Types of cloud computing

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Cloud computing is popularly used for data storage, computations, software and applications. Similar to an electrical grid, the end-user does not know about the physical location and configuration of the system that delivers the above mentioned services.

Based on the physical location, cloud computing can be classified into the following.

[1] Private cloud – The computing infrastructure is private to one particular organization. The applications and computational capabilities are specifically meant to the employees or stakeholders of that particular organization. These private clouds are either hosted by the organization internally or outsourced to a third party service provider.

Major corporations having enough resources to spend on a private infrastructure opt for having a private cloud.

[2] Public cloud – A cloud vendor hosts the computing infrastructure and services multiple clients. Usually the vendor takes care of security issues and upgrades the OS and related applications periodically. The client is free to choose only the services he requires and pay according to the usage.

For organizations that need incremental computational capability at peak traffic hours, public cloud would be the best choice.

[3] Hybrid cloud – Hybrid cloud is a combination of both private and public clouds. Applications and related data that are deemed critical are hosted privately and applications that are comparatively not so critical are hosted on public cloud. Sometimes the organization opts to utilize its own computing infrastructure for normal usage and utilizes the cloud when there is a dramatic requirement. Thus overloads are handled efficiently. This process is popularly known as cloud bursting.

For companies that offer services customized to different verticals, hybrid cloud would be the best choice. Here, the company can interact with the clients through public cloud but when it comes to data and related transactions, they can go private through a secure login.

[4] Community cloud – When organizations share a computing infrastructure within the same community it is termed as community cloud. Example of community cloud could be - government organizations utilizing their infrastructure within their branches for easier data transfer and real time operations.