These days you will find many IT technology press releases that suggest cloud solutions. Many solutions are indeed on this concept, including mobility, social networks, management of personal data, etc.… But still, its many terms are unclear. The purpose of this article is to demystify the concept of cloud computing by explaining some of these implementations: Iaas, PaaS, and SaaS.
IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS
Cloud computing offers a model for on-demand access to share computing resources, configurable networks, servers, storage, applications, and services that can be rapidly provisioned. The idea is to provide a flawless data processing capacity.
Cloud Computing comes in three distinct models:
IAAS (Infrastructure as a Service): This package offers a scalable computing capacity. Its interface level is about the operating system (OS). It is then possible to use its way by installing server software, database, and applications.
PAAS (Platform as a Service): This model offers a higher degree of superiority than provides IAAS: it provides the hardware platform, Operating System (OS) software, and all associated servers: application servers, databases, etc. It is therefore a complete software platform on which it is possible to develop your applications or migrate.
These systems are based on standard environments and multi-technologies (J2EE, NET, and PHP). These systems provide an environment of more complete exploitation by providing solutions for load balancing, monitoring, and management.
SAAS: Software as a Service: This model allows the rental services offered by applications made by the supplier of the solution, which can be consumed by users. This offer not only offers hardware and software platforms on which we can deploy our applications but also provides ready-to-use applications, hosted by the operator of the solution. It is therefore simply use online software where everything is completely transparent to the user.
The principle of all offers of cloud computing is to build on:
• The principles of pooling resources
• The scalability of resources
• Adaptation of the capacity on demand
• Billing – Pay For What You Use
NEED FOR SPECIFIC INFRASTRUCTURE
Cloud computing can meet the specific needs of new infrastructure (disk, bandwidth, computing power) which is based on the pooling of resources that can adapt to its leased capacity need:
• Better management during the peak loads
• Responsiveness of the provider to manage these changes immediately.
Applications that have specific and timely manner needs are particular candidates for cloud computing offers. E.g. payroll applications are mostly used only at the end of the month. The rest of the time the application is used very little.
Applications with high loads with regular chances of peak loads: e-Commerce applications during the Festival seasons, SMS servers, Weather forecasts, or any other frequently used applications that have had peak loads for the period of extraordinary events (e.g. Weather alerts on weather forecast websites, News websites during major events, etc.…). The strong variations of loads can extend over several minutes, several hours, or even several days, cloud computing can meet these needs.
Applications generally not used, but with strong peak loads periods can be identified: e.g. tax reporting applications, infrastructure management applications, election vote counting applications, etc.
Managing these applications with traditional hosting infrastructure is very difficult. Two major risks with traditional solutions.
1) Oversize of the infrastructure, resources will remain unused most of the time when there is no peak load. Significant cost while the platform is generally used a little bit.
2) Undersized infrastructure to absorb the average load will be insufficient during peak loads.
With the PAAS cloud computing platform, you can concentrate on the business services offered by sales applications. Indeed, supporting its developments on industry standards, applications can be hosted by the PAAS platform service provider. Installation and configuration of hardware will be made by the provider of PAAS.
The advantage is that each participant can work in his heart of the business:
PASS provider maintains the platform (integration of SOA, databases, server software, and Virtualization) and infrastructure (server hardware, storage, and networks). The user can hold his applications for his work. He no longer has to worry about the hosting infrastructure.
The advantages are many:
• The user retains control of its software and business heart, which is often an asset to the company.
• Investments related to infrastructure and application hosting is now made by the PAAS providers.
OUTSOURCING OF NON-HEART BUSINESS APPLICATIONS
Business applications are usually distinguished according to their participation at the heart of the company’s business and their strategic dimension.
• The heart of business applications: a hospital treatment for employees, building products for factories, employee training programs, etc.…
These applications constitute the wealth of the company, their development is usually driven by the company but they can be outsourced to a hosting company that offers the solutions on Platform as a Service.
• Applications that are not the heart of business strategy: the key to the competitiveness of finance, accounting, HR, and IT resources.
These applications are not the heart of the company’s business but remain strategic for its operation. These applications, which tend to standardize are addressed today by SAAS solutions: Human Resource Management, Electronic Document Management, and CRM.
SAAS solutions for planning applications especially in non-heart of business: it is to outsource some of these applications used by all, but maintenance costs by the company are of limited value. Entering the world of cloud computing for business often begins with the typical applications which are fully established.
E.g. messaging/wiki/groupware (standard applications for all firms), Customer Relationship Management, Human Resource Management (maintenance legislation is many by the SAAS provider), the open office, etc.
In addition, these cloud solutions also perfectly meet the needs of mobility. The software and data are stored via a cloud computing solution and different devices access the data.