the servers?
  • Do they use SSDs, flash devices or optimization techniques to improve performance?
  • What is the maximum bandwidth offered?
  • Are your data buses and discs shared with other users?
  • How soon can you add computing resources when needed?
  • What are the performance guarantees offered in the SLA?

5.Termination clauses

  • Can you terminate the contract at any time without a significant penalty?
  • Can you terminate the contract without penalty if there is a security breach or other tenuous circumstances?
  • On what grounds can the provider can terminate your contract?
  • How soon will the provider return your data after termination?

6. Support

  • Is emergency support available 24/7?
  • What kind of support channels are available (phone hotline/email/Web-based chat)?
  • How helpful is the customer help desk?
  • Does the provider have an extensive KB (knowledge base) to help your staff handle simple issues?
By Balaji Viswanathan

About Balaji

Balaji Viswanathan is the founder of Agni Innovation Labs that helps startups and small businesses with their marketing and tech strategy. He has a Masters in Computer Science from the University of Maryland and has been blogging for the past 7 years on technology and business related topics.

View All Articles

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.

Conquering Disease with Artificial Intelligence and IBM Watson

Conquering Disease with Artificial Intelligence and IBM Watson

Artificial Intelligence and IBM Watson Artificial Intelligence, or AI, is growing increasingly pervasive in today’s modern world. Perhaps the most publicized and recognizable application of AI to date, IBM’s Jeopardy-winning computer, Watson, is now being used to help cure cancer. IBM announced the development of Watson for Genomics on Wednesday at the National Cancer Moonshot…

The Fundamentals of Predictive Analysis

The Fundamentals of Predictive Analysis

Predictive Analysis  Article sponsored by SAS Software and Big Data Forum Analytics is playing an increasingly important role in our lives thanks in large part to internet of things (IoT) developments and a greater appreciation of Big Data. With solutions that range across business productivity, health care, individual and national security, new insights are regularly…

Clouding Around With The Unicorns

Clouding Around With The Unicorns

The Social Unicorn Early investors and technology consumers alike love the poignantly named “Unicorn” companies, or private startups that reach the $1 billion valuation. The most recent unicorn spotting is social media game-changer Snapchat, which was recently valued at $16 billion. According to a recent infographic from Alexa discovered via Adweek, Snapchat also proves to…

Achieving Network Security In The IoT

Achieving Network Security In The IoT

Security In The IoT The network security market is experiencing a pressing and transformative change, especially around access control and orchestration. Although it has been mature for decades, the network security market had to transform rapidly with the advent of the BYOD trend and emergence of the cloud, which swept enterprises a few years ago.…

Increasing Efficiency and Reducing Cost with Managed Printing Services

Increasing Efficiency and Reducing Cost with Managed Printing Services

Managed Printing Services This is a sponsored post written on behalf of HP MPS.  Today’s business leaders recognize the value of shared services, significantly providing a wide range of enterprises with the sophisticated tools they need to compete with big business, while additionally driving costs down. But an area often overlooked in our tech-savvy world…

4 Different Types of Attacks – Understanding the “Insider Threat”

4 Different Types of Attacks – Understanding the “Insider Threat”

Understanding the “Insider Threat”  The revelations that last month’s Sony hack was likely caused by a disgruntled former employee have put a renewed spotlight on the insider threat. The insider threat first received attention after Edward Snowden began to release all sorts of confidential information regarding national security. While many called him a hero, what…

Most Active Internet Of Things Investors In The Last 5 Years

Most Active Internet Of Things Investors In The Last 5 Years

Most Active Internet Of Things Investors A recent BI Intelligence report claimed that the Internet of Things (IoT) is on its way to becoming the largest device market in the world. Quite naturally, such exponential growth of the IoT market has prompted a number of high-profile corporate investors and smart money VCs to bet highly…

Do Small Businesses Need Cloud Storage Service?

Do Small Businesses Need Cloud Storage Service?

Cloud Storage Services Not using cloud storage for your business yet? Cloud storage provides small businesses like yours with several advantages. Start using one now and look forward to the following benefits: Easy back-up of files According to Practicalecommerce, it provides small businesses with a way to back up their documents and files. No need…

Cloud Infographic – Disaster Recovery

Cloud Infographic – Disaster Recovery

Disaster Recovery Business downtime can be detrimental without a proper disaster recovery plan in place. Only 6% of businesses that experience downtime without a plan will survive long term. Less than half of all businesses that experience a disaster are likely to reopen their doors. There are many causes of data loss and downtime —…

Internet Of Things – Industrial Robots And Virtual Monitoring

Internet Of Things – Industrial Robots And Virtual Monitoring

Internet Of Things – Industrial Robots And Virtual Monitoring One of the hottest topics in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is the Internet of Things (IOT). According to the report of International Telecommunication Union (2012), “the Internet of things can be perceived as a vision with technological and societal implications. It is considered as a…

How Data Science And Machine Learning Is Enabling Cloud Threat Protection

How Data Science And Machine Learning Is Enabling Cloud Threat Protection

Data Science and Machine Learning Security breaches have been consistently rising in the past few years. Just In 2015, companies detected 38 percent more security breaches than in the previous year, according to PwC’s Global State of Information Security Survey 2016. Those breaches are a major expense — an average of $3.79 million per company,…