Liftr Look Ahead: Private Managed and Hybrid Clouds - Choices When Scaling
What’s the difference between public cloud, private cloud and hybrid cloud?
Everyone doesn’t use consistent terminology and definitions when talking about public cloud, private cloud and hybrid cloud computing. LIftr Insights uses the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) definition of cloud computing, from way back in 2011.
NIST defined cloud computing as having five essential characteristics:
- On-demand self-service
- Broad network access through the public internet
- Resource pooling for fluid allocation of compute, storage, memory, and network capacity
- Measure or meter resource utilization
- Scale allocated resources with demand
Multi-Tenant v. Single-Tenant Solutions
Public clouds provide access to multi-tenant, shared infrastructure, while private clouds provide a secure single-tenant solution. However it is accomplished, a private cloud must remain private to the organization paying for it. Private cloud deployments primarily change the second characteristic: Instead of broad public internet access, private clouds limit organization-wide network access to private networks or virtual private networks. That means private clouds are dedicated resources for a single tenant.
Managing Private Clouds
Private clouds can be on prem or hosted remotely. Also, they can also be locally managed or managed remotely. It is possible to locally manage a dedicated but remotely hosted set of private cloud resources or to remotely manage on prem dedicated resource. IT customer self-service is still the central tenet of cloud service provisioning for public or private clouds, whether on prem or remote, and whether locally managed or managed by someone else. But private clouds must also transparently scale application resources using pools of both private and public cloud resources. The same application image must run in both private and public infrastructure. If it can’t, then it may be private, but it isn’t entirely cloud.
Hybrid Cloud Solutions
Hybrid cloud is a service, not an architecture. These days private clouds have design requirement to scale applications and data into public clouds. Hybrid services connect the two. Ideally, applications should scale from private cloud to multiple public clouds (multi-cloud), but in reality most organizations have their hands full scaling into one public cloud. However, simply lifting and shifting virtual machines (VMs) is not a proper hybrid cloud strategy. A virtualized datacenter is not a private cloud until it can meet the five essential characteristics of clouds as defined by NIST.
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