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What is Cloud Computing? Its Types and Benefits

05th Sep, 2023
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    What is Cloud Computing? Its Types and Benefits

    Nowadays, every successful organization has a presence over the internet for which they require a data center irrespective of their size. The traditional data center is on-premises, meaning that all its functionality is carried out in a physical site within enterprise office space. A data center might be a few computers under a desk, a climate-controlled room filled with blade servers, or a whole building. It is managed by an in-house IT team employed and paid for by the enterprise which owns the data center. 

    Now, imagine when you want to create a simple website or digitize whole business processes, apart from building applications, you also need to create a data center for an organization. This means you will have to buy hardware (servers), software, and its licenses, create a network, build infrastructure, and hire a team of experts to manage or maintain this data center. Before setting up the data center, you need to do an assessment on how many servers you need, there will be chances that you might over-provision or under-provision hardware. 

    What if you don’t have to worry about setting up your own data center and just focus on building applications? This is where Cloud Computing comes into the picture. Let us now understand what Cloud Computing is with examples in this article. Also, you can go for Cloud Computing training to get a deeper knowledge of Cloud Computing.

    What is Cloud Computing?

    Cloud Computing is the delivery of computing services such as servers, data storage, databases, networking, software, analytics, and intelligence over the internet (“cloud”) to offer flexible resources, faster innovation, and economies of scale. In simpler terms, instead of owning data centers, organizations can rent access to someone else’s infrastructure like storage, computing servers, and databases from a Cloud Computing service provider and only pay for resources that they use.

    You only need to pay for the cloud services that you use, which helps lower your operating costs, run infrastructure more efficiently, and scale your applications as per business needs.

    Who Uses Cloud Computing? 

    Organizations of different types, sizes, and industries are using the cloud for a wide variety of use cases, such as building customer-facing web applications, data backup, sending email/SMS notifications, virtual desktops, software development and testing, big data analytics, and disaster recovery. For example, Telecom companies are using cloud services to connect with their customers by sending different types of communications. Financial services companies are using the cloud to power real-time fraud detection and prevention.

    How Does Cloud Computing Work?

    How Does Cloud Computing Work

    To understand how Cloud Computing works, let us divide it into two sections- Front end and Back end. The front end consists of the client’s computer or computer network. The front end consists of the client’s computer or computer network. The back end consists of various computers, servers and data storage systems that make up the cloud. They are connected to each other through a network, usually the Internet. The front end is the side of the computer user or client. The back end is ‘the cloud’ section of the system. 

    Cloud Computing Deployment Models

    The deployment models specify different types of clouds. Every organization has different needs, they need to determine which cloud deployment model will work for them. There are mainly three cloud deployment models: 

    1. Public Cloud 

    The public cloud is a set of hardware, networking, storage, services, applications, and interfaces owned and operated by a third party for use by other companies or individuals. You access these services and manage your account using a web browser. These commercial providers create a highly scalable data center that hides the details of the underlying infrastructure from the consumer. 

    2. Private Cloud 

    A private cloud is a set of hardware, networking, storage, services, applications, and interfaces owned and operated by an organization for the use of its employees, partners, or customers. A private cloud can be created and managed by a third party for the exclusive use of one enterprise. The private cloud is a highly controlled environment not open for public consumption. It is essentially just another way of running an on-premises data center. 

    3. Hybrid Cloud 

    A hybrid cloud is a combination of a private cloud combined with the use of public cloud services where the two cloud environments work together to solve business problems. By allowing data and applications to move between private and public clouds, a hybrid cloud gives your business greater flexibility, more deployment options and helps optimize your existing infrastructure, security, and compliance.

    The goal is to create a hybrid cloud environment that can combine services and data from a variety of cloud models to create a unified, automated, and well-managed computing environment. 

    Types of Cloud Services 

    Cloud Computing services are divided into three classes, according to the abstraction level of the capability provided and the service model of providers:

    1. Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS in Cloud Computing)

    The capability provided to the consumer is to provision processing, storage, networks, and other fundamental computing resources. The consumer does not manage or control the underlying cloud infrastructure but has control over operating systems, storage, and deployed applications; and possibly limited control of select networking components (e.g., host firewalls). 

