The technology that has taken the technical world by storm in recent times is surely Cloud Computing. Everyone is talking about it. But the concept is not so clear to everyone yet. So, What is it anyways??
First the short answer: It’s nothing but a service which fulfills your IT infrastructural needs.
Let’s see how it has formed and totally transformed the digital world.
Let’s assume I have inherited a big house from my ancestors. It’s quite a big one and it is way more than my need. So, either I use the entire house for myself and my family or I rent a portion of it which will give me a good business. And being business minded, I opted for the second one and eventually it made me rich. I thought of the same model and I invested further in buying a big house in some other place and applied the same old model. This time I created one website to take the request of rooms from my clients and I deployed few people to modify the rooms according to the client’s request. Some used the rooms for storage, some for their business and some to live there.
Now, let’s put the same concept in the computing world. Suppose you have a big, quite big physical server.But actually, you don’t need that much big server. You thought, you could have shared it with your younger brother, who also needs a server. But alas! You can not divide the RAM, Processor, Harddisk and let him use that…….
Wait wait wait! there is something which can do this for you. Obviously not dividing the server physically, but virtually. Yes, in computing world we call it virtualization. There are companies like VMWARE, Microsoft, Citrix e.t.c who works in this domain. They basically have made a software, which sits on top of a physical server and creates a simulation of many servers virtually. These virtual servers use the resources of the physical server and work like an actual server. So, suppose your physical server has 128 GB RAM and your physical server needs only 16 GB RAM to run itself. Then you can use the rest 112GB RAM for the virtual servers. So, you can create 28 servers having 4GB RAM may be and it is quite a good configuration for a normal purpose server.
Now, if we compare this with our house renting business, you have a big physical computer. You have a software which can help you to make small virtual servers out of it. So you are all set to start your business. What business? Rent the small servers out and enjoy the rent. Know your client’s requirement and create servers for them accordingly. And assure your clients that they don’t need to bother about the maintenance of the servers. They can just concentrate on their core business. Well, this will be a great relief for your clients and a good business for you.
But, the above process is manual. That means, whenever there is a new request from a client, you manually have to go to the virtualization software and fulfill his request. So, as your number of clients will increase, you have to keep few people to maintain this and it will become a bit annoying day by day.
So, according to the first law of mankind (which the entire technical world is based upon), let’s make your life a bit easy. What if you get someone, on whom you will invest once and he will take care of all these requests. Maybe someone like Gini from Alladin stories? Well, it’s not a tough job (apparently). Create a portal to take the requests from clients. Now every virtualization software supports some kind of command line interfaces. It can be SSH script or PowerShell script or something else. So, all you need to do is execute appropriate commands from your portal to fulfill your client’s request. And voila! You have only two tasks now, get clients and count the money.
Well, all the cloud companies are doing the same thing. So basically they are forming a cloud of computing systems and services and putting an interface in front of you, which is abstracting the boring and complex technicalities underneath. And what you are seeing is nothing but a menu from where you can select required services and configurations. Much like a menu card in a restaurant. You just need to pick up the items to organize your platter and then enjoy your platter.
From the consumer point of view, we can divide the cloud technology in two categories:
- Cloud hosted services: Almost every cloud offers some hosted services to their clients. Like database service, storage service. So people don’t need to have their database server on-premise. Instead, they can take advantage of these hosted services. Advantage? You don’t need to think about maintenance, security, back-up, anything. All you need to do is save data and fetch data. Interesting?
- Cloud computing: Instead of services, people can opt for real servers also. The cloud companies are offering servers of various OS flavors. Sometimes they are offering pre-build servers. Like a furnished flat. That means you can have a server where SQL server is pre-installed or IIS is preconfigured. You can even construct your entire datacenter there. Yes, they provide domain service, load balancer everything you name it.
So, how easy the cloud is? It depends on how much complex your need is. If you need to build an entire datacenter, then obviously, you need an expert. If your need is as simple as just having a server, then you can manage it on your own, just like you manage your smart phone.
Every day there are new concepts coming up around cloud, like hybrid cloud and all. Companies like Genx Technology Services are working on making products on cloud computing which can make consumer’s life easy.
There are companies which are in expert cloud consultation. From cost calculation to building datacenter, all the services they provide. Again, Genx Technology Services is working in this field for last two years.
So here goes the cloud concept for you. Do you like it? Please leave a note in comments section.