What is Cloud Computing?

I get asked a lot about cloud computing and a lot of the questions are “what is cloud computing?”. So here is my answer to that question, which I have tried to make as simple as possible.

Cloud Computing:

Data centers that are online for public use of shared resources. Resources such as storage, networking, compute etc. are available on-demand with utility billing.

A data center is a collection of computers on a network that provides computing and storage services. Networking, storage and compute power are generally referred to as resources, which a cloud provider makes available online for anyone to use (rent).

It could be a public cloud or it could be a private cloud. As the names suggest, “public” means the cloud resources are open for anyone to use while “private” means the cloud resources are meant specifically for an entity. A lot of big companies operate a private cloud model or a hybrid cloud model. A hybrid cloud model simply means public cloud resources are linked with private cloud resources.

Cloud providers (Amazon which provides Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google which provides Google Cloud Platform (GCP) [here’s a link to an article I wrote about GCP some time ago], Microsoft which provides Azure) charge on a “pay-as-you-go” basis. Basically this means you only pay for what you use and you do not have to pay in advance for resources.

Get more information about cloud computing here

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