    2. Platform as a Service (PaaS in Cloud Computing)

    The capability provided to the consumer is to deploy onto the Cloud infrastructure consumer-created or acquired applications using programming languages, libraries, services, and tools supported by the provider. The consumer does not manage or control the underlying Cloud infrastructure including network, servers, operating systems, or storage, but has control over the deployed applications and possibly configuration settings for the application-hosting environment. 

    3. Software as a Service (SaaS in Cloud Computing)

    The capability provided to the consumer is their applications running on a Cloud infrastructure. The capability provided to the consumer is to use the provider's applications running on a Cloud infrastructure. The applications are accessible from various client devices through either a thin client interface, such as a web browser (e.g., web-based e-mail), or a program interface.

    The consumer does not manage or control the underlying cloud infrastructure including network, servers, operating systems, storage, or even individual application capabilities, apart from limited user-specific application configuration settings.

    Cloud Computing Examples and Use Cases 

    If you use an online service to send email, edit documents, watch movies or TV (like Netflix), listen to music, play games, or store pictures and other files, it is likely that you are part of cloud eco-system, as Cloud Computing is making it all possible behind the scenes. There are many use cases of Cloud Computing, few are mentioned below: 

    1. Test and Development

    IT Companies uses cloud services for software development environment. DevOps teams can quickly spin up development, testing and production environments. This includes an automated provisioning of physical and virtual machines. 

    2. Big Data Analytics

    There is massive amount of data collected each day from cloud applications, IoT devices and the users who interact with them. Cloud Computing allows organization to leverage the computing power of Cloud Computing. 

    3. Cloud Storage

    Cloud data storage enables files to be automatically saved to the cloud, and then they can be accessed, stored, and retrieved from any device with an internet connection. Instead of maintaining data centers for storage, organizations can only pay for cloud storage they are use and do so without the worries of overseeing the daily maintenance of the storage infrastructure. 

    Benefits of Cloud Computing 

    There are several benefits of using Cloud Computing over traditional way. Few benefits are mentioned below: 

    1. Cost Saving

    You pay only for the services you use; this eliminates capital expenses of buying hardware, software, setting up datacenters and operating cost for the same. 

    2. Rapid Elasticity

    Cloud providers pool large number of resources from their data centers and make them easily accessible. A service provider can easily expand its services to large scale to handle rapid increase in service demands. 

    3. Global Scale 

    With the cloud, you can expand your business to new geographic locations and deploy applications globally within minutes. Many cloud providers give services in lot of countries, deploying applications closer proximity to end users reduces latency and hence improves customer experience. 

    4. Reliability 

    Cloud services provides high availability with their robust infrastructure. You can easily make data backup, disaster recovery, which makes business continuity easier and less expensive as data can be mirrored at different geographic locations on the cloud provider’s network. 

    5. Speed 

    Cloud Computing services are mostly self service and on demand. You can easily provision any number of resources within minutes, that gives a lot of flexibility to businesses to scale their application at right time and at right location. 

    Disadvantages of Cloud Computing

    Although there are many benefits of Cloud Computing, there are few disadvantages as well which you need to be aware of, such as: 

    1. Security and Privacy 

    Although cloud service providers implement the best security standards and industry certifications, storing data and important files on external service providers always opens risks. Any discussion involving data must address security and privacy, especially when it comes to managing sensitive data. You must understand the shared responsibility model of your cloud provider. You will still be liable for what occurs within your network and in your product. 

    2. Vulnerability to Attack 

    In Cloud Computing, every component is online, which exposes potential vulnerabilities. Even the best teams suffer severe attacks and security breaches from time to time. 

    3.  Limited Control 

    Cloud services run on remote servers that are owned and managed by cloud service provides, which makes it hard for the companies to have the level of control over cloud infrastructure. 

    Future of Cloud Computing and Emerging Technologies 

    Lot of companies are already using Cloud services to grow their business and make their global presence. Cloud Computing will be the most common deployment model for companies in future because of its benefits. The future of Cloud Computing is bright and will provide benefits to both the host and the customer. There are many technologies that are emerging with Cloud Computing such as: 

    1. Internet Of Thing (IoT) 

    The internet of things is one of the leading Technology, it comes with continuous innovation in real time Data Analytics and Cloud Computing. We can do it easily with the help of Cloud Computing. 

