Many organizations outside of the tech industry have heard of the terms private cloud computing and/or public cloud computing, but are not necessarily familiar with the differences between the two concepts, or perhaps even what cloud computing actually is and how it differs from an intranet.
Cloud computing services allow organizations to deliver the software applications and data they use over the internet. By delivering over the internet, it allows companies greater flexibility to access what they need, wherever and whenever is convenient, without requiring an intranet portal. As long as staff members have an internet connection and proper credentials, they can access their organization's cloud.
Private Cloud Computing
A private cloud or internal hosting solution, as it is sometimes referred to, is a cloud solution that is located on a company's current intranet or data center. Some of the benefits of this include potentially making use of current IT infrastructure, no sharing of resources with other organizations, and potentially more data security, as all data can be protected behind an in-house firewall. With all these benefits, one might question why an organization would want any other kind of cloud solution. However, there are downsides to hosting one's own internal cloud. The constant managing, maintenance and updating of private cloud solutions requires an extensive investment in an IT team that can perform all the tasks associated with maintaining a cloud solution. In addition, companies who have their own cloud must continually maintain and upgrade their cloud software and hardware components, in order to continually meet the technological demands of the company, while also ensuring the highest level of data security.
Public Cloud Computing
With a public cloud solution, organizations are free from the continual need to staff their own extensive IT department in order to properly maintain an internal cloud. An organization who uses a public cloud relies on their cloud provider to invest in all the hardware and software necessary to maintain cloud services. If the organization wants to test and/or deploy new software products, they can simply ask their cloud provider for increased services. Many cloud providers allow their clients to temporarily increase or decrease their cloud services as their needs change, so clients always have options with regard to flexibility. In addition, even on a public cloud all client data is housed separately from the data of other organizations and with a reputable and professional cloud provider, there is no more likelihood of a data breach than there is with a private cloud.
Which Solution is Best?
There is no single answer to the question of which one is the best solution. Some organizations are required to maintain their own private cloud due to government or industry regulation constraints. For those organizations who have no special security limitations, they need to seriously consider whether they want to invest in not just the upfront costs, but the continual costs associated with maintaining their own private cloud.
Public cloud solutions allow smaller organizations to have access to state-of-the-art cloud technology services without requiring them to make a significant financial investment. Public cloud services also provide great flexibility. If a company needs more cloud services for special, time-limited projects, they can ask for increased services from their cloud provider. If they want to scale back, even temporarily, that is easily arranged as well. Smaller companies will also likely appreciate the fact they will not have to spend significant amounts of time and resources to maintain their own cloud. Instead, they are free to focus on doing what they do best, which is to provide excellent products and/or services to their own customer base.
If you would like more information on private and public cloud concepts and which one will best meet the needs of your organization, we would be happy to answer your questions. Total Computer Solutions has been providing cloud services for over five years now. In that time we have learned from experience that not everyone is a good fit. Each organization has its own specific IT needs. Contact us today for a no-obligation review.