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white paper

Cloud Computing Overview

Title: Cloud Computing Overview

Author(s): Xtravirt (Paul Davey)
Target Audience: Technical - Novice
Current Revision: 1.0 (July 2009)
First Published: July 2009
Product(s): Cloud Computing
UID: XD10107

Content Overview:
• Overview of Cloud Computing
• Components, Methodology, Benefits and Pitfalls

1.0 Introduction 2.1 Platform as a service (PaaS)

Cloud computing is the name for a method of PaaS is the delivery of a platform, that usually comprises
computing where compute resource is provided over of hardware architecture, an operating system, required
the Internet. The resource can be dynamically scaled runtime libraries and programming language platforms.
in-line with the customers demand. The term cloud PaaS allows applications to be easily deployed, without
refers to the Internet and is used to simplify the idea having to worry about the underlying hardware. PaaS is
of the underlying infrastructure. Cloud computing often used by software developers providing multiple
customers do not need to know what physical user concurrency and team based development. Access
infrastructure is providing their software and services. is provided by an Internet browser over the Internet.
If demand increases and more resource is required (or
less demand and less resource), allocated resource can 2.2 Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
be dynamically scaled by the service provider. IaaS is the delivery of a computer infrastructure
(server(s), data storage, networking, rack space, power
and cooling). IaaS is similar to virtual private server
2.0 Cloud Components
offerings (hosted servers), however, rather than paying
A computing cloud is made up of multiple components.
a flat monthly fee for the service, IaaS is billed to the
A cloud provider is engaged to provide a service
customer based on the resource used.
run and managed from the cloud to a customer. A
combination of the following components make up a
cloud platform.

Illustration 1-1: Typical cloud components and connections © 2009 | 1

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2.3 Software as a Service (SaaS) return on investment (ROI) on your infrastructure.

SaaS is a term used to describe a model of software Infrastructure in this sense, is generally purchased from
delivery to a customer. The provider licenses the a customer capital expenditure budget (CapEx).
application to their customer. SaaS vendors usually
host the software on a centralised web server and By utilising cloud based computing, no upfront
provide access over the Internet. The software in some hardware needs to be purchased as you only pay for
instances can be downloaded to a customer device, what resource you require. This allows companies an
where it can be used. The software expires after the easy and potentially more cost efficient entry point
contract between the customer and provider ends. in to scalable computing platforms and applications
whilst lowering management overhead.

3.0 Types of Cloud Typically a service level agreement (SLA) is in place

3.1 Private Cloud between the customer and cloud provider to ensure
Private (or internal) cloud is the terminology used to a level of guaranteed uptime and accessibility, with
describe a companies private network that provides failure often resulting in financial penalties against the
cloud like functions. Private clouds have a high initial cloud provider. Because the customer only pays for
cost and potentially, high ongoing cost, as equipment the resource they use (or in some cases a subscription
must be purchased and services and systems fee basis may be used), where spikes in resource
maintained internally by the company. are required, the allocated resource is dynamically
expanded, providing a more efficient cost model as
3.2 Public Cloud opposed to a customer purchasing over specified
A public (or external) cloud, is the terminology used hardware.
to describe resource provided by a 3rd party provider
(such as Amazon). Companies use services by the public
cloud provider and pay for what they use, therefore
5.0 Cloud Negatives
Some negatives characteristics do exist with cloud
often saving money and driving down TCO.
computing. Companies are used to controlling access
to their data themselves often with data centralised
3.3 Hybrid Cloud where the customer can gain direct physical access.
A hybrid cloud is the terminology used to describe
With data being stored in the cloud, customers have to
multiple connected private clouds, or a combination of
be aware that they themselves cannot guarantee who
private and public cloud use by a company.
does or does not have access to their data; this is under
the control of the provider. Arguably, a cloud customer
4.0 Cloud Benefits places their privacy as well as data in the hands of the
Traditional customer infrastructures have been provider.
comprised of locally or internally centralised compute
resource. More often that not, the purchased resource Customers must research each vendors security policies
(servers, storage, networking) is under utilized and may before choosing their provider. It is also possible that
have been over specified to deal with intermittent cloud data may be stored across geographical borders,
spikes in resource requirements. This lowers the which may complicate certain regulatory requirements, © 2009 | 2

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auditing or potentially break laws. Certain cloud purpose built datacenters and connectivity provided
providers have deployed localised cloud infrastructures by more than 160 global carrier providers.
allowing customers to choose the geographic location
they wish to use for services. Web Address:
Terremark Enterprise Cloud Security: Use above link and
select security tab.
6.0 Cloud Providers
New providers in the cloud computing space
are emerging frequently. Companies will need to 6.3 VMware vCloud
investigate each provider to ensure that they pick the VMware’s offering is based upon their own software and
correct provider vs. Their requirements. Listed below are operating system software, utilised to create private
some of the cloud providers (current at time of writing). clouds, or internal federated clouds connected to
external cloud providers. VMware is currently partnered
with the following cloud providers:
6.1 Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2)
• Cloudnine Hosting
Amazon EC2 is part of Amazons AWS (Amazon Web
• iTricity
Services) platform. The AWS platform was introduced
• TATA Communications
in 2006.
• Terremark

Web Address:

Web Address:
AWS Security Whitepaper: http://awsmedia.

6.2 Terremark Enterprise Cloud This concludes the white paper.

Terremark are a global provider of IT infrastructure
services including enterprise clouds. They have multiple

About Xtravirt
Xtravirt is a knowledge-based company that delivers its expertise in virtualization online and in person. We have developed a reputation for astute
leadership and expertise through our work with an impressive array of organisations. It is this real-world experience that drives our ability to provide
independent, current and free advice online.

We work with organisations whose IT staff are frustrated with how hard it is to find detailed information and skills around virtualisation. We help our clients
deliver the true benefits of virtualization, resulting in cost and time savings.

For more information contact:

Dorset House, Regent Park

297 Kingston Road, Leatherhead
Surrey KT22 7PL
t +44 (0) 1372 824 296
f +44 (0) 1372 824 576

© Copyright 2009 Xtravirt Ltd. All rights reserved. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. Xtravirt Ltd shall not be liable for technical or editorial errors
or omissions contained herein. Xtravirt and the Xtravirt logo are registered trademarks of Xtravirt Ltd. The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the
trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective owners.

This document remains the property of Xtravirt Ltd. Contents may not be copied, reproduced or modified without written consent from Xtravirt Ltd.

Useful Links
1. Amazon EC2, Tags
2. Terremark Enterprise Cloud, http://www.theenterprisecloud. VMware, cloud, computing, resource, terremark, vcloud, amazon, ec2,
com/ paas, saas, iaas
3. VMware vCloud,
4. Cloud by Wikipedia,
computing © 2009 | 8