Private vs. Public Cloud
Cloud computing delivers infrastructure as a service (IaaS) that can be consumed as an operating expense rather than acquired as an asset. The flexibility of moving from capital expense to operating expense provides organizations with a choice between public cloud and private cloud environment options. Choosing between the two—or taking a hybrid cloud approach where workloads operate in both types of environments—requires an understanding of the subtle differences.
In a public cloud, logical computing resources are shared among multiple organizations across the same physical infrastructure and the following feature attributes apply:
- Capacity – The computing, storage and networking resources in a public cloud are shared among multiple organizations and while demand can be matched with supply to ensure the most efficient allocation, those resources are not unlimited.
- Cost – A public cloud delivers a high value return because resources are shared among multiple organizations and can be consumed irrespective of location.
- Control – While public cloud environments deliver control over resource utilization, the shared nature of the infrastructure leaves some elements up to the hosting operator.
- Reliability – High availability configurations in the public cloud provide shared redundancy capabilities.
- Security – Because physical resources in a public cloud are shared, some organizations choose to be selective about which workloads operate here.
In a private cloud, all computing resources are dedicated to a single organization and the following feature attributes apply:
- Capacity – All computing, storage and networking resources in a private cloud are dedicated to a single organization and demand can be matched with supply and to ensure the most efficient allocation.
- Cost – A hosted private cloud can be delivered with little to no capital expense and instead consumed as an operating expense that is predictable over a period of time.
- Control – A private cloud is built to be consumed by a single organization that retains the ability to configure and manage resources without the restrictions that might be imposed in a multi-tenant solution that shares resources.
- Reliability – High availability configurations provide dedicated redundancy in a private cloud because all resources can be assigned in the event of a failure.
- Security – The combination of physical and logical segmentation for resources in a private cloud safeguards the infrastructure at multiple layers which creates additional peace of mind for sensitive workloads.
Making the Decision
A public cloud solution may be right for you if:
- Business growth is dynamic and computing demand fluctuates over time
- Security is an imperative, but workloads can be appropriately segmented to reduce any risk that might be associated with industry or government compliance mandates
- Keeping costs low by taking advantage of economies of scale is appealing
A private cloud solution may be right for you if:
- Business growth is predictable and computing demand is stable over time
- Industry or government compliance mandates limited the feasibility of shared resources
- Accepting higher, but predictable costs to ensure dedicated resources is strongly desired
Some organizations may choose a hybrid approach by deploying workloads across both types of environments. Public, private and hybrid cloud environments can keep data safe, secure and separate. Expedient can deliver the outcome you’re looking for in one of its local data centers near you or one that’s further away—for backup or disaster recovery reasons.
As Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Jonathan Rosenson is responsible for overseeing organizational functions that drive growth at Expedient. Jon additionally acts as an external spokesperson conveying the Expedient story._ Follow him on Twitter.