Cloud Computing

Cloud 101 Series: What Are Common Cloud Terms?

Part three of series

Confused by the whirlwind of cloud computing terms? Don’t feel bad – between the general acronyms; there are quite a few! I will break down a few of the most common ones.

General Terms

  • On-prem – Short for “On Premises.” Simply, your infrastructure you have on site (or leased in a data center).
  • TCO – “Total Cost of Ownership,” or how much it costs you to run your infrastructure on-prem or in the cloud. When a company is considering moving to the cloud, they may run some TCO calculations to compare costs between their current configuration and a cloud deployment.
  • Elastic Computing – The great thing about cloud computing is that it is flexible. Elastic computing just means that you can change things like computer processing, memory, and storage dynamically based on your needs.

Type of Cloud Services

  • IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) – This is the foundational layer of cloud, where you rent your infrastructure through a service such as Amazon AWS or Microsoft Azure.
  • PaaS (Platform as a Service) – PaaS allows developers to create and deliver applications via the web. Google App Engine,, and AWS Elastic Beanstalk.
  • SaaS (Software as a Service) – Think Gmail, Salesforce and Microsoft Office365. SaaS is a software application delivered over the internet.

Types of Cloud Deployments

  • Private Cloud – A cloud on a private network with services available only to select users, such as a single business or organization. It may be maintained by the company itself, or they may pay a third-party to manage it.
  • Public Cloud – Cloud services available to anyone via a third-party provider. Common examples of public clouds are Amazon AWS and Microsoft Azure.
  • Hybrid Cloud – A combination of private and public clouds.

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