Cloud computing provides customers with on-demand access to computing resources and without direct management of the infrastructure required to provide these services.
Cloud computing is an alternative to on-premises computing which requires that customers procure, install, setup, manage, and maintain not just the servers provided computing resources, but also data storage devices, networking equipment, power supplies, cooling, racking, cabling, and more. Instead of taking on the investment and difficult technical work, many businesses request the computing resources they require from cloud computing providers, who deliver the services for a monthly fee. The more the services, including cybersecurity coverage, the greater the fees.
For customers interested in cloud services, there are three standard methods of deployment: private, public, and hybrid clouds. In this post, we describe each method, identify the differences between the methods, and list the benefits of each method so that you can better understand how cloud computing can cover your business needs.
What is a Private Cloud?
Private clouds provide computing resources that are used exclusively by one business. A private cloud deployment should be physically located in a secure data centre, confined to a private network, and use hardware that is dedicated to the business. No component of the infrastructure providing private cloud computing should be shared with another company.
The greater degree of control offered by private clouds enables increased customization, and of course, privacy for businesses. As such, private clouds are ideal for financial service providers, health care providers, or any other business that sees value in protecting private, confidential, or proprietary information.
What is a Public Cloud?
With public clouds, all hardware, software, and other supporting infrastructure is owned and managed by the cloud provider and delivered to the customer over the internet. This is the deployment method used by Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, and Microsoft Azure and is the most common method of cloud computing.
As customers share the infrastructure with other tenants in large data centres, there is less control for customers than in a private cloud deployment. That said, public clouds offer the advantages of lower costs and nearly unlimited resources to the economies of scale offered by companies like Amazon, Google, and Microsoft. The more the services, including cybersecurity coverage, the greater the fees.
What is a Hybrid Cloud?
A hybrid cloud combines on-premises computing or a private cloud with the public cloud. This allows customers to move data and applications between the two environments, meaning flexibility with the security and customization of private and the cost savings and scalability of public.
The challenge with hybrid cloud deployments is that recognizing the need for such a solution requires a great deal of technical expertise, to say nothing of implementing and managing a dynamic, multi-location cloud infrastructure.
Affordable Clouds: Solutions for Small to Mid-Sized Businesses
Large companies, enterprise-level businesses, can afford private clouds, i.e., clouds that satisfy the definition of “private clouds” provided above. There are clouds that offer a menu of fully-customized services. Most small to mid-sized businesses can afford some of these services. Some small to mid-sized services can afford to buy every service on the menu.
For example, some small businesses want to have advanced cybersecurity services that are very expensive when provided by the big public clouds.
To remove any misconceptions, IT clouds are not mystical and magical places. They are rooms known as data centres that contain a lot of racks, computer equipment, wires, network cables, security cameras, locks, air-conditioning, and fire suppression/disaster control.
Data centres can house clouds operated by the data centre owner. Some of those clouds contain the owners’ IT equipment. If the owners of a data centre keep their own equipment in their data centre then they rely on their private cloud to be reliable, safe, secure, etc. These data centre owners drink their own Kool-Aid. That’s an important consideration, which raises thoughts and questions:
Thought – The businesses that own their private data centres drink their own Kool-Aid.
Question – Do the big public cloud companies drink their own Kool-Aid or do they keep their IT equipment in more safe and secure places?
Our data centre contains our own equipment. And yes, we keep backup and other IT equipment in other secure data centres. We offer data centre services to other businesses who want affordable cloud services and colocation services.
Our clients have choices that allow tailored, truly hybrid, services that fit their IT goals and their budgets. We offer these services under our Waterloo Colocation division.
Waterloo Colocation has the rare ability to deliver private, public, and cloud deployments through our data centre in the University of Waterloo Research + Technology Park and as a member of the Microsoft Partner Network.
We treat your data and operation needs as seriously as we treat our own. And, we enjoy matching your services to your needs as much as we enjoy matching our services to our needs. And, we drink our own Kool-Aid.
To learn which solution is right for you, our team works with you to understand your business processes, goals, budget, and current technology landscape. We then design a custom solution that optimizes security, cost, and scalability for your business.