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Cloud 101 Primer

An Introduction
to the Cloud

on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (for example. A Definition of the Cloud In Cloud Computing Synopsis and Recommendations (Special Publication 800-146).pdf Data Center & Network Services Cloud Services Managed Services peak10. The cloud is not a place or a technology. That is largely because the cloud represents a large ecosystem of diverse models and technologies that are quickly changing as the industry advances. 2 of 6 . The costs shift from capital expenditures to operating expenditures. both the NIST and Peak 10 definitions call out an important difference.3 National Institute of Standards and Technology http://csrc. One way to understand the “cloud” is to start with the definition outlined by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). as needed automatically without requiring human interaction with each service provider. A consumer can unilaterally provision computing capabilities. storage and networks are shared across multiple tenants and over a remote connection. on a subscription basis or on a reservation system. network and storage converge into a single infrastructure that is fully managed and delivered as a service. which provides more room for its continuing evolution. the NIST defines the “cloud” (also known as cloud computing) as: “… a model for enabling convenient. applications and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction. It attempts to encompass all of the various cloud approaches and provides a baseline understanding of the concepts and components involved.”1 Yet another way to define the cloud. which ensures access to resources when needed. to a set of standardized cloud services and options. People are making up vocabulary along the way. It is a usage model or philosophy that provides a way to transform business practices. They include: • On-demand the cloud is similar to shared hosting. Computing resources such as servers. typically the Internet. however. The cloud offers businesses and their information technology (IT) staffs a number of important benefits ranging from increased efficiencies to scalability. servers. Cloud Characteristics The cloud can be further defined by specific characteristics. there is a lot of talk about “the cloud” and for good reason.2 1. and every cloud service provider has its own definition of the cloud. Rather than making an up-front investment in IT infrastructure. a company can draw on IT services that are delivered as a service over a third-party managed network.2. such as server time and network storage. Cloud 101 Primer Introduction From the server room to the board room. The company is charged based on what it uses (like a utility). networks. is as Peak 10 does: a philosophy of design and execution in which computing resources such as server. The NIST lists out five it considers to be essential but that all of these attributes may not be included in every cloud solution.nist. Even among IT professionals. On-demand self-service combines a service catalog and self-service portal to provide users with access. there’s confusion as to what exactly “the cloud” is. when needed. However. From an IT infrastructure perspective.

mobile phones. cost and availability of cloud resources. bandwidth and active user accounts). Virtualization software is used to run multiple VMs on a single physical server to provide the same functions as multiple physical machines. the infrastructure is made available to the general public or a large group.pdf Data Center & Network Services Cloud Services Managed Services peak10. The hypervisor can create this illusion for multiple guests at the same time. a government organization or by some combination of these organizations. Capabilities are available over a network and accessed through standard mechanisms that promote use by heterogeneous thin or thick client platforms (e. and network bandwidth. 6 National Institute of Standards and Technology http://csrc.nist. The most common classifications are public. Response-time guarantees depend upon this connectivity. controlled and reported.. storage.” In the IT world.4 • Rapid elasticity.5 • Measured service. Cloud environments can leverage virtualization as the basis for running services. sometimes called a multi-tenant cloud. and provide tools for monitoring application performance and response time. • Resource pooling. creates a high level of utilization and reuse. Cloud Deployment Models In addition to possessing specific characteristics. tablets. processing. Some cloud vendors offer dedicated links to their data centers and provide appropriate service level agreements (SLAs) for uptime or response time. Public cloud. ultimately yielding a very effective use of capital equipment. this virtualization software performs the abstraction of the hardware to the individual VMs. Capabilities can be quickly and elastically provisioned. Others might implement a best-effort guarantee for uptime or response time. for example). 4.. along with provisioning automation. allowing multiple VMs to share the same physical hardware. operated and managed by a business that provides cloud services. an academic organization. and gives the illusion that it is running directly on the hardware. Cloud systems automatically control and optimize resource use by leveraging a metering capability at some level of abstraction appropriate to the type of service (e. Management software can operate in concert with the hypervisor to provide advanced features such as VM migration. so that users can plan their bandwidth needs. processing. 5. the capabilities available for provisioning often appear to be unlimited and can be appropriated in any quantity at any time. state or data center). It may be owned. The consolidation provided by virtualization. To the consumer. the cloud is classified by how it is deployed. community and hybrid.g.6 The Virtualization Factor Another characteristic commonly associated with the cloud is “virtualization. A public cloud exists on the premises of the organization providing the cloud services. laptops and workstations). Cloud 101 Primer • Broad network access. Resource usage can be 3 of 6 . to scale rapidly outward and inward commensurate with demand. load balancing or disaster recovery. There is a sense of location independence in that the customer generally has no control or knowledge over the exact location of the provided resources but may be able to specify location at a higher level of abstraction (e.3 The network can be public (the Internet) or private (dedicated lines or Multiprotocol Label Switching [MPLS] infrastructure. in some cases automatically. providing transparency for both the provider and consumer of the utilized service. The different deployment models each present a number of advantages and disadvantages associated with the scale. Examples of resources include storage. private. The cloud services provider’s computing resources are pooled to serve multiple consumers using a multi-tenant model with different physical and virtual resources dynamically assigned and reassigned according to consumer demand. virtualization is the creation of a virtual machine (VM) in which to execute workloads. country. It slips between the physical machine hardware and a guest operating system. In a public cloud.g. Known as a hypervisor.

