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A walk in the clouds (Part 1)

Guest Post by

Shailesh Shivakumar, Technology Architect, MFG-ADT Online, Infosys

Cloud computing is a buzz word for quite some time now. It was envisioned to provide paradigm shift to computing industry. On the same lines there is also a perception that cloud adoption is below the expectation. Is cloud really over hyped IT wave? Come; let's take a walk in the clouds to find out more.


A brief history of cloud computing..

Cloud computing is defined by NIST as "Cloud computing is a model for enabling convenient, on demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction".  Computation has evolved over generations starting from traditional IT to virtualization to standardization to automation to self-service cloud.  



Cloud concepts




Deployment models: private cloud consists of a cloud infrastructure exclusively for a single cloud consumer whereas a public cloud is provisioned for open use by general public. Hybrid cloud is a combination of two or more distinct cloud infrastructures.


Service Models:

The cloud pyramid depicts various service models offered:


Essential Characteristics: Cloud infrastructure should support on-demand self-service with which the consumer can provision in the pre-defined process. Cloud should be ubiquitous network access which can be accessed from any device anywhere. The usage should be metered/measured to support only pay-per-use model and it should be elastic to support seamless scalability in real-time.


Cloud computing promises multi-dimensional benefits at various levels:


Trends, Prediction and adoption:


I am detailing few key survey statistics and its larger implications for the industry as a whole:


Cloud adoption and market is growing..

  •  Gartner predicts that cloud market would be 150B by 2013 while Merrill Lynch puts the number to 160B by 2011. IDC estimates that sales of public cloud will grow at 25% annual rate.
  •     Aberdeen group survey details that 48% of mid-sized enterprises have the highest cloud adoption rate with Small enterprises (38%) coming second and large enterprises (26%) coming last. However this trend is most likely to change: a survey conducted by Edge strategies in 2011 indicates that 74% of SMBs plan to use at least one cloud service in next 3 years. The same survey indicates that SME favor SaaS including business email, CRM, file share, collaboration, business apps and IaaS including data storage/backup.


Business drivers for cloud adoption..

  • Server virtualization: Out of 50M physical servers today, 60% of server workloads would be virtualized by 2013 
  • Low TCO:  IBM estimates that cloud adoption would reduce IT costs by 50% and improve capital utilization by 75%.
  • Business agility: Sandhill survey indicates that 50% of its respondents cited agility as the key driver to move to cloud platform; similarly Information week survey puts this number to 65%.  
  • Move towards SaaS model: IDC finds that SaaS revenue would grow 5 times faster than traditional packaged software in 2014; 34% of all new software purchases will be consumed via SaaS.  
  • Mobility and social computing: Mobile market is going to surpass the traditional desktop shortly and in addition to this social computing is adding lots of data each passing second. Cloud is the platform of choice for this scenario. 


Thanks Shailesh for sharing this insight. The post is precise and to the point covering all the Delivery and Deployment model of Cloud Computing.
To just give an analogy, we can link the concept of Cloud computing with the Electricity that we use in our houses. We need not worry about how the electricity is being generated, where the power generation units are located. We just pay for the units of electricty that we use. Similarly in Cloud computing we consume IT as a service in the form of "Storage, Processing, Application Development platform, Servers, Database Management etc. " and pay only for what we use. These are maintained by Cloud Service providers and the infrastructure may be spread across the globe.

Nice analogy Jitendra. Do check out the next part of this article as well:

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