I read a comic today about a data center support technician who was going to put a fog machine in his lab, and when people walked in he could declare, “Welcome to the cloud!”
He laughed, his friends laughed and I died a little inside as I read it. The cloud is still viewed as some mysterious, futuristic technology — and rightfully so.
Cloud computing was something of a future-state technology not too long ago. And while we’ve built out business uses, and the cloud has become a market valued at hundreds of billions of dollars, we are still trying to grasp the solution as we see it changing before our eyes. New developments continue to build on cloud technology and push it into innovative new directions.
In the current state of cloud computing, cloud service providers offer customers a choice of cloud solutions that will work best with their defined requirements. These solutions could come in the form of a traditional enterprise agreement (EA) or cloud solutions provider (CSP) agreement. Cloud computing options, such as Microsoft Azure, provide the architectures as we know them today, which are made up of three individual parts:
Software as a Service (SaaS)/Applications: Software licensing and delivery model in which software is licensed on a subscription basis and hosted centrally
Platform as a Service (PaaS): Compute resources are provided so customers can test, build and develop complex operations
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS): Resources such as virtual desktop compute platforms (Win10), networking and storage
When grouped together, these three architectures make up a total solution known as XaaS (Everything as a Service).
Let’s look at these services another way that may be more familiar (and tasty):