Search

Google Cloud vs AWS- Which is Better: A Comparison

Cloud computing has become an integral part of the IT sector. The days of struggling with complicated networking and on-premise server rooms are long gone. Thanks to cloud computing, services are now secure, reliable, and cost-effective.  When we talk of top cloud computing providers, there are 2 names that are ruling the markets right now- AWS and Google Cloud. Here, we are going to compare both of them, determining the pros and cons of both. Before we start with the comparison, you should have an understanding of the latest trends in the field of cloud computing.  In the sixth annual State of the Cloud Survey of the RightScale, where over 1,000 professionals were interviewed, there were some interesting findings that came out: One of the biggest challenges the cloud computing industry faces is the lack of expertise and resources. Some professionals were worried about the security related to using the services provided by cloud computing.  There were a few professionals who thought that performance was a major challenge they faced while using cloud computing services. The report was published in 2016, and since then significant changes have occurred in the field of cloud computing. Hosting sites at AWS and Google Cloud has become fairly easy. There are multiple WordPress hosting providers allowing you to use the cloud without worrying about the technical aspects of cloud computing. Several large enterprises are investing in their engineers and employees and helping them gain certifications offered by cloud computing platforms: AWS –AWS Solutions Architect, AWS Developer, DevOps Engineer, SysOps Administrators Google Cloud - Cloud Architect, G Suite Administrator, Data Engineer Over the past couple of years, security and performance have significantly improved. This is because cloud computing providers have come up with new ways of securely hosting data and delivering it faster. All the traffic between the data centers is now encrypted by default. When it comes to public cloud adoption, AWS is still the leader. The main reason behind this being that AWS was the first cloud computing service to be launched and has significantly shaped the cloud industry. However, other cloud computing providers like Google Cloud and Azure have seen significant growth too.  Let’s take an in-depth look at these two market leaders in cloud computing to help you select the best one for your organization. Google Cloud Platform With all the different solutions and services provided by the Google Cloud Platform, you will be able to use the same hardware and software infrastructure used by Google for its own products like Gmail and YouTube. Their first service, Google App Engine, was launched in 2008 in public purview. Here are some of their products: Google Compute Engine Google Cloud Bigtable Google Cloud CDN Google Cloud Datastore Google Cloud DNS Google Cloud Functions Google Container Engine Google BigQuery Google Storage According to the Chief Executive Officer of Google, Sundar Pichai, Google Cloud Platform is one of the top three priorities for the company. The annual run rate for the platform is over $8 billion.  Amazon Web Services (AWS) A subsidiary of Amazon.com, this cloud computing service was launched in 2006. Since then, it has offered multiple solutions and services. Here are a few of their products: Amazon CloudFront Amazon DynamoDB Amazon EC2 Container Service Amazon Elastic Beanstalk Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud Amazon Lambda Amazon Redshift Amazon Route 53 Amazon S3 There are some big brands that are using the service provided by the AWS Cloud including Netflix, Nasa, Lamborghini, Time Inc., Airbnb, Expedia, etc. Comparisions Between Google Cloud vs AWS There are many services that are similar between Google Cloud and AWS. With so many products offered by both, we can’t compare them product wise. Instead, we will be covering them according to their compute instances, storage, networking, and billing features. 1. Cloud Let’s compare how both the providers handle their instances i.e., their virtual machines. For virtual machines, Google cloud uses KVM while AWS EC2 uses Xen. Both the technologies offer predefined configurations with a specified amount of network, RAM, and virtual CPU. However, Amazon EC2 refers to them as instance types while Google Compute Engine refers to them as machine types. With AWS EC2, you can equip up to 3,904 GB of RAM and 128 vCPUs. For Google Compute Engine instances, you can equip 3,844 GB of RAM and 160 vCPUs. Google Cloud also allows departing from the predefined configuration and customizing your RAM and CPU resources for fitting your workload. There are other types including AWS EC2 Spot Instances and Google Cloud Preemptible VMs. 2. StorageThis is a very important consideration as it will directly impact the performance of your applications like max IOP per instance/volume, expected throughput (IO), and the ability of bursting capacity for short times. When comparing AWS and Google, there are two types of primary storage that need to be considered: object storage and block storage. Block storage is the virtual disk volume that is used in conjunction with cloud-based virtual machines. AWS EC2 provides this with its Elastic Block Store (EBS) while Google Compute engine uses persistent disks. Object Storage, also known as distributed object storage, are hosted services used to store and access a large number of blobs or binary data. Google Compute Engine uses Google Cloud Storage to provide this service while AWS uses the S3 service for this. Apart from the above-mentioned, both the providers also allow the usage of disks locally attached to the physical machine that is used to run the instance. When compared to persistent disks, this local storage provides very low latency, very high input/output operations per second, and superior performance. You can even achieve several GBs of read and write speeds with this storage, which is incredibly huge. AWS EC2 calls them instance store volumes while Google Cloud refers to them as local SSDs. Google Cloud allows attaching local SSDs to any type of instance. In the case of AWS, only the X1, R3, M3, I3, I2, HI1, G2, F1, and C3 can support instance store volumes. In 2017, Google Cloud announced a price cut on local SSDs for preemptable and on-demand instances. 3. NetworkBoth the providers use different partners and networks for interconnecting their data centers and delivering content to end users via ISPs. For accomplishing this, different products are used. When it comes to Google Compute Engine instances, the achievable network capacity is based on your VM’s CPUs quantity. For peak performance, every core is provided with a 2 Gbits/second cap. Every core increases the network capabilities to a maximum of 16 Gbps for every virtual machine. Amazon EC2 instances, for the large instance sizes, have a maximum bandwidth of 25 Gbps. 10 Gbps/second is the maximum speed for standard instances. When you are comparing the network capabilities of both the providers, network latency plays a major part. When you are working with the business with visitors from a particular geographic location, latency is important. For example, if you have a website in Frankfurt and more than 90% of your customers are from Germany, you will benefit from placing the site on a server in Germany rather than placing it in Asia or the United States. This can make a difference of about 2 seconds. It includes other factors as well like TTFB, DNS, etc. Both, the AWS and Google Cloud, have multiple locations across the globe for you to choose from. On a latency test conducted using Cloud Harmony that offers impartial, reliable, and objective analysis of the performance, 50 servers located around the globe were utilized. The results showed that Google Cloud offered better latency. But the test was run from a specific location. Different location can give different results. For measuring ping times and latency, you can try spinning up small instances on both the providers and running your own tests. 