The practice of using a network of remote servers hosted on the Internet to store, manage, and process data, rather than a local server or a personal computer.
Cloud computing is an information technology paradigm, a model for enabling ubiquitous access to shared pools of configurable resources (such as computer networks, servers, storage, applications and services), which can be rapidly provisioned with minimal management effort, often over the Internet. Cloud computing allows users and enterprises with various computing capabilities to store and process data either in a privately-owned cloud, or on a third-party server located in a data center – thus making data-accessing mechanisms more efficient and reliable. Cloud computing relies on sharing of resources to achieve coherence and economy of scale, similar to a utility.
Cloud computing allows companies to avoid or minimize up-front IT infrastructure costs. As well, third-party clouds enable organizations to focus on their core businesses instead of expending resources on computer infrastructure and maintenance. Cloud computing allows enterprises to get their applications up and running faster, with improved manageability and less maintenance, and that it enables IT teams to more rapidly adjust resources to meet fluctuating and unpredictable business demand. Cloud providers typically use a “pay-as-you-go” model.
Simply put, cloud computing is the delivery of computing services—servers, storage, databases, networking, software, analytics and more—over the Internet (“the cloud”). Companies offering these computing services are called cloud providers and typically charge for cloud computing services based on usage, similar to how you are billed for water or electricity at home.
Cloud computing is a general term for the delivery of hosted services over the internet. Cloud computing enables companies to consume a compute resource, such as a virtual machine (VM), storage or an application, as a utility — just like electricity — rather than having to build and maintain computing infrastructures in house.
More and more, we are seeing technology moving to the cloud. It’s not just a fad—the shift from traditional software models to the Internet has steadily gained momentum over the last 10 years. Looking ahead, the next decade of cloud computing promises new ways to collaborate everywhere, through mobile devices. So what is cloud computing? Essentially, cloud computing is a kind of outsourcing of computer programs. Using cloud computing, users are able to access software and applications from wherever they need, while it is being hosted by an outside party — in “the cloud”. This means that they do not have to worry about things such as storage and power, they can simply enjoy the end result.In the simplest terms, cloud computing means storing and accessing data and programs over the Internet instead of your computer’s hard drive. The cloud is just a metaphor for the Internet. It goes back to the days of flowcharts and presentations that would represent the gigantic server-farm infrastructure of the Internet as nothing but a puffy, white cumulus cloud, accepting connections and doling out information as it floats.
What cloud computing is not about is your hard drive. When you store data on or run programs from the hard drive, that’s called local storage and computing. Everything you need is physically close to you, which means accessing your data is fast and easy, for that one computer, or others on the local network. Working off your hard drive is how the computer industry functioned for decades; some would argue
From a customer perspective, the public cloud offers a way to gain new capabilities on demand without investing in new hardware or software. Instead, customers pay their cloud provider a subscription fee or pay for only the resources they use. Simply by filling in web forms, users can set up accounts and spin up virtual machines or provision new applications. More users or computing resources can be added on the fly—the latter in real time as workloads demand those resources thanks to a feature known as auto-scaling.