2009-09-02

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).

References:

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

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