4. BillingBoth providers have a different approach for billing. Both of them also have a very complicated way of doing it. You can try checking out their monthly calculators: Google Cloud Platform Pricing Calculator AWS Simple Monthly Calculator Calculating this monthly amount is not an easy task. There are tools like Cloudability and reOptimize that are built entirely for helping you better understand your bills. Google Cloud Platform uses its BigQuery tool for providing estimated exports. AWS has a dashboard providing insights to your bill. However, both of the cloud platforms are working their best to reduce costs and making billing easier. In September 2017, AWS announced per second billing. This works great for clients who are working on spinning up new instances and carry out a large amount of work in a short duration. After this, Google Cloud also launched the per second billing. This just shows the intense competition between the two where they are simultaneously launching new products. If you are seriously invested in one of the platforms, they will provide you with various ways to save costs. Reserved Instances is one such way by which AWS EC2 offers a significant discount and when used in a particular availability zone, provides a capacity reservation. There are 3 types of reserved instances: Standard Reserved Instances Scheduled Reserved Instances Convertible Reserved Instances Google Cloud uses Committed Use Discounts to all the customers of Compute Engine. So basically, in return for discounted prices, you have to buy the committed use contracts. After analysis, it was found that on using the 1 year standard RI of AWS vs the 1 year committed use discount of Google, the Google’s environment cost 28 percent less than AWS. The 3 year program for both the discount types led to 35 percent less cost in Google environment as opposed to the AWS. 5. Support and UptimeBoth, the AWS and Google Cloud, have multiple community forums and documentation that can help you understand their services for free. AWS Forums Google Cloud Forums AWS Documentation Google Cloud Documentation However, you will have to pay for instant support or assistance. Both of them have support plans. We strongly recommend that you read the fees involved in both before availing of the assistance services. Both of them offer unlimited number of billing and account support cases without any long-term contracts. For Google, there are 3 levels of support available - Silver, Gold, and Platinum. The cheapest plan is the Silver one starting at $150/month. The Gold plan starts at $400/month. You will also be charged a product usage fee of minimum 9% which will decrease as your spend increases. AWS provides 4 levels of support - Basic, Developer, Business, and Enterprise. The cheapest paid plan is the developer starting at $29 per month of 3% of your monthly usage. The Business plan starts at $100 per month along with 10% of product usage fees which will also decrease as the spend increases. When it comes to monthly uptime percentage, both have SLAs providing at least 99.95%. For staying up to date with the incidents, you need to subscribe to their status page. However, both the providers have delayed updating their status dashboards. With AWS, you have the advantage of having different machines within multiple availability zones per region. On the Google Cloud, the same machine per region might have all your instances. However, with Google Cloud you have the ability of live migrating the virtual machines which allow addressing issues like patching, updating and repairing without worrying about the machine reboots. 6. SecurityIn the Clutch’s Second Annual Cloud Computing Survey, it was found that about 70% of professionals felt secure storing their data in the cloud than on their previous, on-premises legacy systems. With Google Cloud Security, you get the benefit of a security model that has been developing over a period of 15 years and is securing products like Gmail, Search, etc. There are about 500 full-time security professionals employed by Google. It provides security features like: All the data in the cloud platform services and in transit between Google, data centers, and the customers is encrypted by default. 256-bit AES is used for encrypting the data stored on persistent disks. A set of regularly changed master keys are used for encrypting the encryption key. Regular audits are used to commit to the security certifications of the enterprise for PCI, SSAE16, ISO 27018, ISO 27017, and HIPAA compliance. Thanks to Google’s relationship with the biggest ISPs in the world, there are fewer hops across the public internet which improves data security. The layers of the storage stack and Google application require that all requests coming from other components must be authorized and authenticated. Google Cloud’s Identity and Access Management uses predefined roles for giving granular access to the specific resources of the Google Cloud Platform. This helps in preventing unwanted access. AWS platform also has a security model with the following features: All the data in transit between the AWS, data centers and the customers is encrypted. 256-bit AES is used for encrypting the data stores on EC2 instances. All the encryption keys are encrypted using regularly changed master keys. It allows creating private networks and controlling access to the applications and instances through AWS WAF’s web application firewall capabilities and Amazon VPC’s network firewalls. AWS Key Management Service allows selecting whether you or AWS will be managing the encryption keys and controlling them. Using AWS CloudHSM, you get hardware-based cryptographic key storage that satisfies all the compliance requirements. You can define, enforce, and manage user access policies using AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM), AWS Directory Services, and AWS Multi-Factor Authentication. It has service features like SOC, PCI, HIPAA, ISO and other compliance standards that are audit-friendly. From the above it is clear that both cloud computing providers have their pros and cons. Google Cloud has seen rapid global expansion over the past few years. It is also the one to go for if you favour speed and affordable pricing. AWS has been a long-standing name in the history of cloud computing. AWS started it all and is still being copied by other major players in the market. AWS redundancy, support and availability per region have helped it stay at the top. Rest assured, the constant battle between both the cloud providers will result in increased performance, more services and products, and lower prices benefitting hosting partners and customers. You can try the AWS Certification course  for learning about all the services offered by AWS. 

