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What Are the 3 Types of Cloud Computing?

 

By Alex Hunter, Parallels

Thinking of moving to the cloud, and wondering what options you have? Well, there are 3 types of cloud computing: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS).

With IaaS, companies control their own computing, networking, and storing components without having to manage them on-premises physically. PaaS, provides developers with a framework to build custom applications, while SaaS avails internet-enabled software to organizations via a third party.

IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service)

IaaS provides an on-demand infrastructure to organizations on a pay-as-you-go basis over the Internet instead of via a traditional datacenter. IaaS has the following physical and virtual resources that allow organizations to run workloads in the cloud:

Physical datacenters. IaaS providers have tens of powerful servers spread across the world to provide on-demand and scalable computing. IaaS provisions these components as a service rather than users interacting with them directly.

Compute resources. IaaS compute resources are Virtual Machines (VMs) that are managed by hypervisors. IaaS providers provision VMs based on CPU, GPU, and memory consumption for various workloads. Organizations can auto-scale and load-balance different workloads based on the performance characteristic they want to achieve.

Networks. Software-defined networking programmatically manages network hardware such as switches and routers.

Storage. IaaS providers offer highly distributed storage technologies such as file storage, block storage and object storage that are resilient and easily accessible over Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP).

Startups can opt for the IaaS model to avoid the costly and tedious process of setting up on-premises IT infrastructure. Similarly, large corporations that want to retain control over their IT infrastructure, but with the flexibility of paying only for resources consumed, can also use this model.

Common examples of IaaS include Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), Rackspace and Alibaba Cloud.

PaaS (Platform as a Service)

In a PaaS model, developers lease the infrastructure they need for a complete application lifecycle: development, testing, deployment and maintenance. Like IaaS, developers rent the servers, networking and storage components. In addition, they also lease items like middleware, development tools, and database management systems (DBMSs) from the PaaS provider.

PaaS allows an organization to avoid the often costly and complex process of purchasing and managing software licenses. Essentially, PaaS providers manage everything else related to the application lifecycle while allowing developers to focus on applications they are developing. PaaS is particularly useful for organizations that want to streamline workflows in a production environment that has multiple developers.

PaaS can also minimize costs greatly and simplify the application development lifecycle in a Rapid Application Development (RAD) environment. Common examples of PaaS include Google App Engine, Apache Stratos, OpenShift, AWS Elastic Beanstalk, and Heroku.

SaaS (Software as a Service)

In this model, SaaS providers host software on their servers and lease it to organizations on a subscription basis. Rather than IT administrators installing the software on individual workstations, the SaaS model allows users to access the application via a web browser where they log in with their usernames and passwords.

Under the SaaS model, organizations can lease productivity software such as email, collaboration and calendaring. Also, they can lease other business applications, including enterprise resource planning (ERP), document management, and customer relationship management (CRM).

Startups can use the SaaS model to launch enterprise applications quickly if they do not have the time to set up the server or software. Common examples of SaaS include Dropbox, Google GSuite (applications), Cisco Webex, and GoToMeeting.

How to optimize your cloud computing with Parallels RAS

Organizations can easily choose from the 3 types of cloud computing-IaaS, PaaS or SaaS-based on workload requirements. However, no organization can leverage the power of cloud computing fully without an efficient Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) solution. VDI replaces traditional desktops and applications with virtual ones powered from a datacenter.

In this regard, an efficient VDI solution that complements the 3 types of cloud computing can greatly promote your bottom line. ParallelsĀ® Remote Application Server (RAS) is an inclusive VDI solution for deploying virtual applications and desktops for on-premises, hybrid and public cloud scenarios. It does not matter whether you choose an IaaS, PaaS or SaaS model for your organization.

Parallels RAS complements each cloud option to deliver a fully functioning cloud-based virtualization to any device, at any location and at any time. Most of all, Parallels RAS has cutting-edge security features, including multi-factor authentication (MFA) and advanced filtering, to deliver a secure and efficient cloud-based VDI solution.

Download a FREE 30-day trial of Parallels RAS today, and start experiencing the power of IaaS, PaaS or SaaS!

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Published Wednesday, September 30, 2020 7:25 AM by David Marshall
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