Components of a Cloud Computing Model

This article provides the architectural overview of a Cloud Computing platform to communicate a brief and clear overview of the target IT system in a Cloud.

At the topmost level, every cloud can be viewed as:

Starting from the lowest level, here’s a brief description of various components:

System Virtualisation infrastructure

This is infrastructure components that provide virtualisation of a specific architecture (H/W or O/S), server, storage and network. This is the base layer that is “virtualised” into the cloud.

All components above this layer are enablers that make the cloud usable.


The installation component installs software on the managed environment.

Process Automation

Automated workloads for installation of software (which in turn, deliver a “service”).


Provision of network resources, software, servers/workloads, storage, etc. This component has pre-packaged workflows for common installation scenarios, delivered in a private cloud.

Authentication and Authorisation

Component which controls access

Virtualisation Management

Provides high-level management tools for dynamic manipulation of the virtualised environment.

Configuration management database

The central repository which stores the underlying configuration (such as software, server, storage and network), as well as access credentials, type of workloads provisioned, available, etc.

The OSS and BSS layer on top of this cloud then provides integration points for Service Providers and Service Consumers


Test Drive the IBM cloud

In this article we will test drive an IBM cloud. First, get your account at IBM Developer Cloud

Apart from the demo video on that page, the bottom of the page has nice stats about the cloud such as:

Sign-up to create an account. Please note there's a delay between your account being created and it actually activated for you to be able to create any instances. To find out if your instance is active, click on the Account page. If you don't see the following "Access" section then you gotta wait (Or, you can browse the "Assets" Panel to see the various "cloud" images available to you, but more on that later):

You can now generate your own key pair. Make sure to save your key.

Go to the "Control Panel" and you will then see a link on the right to create an instance. Click then and well, create your instance selecting the image of your choice:

Once you create a cloud, give it a name, and it will be provisioned for you. As you can see, at the time, your instance will be deleted after 7 days.

After your instance is provisioned you will be able to see that in the "Control Panel" as well as connection details to the instance (such as IP address of the instance, the hostname, the base OS, date of expiration, etc).

At this point, if you want to use Putty, you will have to use PuTTyGen to convert the key to a format that putty understands, enable "Auto-login username" to "idcuser" (the default username for IBM clouds), and import the SSH-2 key to PuTTy and click "Open". In theory, you should be able to connect to your instance, unless the server is under maintenance (as it was in my case).

More to come as the cloud come up :-)

Types Of Cloud (Computing)

The long-held dream of utility computing has arrived and is here to stay, with some of the biggest players in the industry investing significant dollars. IBM has announced a raft of cloud computing services, and so has Amazon.

Fundamentally, all cloud services are derivatives of the following types:

1. Infrastructure as a Service (Iaas) - A typically virtualized platform is delivered as a service. This is where rather than purchasing servers or spaces in data center, you get a service delivery infrastructure delivered a service. Like any other service you have a Service Level Agreement (SLA) with parameters to measure QoS. All other aspects of cloud computing remain - dynamic scaling, multi-tenancy, etc.

2. Software as a Service (SaaS) - The combination of software and hardware is delivered as a service (something tangible and usable), by a provider. This service is hosted on the provider's data center (or in turn, another provider of IaaS). The model can be quite complex where the software application may be licensed by an Application Service Provider with the hardware infrastructure bundled (the ASP model, also called "pay as you go"), or a SaaS provider which licenses the application from a vendor, and bundles it with the hardware (though that's very rare).


Software as a Service - Wikipedia
Truth about SaaS - CIO.com