Google Cloud vs AWS- Which is Better: A Comparison

7K
  • by Joydip Kumar
  • 14th Oct, 2019
  • Last updated on 11th Mar, 2021
  • 8 mins read
Google Cloud vs AWS- Which is Better: A Comparison

Cloud computing has become an integral part of the IT sector. The days of struggling with complicated networking and on-premise server rooms are long gone. Thanks to cloud computing, services are now secure, reliable, and cost-effective.  

When we talk of top cloud computing providers, there are 2 names that are ruling the markets right now- AWS and Google Cloud. Here, we are going to compare both of them, determining the pros and cons of both. Before we start with the comparison, you should have an understanding of the latest trends in the field of cloud computing.  

In the sixth annual State of the Cloud Survey of the RightScale, where over 1,000 professionals were interviewed, there were some interesting findings that came out: 

  • One of the biggest challenges the cloud computing industry faces is the lack of expertise and resources. 
  • Some professionals were worried about the security related to using the services provided by cloud computing.  
  • There were a few professionals who thought that performance was a major challenge they faced while using cloud computing services. 

The report was published in 2016, and since then significant changes have occurred in the field of cloud computing. Hosting sites at AWS and Google Cloud has become fairly easy. There are multiple WordPress hosting providers allowing you to use the cloud without worrying about the technical aspects of cloud computing. Several large enterprises are investing in their engineers and employees and helping them gain certifications offered by cloud computing platforms: 

Over the past couple of years, security and performance have significantly improved. This is because cloud computing providers have come up with new ways of securely hosting data and delivering it faster. All the traffic between the data centers is now encrypted by default. 

When it comes to public cloud adoption, AWS is still the leader. The main reason behind this being that AWS was the first cloud computing service to be launched and has significantly shaped the cloud industry. However, other cloud computing providers like Google Cloud and Azure have seen significant growth too.  

Let’s take an in-depth look at these two market leaders in cloud computing to help you select the best one for your organization. 

Google Cloud Platform Google Cloud Platform

With all the different solutions and services provided by the Google Cloud Platform, you will be able to use the same hardware and software infrastructure used by Google for its own products like Gmail and YouTube. Their first service, Google App Engine, was launched in 2008 in public purview. Here are some of their products: 

  • Google Compute Engine 
  • Google Cloud Bigtable 
  • Google Cloud CDN 
  • Google Cloud Datastore 
  • Google Cloud DNS 
  • Google Cloud Functions 
  • Google Container Engine 
  • Google BigQuery 
  • Google Storage 

According to the Chief Executive Officer of Google, Sundar Pichai, Google Cloud Platform is one of the top three priorities for the company. The annual run rate for the platform is over $8 billion.  

Amazon Web Services (AWS) 

A subsidiary of Amazon.com, this cloud computing service was launched in 2006. Since then, it has offered multiple solutions and services. Here are a few of their products: 

  • Amazon CloudFront 
  • Amazon DynamoDB 
  • Amazon EC2 Container Service 
  • Amazon Elastic Beanstalk 
  • Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud 
  • Amazon Lambda 
  • Amazon Redshift 
  • Amazon Route 53 
  • Amazon S3 

There are some big brands that are using the service provided by the AWS Cloud including Netflix, Nasa, Lamborghini, Time Inc., Airbnb, Expedia, etc. 

Comparisions Between Google Cloud vs AWS 

There are many services that are similar between Google Cloud and AWS. With so many products offered by both, we can’t compare them product wise. Instead, we will be covering them according to their compute instances, storage, networking, and billing features. 

1. Cloud 

Let’s compare how both the providers handle their instances i.e., their virtual machines. For virtual machines, Google cloud uses KVM while AWS EC2 uses Xen. Both the technologies offer predefined configurations with a specified amount of network, RAM, and virtual CPU. However, Amazon EC2 refers to them as instance types while Google Compute Engine refers to them as machine types. 

With AWS EC2, you can equip up to 3,904 GB of RAM and 128 vCPUs. For Google Compute Engine instances, you can equip 3,844 GB of RAM and 160 vCPUs. Google Cloud also allows departing from the predefined configuration and customizing your RAM and CPU resources for fitting your workload. There are other types including AWS EC2 Spot Instances and Google Cloud Preemptible VMs. 

2. Storage

This is a very important consideration as it will directly impact the performance of your applications like max IOP per instance/volume, expected throughput (IO), and the ability of bursting capacity for short times. When comparing AWS and Google, there are two types of primary storage that need to be considered: object storage and block storage. 

Block storage is the virtual disk volume that is used in conjunction with cloud-based virtual machines. AWS EC2 provides this with its Elastic Block Store (EBS) while Google Compute engine uses persistent disks. 

Object Storage, also known as distributed object storage, are hosted services used to store and access a large number of blobs or binary data. Google Compute Engine uses Google Cloud Storage to provide this service while AWS uses the S3 service for this. 

Apart from the above-mentioned, both the providers also allow the usage of disks locally attached to the physical machine that is used to run the instance. When compared to persistent disks, this local storage provides very low latency, very high input/output operations per second, and superior performance. You can even achieve several GBs of read and write speeds with this storage, which is incredibly huge. AWS EC2 calls them instance store volumes while Google Cloud refers to them as local SSDs. Google Cloud allows attaching local SSDs to any type of instance. In the case of AWS, only the X1, R3, M3, I3, I2, HI1, G2, F1, and C3 can support instance store volumes. In 2017, Google Cloud announced a price cut on local SSDs for preemptable and on-demand instances. 

3. Network

Both the providers use different partners and networks for interconnecting their data centers and delivering content to end users via ISPs. For accomplishing this, different products are used. 

When it comes to Google Compute Engine instances, the achievable network capacity is based on your VM’s CPUs quantity. For peak performance, every core is provided with a 2 Gbits/second cap. Every core increases the network capabilities to a maximum of 16 Gbps for every virtual machine. 

Amazon EC2 instances, for the large instance sizes, have a maximum bandwidth of 25 Gbps. 10 Gbps/second is the maximum speed for standard instances. 

When you are comparing the network capabilities of both the providers, network latency plays a major part. When you are working with the business with visitors from a particular geographic location, latency is important. For example, if you have a website in Frankfurt and more than 90% of your customers are from Germany, you will benefit from placing the site on a server in Germany rather than placing it in Asia or the United States. This can make a difference of about 2 seconds. It includes other factors as well like TTFB, DNS, etc. Both, the AWS and Google Cloud, have multiple locations across the globe for you to choose from. 

On a latency test conducted using Cloud Harmony that offers impartial, reliable, and objective analysis of the performance, 50 servers located around the globe were utilized. The results showed that Google Cloud offered better latency. But the test was run from a specific location. Different location can give different results. For measuring ping times and latency, you can try spinning up small instances on both the providers and running your own tests. 

