“The Cloud”

It’s a somewhat commoditized term that means many things to different people. For some the cloud denotes massive data breaches—a term they hear about mainly on TV— and for others who truly understand cloud computing, it provides a scalable, cost-effective solution to traditional data storage.

Cloud solutions can help reduce IT costs while ensuring business continuity with quick and effective disaster recovery services. Even the most basic data hosting solutions and cloud-based options allow for improved worker productivity and reduced overhead costs. However, not every service is equipped to meet the specific needs of your business.

The fallacy that “all cloud computing is created equal” is the biggest obstacle most businesses must overcome if they are to harness the revolutionary opportunities cloud computing offers. The second biggest misconception is that you must compromise or dissipate your business processes in order to choose the best cloud provider and cloud computing services for your business.

Understanding your cloud hosting options can help you find the best suited cloud solution for your growing enterprise.

Related Resource: 5 Things You Should Know When Selecting a Cloud Provider

Public Cloud

Cost-effective and able to provide a greater level of efficiency with regards to shared resources, public cloud environments provide access to off-site services and infrastructure over the Internet. A public cloud service may be ideal for a business with a working process that utilizes a standard application shared by numerous staff or departments, and companies that are involved with large-scale collaboration projects. The lower cost of public cloud services makes them a popular choice for businesses that have limited financial resources at their disposal.

Public Cloud Benefits

  • Lower cost – pay as you go, sometimes by the hour
  • Ideal working environment for testing and application development
  • Increased flexibility through incremental capacity with access to additional servers during peak usage
  • For use by the general public
  • Highly scalable in a short time

Public Cloud Disadvantages

  • Public cloud services don’t offer same degree of security as private counterparts
  • Reliability issues are more common
  • Effective maintenance and management can become problematic
  • No compliance for Sarbanes Oxley, PCI and HIPAA
  • Self-managed experience, but less control over resource optimization

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Private Cloud

In a private cloud environment a business develops and uses a private network to provide data hosting services and infrastructure for its own internal use. This is a crucial asset for businesses required to maintain a strict level of security or that may have additional data and privacy concerns, private cloud hosting are usually the obvious choice for organizations involved in application development or the management of data and information that may be of a more sensitive nature.

Private Cloud Benefits

  • A private cloud option allows for service options and solutions tailored to fit specific needs of a client
  • Enhanced security and improved IT support services
  • More convenient, effective and comprehensive back-up services with superior data and disaster recovery solutions

Private Cloud Disadvantages

  • Higher initial cost
  • Data may be more difficult to set up
  • Dependent on specific business requirements

Read: Today’s Small Business Cloud: Are You Ready?

While private cloud computing options can provide the enhanced security and higher quality of service and support many businesses may require, this option frequently entails greater expense than a public cloud service.

The costs associated with maintaining data centers and a full staff of IT team, makes private cloud hosting a choice usually viable for bigger organizations with easier access to both human and capital resources.

Virtual Private Cloud

Simply put, a virtual private cloud environment is a fusion between the public cloud and private cloud environment. Unlike the public cloud where data resources are usually compiled together to reduce costs, virtual private cloud environments offer levels of isolation between different organizations to keep data apart in transit and in the cloud. CompuData’s iSySair Virtual Private Cloud Services is operated using this model as it offers customers the flexibility and security needed to run their business efficiently.

Virtual Private Cloud Benefits

  • Easily Scalable for any organization size
  • Less costly compared to an internal private cloud environment
  • Offers more security than the public cloud environment
  • Can be customized to fit your organization’s needs
  • Compliance for Sarbanes Oxley, PCI and HIPAA
  • Usually managed by cloud provider with resource optimization options

Virtual Private Cloud Disadvantages

  • Not as secure as an internal private cloud environment
  • Might not fit your current business model

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Hybrid Cloud

By making use of multiple service providers, hybrid cloud options are able to offer clients a mix of public and private cloud service features. Your business creates multiple working environments that are able to benefit various aspects of their working process and daily operations, But having to deal with numerous service providers can create complications, especially when it comes to troubleshooting a problem or addressing an issue. The best solution is to turn over management of a hybrid cloud solution to a managed service provider who will keep track of your data storage and computing locations.

Hybrid Cloud Benefits

  • Unparalleled flexibility
  • Access to an expanded range of options and features

Hybrid Cloud Disadvantages

  • More complex account management
  • Addressing services issues may require more time and effort
  • Security may become an issue, especially for businesses that may benefit from private cloud solutions

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From security and dependability to ease of use and affordable service costs, there are many factors that businesses need to consider in order to select a cloud computing solution that provides the greater advantage. Whether your business requires the more affordable services of a public cloud, the enhanced security of a private option or a hybrid solution able to provide more efficient working environments for a range of different projects and operations, it pays to know more about your options. Choose the right cloud hosting options to ensure your business is able to benefit from the elasticity, cost-savings and greater convenience of cloud computing.