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The key characteristics of cloud ARCHITECTURE include the following:

On-demand self-service Unilateral provisioning of such computing
resources as server time, storage or network bandwidth, without requiring
human interaction with service providers.
Ubiquitous network access Access to systems regardless of user location
or device (PC, mobile phone, tablet, etc.).
Resource pooling Multi-tenancy that enables sharing of pooled resources
and costs across a
number of users, with different physical and virtual resources dynamically
assigned and reassigned
according to user demand.
Rapid elasticity Quick scale up or scale down of resources through elastic
provisioning or the release of capabilities in near real time.
Pay per use Capabilities that are charged using a metered, fee-for-service or
billing model to promote optimization of resource use. One pays only for the time
when the resource is used.
The service models of cloud providers differ in the amount of control the users
have over information and could be described as:2 Infrastructure-asa-Service
(IaaS); Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS); and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). The three
service models or layers are completed by an end user layer that encapsulates
the end user perspective on cloud services. Cloud Computing can be delivered
through such delivery models as:
Software as a Service (SaaS)
Platform as a Service (PaaS)
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
Business Process as a Service (BPaaS)
Data as a Service (DaaS)
The above cloud services can be delivered through deployment models, such as:
Public Cloud A public cloud is available over the internet to everyone. The
cloud provider manages and owns everything from operations and facilities to
computing resources. Infrastructure is available to the general public or a large industry
group and is owned by an organization selling cloud services. Popular public clouds are
Amazon EC2, Google App Engine and Microsoft Azure.

Private Cloud A private cloud is available only to trusted users of an

organization or group. Everything in a private cloud can be managed either by
the organization or the cloud provider. Infrastructure operated solely for an individual
organization, although it may be managed by a third party and exist either on- or off-premise
Community Cloud A community cloud is accessible to the members of a
larger community comprised of different organizations or groups, and where
partner organizations and the cloud provider co-manage everything from
operations to facilities. Infrastructure is shared by several organizations within a specific
community with shared concerns (such as mission or security requirements); it may be
managed by the organizations or a third party and may exist on- or off-premise.
Hybrid Cloud A hybrid cloud is a mix of multiple public and private clouds
and it addresses the challenges of a pure public or private cloud environment.
Infrastructure is a composition of two or more clouds (private, community or public) that
remain unique entities but are bound together by standardized or proprietary technology that
enables data and application portability