Technology, in recent years, has seen a transformation from the on-premise infrastructure to hosting of cloud with more and more companies adopting cloud, in some way or the other. So what exactly is this cloud?
If you are uploading your photos to Google or using iPhone, you are more or less a cloud customer too, in your daily life. Cloud hosting is having your data located in a remote data center, and not in your local server that you buy and maintain in your own organization premise.
It is not just the data, but a host of other stuff that you can host in the cloud. Cloud hosting comes in various forms, starting with Infrastructure-As-a-Service (IaaS), which allows you to have your network and database, among others to be hosted in cloud. Platform-As-a-Service (PaaS) offers you to host your software platform in cloud. Software-As-a-Service (SaaS) enables you to develop and host applications, that you typically run in your on-premise system, to be executed in cloud and fully maintain it there.
Typically, most businesses will have their websites hosted in a virtual server in the cloud, instead of their local server, which they purchase. Compare this with using utility services in your daily life like electricity and petrol, where you only use them as much as you need them and when you need them, and pay for only what you use. Consumers do not set up an power station to meet their electricity demands, but share the electricity provided by the power supplier and use only as much as they need, based on a subscription basis. Drawing analogy, hosting service providers host the data and applications of their customers, based on the type of service they have subscribed for and the amount of cloud space they need. Usually, the customers are billed based on the pay-as-you-go model, and licenses are issued as per the contract.
This hosting has gained in immense popularity among organizations across the globe, due to its low investment, scalability and the elimination of the need to maintain your own server and IT infrastructure in your own premise, letting you focus more on your core business. Having your data and applications hosted in a Virtual Data Center (VDC), relieves you from the headache of buying servers and upgrading them with growing business. The remote data centers enable 24×7 access and let you upgrade your subscription from time to time. You also pay only for the amount of data and applications that you host and not for the entire server. It is like renting a house and only paying for the amount of resources you use. The responsibility of maintenance and upkeep of the servers lie with the cloud hosting providers too.
Given the boon it has been to the world of technology, hosting has changed the way organizations do business. So if you are not yet in cloud, you better be!