In our last blog, we illustrated the scenario where a business owner has an On Premises IT environment, and faces burgeoning costs from both a staffing and technological standpoint. What can he or she do about this? Well, the bottom line is that they can move this whole thing into what is known as the “Cloud”. Have you heard of the iCloud and the Amazon Web? Well, this is what the Cloud is.
What is essentially this is space being outsourced to a third party, and they manage it. A good analogy to this is renting. When you rent, you pay a fixed amount each month for a space in which you make your home. As part of the rent, the landlord or the property manager is expected to maintain the upkeep of the property, as well as provide any necessary maintenance which is required for your dwelling. They are also tasked to keep it safe and secure.
In regard to the Cloud, the third party is known as the “Internet Service Provider”, or simply known as the “ISP”. They are essentially the landlord of the space from which you about to rent from them. This space contains all of the technological platforms that you will ever need in order to move your On Premises environment away from your business and into this allocated space. In return for the use of this space, you also pay a monthly fee, which can also be considered as the rent (but not nearly as expensive).
Also in return for this, the ISP is also tasked with the overall maintenance of this space, as well as keeping it safe and secure from Cyber attackers. For instance, this can include hardware and software upgrades, making sure that your IT environment is running at 99.999% uptime, applying the latest software upgrades to the virtual servers that you may have, and probably even more importantly, applying the latest security mechanisms to keep you information and data that you store onto it from prying eyes.
So, long story short, this space now becomes officially the “Cloud”. Just like your apartment, this is your space, and nothing can be done to change that, provided you pay the monthly fee, or rent on time. As a result, there are numerous benefits to the Cloud, which include the following:
- A fixed, predictable monthly fee that will most likely fit into your budget. The only time it will increase is if you add new services, or increase the amount of space that you have (in our analogy, moving to a larger apartment).
- You will have scalability: This simply means that you can literally increase or decrease the size of your IT environment with just a click of the mouse, as opposed buying or throwing out old servers with an On Prem solution.
- You do not have to worry about any software or hardware upgrades or patches-the ISP will take care of all this for you, as it is part of your monthly fee or rent.
- Services (such as software applications) are available on demand. This simply means that if you want to set up Microsoft Exchange, you can do so in just a matter of minutes with a few clicks of your mouse.
- You do not have to worry about implementing any type or kind of Security mechanism-the ISP does all of this for you, so you can rest easy. This is in stark contrast to an On Premises solution, where you, the business owner, are totally responsible for this.
Our next blog will examine the technical nittie gritties of the Cloud so stay tuned!!!