Introduction to Clouds

The cloud has expanded to be one of the most popular storage units in IT. As it continues to grow and develop, the cloud has come to exist in several different models. There’s the public cloud, managed public cloud, managed private cloud, and an on-premises infrastructure. Understanding what each of these are and the differences between them can become quickly confusing, so here are the different forms of clouds and their descriptions:

  • Public Cloud: A provider offers on demand, highly automated cloud service to customers. The provider owns and operates the infrastructure and rents access to customers. Customers then manage only the operating system, middleware, and application.
  • Managed Public Cloud: Differently from the public cloud, a managed public cloud, also known as Software-as-a-Service, offers customers access to both infrastructure and services for monitoring and managing the operating system, middleware, and application. The infrastructure is shared by several companies as a multi-tenant environment.
  • Managed Private Cloud: Also known as a “single-tenant” or “dedicated” cloud, the infrastructure is not shared. The provider can be either through a third party subscription or set up in your own office. The latter can be called an “on-premises infrastructure” where your business owns and operates its own infrastructure.

Knowing the differences between each of these cloud services will help you in choosing the best cloud for your business.

Forms of Private Clouds

As mentioned above, there are two forms of private clouds— the third party and your own on-premises infrastructure. These two are the same in that only one business/ subscriber resides and has access to the cloud and infrastructure. The difference is that with on premises private clouds, your business owns the infrastructure but the provider designs, manages, and monitors it. Private clouds are isolated forms of cloud computing with access granted to only one subscriber. This makes them much more secure, but that is not the only reason to consider getting a private cloud. The top benefits of private clouds are its speed of innovation and efficiency in producing new services. However, it’s also important to consider the unique features that come with the private cloud such as customization, integration, and control.

Features of Private Clouds

Customization

Private clouds offer complete customization of your network and storage. If your business has IP-address restrictions, in-line security appliances, or other custom requirements, a private cloud will be the best option for you. Oftentimes, public clouds will not work for such custom requirements. Private clouds are also the only form to support IPsec VPN connectivity, MPLS/peering, co-located equipment, and customized tape rotation. If your business has many specific needs, the private cloud will allow you to build your own infrastructure and customize it to those requirements.

Integration

While the public cloud is limited in provided services, the private cloud offers significantly more options especially when it comes to integration with internal systems and custom applications. If you, like many businesses, have some services that cannot be addressed by a public cloud, they can easily be integrated with your own private cloud. For example, many businesses have integrated mobile device management solutions, CRM, custom SharePoint installations, unified messaging systems, content archiving systems, and more with their private cloud.

Control

If you want to avoid issues with updates, infrastructure, and more that can come with public clouds that you cannot control, the private cloud has the solution. Private clouds allow you to have more control and ability to resolve or prevent potential problems, rather than waiting on someone else to resolve it. Customers with the private cloud have increased control over the cloud environment and its “roadmap”. You choose when updates take place. You can manage and disable specific services, add custom services, test new solutions, and experiment with IT— but only with a private cloud.

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU

Private Clouds offer many benefits such as better security, customization, integration, and control. Businesses that have any custom needs, desire to integrate business applications with their cloud, and actually be in control of the functioning of your cloud would be best served by a private cloud. Contact your local IT professional to learn more and get your private cloud setup ASAP.

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