Understanding Cloud Computing - 1

A lot of my readers ask me fundamental questions on cloud. This series of posts are dedicated to all my fans and readers who would like cloud computing to be simplified for them.

Let's start with a pictorial analogy of cloud computing to something that we are more familiar with. Consider a server or even your desktop computer or a laptop. A scratch at the surface to see what makes these computing devices tick reveals 3 distinct layers.

  1. The hardware consisting of the motherboard, the memory (RAM, hard disks), the processor, etc
  2. The operating system that loads when you first switch on your computer - Windows, Linux, Unix, etc
  3. The software applications that you use when using your computer - Notepad, Word, Paint Brush, Winamp, Internet Explorer, etc
A cloud in simple terms is your computer multiplied sever hundred thousand times and can go beyond theoretically to infinity. More on this characteristic in my next post.

Coming back to the analogy, imagine the cloud to be one giant computer. Obviously you would need the equivalent of the 3 layers here too, right?
  1. Infrastructure - IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) - The hardware layer equivalent
  2. Platform - PaaS (Platform as a Service) - The Operating system equivalent with more bells and whistles. Lets understand that in a separate post
  3. Software - SaaS (Software as a Service) -The software applications you would use to draw on the power of the giant cloud computer.
You might have noticed that all three had the terms "as a Service" attached to them. Let's explore that in our next post in this series.

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Laura said…
Thanks for yor article. May i post your cloud image on my blog:
(with a link to your article, of course).
Cloud Computing said…
Thanks for sharing this such a great information.I really appreciate your work i share this link to my facebook friend as well as Digg and twitter this info helps to everyone

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