24 February 2022
Demystifying Cloud Computing – Part 2: Public, Private, Hybrid Cloud
by Stephanie Schuldes
Making decisions about IT infrastructure today is virtually impossible without understanding the fundamentals of cloud computing. This miniseries takes you through the basics, with part one having introduced the different service models (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS). Today, we’ll look at the cloud deployment models and explain what there is to know about public, private, and hybrid cloud scenarios.
The public cloud is probably the most commonly known model. It makes it possible for many users to gain access to services via the public internet. The data of the users is kept separate, allowing access to only their own data (multitenancy).
With a private cloud, access to services and resources is restricted to a single organization and is not available to the general public. The operation is either handled by the company or in a data center that is managed by a third party.
A hybrid cloud is a combination of public and private clouds. The goal is to create a unified and interconnected environment that enables seamless scaling and migration of apps that can access data from any cloud without concern for the underlying infrastructure. This is made possible by cloud-native technologies that emphasize portability, virtualization, and automation:
According to the Red Hat Global Tech Outlook 2022, 30 percent of enterprises use hybrid cloud, while the share of pure public or private cloud has decreased.
When deciding which cloud architecture is the best fit for one’s needs, a variety of factors needs to be considered. The reliability, performance, and security of IT environments are critical for business continuity.
Some technological, personnel, and financial requirements to be considered are for example:
A recent Techconsult study on cloud deployment in German SMEs revealed that the use of different cloud architectures varies depending on the size of the organization. The results show that the private cloud is most commonly used by medium-sized businesses (500-999 employees, 55 percent). Large corporations use both hybrid cloud and private cloud equally (43 percent). Small businesses (50-99 employees) are the most likely to use pure public cloud. In general, hybrid cloud and multi-cloud are growing, particularly in smaller medium-sized businesses (100-499 employees) and in half of companies larger than 1,000; pure private cloud is declining.
Cloud computing is already a significant component of the majority of IT infrastructures, and hybrid cloud, in particular, is quickly becoming a critical building block for new applications and environments. Because the deployment models, pricing models, and service features of IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS are converging, it can be difficult to determine which model is the best fit for your operating requirements.
A good rule of thumb is to use a private cloud infrastructure when security and compliance concerns outweigh cost considerations. Using a public cloud infrastructure takes precedence in situations where cost alone matters. The hybrid model represents an attractive compromise between the other two in situations where security and compliance are of great importance. Moreover, the decision to use either one of the three models must be based on factors such as the type, scope, and workloads of the application to be developed, as well as budget, team skills, timeline, and compliance requirements.