4. Billing

Both providers have a different approach for billing. Both of them also have a very complicated way of doing it. You can try checking out their monthly calculators: 

Calculating this monthly amount is not an easy task. There are tools like Cloudability and reOptimize that are built entirely for helping you better understand your bills. Google Cloud Platform uses its BigQuery tool for providing estimated exports. AWS has a dashboard providing insights to your bill. However, both of the cloud platforms are working their best to reduce costs and making billing easier. 

In September 2017, AWS announced per second billing. This works great for clients who are working on spinning up new instances and carry out a large amount of work in a short duration. After this, Google Cloud also launched the per second billing. This just shows the intense competition between the two where they are simultaneously launching new products. 

If you are seriously invested in one of the platforms, they will provide you with various ways to save costs. Reserved Instances is one such way by which AWS EC2 offers a significant discount and when used in a particular availability zone, provides a capacity reservation. There are 3 types of reserved instances: 

  • Standard Reserved Instances 
  • Scheduled Reserved Instances 
  • Convertible Reserved Instances 

Google Cloud uses Committed Use Discounts to all the customers of Compute Engine. So basically, in return for discounted prices, you have to buy the committed use contracts. After analysis, it was found that on using the 1 year standard RI of AWS vs the 1 year committed use discount of Google, the Google’s environment cost 28 percent less than AWS. The 3 year program for both the discount types led to 35 percent less cost in Google environment as opposed to the AWS. 

5. Support and Uptime

Both, the AWS and Google Cloud, have multiple community forums and documentation that can help you understand their services for free. 

However, you will have to pay for instant support or assistance. Both of them have support plans. We strongly recommend that you read the fees involved in both before availing of the assistance services. Both of them offer unlimited number of billing and account support cases without any long-term contracts. 

For Google, there are 3 levels of support available - Silver, Gold, and Platinum. The cheapest plan is the Silver one starting at $150/month. The Gold plan starts at $400/month. You will also be charged a product usage fee of minimum 9% which will decrease as your spend increases. 

AWS provides 4 levels of support - Basic, Developer, Business, and Enterprise. The cheapest paid plan is the developer starting at $29 per month of 3% of your monthly usage. The Business plan starts at $100 per month along with 10% of product usage fees which will also decrease as the spend increases. 

When it comes to monthly uptime percentage, both have SLAs providing at least 99.95%. For staying up to date with the incidents, you need to subscribe to their status page. However, both the providers have delayed updating their status dashboards. 

With AWS, you have the advantage of having different machines within multiple availability zones per region. On the Google Cloud, the same machine per region might have all your instances. However, with Google Cloud you have the ability of live migrating the virtual machines which allow addressing issues like patching, updating and repairing without worrying about the machine reboots. 

6. Security

In the Clutch’s Second Annual Cloud Computing Survey, it was found that about 70% of professionals felt secure storing their data in the cloud than on their previous, on-premises legacy systems. 

With Google Cloud Security, you get the benefit of a security model that has been developing over a period of 15 years and is securing products like Gmail, Search, etc. There are about 500 full-time security professionals employed by Google. It provides security features like: 

  • All the data in the cloud platform services and in transit between Google, data centers, and the customers is encrypted by default. 256-bit AES is used for encrypting the data stored on persistent disks. A set of regularly changed master keys are used for encrypting the encryption key. 
  • Regular audits are used to commit to the security certifications of the enterprise for PCI, SSAE16, ISO 27018, ISO 27017, and HIPAA compliance. 
  • Thanks to Google’s relationship with the biggest ISPs in the world, there are fewer hops across the public internet which improves data security. 
  • The layers of the storage stack and Google application require that all requests coming from other components must be authorized and authenticated. 
  • Google Cloud’s Identity and Access Management uses predefined roles for giving granular access to the specific resources of the Google Cloud Platform. This helps in preventing unwanted access. 

AWS platform also has a security model with the following features: 

  • All the data in transit between the AWS, data centers and the customers is encrypted. 256-bit AES is used for encrypting the data stores on EC2 instances. All the encryption keys are encrypted using regularly changed master keys. 
  • It allows creating private networks and controlling access to the applications and instances through AWS WAF’s web application firewall capabilities and Amazon VPC’s network firewalls. 
  • AWS Key Management Service allows selecting whether you or AWS will be managing the encryption keys and controlling them. 
  • Using AWS CloudHSM, you get hardware-based cryptographic key storage that satisfies all the compliance requirements. 
  • You can define, enforce, and manage user access policies using AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM), AWS Directory Services, and AWS Multi-Factor Authentication. 
  • It has service features like SOC, PCI, HIPAA, ISO and other compliance standards that are audit-friendly. 

From the above it is clear that both cloud computing providers have their pros and cons. Google Cloud has seen rapid global expansion over the past few years. It is also the one to go for if you favour speed and affordable pricing. AWS has been a long-standing name in the history of cloud computing. AWS started it all and is still being copied by other major players in the market. AWS redundancy, support and availability per region have helped it stay at the top. Rest assured, the constant battle between both the cloud providers will result in increased performance, more services and products, and lower prices benefitting hosting partners and customers. You can try the AWS Certification course  for learning about all the services offered by AWS. 

Joydip

Joydip Kumar

Solution Architect

Joydip is passionate about building cloud-based applications and has been providing solutions to various multinational clients. Being a java programmer and an AWS certified cloud architect, he loves to design, develop, and integrate solutions. Amidst his busy work schedule, Joydip loves to spend time on writing blogs and contributing to the opensource community.


