Here we will discuss about cloud computing and Microsoft Azure.
First we will discuss what is cloud computing. Now a days lots of companies adopting and moving to cloud. So it is necessary to understand what is cloud computing, advantages we are getting from cloud.
In case of an on premise datacenter, the company is full responsible end to end for the hardware and software for the datacenter includes from hardware purchase to maintenance etc. But cloud computing is an alternative to the on premise datacenter, where a 3rd party company is responsible for everything, from hardware purchase to maintenance and provides wide range of services which we can only use. We can kind of rent whatever hardware and software services we need for our business. We can rent or lease purly in need basis and we will only pay whatever and whenever we use it.
Cloud environment provides online portal experience which makes it easy to use and maintain.
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Microsoft Azure is Microsoft’s cloud computing platform. Microsoft Azure provides a wide range of different services, Windows Azure lets you build, deploy, and manage solutions.
Windows Azure is an open and flexible cloud platform that enables you to quickly build, deploy, and manage applications across a global network of Microsoft-managed datacenters. You can build applications using any language, tool, or framework. And you can integrate your public cloud applications with your existing IT environment.
In the Azure portal, a user can create a virtual machine (VM) configuration specifying the VM size (with regard to CPU, RAM, and local disks), the operating system, any predeployed software, the network configuration, and the location of the VM.
Look at services provided by Azure below:
Windows Azure provides a set of cloud services that allow you to build and deploy cloud-based applications using almost any programming language, framework, or tool. Windows Azure services are currently hosted in several datacenters spread across the United States, Europe, and Asia. These datacenters are managed by Microsoft and provide expert global support on a 24x7x365 basis.
Advantages of Cloud Computing over On Premise Datacenters:
- Companies can reduce or eliminate on premise datacenters. Companies can reduce servers, software licenses, IT administrators cost. Companies do not have to spend money on hardware, utilities etc. Large organizations can save millions of money by using cloud. Because in case of cloud everything will be taken care by the 3rd party vendor.
- Companies will only pay whatever and whenever they will use. But in case of on premise datacenters, companies will have to buy all hardware and softwares.
- Cloud providers are reliable and Microsoft saying Azure has 99.99% uptime and is available for 24/7/365. You need only internet connection to use.
- Cloud Computing helps to access data anywhere and anytime. But in on premise datacenter , the user can access his data only on the system in which he has stored it. If the user has to access the data in another system, he needs to save it in an External storage Medium. To access the data user only need an active internet connection. Data is not restricted to only one system or network.
Types of Cloud:
There are three types of cloud:
1- Public Cloud:
Public cloud will be available for the general public users. The cloud will be available through internet by users. The infrastructure is owned and maintained by providers like Google, Microsoft, Amazon etc.
2- Private Cloud:
Private cloud is maintained and managed by particular organization or any third party. The particular organization can use the cloud to store company data as well as can host business applications. The data cannot be shared outside the organization.
3- Hybrid Cloud:
In a hybrid cloud we use both private cloud as well as public cloud. Organizations can use private clouds for sensitive application, while public clouds for non-sensitive applications.
Three types of services provided by cloud computing.
1- SaaS (Software as a service)
Software as a service (SaaS) allows users to connect to and use cloud-based apps over the Internet. For example Office 365. Here we can just use and pay as subscription based. Cloud providers host and manage the software application and underlying infrastructure and handle any maintenance, like software upgrades and security patching. Users connect to the application over the Internet, usually with a web browser on their phone, tablet or PC.
Other examples are Dropbox, WordPress, and Amazon Kindle etc.
2- PaaS (Platform as a service)
In this method of cloud computing services, it supply an on-demand environment for developing, testing, delivering and managing software applications. PaaS is designed to make it easier for developers to quickly create web or mobile apps, without worrying about setting up or managing the underlying infrastructure of servers, storage, network and databases needed for development.
3- IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-service)
In this kind of cloud computing services company will rent IT infrastructure such as servers and virtual machines (VMs), storage, networks, operating systems from a cloud provider on a pay-as-you-go basis.
Microsoft Azure Services:
Azure provides various services in its cloud platform.
1- Compute services: These service incldes, Azure Virtual Machines (Linux & Windows), Cloud Services, App Services (Web Apps, Mobile Apps, API Apps etc), RemoteApp, Service Fabric, and the Azure Container Service etc.
2- Data services: These service includes Microsoft Azure Storage, Azure SQL Database, DocumentDB, StorSimple etc.
3- Application services: These services includes Azure Active Directory (Azure AD), Service Bus for connecting distributed systems, HDInsight for processing big data, Azure Scheduler, and Azure Media Services.
4- Network services: These service includes Virtual Networks, ExpressRoute, Azure DNS, Azure Traffic Manager, and the Azure Content Delivery Network etc.