Types of Cloud Applications
There are three types of Cloud applications:
“Low-Cloud” applications are those functions such as personal email and calendars that have already migrated to cloud platforms. Education institutions have used email hosting services for staff and students.
The “Middle-Cloud” applications refer to elearning and related management systems and analytics that are running on Cloud platforms in almost all higher education institutions and many schools. The infrastructure for these applications is already in place.
“High Cloud” applications are very large, complex, and essential administrative software functions that normally include finance, human resources and student information systems.
Smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktop computers can all be used to access applications and data on the Cloud.
Cloud computing comes in three forms:
- Public Cloud,
- Private Cloud, and
- Hybrid Cloud.
Depending on the type of data you're working with, you'll want to compare public, private, and hybrid clouds in terms of the different levels of security and degree of management required by your organisation.
A Public Cloud is basically the Internet. Providers use the internet to make resources, such as applications (also called Software-as-a-service) and data storage, available to the general public, or on a Public Cloud.
For users, this type of Cloud provides good economies of scale, they are inexpensive to set-up because the hardware, application and bandwidth costs are covered by the provider.
A pay-per-usage model is operated and the only costs incurred are based on the capacity that is used.
There are some limitations, so a Public Cloud may not be right for your organisation as there are limits to configuration, security, and the servicde level agreements. As a result it would not be recommended for sensitive data.
A Private Cloud is procured as it based at a data center owned by an external company. This situation should provides you with flexibility, scalability, provisioning, automation and monitoring.
The goal of a Private Cloud is for you to gain the benefits of Cloud architecture without giving up the control of maintaining your own data center.
Private Cloud systems can be expensive. This is usually not an option except for large education organisations. Private clouds are driven by concerns around security and compliance, and keeping assets behind your firewall.
By using a Hybrid Cloud approach, you can maintain control of an internally managed Private Cloud information while relying on the Public Cloud when needed. For instance during very busy periods individual applications, or portions of applications can be migrated to the Public Cloud.