Cloud computing is not necessarily a new technology, but it is one that has become much more popular in the past few years. It is a technology that has been improved upon and more companies are relying on cloud computing for their hardware, software, and storage needs. What is Cloud Computing?
There are several definitions of what exactly cloud computing is. The simplest explanation is that cloud computing is a means of renting computers, storage, and network capacity on an hourly basis from a company that already has these resources in its own data center and can make them available to you and your customers via the Internet (Smith, 2009). Cloud computing comes in three main formats: Infrastructure-as-a-service, platform-as-a-service, and software-as-a-service (SaaS) (Howarth, 2009). Infrastructure-as-a-service provides access to server hardware, storage and bandwidth (2009). Platform-as-a-service provides basic operating software and may also include services such as database access, user interface, message queues, and application servers (2009). The last model is software-as-a-service (SaaS), which provides customers with access to complete software applications that are often integrated with other users to prove greater functionality for the customer (2009). Positive Aspects of Cloud Computing
Prior to cloud computing, there were related services that offered certain or limited services, but not all the services were combined, as they are with cloud computing. Small- and mid-size businesses are signing up for cloud computing, as their goal is to eliminate as much internal IT services as possible (Shacklett, 2011). Cloud computing allows a company to use the services that they see fit for their needs and use as much computing power as them deem necessary on an hourly basis (Smith, 2009). As the demand for internal or external users shrinks or expands, the necessary software, hardware, storage, and network capacity can be added or subtracted as needed...
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