Cloud Computing

Cloud computing is a general term for anything that involves delivering hosted services over the Internet. These services are broadly divided into three categories: Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS).

The name ‘cloud computing’ was inspired by the cloud symbol that’s often used to represent the Internet in flowcharts and diagrams.

While cloud storage sounds like it has something to do with weather fronts and storm systems, it really refers to saving data to an off-site storage system maintained by a third party.

It is for this reason that almost every sector, managers and business owners alike are investigating the ways in which a move to cloud computing could potentially benefit their organisations.

It is unfortunate that there is such a significant lack of understanding around the benefits and inner workings of this exciting new phenomenon.

This breakthrough technology offers businesses a simple answer to the challenge of IT scalability through the use of a hosted environment, which can be set up in a matter of hours, sometimes even less.

In essence, this represents a departure from on-site IT solutions such a file servers temperamental e-mail platforms that are able to grow and shrink according to business requirements.

Through both private and public off-site offerings, organisations in Namibia are now deploying cloud-based computing, storage computing, storage and applications at a fraction of a cost of on-site IT infrastructure.

Understandably, some businesses are wary of hosting sensitive information with a cloud environment. Data security is a large focus area for every organisation and the perceived risk associated with storing critical information as a remote location can be daunting.

This perception is somewhat justified. At present, there is very little commitment to Service Level Agreements (SLAs) for uptime security within a public cloud setting. As these services mature, however, so do the standards that govern them, which are expected to become more stringent, giving users greater peace of mind when opting for application-based public cloud services.

Every successful organisation seeks to minimise expenditure and exposure to risk in Cloud Computing is one of 2012’s most compelling ways to achieve this.. PF