What is Cloud and Cloud Computing? An introduction for beginners!

We all hear the word Cloud now and then but I, am sure many of us aren’t exactly very sure about Cloud and Cloud Computing. So first of all, it is important to understand,  what is the cloud.

What is Cloud

Cloud is just a metaphor for the internet when we say cloud, we are just referring to the internet only and simply the services we use using the internet – through our web browsers. Now when I say Cloud Computing, then there is no standard industry definition which talks about cloud computing, given the fact that this is in a nascent stage and the only handful of companies are investing in cloud computing & virtualization which are often cited as the FUTURE TRENDS.

What is Cloud Computing

But, in simple words,” Cloud Computing is more than the few internet based services which we access through our web browsers, it is the fundamental shift from the traditional client/server or n-tier architecture, and it primarily focuses on the effective utilization of the IT INFRASTRUCTURE “.

Most Cloud Service providers offer this service on the pay as you go model. By “pay as you go” model it means that you pay only for the services you use and a number of the resources you use. You are billed for only those services & resources that you consumed. In short, everything that is offered is actually a service which you use.

You must be thinking it’s just another computational model, so why should one have an interest in it? Well here is the answer for it! Let me brief you with the features of it, and I am sure you will agree that it is next generation model.

Features are as follows:

  • Scalable: These are highly scalable services than the traditional services that tend to reach a limit at a certain level, but these are designed and managed to cater the needs of people around the world because these services are replicated at the data centers which have a very good geo-distribution.
  • Automated Services Management: Well, it simply means you don’t have to worry about the manpower, servers, software upgrades, hardware, etc. all are managed by the cloud services offering company. I will elaborate this in a future post on Windows Azure.
  • High Availability: These have almost 99.9999% uptime services because they have thousands of data centers across the globe and they have hundreds of instances which are replicated on them, so even if one server fails other jumps in to serve the client.
  • Multi-tenancy: One Cloud – many tenants, that is the way most Cloud service providers, effectively utilize underlying IT infrastructure. They have many clients whose services are running on the single data centre.
  • Virtualization: It actually is the most important aspect of it. Cloud service providers have data centers where they run thousands of servers virtually using a hypervisor which increases effective utilization of the resources of mere 40-45% to around 85%.

So what it actually does, is that it takes all the stress of managing your servers, databases, security patches, software upgrades, infrastructure, etc. ( in the case of public cloud) from you.

These posts talk of some of the best cloud computing services and free Cloud Storage Providers.

These links will also interest you:

  1. Types of Cloud services & Microsoft Cloud
  2. Cloud computing myths
  3. Public Cloud vs Private Cloud
  4. Hybrid Clouds
  5. Fact about cloud computing
  6. The Future Of Cloud Computing
  7. Infographic: What is Cloud Computing
  8. Security issues with Cloud computing
  9. Microsoft’s View On Privacy in Cloud Computing
  10. Microsoft Privacy Principles in Cloud Computing
  11. Cloud Computing with Microsoft Windows Azure
  12. Difference between Cloud computing and Grid computing
  13. Free Ebook on Cloud Computing from Microsoft.
Posted by on , in Category General with Tags
Harsh Mahajan is a Microsoft Student Partner. A technology enthusiast at heart, he has a tremendous passion for emerging technologies & trends like Cloud Computing & Windows Azure. He is associated with the International .Net Association as Brains Unleashed leader.