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Stepan Artemyev
Stepan Artemyev

Imply 3.2: Deploy And Manage The Imply Platform On Private And Public Cloud Services



So, you are looking to learn more about the various cloud deployment models out there? Good! That is exactly what we will cover in this short post. If you have started to do some reading on the topic already, you may have noticed that there are many cloud deployment models out there. To narrow down the scope of this post, we will focus only on the four most popular cloud deployment model examples: public, private, hybrid and multi-cloud. We will cover each in detail, focusing on how they work and the perceived advantages and disadvantages associated with them.




Imply 3.2: Deploy and manage the Imply platform on private and public cloud services



To quickly baseline, let's take a moment to define public cloud. Public cloud is more or less a platform that leverages a standard cloud computing model to make storage, networking, virtual machines, etc. available to the public over the public internet. These are typically grouped as services and made available either for free or charged via subscription models or based on usage. Pretty straight forward, right? One could say that it is similar to using an on-demand car service (Uber or Lyft) to get somewhere. The service is on-demand, you are provided with details on cost and duration of your trip and an arrival time. There are no upfront costs such as vehicle lease or purchase, no vehicle maintenance involved, nor do you have to ensure you have the right size vehicle. You simply pay for what you use at the time of use.


A public cloud deployment model offers companies the ability to consume highly available and scalable services hosted on shared infrastructure. These services are on-demand, maintenance free, and low cost. This allows companies to grow at scale, while avoiding high up-front capital investments and operational costs. Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, and Microsoft Azure are all examples of public cloud providers.


Control and scalability are at the top of the list of the advantages of implementing hybrid cloud deployment. In short, companies can still apply specific custom requirements for critical environments and rely on the near infinite scalability of a public cloud provider; thus reducing cost in general. However, this is only possible if a company has the ability to run and manage a complex environment.


One benefit of using cloud-computing services is that firms can avoid the upfront cost and complexity of owning and maintaining their own IT infrastructure, and instead simply pay for what they use, when they use it.


Building the infrastructure to support cloud computing now accounts for a significant chunk of all IT spending, while spending on traditional, in-house IT slides as computing workloads continue to move to the cloud, whether that is public cloud services offered by vendors or private clouds built by enterprises themselves.


SaaS is the largest chunk of cloud spending simply because the variety of applications delivered via SaaS is huge, from CRM such as Salesforce, through to Microsoft's Office 365. And while the whole market is growing at a furious rate, it's the IaaS and PaaS segments that have consistently grown at much faster rates, according to analyst IDC: "This highlights the increasing reliance of enterprises on a cloud foundation built on cloud infrastructure, software-defined data, compute and governance solutions as a Service, and cloud-native platforms for application deployment for enterprise IT internal applications." IDC predicts that IaaS and PaaS will continue growing at a higher rate than the overall cloud market "as resilience, flexibility, and agility guide IT platform decisions".


Cloud computing is reaching the point where it is likely to account for more of enterprise tech spending than the traditional forms of delivering applications and services in-house that have been around for decades. However, use of the cloud is only likely to climb as organisations get more comfortable with the idea of their data being somewhere other than a server in the basement. And now cloud-computing vendors are increasingly pushing cloud computing as an agent of digital transformation instead of focusing simply on cost. Moving to the cloud can help companies rethink business processes and accelerate business change, goes the argument, by helping to break down data any organisational silos. Some companies that need to boost momentum around their digital transformation programmes might find this argument appealing; others may find enthusiasm for the cloud waning as the costs of making the switch add up.


