Whitepaper: Fair to Partly Cloudy

Fair to Partly Cloudy

While the cloud is often referred to in singular fashion, the reality is that enterprises looking to embrace cloud computing can choose from some very different approaches, each providing specific benefits—and challenges. This paper will describe IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS, revealing the unique characteristics of these cloud service delivery models. In addition, it will detail the distinct monitoring responsibilities and challenges of each model, and describe the specific capabilities organizations need to maximize the benefits of their cloud implementations.

Introduction

The hype surrounding cloud computing has been enormous, but this is a case where the reality may in fact eclipse some of the most optimistic projections—the potential is that significant. Enterprises of virtually every size and type either already have or soon will be adopting cloud services in some fashion. Cloud adoption is already pervasive when factoring in SaaS services, which have been mainstays in hundreds of thousands of enterprises since long before the “cloud” terminology materialized. Further, analysts predict that, by 2012, cloud-based services will account for at least 50% of the new demand for managed IT infrastructure services.

Why is the move to cloud computing so compelling?

Organizations choose to adopt cloud computing for several reasons:

  • Cost savings. Compared with traditional software installations, organizations can save 50% or more when deploying applications in cloud environments.
  • Speed. Many cloud initiatives can go from start to production in days, rather than the lengthy deployment cycles of traditional infrastructure implementations.
  • Reduced overhead. Organizations can eliminate the time and expense of hardware and software procurement—and ongoing maintenance, support, and upgrades.
  • Flexibility. Organizations can accommodate spikes in computing demand—without over-provisioning during non-peak periods—and only pay for resources used.

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