Website : https://geeks18.com/

Join the Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Suggested Blogs

A Glimpse Of The Major Leading SAFe® Versions

A Quick view of SAFe® Agile has gained popularity in recent years, and with good reason. Teams love this approach that allows them to get a value to the customer faster while learning and adjusting to change as needed. But teams often don’t work in isolation. Many teams work in the context of larger organizations.  Often Agile doesn’t fit their needs. Some teams need an Agile approach that scales to larger projects that involve multiple teams.   It’s possible to do this. That’s where the Scaled Agile Framework, or SAFe®, can help.Why SAFe® is the best scalable framework?The Scaled Agile Framework is a structured Agile approach for large enterprises. It’s prescriptive and provides a path for interdependent teams to gain the benefits of using an Agile approach.Scaled Agile provides guidance not only at the team level but also at the Program and Portfolio levels. It also has built-in coordinated planning across related teams who are working in Release Trains.These planning increments allow teams to plan together to work with customers and release value frequently in a way that’s sustainable to teams.And it supports continuous improvement.It’s a great way for large companies to maintain structure and roll out Agile at a large scale.  What is SAFe® 4.5? Scaled Agile, otherwise known as SAFe®, was initially released in 2011 by Dean Leffingwell as a knowledge base for enterprises to adopt Agile. Over the years it has grown and evolved. SAFe® 4.5 was released on June 22, 2017, to accommodate improvements to the framework. Following are some of the key improvements in SAFe® 4.5:Essential SAFe® and ConfigurabilityInnovation with Lean Startup and Lean UXScalable DevOps and Continuous DeliveryImplementation roadmapBenefits of SAFe® 4.5 to companies:Organizations who adopt SAFe® 4.5 will be able to gain the following benefits:1) Test ideas more quickly. SAFe® 4.5 has a build-in iterative development and testing. This lets teams get faster feedback to learn and adjust more quickly.2) Deliver much faster. The changes to SAFe® 4.5 allow teams to move complex work through the pipeline and deliver value to the customer faster.3) Simplify governance and improve portfolio performance. Guidance and support have been added at the Portfolio level to guide organizations in addressing Portfolio-level concerns in a scaled agile context. SAFe® 4.5 - Key areas of improvements:A. Essential SAFe® and ConfigurabilityFour configurations of SAFe® that provide a more configurable and scalable approach:Essential SAFe®: The most basic level that teams can use. It contains just the essentials that a team needs to get the benefits of SAFe®.Portfolio SAFe®: For enterprises that implement multiple solutions that have portfolio responsibilities such as governance, strategy, and portfolio funding.Large Solution: Complex solutions that involve multiple Agile Release Trains. These initiatives don’t require Portfolio concerns, but only include the Large Solution and Essential SAFe® elements.  SAFe® Full SAFe®: The most comprehensive level that can be applied to huge enterprise initiatives requiring hundreds of people to complete.Because SAFe® is a framework, that provides the flexibility to choose the level of SAFe® that best fits your organization’s needs.B. Innovation with Lean Startup and Lean UXRather than creating an entire project plan up-front, SAFe® teams focus on features. They create a hypothesis about what a new feature will deliver and then use an iterative approach to develop and test their hypothesis along the way. As teams move forward through development, they perform this development and test approach repeatedly and adjust as needed, based on feedback. Teams also work closely with end users to identify the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) to focus on first. They identify what will be most valuable to the customer most immediately. Then they rely on feedback and learning as they develop the solution incrementally. They adjust as needed to incorporate what they’ve learned into the features. This collaboration and fast feedback and adjustment cycle result in a more successful product.  C. Scalable DevOps & Continuous DeliveryThe addition of a greater focus on DevOps allows teams to innovate faster. Like Agile, DevOps is a mindset. And like Agile, it allows teams to learn, adjust, and deliver value to users incrementally. The continuous delivery pipeline allows teams to move value through the pipeline faster through continuous exploration, continuous integration, continuous deployment, and released on demand. DevOps breaks down silos and supports Agile teams to work together more seamlessly. This results in more efficient delivery of value to the end users faster. It’s a perfect complement to Scaled Agile.D. Implementation RoadmapSAFe® now offers a suggested roadmap to SAFe® adoption. While change can be challenging, the implementation roadmap provides guidance that can help with that organizational change.Critical Role of the SAFe® Program ConsultantSAFe® Program Consultants, or SPCs, are critical change agents in the transition to Scaled Agile.Because of the depth of knowledge required to gain SPC certification, they’re perfectly positioned to help the organization move through challenges of change.They can train and coach all levels of SAFe® participants, from team members to executive leaders. They can also train the Scrum Master, Product Owners, and Agile Release Train Engineers, which are critical roles in SAFe®.The SPC can also train teams and help them launch their Agile Release Trains (ARTs).And they can support teams on the path to continued improvement as they continue to learn and grow.The SPC can also help identify value streams in the organization that may be ready to launch Agile Release Trains.The can also help develop rollout plans for SAFe® in the enterprise.Along with this, they can provide important communications that help the enterprise understand the drivers and value behind the SAFe® transition.       How SAFe® 4.5 is backward compatible with SAFe® 4.0?Even if your organization has already adopted SAFe® 4.0, SAFe® 4.5 has been developed in a way that can be easily adopted without disruption. Your organization can adopt the changes at the pace that works best.Few Updates in the new courseware The courseware for SAFe® 4.5 has incorporated changes to support the changes in SAFe® 4.5.They include Implementing SAFe®, Leading SAFe®, and SAFe® for Teams.Some of the changes you’ll see are as follows:Two new lessons for Leading SAFe®Student workbookTrainer GuideNew look and feelUpdated LPM contentSmoother lesson flowNEW Course Delivery Enablement (CDE) Changes were made to improve alignment between SAFe® and Scrum:Iteration Review: Increments previously known as Sprints now have reviews added. This allows more opportunities for teams to incorporate improvements. Additionally, a Team Demo has been added in each iteration review. This provides more opportunity for transparency, sharing, and feedback.Development Team: The Development team was specifically identified at the team level in SAFe® 