self-service and better integrated management tools also reduce total costs and operating expenses. When a third party manages it. storage and network infrastructure so that customers can load their own software. Private cloud. It can also exist on premise or off premise. available on demand. For wide-area connectivity. a public cloud enables consumers to use computing resources as they would a utility. Among the reasons companies may choose a private cloud are: • To leverage existing hardware investments. the NIST has set some definitions in place to help distinguish the three most common cloud service delivery models: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). it is called a managed private cloud. such as security requirements or policy and compliance considerations. community or public) that remain distinct but share technologies that enable porting of data and applications from one to the other. Hybrid 4 of 6 . a third party and/or some combination of them. Many in the industry prefer to refer to this as a hybrid IT strategy. It is accessed from behind the organization’s existing firewall. customers can use either the Internet or dedicated virtual private networks. host firewalls). Companies that use hybrid clouds typically have the security features and customization options of a private cloud but can still take advantage of the scalability and cost-effectiveness of a public cloud. and get the impression of unlimited capacity. IaaS providers typically supply resources on-demand from their large resource pools installed in data centers. Community cloud. The customer does not manage or control the underlying cloud infrastructure but has control over operating systems. deployed applications. Businesses may use certain applications in a public cloud and then migrate them to a private cloud as their needs change. automation. • A preference or need for exclusive use of hardware to handle specific workloads or to obtain higher availability of systems and applications during specific times. Consolidated IT resources. Cloud 101 Primer Often referred to as utility computing. Like its name suggests. a hybrid cloud combines two or more cloud types (private.g. A private cloud may be owned. a third party or both. The infrastructure of a community cloud is shared by several organizations and supports a specific community that has shared concerns. a community cloud can exist on premise or off premise. storage. Also referred to as an internal or single-tenant networks and other traditional computing resources that allow the customer to deploy and run arbitrary software. Again.nist. IaaS offers the greatest degree of control of the three models with scaling and elasticity the responsibility of the customer. • IaaS. operated and managed by one or more of the organizations.pdf Data Center & Network Services Cloud Services Managed Services peak10. it is called a hosted private cloud.7 In simple terms. Like a private cloud. including operating systems and applications. The IaaS model provides network access to processing. a private cloud is deployed for the exclusive use of a single organization. IaaS offers the raw computing. It may be owned. and possibly limited control of select networking components (e. Colocation can also play a role in a hybrid model. Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS). Service Models Another means of distinction regarding the cloud is the variety of cloud service delivery models available. • Concerns about data security and issues of trust if multiple organizations were sharing the same resources. They trust the cloud provider will maintain the necessary infrastructure to run their applications and provide the requested service at their required Service Level Agreement (SLA). They pay only for what they use. When it is hosted and operated off premises. on to this infrastructure. 7 National Institute of Standards and Technology http://csrc.. storage. Pricing is typically on a usage or reservation basis. managed and operated by the organization. Some companies offer private clouds that are actually in a multi-tenant environment but employ logical segmentation.

