Key Features Of Cloud Computing
The most talked-about term currently in the IT industry is cloud computing. Everyone is thinking about cloud computing from different perspectives. Some emphasize the cost benefits associated with it, while others are still cautious about security and privacy. It has become extremely important to understand the key defining features of cloud computing.
1. Resource Pooling and Elasticity
In cloud computing, resources are pooled to serve a large number of customers. Cloud computing uses multi-tenancy where different resources are dynamically allocated and de-allocated according to demand. From the user’s end, it is not possible to know where the resource actually resides.
The resource allocation should be elastic, in the sense that it should change appropriately and quickly with the demand. If on a particular day the demand increases several times, then the system should be elastic enough to meet that additional need, and should return to the normal level when the demand decreases.
2. Self-Service and On-demand Services
Cloud computing is based on self-service and on-demand service models. It should allow the user to interact with the cloud to perform tasks like building, deploying, managing, and scheduling. The user should be able to access computing capabilities as and when they are needed and without any interaction from the cloud-service provider. This would help users to be in control, bringing agility in their work, and to make better decisions on the current and future needs.
Cloud computing does not have any upfront cost. It is completely based on usage. The user is billed based on the amount of resources they use. This helps the user to track their usage and ultimately help to reduce cost. Cloud computing must provide means to capture, monitor, and control usage information for accurate billing. The information gathered should be transparent and readily available to the customer. This is necessary to make the customer realize the cost benefits that cloud computing brings.
4. Quality of Service
Cloud computing must assure the best service level for users. Services outlined in the service-level agreements must include guarantees on round-the-clock availability, adequate resources, performance, and bandwidth. Any compromise on these guarantees could prove fatal for customers.
The decision to switch to cloud computing should not be based on the hype in the industry. A good understanding of the technology enables the user to make smarter decisions. Knowing all the features will empower the business users to understand and negotiate with the service providers in a proactive manner.
By Jack Rosenblum
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