4.5. The development team is made up of three to nine people who can move an element of work from development through the test. This development team contains software developers, testers, and engineers, and does not include the Product Owner and Scrum Master. Each of those roles is shown separately at the team level in SAFe® 4.5.Scrum events: The list of scrum events are shown next to the ScrumXP icon and include Plan, Execute, Review, and Retro (for a retrospective.)Combined SAFe® Foundation Elements SAFe® 4.0 had the foundational elements of Core Values, Lean-Agile Mindset, SAFe® Principles, and Implementing SAFe® at a basic level.SAFe® 4.5 adds to the foundation elements by also including Lean-Agile Leaders, the Implementation Roadmap, and the support of the SPC in the successful implementation of SAFe®.Additional changes include: Communities of Practice: This was moved to the spanning palette to show support at all levels: team, program, large solution, and portfolio.Lean-Agile Leaders: This role is now included in the foundational level. Supportive leadership is critical to a successful SAFe® adoption.SAFe® Program Consultant: This role was added to the Foundational Layer. The SPC can play a key leadership role in a successful transition to Scaled Agile.Implementation Roadmap: The implementation roadmap replaces the basic implementation information in SAFe® 4.0. It provides more in-depth information on the elements to a successful enterprise transition to SAFe®.Benefits of upgrading to SAFe® 4.5With the addition of Lean Startup approaches, along with a deeper focus on DevOps and Continuous Delivery, teams will be situated to deliver quality and value to users more quickly.With improvements at the Portfolio level, teams get more guidance on Portfolio governance and other portfolio levels concerns, such as budgeting and compliance.  Reasons to Upgrade to SAFe® 4.5 Enterprises who’ve been using SAFe® 4.0 will find greater flexibility with the added levels in SAFe® 4.5. Smaller groups in the enterprise can use the team level, while groups working on more complex initiatives can create Agile Release Trains with many teams.Your teams can innovate faster by using the Lean Startup Approach. Work with end users to identify the Minimum Viable Product (MVP), then iterate as you get fast feedback and adjust. This also makes your customer more of a partner in development, resulting in better collaboration and a better end product.Get features and value to your user community faster with DevOps and the Continuous Delivery pipeline. Your teams can continuously hypothesize, build, measure, and learn to continuously release value. This also allows large organizations to innovate more quickly.Most Recent Changes in SAFe® series - SAFe® 4.6Because Scaled Agile continues to improve, new changes have been incorporated with SAFe® 4.6. with the addition of five core competencies that enable enterprises to respond to technology and market changes.Lean Portfolio Management: The information needed for how to use a Lean-Agile approach to portfolio strategy, funding, and governance.Business Solutions and Lean Systems: Optimizing activities to Implement large, complex initiatives using a Scaled Agile approach while still addressing the necessary activities such as designing, testing, deployment, and even retiring old solutions.DevOps and Release on Demand: The skills needed to release value as needed through a continuous delivery pipeline.Team and Technical Agility: The skills needed to establish successful teams who consistently deliver value and quality to meet customer needs.Lean-Agile Leadership: How leadership enables a successful agile transformation by supporting empowered teams in implementing agile practices. Leaders carry out the Agile principles and practices and ensure teams have the support they need to succeedSAFe® Agilist (SA) Certification exam: The SAFe® Agilist certification is for the change leaders in an organization to learn about the SAFe® practices to support change at all levels: team, program, and portfolio levels. These change agents can play a positive role in an enterprise transition to SAFe®.In order to become certified as a SAFe® Agilist (SA), you must first take the Leading SAFe® class and pass the SAFe® certification exam. To learn more about this, see this article on How To Pass Leading SAFe® 4.5 Exam.SAFe® Certification Exam: KnowledgeHut provides Leading SAFe® training in multiple locations. Check the site for locations and dates.SAFe® Agile Certification Cost: Check KnowledgeHut’s scheduled training offerings to see the course cost. Each course includes the opportunity to sit for the exam included in the cost.Scaled Agile Framework Certification Cost: There are multiple levels of SAFe® certification, including Scrum Master, Release Train Engineer, and Product Owner. Courses range in cost, but each includes the chance to sit for the corresponding SAFe® certification.SAFe® Classes: SAFe® classes are offered by various organizations. To see if KnowledgeHut is offering SAFe® Training near you, check the SAFe® training schedule on our website.TrainingKnowledgeHut provides multiple Scaled Agile courses to give both leaders and team members in your organization the information they need to for a successful transition to Scaled Agile. Check the site for the list of classes to find those that are right for your organization as you make the journey.All course fees cover examination costs for certification.SAFe® 4.5 Scrum Master with SSM Certification TrainingLearn the core competencies of implementing Agile across the enterprise, along with how to lead high-performing teams to deliver successful solutions. You’ll also learn how to implement DevOps practices. Completion of this course will prepare you for obtaining your SAFe® 4 Scrum Master certificate.SAFe® 4 Advanced Scrum Master (SASM)This two-day course teaches you to how to apply Scrum at the enterprise level and prepares you to lead high-performing teams in a Scaled Agile environment. At course completion, you’ll be prepared to manage interactions not only on your team but also across teams and with stakeholders. You’ll also be prepared to take the SAFe® Advanced Scrum Master exam.Leading SAFe®4.5 Training Course (SA)This two-day Leading SAFe® class prepares you to become a Certified SAFe® 4 Agilist, ready to lead the agile transformation in your enterprise.  By the end of this course, you’ll be able to take the SAFe® Agilist (SA) certification exam.SAFe® 4.5 for Teams (SP) This two-day course teaches Scrum fundamentals, principles tools, and processes. You’ll learn about software engineering practices needed to scale agile and deliver quality solutions in a Scaled Agile environment. Teams new to Scaled Agile will find value in going through this course. Attending the class prepares you for the certification exam to become a certified SAFe® 4 Practitioner (SP). DevOps Foundation Certification trainingThis course teaches you the DevOps framework, along with the practices to prepare you to apply the principles in your work environment. Completion of this course will prepare you also to take the DevOps Foundation exam for certification.
5174
A Glimpse Of The Major Leading SAFe® Versions

