Sunday, August 15, 2010

Cloud Hosting versus Web Hosting

I have talked about cloud services interms of infrastructure services, platform services, software services , when detailing about infrastructure services many people have this doubt in mind , how is the cloud infrastructure services ( ex : Amazon ) differ from the normal web hosting providers,if I use virtual servers from web hosting providers, how cloud hosting is different ?, i thought to provide my thoughts on that.

Let us talk a sometime to talk about web hosting providers, there are different type of providers, with dedicated hosting provider we can rent physical servers not shared with anybody and have full control over the server including the server administration, with shared web hosting provider we can share the server space with others to be cost efficient but have less control over the server like administration , we can also procure interms of virtual servers and use.

So what's the big deal with cloud infrastructure providers like amazon , they also provides servers in the form of virtual servers so what's the big difference and what makes amazon to be called as cloud provider?

When we say cloud provider the main difference we have to clearly observe is the utility model of computing in all dimensions of usage , the chargeback will happen based on how much we utilize the cloud elements like compute units, bandwidth, power usage, storage etc..Also the turn around time to set up an infrastructure with amazon will be much easier and quick compared to web hosting providers.

For example when a rent a server with a hosting provider we have to commit for their space say interms of months / years. It is not easy to dynamically expand and reduce the space depends on our need, you need to have minium commitment for specific duration. Also you have to get dedicated intenet bandwidth for our application need. Similarly we have to procure storage requirements for our need, all these needs minimum commitment with the provider. We cannot dynamically scale up and down instantly with general web hosting providers.

Taking an example with Amazon Infrastructure Cloud hosting provider we see how the cloud elements can be used in utilization model. Amazon provides a simple web interface in the form of plugin with firefox called 'Elastic fox' with which any user having an amazon account can securely create , destroy instances , attach, detach disk , set security settings for the instances , it also exposes SDK to operate on the elements, so you can programatically operate on the elements based on your application needs. So you basically pay for what you use and scale dynamically for seasonal needs. It also assures of high availability .

In addition to these, amazon infrastructure services provides blob storage services, Simple DB services, Amazon Relational database services, simple queue services , notification services. Using all these services in utilization model you can effectively build an architecture that use these infrastructure in a effective way to operate your app in OPEX (Operational Expense )model than in CAPEX ( Capital Expense ) model.

Cloud platform services like Microsoft Azure , Google App engine provides more services built on top of infrastructure services and cloud software service providers like sales force provides services at higher level than platform services.

Getting the power of cloud computing ...

1 comment:

  1. The cloud is a natural home for service-oriented applications, which need a way to easily scale as services get incorporated into other hosting india