What is the Public Cloud?
The public cloud is a cloud computing service provided publicly over the internet for anyone looking to purchase and use the public cloud services. Access can be free or pay-as-you-go, depending on your usage specifications, including the storage space and data your applications consume.
Your business can save the costs of buying and maintaining cloud infrastructure on-site. Instead, your service provider manages and maintains the hardware and software resources. Public cloud services are also more efficient to set up, unlike on-site infrastructures.
Besides, they are more scalable.
How does the public cloud work?
Third-party service providers, like Microsoft (Azure), Google (Cloud), or Amazon (Web Services), set up public cloud infrastructure to help you host applications and data with instant scalability and on-demand flexibility using a public network connection over the internet.
Cloud service providers supply a wealth of availability and integration varieties that you may find quite desirable for different cloud computing needs. More prominent service providers even give you extensive customization features.
The Architecture of the Public Cloud
A public cloud is in a virtual environment and requires network connectivity to access and transfer data. As a result, you can execute workloads on shared infrastructure and use shared resources for computing. However, your data, storage, and computing resources remain separate from other user’s data.
Cloud service providers manage cloud service infrastructure in remote locations within public cloud regions. You can call these regional locations “availability zones:”
- AWS regions and availability zones
- Azure regions and availability zones
- GCP regions and availability zones
You can choose to subscribe to availability zones depending on convenience regarding compliance and proximity. There are three standard public cloud service models:
- IaaS (Infrastructure as a service): A third-party service provider hosts the infrastructure resources, including storage servers. Your provider supplies the virtualized computing resources using dedicated connections or over the internet.
- PaaS (Platform as a service): A third-party provider supplies the hardware and software resources needed for you to develop applications, including running operating systems, efficiently.
- SaaS (Software as a service): A third-party cloud service provider develops and manages the hosting of applications you can access and use over the internet.
The cloud service model you purchase underlines your control limits over certain cloud features. For instance, infrastructure as a service model will enable you to create virtual machines, install operating systems and manipulate network configurations. But networking architecture is entirely managed by the provider in the platform and software as service models’.
You may also opt for a Function-as-a-service model if you’d like a helpful model to create microservices. It’s established upon serverless computing and efficiently breakdown workloads into smaller resource components that can execute actions requiring virtual machines. Your provider deals with all underlying server maintenance. Thus, the features only exist as long as you assign them.
Perhaps you may fancy some Storage-as-a-service. Cloud service providers can also supply storage platforms with features like archiving and backup.
The Advantages and Disadvantages Public Cloud Services
You must carefully contrast the advantages and disadvantages of adopting public cloud services before deciding that it is the right solution for you.
Advantages of Public Cloud Services
The most prominent benefits of public cloud services include:
- Extensive Flexibility: Thanks to the flexible, scalable nature of public cloud storage, you can store and readily access more significant volumes of data whenever needed. The cloud is beneficial in disaster recovery times and application and data back up in case of emergencies.
You can seamlessly implement a data retention policy to regulate how data is stored and remove old data and unwanted storage costs.
- Unlimited Virtual Scalability: Public cloud services also provide you higher redundancy and availability, thanks to the providers’ establishing various cloud storage locations. Also, cloud services enable quick connectivity.
- Updated Business Technologies: Using established cloud services gives you instant access to the latest technologies, including real-time machine learning and AI integration.
- Advanced Analytics: Managing your business using the cloud enhances your capacity to collect crucial metrics and manipulate data to make it practical. Cloud analytics enable you to compute massive data volumes and variety’s to deliver analytical business insights.
Disadvantages of Public Cloud Services
Despite the many advantages of public cloud services, you will encounter some challenges, including:
- Professional Personnel: The current skills gap in the cloud computing industry may present challenges when searching for expert personnel to build and manage modern cloud application infrastructure. You can’t afford to be poorly equipped when dealing with current technological demands.
- On-Going Costs: Some cloud services have complex pricing models, making it challenging to monitor spending efficiently. Even though the cloud cheaper physical equipment, some people find themselves perpetually paying more with cloud services.
- Control Limits: Using a public cloud service exposes you to limited control over the overall IT infrastructure because your provider sets and manages configurations.
- Data Separation: With the multi-tenancy characteristics of cloud infrastructure, you may experience possible latency challenges regarding industry adherence and country-specific regulations regarding your data regions.
The Differences Between Public Clouds, Private Clouds, and Hybrid Clouds
Public and Private Clouds supply similar services like computing, storage, networking, and scalability. However, there are significant differences regarding how they operate and provide services. For example, standard private cloud service resources are only accessible to specified users.
Public cloud services operate on multi-tenant, shared infrastructure. In contrast, private cloud platforms are on single-tenant, privately run infrastructure. And setting up personal cloud services requires a significant initial investment, while public cloud services are pay-as-you-go.
Private cloud services offer more performance reliability because its managed on-site. Public cloud services remain subject to network and connectivity challenges because it depends on the public internet. The private cloud allows more control regarding configurations, and it gives minimal issues with compliance.