In the 1990s, telecommunications companies, who previously offered primarily dedicated point-to-point data circuits, began offering virtual private network (VPN) services with comparable quality of service, but at a lower cost. By switching traffic as they saw fit to balance server use, they could use overall network bandwidth more effectively.[citation needed] They began to use the cloud symbol to denote the demarcation point between what the provider was responsible for and what users were responsible for. Cloud computing extended this boundary to cover all servers as well as the network infrastructure.[15] As computers became more diffused, scientists and technologists explored ways to make large-scale computing power available to more users through time-sharing.[citation needed] They experimented with algorithms to optimize the infrastructure, platform, and applications, to prioritize tasks to be executed by CPUs, and to increase efficiency for end users.[16]


Though service-oriented architecture advocates "Everything as a service" (with the acronyms EaaS or XaaS,[67] or simply aas), cloud-computing providers offer their "services" according to different models, of which the three standard models per NIST are Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS).[66] These models offer increasing abstraction; they are thus often portrayed as layers in a stack: infrastructure-, platform- and software-as-a-service, but these need not be related. For example, one can provide SaaS implemented on physical machines (bare metal), without using underlying PaaS or IaaS layers, and conversely one can run a program on IaaS and access it directly, without wrapping it as SaaS.


IaaS-cloud providers supply these resources on-demand from their large pools of equipment installed in data centers. For wide-area connectivity, customers can use either the Internet or carrier clouds (dedicated virtual private networks). To deploy their applications, cloud users install operating-system images and their application software on the cloud infrastructure. In this model, the cloud user patches and maintains the operating systems and the application software. Cloud providers typically bill IaaS services on a utility computing basis: cost reflects the number of resources allocated and consumed.[69]


The capability provided to the consumer is to deploy onto the cloud infrastructure consumer-created or acquired applications created 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.


Cloud services are considered "public" when they are delivered over the public Internet, and they may be offered as a paid subscription, or free of charge.[94] Architecturally, there are few differences between public- and private-cloud services, but security concerns increase substantially when services (applications, storage, and other resources) are shared by multiple customers. Most public-cloud providers offer direct-connection services that allow customers to securely link their legacy data centers to their cloud-resident applications.[50][95]


Hybrid cloud is a composition of a public cloud and a private environment, such as a private cloud or on-premises resources,[97][98] that remain distinct entities but are bound together, offering the benefits of multiple deployment models. Hybrid cloud can also mean the ability to connect collocation, managed and/or dedicated services with cloud resources.[66] Gartner defines a hybrid cloud service as a cloud computing service that is composed of some combination of private, public and community cloud services, from different service providers.[99] A hybrid cloud service crosses isolation and provider boundaries so that it can't be simply put in one category of private, public, or community cloud service. It allows one to extend either the capacity or the capability of a cloud service, by aggregation, integration or customization with another cloud service.


Varied use cases for hybrid cloud composition exist. For example, an organization may store sensitive client data in house on a private cloud application, but interconnect that application to a business intelligence application provided on a public cloud as a software service.[100] This example of hybrid cloud extends the capabilities of the enterprise to deliver a specific business service through the addition of externally available public cloud services. Hybrid cloud adoption depends on a number of factors such as data security and compliance requirements, level of control needed over data, and the applications an organization uses.[101]


Another example of hybrid cloud is one where IT organizations use public cloud computing resources to meet temporary capacity needs that can not be met by the private cloud.[102] This capability enables hybrid clouds to employ cloud bursting for scaling across clouds.[66] Cloud bursting is an application deployment model in which an application runs in a private cloud or data center and "bursts" to a public cloud when the demand for computing capacity increases. A primary advantage of cloud bursting and a hybrid cloud model is that an organization pays for extra compute resources only when they are needed.[103] Cloud bursting enables data centers to create an in-house IT infrastructure that supports average workloads, and use cloud resources from public or private clouds, during spikes in processing demands.[104] The specialized model of hybrid cloud, which is built atop heterogeneous hardware, is called "Cross-platform Hybrid Cloud". A cross-platform hybrid cloud is usually powered by different CPU architectures, for example, x86-64 and ARM, underneath. Users can transparently deploy and scale applications without knowledge of the cloud's hardware diversity.[105] This kind of cloud emerges from the rise of ARM-based system-on-chip for server-class computing.


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