Public cloud or private cloud? Or hybrid cloud? Cloud computing is the future – in fact it’s the here-and-now – but what exactly are the differences between these different approaches, and which is right for your business?
“Cloud computing has brought about a paradigm shift in the field of information technology,” explains IT Portal.com by way of scene setting. “It is probably the most talked about trend in the IT sector and it is the industry buzzword. The reason is simple – cloud offers many advantages, including reduced capital expenditure, increased flexibility, scalability, ease of access to information, instant provisioning and speedy deployment.”
Their recent infographic, above, sets out the benefits for each type of cloud pretty clearly. Or click over to the cloud section of our website to explore each methodology in more depth. Each has it’s own particular use and niche. Take the private cloud, for example, for which Vivek Vahie, senior director of service delivery at NaviSite puts the case perfectly:
“The information held in a private cloud is protected behind a firewall that is accessible to users with appropriate access rights and only available for employees (or agents) of that organisation. This makes it highly secure and redundant. The data in the private cloud stays within a specified data centre, making integration with other systems much simpler. This deployment model offers the highest level of security and control, which makes it less economical compared to other cloud options.”
These security aspects of a private cloud practice are fundamental. “Why would anyone spend so much more to own their own private cloud,” asks Howard M. Cohen over at Dell’s Tech Page One , “when they could use the services provided by a public cloud service for so much less?”
“The answer, often, is security.” And, cutting to the chase, he puts it bluntly: “If your organization has fiduciary or legal responsibilities imposed by internal policies to keep your data within your four walls, then you must select a private cloud server environment.”
Answering the same question – “what’s the difference between public, private and hybrid clouds?” – here’s George Reese, Dell Cloud Management’s Executive Director speaking at the Cloud World Forum at London Olympia back in June:
‘The new role for the private cloud – it’s not what you think’ is how cloud computing analyst and blogger David Linthicum sums up the latter term, the hybrid cloud methology. It was the rather contentious title of his August piece for Cloud Tech News “This hybrid architectural approach uses the private cloud as an entry point,” he explains, “and it is beginning to gain popularity for a few core reasons:
- Enterprises typically like to focus on private clouds as the primary resources for applications when there are considerations around control and security, and, in some cases, standing laws and regulations that dictate where data can and cannot reside.
- Use of the private cloud as the “public cloud controller” (for lack of a better term) means there is a single set of interfaces to many different public cloud providers. This simplifies the use of cloud services by providing a common layer of abstraction using a private cloud.
- Finally, the use of governance and security becomes much easier to implement. We’re really focused on the private cloud platform, and use the public cloud resources only as needed. That means there is no repeatable pattern of use that causes vulnerabilities, and the security approaches are fairly straightforward.
Public, private or hybrid. Each type of cloud has its place, and its own particular features and benefits. We’ve only just begun to touch on the discussion each one stirs in the tech community. But to find out which we would recommend for your particular business or requirements, give us a call!