This article is about Cloud Computing
Cloud Computing Architecture - Explained
By NIIT Editorial
Published on 10/09/2021
The delivery of computing services (such as servers, databases, storage, software, networking, analytics, and intelligence) over the internet to offer quick innovation, flexibility in resources, and economies of scale are known as cloud computing. Cloud computing enables you in lowering your operating costs as you only have to pay for the cloud services you will use. Your business’s infrastructure runs smoothly when cloud computing steps in.
Why is Cloud Computing Important?
Cloud computing has emerged as a revolution in various businesses by eliminating the traditional ways. Below-mentioned are some of the pointers on why complying with cloud computing is important for any organization. Have a look:
Cost-effective: The businesses can get rid of the capital expense of purchasing hardware, software and the costs that will be used in the setup and running the on-site data centers like the servers’ rack, 24*7 electricity to cool and supply power, and the IT managers to take care of the infrastructure. All of these costs add up so fast and hence cloud computing is at the rescue.
Enhances speed: While it will take a lot of time to manage such multiple and essential resources, cloud computing lets you save substantial time. Now, one can easily avail to even large amounts of computing resources with just a few clicks. This bestows the businesses with greater flexibility and taking away the pressure from capacity planning.
Global Scale: Cloud computing can scale elastically. Delivering the right amount of IT resources (such as computing power, bandwidth, and storage) from the apt geographic location is what is needed in cloud computing.
Boosts productivity: On-site data centers generally require so much “racking and stacking” such as software patching, hardware setup, and other time-consuming activities. Since several tasks are excluded, the IT team can utilize the time in achieving more important business goals.
Elevates performance: Major cloud computing services work on a global network of secure data centers. These are to be regularly upgraded to the newest generation of quick and efficient and computing hardware. This leads to offer multiple benefits than that of a single corporate datacenter that involves less network latency for applications and larger economies of scale.
Is Reliable: Data backup, business continuity, and disaster recovery are made easy and cost-effective so that the data can easily be mirrored at various redundant sites on the network of the cloud provider.
Is Secure: Several cloud providers are broadly offering a set of policies, technologies, and controlling power that strengthens the overall security posture. This, in turn, helps in protecting your data, apps, and infrastructure from potential threats.
Understanding the Types of Cloud Computing
Cloud computing is a vast term. It encompasses multiple types, models, and services that have catered to all the cloud computing needs of the business. But to meet the needs of your business, you first have to determine the cloud deployment type or the cloud computing architecture you are aiming to implement the services on. Broadly, three different ways to deploy can be classified: Public Cloud, Private Cloud, and Hybrid Cloud.
Let’s have a detailed look at all of these types of cloud computing:
Public Cloud: When the third-party cloud operators own and conduct the clouds, it is known as Public Cloud. Computing resources like servers and storage over the Internet are delivered by these clouds. Furthermore, a public cloud enables you to own and manage all the hardware, software, and other supporting infrastructure with the help of the cloud provider. You can easily access these services and can manage your account using a web browser.
Private Cloud: When a single business or an organization is using cloud computing services exclusively, it is known as a private cloud. You can physically locate the private cloud on the on-site data center of the company. Sometimes, third-party service providers are also hired to host the company’s private cloud. All in all, a private cloud comprises services and infrastructure that are maintained on a private network.
Hybrid Cloud: Hybrid clouds are a mix of public and private clouds. These are bound together by technology while allowing data and applications to move amid public and private clouds. Businesses are bestowed with more flexibility, greater deployment options along with receiving help in cases of optimizing the existing infrastructure, compliance, and security.
Different Uses of Cloud Computing
Using cloud computing has become slightly inevitable. It is present everywhere. From basic activities like sending mail, watching TV, editing documents, etc. to listening to music, playing heavy games, etc. – everything is possible because of cloud computing. People are availing cloud computing services for a decade and global corporations, tiny startups, government agencies, and nonprofits are highly benefitting from this technology.
