Information technology represents a world that has many acronyms or code names that sometimes serve to confuse more than to educate or inform, but cloud computing is not just another one of those and should be taken seriously. It is a revolution that has seen much of everyday computing shift from personal computers and devices to centralized servers located around the globe with the necessary capacity to handle millions of computing demands.
Virtual Client Computing:
Traditionally, software vendors sold software to companies and did the installation in physical machines at the company premises. In case of any maintenance demands, the companies call for a technician to come to the premises and work on the installed programs. Sometimes this happens on the server, and, in other cases, it takes place on individual machines. The concept of the cloud is akin to that of a power grid where consumers, instead of relying on their own generation of power, tap to an already established grid with a central source. In the cloud, consumers use their computing devices as terminals to connect to centralized servers that do all the heavy lifting jobs that the software demands. In this case, software is no longer a product, but turns out to be part of cloud computing services that can be bought in incremental terms. In virtual client computing, the user’s computer does the job of delivering and fetching computing instructions to the server that it virtually connects to via the internet.
A data center is the facility that hosts the hardware that powers the cloud. It is a facility that has the necessary power, cooling and network connectivity infrastructure. Other than computing, it also works as a storage center for information delivered by client computers that are virtually connected to it. Companies that offer data center solutions build the data centers and then host the various software programs that will then connect their clients to allow them to use the resources of the center. For clients, this is an opportunity to get high powered computing jobs done in a cost effecting way, as they only have to part with a minimal service fee.
Having a centralized data center makes it easy to manage the cost of computing. The company responsible can assess the present demand and make the necessary investments in the hardware and software. On the other hand, client companies only have to sign up to a service agreement that lets them use the data centers. It is easier for them to sign up for the basic minimum offer on cloud computing services and scale up as their needs incraease. They can also scale down if need be. This flexibility makes the cloud an attractive option for clients, as it lets them do their core work without having to deal with various IT management challenges that would arise if they relied on their own infrastructure.
In terms of security, the cloud reduces the risk associated with digital document theft or destruction. A disaster in the company premises would not lead to a loss of the data held in remote data centers. Many data centers are also mirrored such that, when one is compromised, users can still access the same information and services from other centers. The companies providing the cloud service use industry standard security measures to authenticate users to not only guard their profits, but to ensure that only authorized people get access. In their physical centers, they employ both physical and computer security solutions to keep off intruders and make sure that client information remains safe.
Just like how the entry of the personal computer shaped the way consumers used computers, cloud computing promises to change how the future takes shape, as far as computing goes. The term may seem new-fangled and complex, but the concept is already in use by millions of consumers across the world. The applications of cloud computing are as simple as using third party email software online to complicated ones like having a virtual server for handling a company’s enterprise software jobs.