    2. Serverless Computing 

    Serverless architecture is the next evolution from monolithic application architecture after service-oriented architecture and micro-services architectures. 

    3. Artificial Intelligence (AI) 

    Artificial Intelligence is the next-generation technology solution set to present the technology world in a different view. However, building AI applications are complex for many businesses as it requires high computing power machines. Companies are looking at Cloud solutions for machine learning and other deep learning tools. Because of its vast computing and storage options, cloud-based AI is emerging as the most-sought solution for businesses of any size in realizing their AI efforts. 

    Cloud Computing Architecture  

    Architecture is how different components combine to create a cloud system, which every employee of an organization can use for data-related operations. Talking of cloud computing architecture, virtualization technology pools different resources and software components in one place, calling it a cloud. There are various components in cloud architecture:

    • A front-end device from which the user accesses the network. 
    • The backend platform is like the servers that store the information for the user to access. 
    • A delivery model that decides how the network will work and how the user will be able to access data. 
    • A trusted network on which the storage and sharing of information will happen. 

    Putting all these components together forms a cloud platform, which an organization and its employees can use. This system helps the users in plenty of ways. First, it reduces the risk of data theft as online servers are much more secure than physical ones. Secondly, it makes remote working possible for everyone as there will be no issue with data sharing. 

    Cloud Computing Architecture

    Different Architectures  

    Although no two cloud models are similar, the basics of a few models are alike. Therefore, an organization can use the model, which they think would stand tall on their expectations, make changes, and enjoy all the perks that this virtual data storage and sharing platform offers. 

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    Cloud Computing vs Traditional IT Infrastructure 

    Below are the differences between Cloud Computing and Traditional IT Infrastructure: 


    Traditional IT Infrastructure 

    Cloud Computing 


    Traditional computing is done on physical server provisioned and managed by organization. Companies own these servers 

    Cloud Computing run on outsider servers facilitated by third-party hosting organizations such as Microsoft AZURE, Amazon AWS, Google GCP 

    Cost Effective 

    In traditional computing companies must spend up-front expenses on hardware 

    Cloud Computing works on pay as you go model, you pay only for number of resources you use 


    In traditional computing companies had to spend lot of efforts securing their infrastructure, they had to hire security experts to protect their data 

    In Cloud Computing the Cloud service providers are specialized in guarding the data and their primary responsibility is security data 


    In traditional computing you need to do proper estimations in order to buy hardware upfront 

    Cloud Computing is flexible in this regard, you can use resource as per your need 


    One of the many advantages of Cloud Computing are to reduce the time to market applications that need to scale dynamically. Cloud Computing brings lot of benefits in terms of cost, agility, scalability, resiliency and many more. Considering these benefits many organizations are utilizing cloud services, for creating highly scalable and resilient applications.

    The future with cloud services looks very bright with endless opportunities to explore and the survival of the business depends on whether it can adapt the new changes. So, take advantage of Cloud Computing and start your KnowledgeHut Cloud Computing training

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    1What are the types of cloud computing?

    There are four major types of models: public, private, hybrid, and multi-cloud. Other than this, there are three service types: IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS.

    2What are the key advantages of cloud computing?

    Cloud computing helps in numerous ways, including safe data storage, making remote working possible, bringing utmost efficiency at work, and more.

    3Why is it known as cloud computing?

    It is known as cloud computing as the data gets stored in a virtual space, referred to as a cloud. One can access this space on the web only, as there is no physical existence.

    4What is cloud computing in simple terms?

    Cloud Computing is the practice of managing and storing data on online servers. The user does not have to perform any network operations, as the service provider handles everything. Some famous examples of clouds are AWS, Microsoft Azure, and IBM cloud. 


    Qamer Ali Ahmed Ali Shaikh


    I am a passionate software engineer with over 12 years of experience in the IT industry. I help transform an idea into useful software that not only helps businesses grow but also impacts society. I love spending time with my daughter.

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