A Quick view of SAFe® Agile has gained popularit... Read More

How Start Ups Can Benefit From Cloud Computing?

From nebulous beginnings, the cloud has grown to a platform that has gained universal acceptance and is transforming businesses across industries. Companies that have adopted cloud technology have seen significant payoffs, with cloud based tools redefining their data storage, data sharing, marketing and project management capabilities. The easy availability of affordable cloud infrastructure has made it so easy to set up new businesses that the economy is all set for a start up boom which has its head, so to speak, in the cloud! With the advent of this new technology, complete newbie’s in the market are able to hold their own against established market players—by achieving an amazing quantum of work using skeleton manpower resources. Recently, a popular ad doing the rounds on TV showed a long haired youth conducting business from a cafe on his HP Pavilion laptop, where he is ridiculed by some well heeled middle aged businessmen on their coffee break. Back at their office, they find that this youngster is the new investor that their boss has been heaping accolades on. “Where’s your office?” one of them asks the young man…to be laughingly told that he carries his entire office in his laptop! And that, typically, is how the new-age start up business looks. We have heard many stories of how a clever idea has turned a tidy profit for a smart entrepreneur working out of his laptop. While cloud computing is pushing the boundaries of science and innovation into a new realm, it is also laying the foundation for a new wave of business start ups. New ventures in general suffer from a lack of infrastructure, manpower and funding…and all these three concerns are categorically addressed by the cloud. Moving to the cloud minimizes the need of huge capital investments to set up expensive infrastructure. For nascent entrepreneurs, physical hardware and server costs used to be formidable given the limited budgets at their disposal. Seed money was also required to hire office space, promote the business and hire workers. Today, thanks to cloud technology, getting a new business off the ground and running costs virtually nothing. Most of the resources and tools that new ventures need are available on the cloud at minimal costs, in fact quite often at zero costs, making this a powerful value proposition for small businesses. A cloud hosting provider such as AWS can enable you to go live immediately, and will even scale up to your requirement once your business expands. Small businesses can think and dream big with the cloud. When it comes to manpower resources, it takes just a handful of people to work wonders using the online resources that are at their disposal. If you have a brilliant idea and have a workable plan for execution, you can comfortably compete neck to neck with market leaders. The messaging sensation WhatsApp was started in 2009 by just two former Yahoo employees who leveraged the power of the internet – and this goes to show that clever use of technology can completely eliminate the need for a sizeable manpower pool. Start ups have always been more agile than their large scale counterparts, and the cloud helps them take this a step further. Resources can be scaled up or down in no time, whereas in traditional environments it would have taken many days, considerable planning and funds to add hardware and software. Cloud computing also helps improve collaboration across teams, often across geographies. Data sharing is instantaneous, and teams can work on a task together in real time regardless of their location. Powered by the cloud, small businesses operate with shoestring budgets and key players in different continents. All their accounting, client data, marketing and other business critical files can be stored online and are accessible from anywhere. These online tools can be accessed and utilised instantly, and underpin all the crucial processes on which these businesses thrive. Strategic financial decisions are made after garnering insights from cloud-based accounting software. E-invoicing helps settle bills in a fraction of the time of traditional billing systems, and client queries are answered quickly through cloud-based management systems—saving precious time and increasing customer satisfaction levels to an all-time high. Whether at home, on vacation or on the phone, businesses can oversee sales, replenish products and plan new sales strategies. That’s a whole new way of doing business, and seems to be very successful! An estimate by Cloudworks has put the anticipated cloud computing market at over $200 billion by the year 2018. As Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn, succinctly put it, the cloud “makes it easier and cheaper than ever for anyone anywhere to be an entrepreneur and to have access to all the best infrastructure of innovation.” With cloud technology rapidly levelling the playing field between nascent and established businesses, it is anybody’s guess as to just how many new start ups will burst into the scene in the next few years. Hoping that the blog has helped you gain a clear understanding of the importance of Cloud Computing.  To gain more knowledge on what cloud computing has to offer, take a look at other blogs as well as the AWS certifications that we have to offer or enrol yourself for the AWS Certification Training course by KnowledgeHut.  
How Start Ups Can Benefit From Cloud Computing?