The software platform is used as a development framework to build.10 They are: Network as a service (NaaS). The application is licensed to customers (single or multiple) either as a service-on-demand. upgrades and patches for a company’s IT team because the software is managed centrally at the SaaS provider’s facilities. and possibly limited control of select networking components (e. cloud providers install and operate application software in the cloud. or at no charge when there is opportunity to generate revenue from streams other than the user. PaaS and SaaS are the most common simplifying maintenance and support. or storage. Communications can include voice over IP (VoIP). debug and deploy applications. New Service Models While IaaS.9 SaaS saves the complexity of software installation. 5 of 6 . instant messaging (IM) and collaboration and videoconference applications using fixed and mobile devices. storage. The CaaS provider is responsible for all hardware and software management and offers guaranteed Quality of Service (QoS). in 2012 two additional cloud service models were officially named as basic cloud computing models by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). the customer does not manage or control the underlying cloud infrastructure including network. as-needed basis.8 PaaS is a true cloud model in that applications do not need to worry about the scalability of the underlying hardware and software. maintenance. NaaS provides cloud users with network/transport connectivity services and/or inter-cloud network connectivity services. When enterprises write their application to run over the PaaS provider’s software platform. This eliminates the large capital investment and ongoing overhead for a system whose capacity may often exceed or fall short of current demand. CaaS is an outsourced enterprise communications solution that can be leased from a single vendor. The cloud users do not manage the cloud infrastructure and platform on which the application is running. 10 National Institute of Standards and Technology http://csrc. SaaS. a number of other cloud service models are taking shape as well.. With this model. operating systems.g. Cloud 101 Primer PaaS.nist. the elasticity and scalability is guaranteed transparently by the PaaS platform. With new technologies and business needs emerging. Stay tuned for more information on service models such as: • Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) • Storage as a Service (STaaS) • Security as a Service (SECaaS) • Desktop as a Service (DaaS) • Database as a Service (DBaaS) • Test Environment as a Service (TEaaS) 8. It often provides middleware-style services such as database and component services for use by applications. The pricing for the SaaS model is typically on a per-user basis for a fixed bandwidth and storage.pdf Data Center & Network Services Cloud Services Managed Services peak10. 9. The customer does not manage or control the underlying cloud infrastructure but does have control over operating systems. host firewalls). Services include flexible and extended VPN and bandwidth on demand. in a “pay-as-you-go” model. through a subscription. The PaaS model provides a software platform on which users can build their own applications while hosting them on the PaaS provider’s infrastructure. Monitoring application delivery performance is the responsibility of the SaaS provider. deployed applications. CaaS allows businesses to selectively deploy communications devices and modes on a pay-as-you-go. Communications as a Service (CaaS). In the SaaS model. Cloud users then access the software from cloud clients. but has control over the deployed applications and possibly application hosting environment configurations. This eliminates the need to install and run the application on their computers. a specialized agency of the United Nations that is responsible for issues that concern information and communication technologies.

maintain and improve and view any of the many cloud-related resources available to increase your understanding of the cloud and what it can do for your business. With the reservation billing 6 of 6 . Portions reprinted courtesy of the National Institute of Standards and Technology. It creates a strong initial set of ground rules. Utility model. This includes the minimum acceptable level of service that must be maintained in worst-case scenarios. The main idea of this pricing configuration is to pay for the actual use with no other commitments. However. U. With utility billing. cloud billing models will continue to change to meet the needs of both customers and cloud service providers. Or visit Peak10. Peak 10 can help you learn even more about the cloud. and a plan for exceptions from the start. water or other utilities. particularly as new cloud service providers enter the market and The reservation billing model requires a long-term commitment but offers discounts based on various factors. Learn More About the Cloud Defining the cloud will continue to be an on-going task. enhance technology planning. Reservation model. a customer pays for the reserved resources regardless of use. similar to how customers are charged for using electricity. The SLA sets the expectation for how cloud resources will be delivered and guarantees that the expectation will be met for uptime and reliability. Among the disadvantages of this model is that usage rates often quickly exceed planning parameters.peak10. Request a free cloud consultation at www. Service Level Agreements One of the most important aspects of the cloud is the Service Level Agreements (SLA). the Peak 10 Cloud 101 Primer provides an an important baseline understanding of the cloud and the various concepts and components that comprise it. manage capital and operational finance and even meet regulatory requirements.S. Cloud 101 Primer • API as a Service (APIaaS) • Backend as a Service (BaaS) • Integrated Development Environment as a Service (IDEaaS) • Integration Platform as a Service (IPaaS) Billing Models Just as there are different cloud deployment and service models. compliance. Each cloud service provider also can have its own variation on these billing models. so IT departments can be hit with a huge. unexpected bill. The two most common billing models. Data Center & Network Services Cloud Services Managed Services peak10. As with the entire cloud ecosystem.” the customer only pays for the resources used. security and other issues spur the development of new cloud deployment and service models. Such portions are not copyrightable in the United States. Department of Commerce. The resources are always there for the customer’s usage. often referred to as the “use it or lose it” model. are utility billing and reservation billing. including how the cloud can help your business operate. there are different ways of billing for cloud services. also referred to as “pay-as-you-go billing. particularly for IaaS.