In this article, we will try to understand in simplest possible way; What is cloud? What are different cloud offerings? How does it work for you?

 

Cloud computing constitutes a broad range of services. Web is the common thread between all of these. So something sitting on your desktop and able to operate on its own is not a cloud service.

 

Key characteristics of a cloud based solution are:

 

 

There are different types of cloud computing services commonly classified as Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). In a very simplistic explanation:

 

 

 

 

Let’s take a deeper look at these services.

 

Software as a Service (SaaS)

 

Characteristics:

 

 
Where it works?  
 
 
Where it doesn't work? 
 
 
Example – Salesforce.com is the best example of a software delivered as a Service. 
 

Platform as a Service (PaaS) 

 

Characteristics:

 

 
Where it works? 
 
 
Where it doesn't work?   
 
 
Example – Force.com is the best example of a platform delivered as a Service. Another very popular example is Google App Engine which provides complete platform to enable development of software applications. If your software technical requirements can be met completely by such platforms, PaaS is for you. 
 
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
 
Characteristics:   
 
 
Where it works?  
 
 
Where it doesn't work?  
 
 
Example – Amazon web services, Rackspace are some of the leaders in this space. People and organizations that want to move to Cloud computing should identify their needs and based on that find the suitable service offering and model that suits best for their business needs. Cloud offers a lot; not everything may be useful for everybody.