From nebulous beginnings, the cloud has grown to a... Read More

Business Transformation through Enterprise Cloud Computing

The Cloud Best Practices Network is an industry solutions groups and best practices catalogue of how-to information for Cloud Computing. While we cover all aspects of the technology our primary goal is to explain the enabling relationship between this new IT trend and business transformation, where our materials include: Core Competencies – The mix of new skills and technologies required to successfully implement new Cloud-based IT applications. Reference Documents – The core articles that define what Cloud Computing is and what the best practices are for implementation, predominately referring to the NIST schedule of information. Case studies – Best practices derived from analysis of pioneer adopters, such as the State of Michigan and their ‘MiCloud‘ framework . Read this article ‘Make MiCloud Your Cloud‘ as an introduction to the Cloud & business transformation capability. e-Guides – These package up collections of best practice resources directed towards a particular topic or industry. For example our GovCloud.info site specializes in Cloud Computing for the public sector. White papers – Educational documents from vendors and other experts, such as the IT Value mapping paper from VMware. Core competencies The mix of new skills and technologies required to successfully implement new Cloud-based IT applications, and also the new capabilities that these platforms make possible: Virtualization Cloud Identity and Security – Cloud Privacy Cloud 2.0 Cloud Configuration Management Cloud Migration Management DevOps Cloud BCP ITaaS Procurement Cloud Identity and Security Cloud Identity and Security best practices (CloudIDSec) provides a comprehensive framework for ensuring the safe and compliant use of Cloud systems. This is achieved through combining a focus on the core references for Cloud Security, the Cloud Security Alliance, with those of Cloud Identity best practices: IDaaS – Identity Management 2.0 Federated Identity Ecosystems Cloud Privacy A common critcal focus area for Cloud computing is data privacy, particularly with regards to the international aspects of Cloud hosting. Cloud Privacy refers to the combination of technologies and legal frameworks to ensure privacy of personal information held in Cloud systems, and a ‘Cloud Privacy-by-Design’ process can then be used to identify the local legislated privacy requirements of information. Tools for designing these types of privacy controls have been developed by global privacy experts, such as Ann Cavoukian, the current Privacy Commissioner for Ontario, who provides tools to design and build these federated privacy systems. The Privacy by Design Cloud Computing Architecture (26-page PDF) document provides a base reference for how to combine traditional PIAs (Privacy Impact Assessments) with Cloud Computing. As this Privacy Framework presentation then explains these regulatory mechanisms that Kantara enables can then provide the foundations for securing the information in a manner that encompasses all the legacy, privacy and technical requirements needed to ensure it is suitable for e-Government scenarios. This then enables it to achieve compliance with the Cloud Privacy recommendations put forward by global privacy experts, such as Ann Cavoukian, the current Privacy Commissioner for Ontario, who stipulates a range of ‘Cloud Privacy By Design‘ best practices Cloud 2.0 Cloud is as much a business model as it is a technology, and this model is best described through the term ‘Cloud 2.0′. As the saying goes a picture tells a thousand words, and as described by this one Cloud 2.0 represents the intersection between social media, Cloud computing and Crowdsourcing. The Social Cloud In short it marries the emergent new online world of Twitter, Linkedin et al, and the technologies that are powering them, with the traditional, back-end world of mainframe systems, mini-computers and all other shapes and sizes of legacy data-centre. “Socializing” these applications means moving them ‘into the Cloud’, in the sense of connecting them into this social data world, as much as it does means virtualizing the application to run on new hardware. This a simple but really powerful mix, that can act as a catalyst for an exciting new level of business process capability. It can provide a platform for modernizing business processes in a significant and highly innovative manner, a breath of fresh air that many government agency programs are crying out for. Government agencies operate many older technology platforms for many of their services, making it difficult to amend them for new ways of working and in particular connecting them to the web for self-service options. Crowdsourcing Social media encourages better collaboration between users and information, and tools for open data and back-end legacy integrations can pull the transactional systems informtion needed to make this functional and valuable. Crowdsourcing is: a distributed problem-solving and production process that involves outsourcing tasks to a network of people, also known as the crowd. Although not a component of the technologies of Cloud Computing, Crowdsourcing is a fundamental concept inherent to the success of the Cloud 2.0 model. The commercial success of migration to Cloud Computing will be amplified when there is a strong focus on the new Web 2.0 type business models that the technology is ideal for enabling. Case study – Peer to Patent One such example is the Whitehouse project the Peer to the Patent portal, a headline example of Open Government, led by one its keynote experts Beth Noveck. This project illustrates the huge potential for business transformation that Cloud 2.0 offers. It’s not just about migrating data-center apps into a Cloud provider, connecting an existing IT system to a web interface or just publishing Open Data reporting data online, but rather utilizing the nature of the web to entirely re-invent the core process itself. It’s about moving the process into the Cloud. In this 40 page Harvard white paper Beth describes how the US Patent Office was building up a huge backlog of over one million patent applications due to a ‘closed’ approach where only staff from the USPTO could review, contribute and decide upon applications. To address this bottleneck she migrated the process to an online, Open version where contributors from across multiple organizations could help move an application through the process via open participation web site features. Peer to Patent is a headline example of the power of Open Government, because it demonstrates its about far more than simply publishing reporting information online in an open manner, so that they public can inspect data like procurement spending numbers. Rather it’s about changing the core decision-making processes entirely, reinventing how Government itself works from the inside out, reinventing it from a centralized hierarchical monolith to an agile, distributed peer to peer network. In essence it transforms the process from ‘closed’ to ‘open’, in terms of who and how others can participate, utilizing the best practice of ‘Open Innovation‘ to break the gridlock that had occured due the constraints caused by private, traditional ways of working. Open Grantmaking – Sharing Cloud Best Practices Beth has subsequently advised further on how these principles can be applied in general across Government. For example in this article on her own blog she describes ‘Open Grantmaking‘ – How the Peer To Patent crowdsourcing model might be applied to the workflows for government grant applications. She touches on what is the important factor about these new models, their ability to accelerate continual improvement within organizations through repeatedly sharing and refining best practices: “In practice, this means that if a community college wins a grant to create a videogame to teach how to install solar panels, everyone will have the benefit of that knowledge. They will be able to play the game for free. In addition, anyone can translate it into Spanish or Russian or use it as the basis to create a new game to teach how to do a home energy retrofit.” Beth describes how Open Grantmaking might be utilized to improve community investing in another blog, describing how OG would enable more transparency and related improvements. Cloud 2.0 As the underlying technology Cloud 2.0 caters for both the hosting of the software and also the social media 2.0 features that enable the cross-enterprise collaboration that Beth describes. Cloud Configuration Management CCM is the best practice for change and configuration management within Cloud environments, illustrated through vendors such as Evolven. Problem Statement One of the key goals and perceived benefits of Cloud computing is a simplified IT environment, a reduction of complexity through virtualizing applications into a single overall environment. However complexity actually increases.  Virtual Machines (VMs) encapsulate application and infrastructure configurations, they package up a combination of applications and their settings, obscuring this data from traditional configuration management tools. Furthermore the ease of self-service creation of VMs results in their widespread proliferation, and so actually the adoption of Cloud technologies creates a need for a new, extra dimension of systems management. This is called CCM, and incorporates: Release & Incident Management The increased complexity therefore increases the difficulties in trouble-shooting technical problems, and thus requires an updated set of tools and also updates to best practices like the use of ITIL procedures. ‘Release into Production’ is a particularly sensitive process within software teams, as major upgrades and patches are transitioned from test to live environments. Any number of configuration-related errors could cause the move to fail, and so CCM software delivers the core competency of being better able to respond quicker to identify and resolve these issues, reducing the MTTR significantly. DevOps DevOps is a set of principles, methods and practices for communication, collaboration and integration between software development and IT operations. Through the implementation of a shared Lean adoption program and QMS (Quality Management System) the two groups can better work together to minimize downtimes while improving the speed and quality of software development. It’s therefore directly linked to Business Agility. The higher the value of speed and quality = a faster ability to react to market changes, deploy new products and processes and in general adapt the organization, achieved through increasing the frequency of ‘Release Events’: It’s therefore directly linked to Business Agility. The higher the value of speed and quality = a faster ability to react to market changes, deploy new products and processes and in general adapt the organization, achieved through increasing the frequency of ‘Release Events’: ITaaS Procurement The fundamental shift that Cloud Computing represents is illustrated in one key implementation area:   Procurement. Moving to Cloud services means changing from a financial model for technology where you buy your own hardware and software, and pay for it up front, to an approach where instead you access it as a rental, utility service where you “PAYG – Pay As You Go”. To encompass all the different ‘as a Service’ models this is known at an overall level as ‘ITaaS’ – IT as a Service. Any type of IT can be virtualized and delivered via this Service model. Towards the end, I hope that you have gained a clear understanding of How Business Transforms Through Enterprise Cloud Computing. If this article has helped you clear your fundamentals and if you wish to learn more about Cloud computing by getting certified, then you can undertake the AWS certification course offered by KnowledgeHut.
Business Transformation through Enterprise Cloud C...

The Cloud Best Practices Network is an industry ... Read More