Below-mentioned are some of the popular uses of cloud computing:
- Creating cloud-native applications: Quickly building, deploying, and scaling operations like web, mobile and API is one of the greatest uses of cloud computing. Benefitting from the cloud-native technologies and approaches, namely Kubernetes, microservices architecture, containers, and API-driven communication and DevOps.
- Testing and building applications: Reduction in application development cost and time with the help of cloud infrastructures that can be easily regulated by scaling up and down.
- Storing and recovering data: Protecting the data by the most cost-effective method by relocating the data over the internet directly to an offsite cloud storage system which will be accessible from any location or any device.
- Analysing data: Unifying the cloud’s data across teams, locations and divisions. Then using cloud services like artificial intelligence and machine learning, to disclose insights for more such informed decisions.
- Streaming audio and video: Connecting with the audience anytime, anywhere, or on any device is possible only because of cloud computing. It enables you to provide high-definition video, audio along with global distribution.
- Embedding intelligence: Using intelligent models to help in engaging customers and providing valuable insights from the captured data.
- Delivering software on demand: On-demand software, also known as software as a service (SaaS) enables you to offer the latest versions and updates of the software to the customers anytime or anywhere they need it.
Cloud Computing Architecture
As discussed earlier, cloud computing is famous in both small and large organizations, and storing the information in the cloud and accessing it from anywhere and anytime via the internet is such a relief to the business owners. The architecture of cloud computing is a mix of service-oriented and event-driven architecture.
The cloud computing architecture is further divided into two parts:
- Front end
- Back end
Front End: Usually, the front end is used by the client. It consists of client-side interfaces and applications that enable users to access cloud computing platforms. The front-end cloud computing architecture includes tablets, mobile devices, web servers like Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, etc.
Back End: The service providers are the primary users of the back end. The back end helps you in managing the resources that are necessary to provide cloud computing services. A huge amount of data storage, servers, security mechanism, traffic control mechanisms, deploying models, etc. is included.
Note: An internet connection is always required to connect with both the front end as well as back end.
Components of Cloud Computing Architecture
Have a look at the vital components of cloud computing architecture:
1. Client Infrastructure:
Client Infrastructure is a component of the Front-end. It renders GUI (Graphical User Interface) that helps in interacting with the cloud.
The application can be any software or platform that is accessible to the client.
A cloud service manages the type of service you want to access as per the requirement of your client.
Cloud computing offers the following services:
i. Software as a Service (SaaS) – SaaS is also known as cloud application services. Mostly, the SaaS applications are conducted directly via the web browser. This means there is no need to download or install these applications. Below-mentioned are some of the important examples of SaaS:
Example: Google Apps, Slack, Dropbox, Hubspot, Salesforce, Cisco WebEx.
ii. Platform as a Service (PaaS) – It is also known as cloud platform services. It's similar to SaaS, but the difference is that PaaS offers a framework for software development, while SaaS allows us to access software over the internet without needing a platform. Windows Azure, Force.com, Magento Commerce Cloud, and OpenShift are some examples.
iii. Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) – Also known as cloud infrastructure services, IaaS will be highly responsible for managing data of the applications, middleware, and runtime environments.
Example: Google Compute Engine (GCE), Amazon Web Services (AWS) EC2, Cisco Metapod.
4. Runtime Cloud
The virtual machines are provided with the execution and runtime environment by the Runtime Cloud.
One of the most important components of cloud computing is storage. It helps in providing a vast storage capacity to the cloud, in turn, helping it to store and manage the data.
Services are provided on the application level, host level, and network level. The cloud infrastructure includes software and hardware components namely network devices, servers, storage, virtualization software, and other such resources that are required to support the cloud.
As the name suggests, managing components like service, application, infrastructure, runtime cloud, storage, and other security issues in the backend and establish coordination between them.
An in-built back-end component of cloud computing is what security is. A security mechanism is implemented in the back end.
The Internet is a medium through which the front end and back end can interact and communicate with each other.
This is a basic guide on cloud computing, allowing us to understand the usability and importance of this innovation to prevent excessive expenditure and optimize the functioning of the business.
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