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Cloud computing is huge and one way or other touches upon everything on the net. Surprisingly not many have tried it out. The major advantages of cloud offering are flexibility, scaling and cost. As an entrepreneur you don’t have to pay for the web servers nor to any data center. You can hire any number of servers and scale up and down as your traffic demands. Virtual servers can be commissioned instantaneously without waiting for hardware engineers and systems setup. As an entrepreneur , cloud is a major plus since you can start with a single server and scale up indefinitely and smoothly as and when your traffic escalates. There are two cloud vendors which I will be discussing though there are tens of cloud service providers around.
Amazon Electronic Compute Cloud, EC2 and Simple Storage Service, S3
You will be surprised to know that Amazon are the pioneers in providing cloud services. Electronic Compute Cloud or EC2 is a elastic service in which you can obtain computing capacity or server capability instantaneously without bothering about hardware installation. Amazon Simple Storage Service or S3 is a facility to store data or code or any other information. It is like having memory on the cloud. Both these facilities EC2 and S# can be used to create a virtual web server. The major advantage of Amazon EC2 is that you can create server instances in any flavor, Linux or Windows. You can expand or reduce server instances according to your need. The costing is based essentially on usage of services on an hourly basis. For example, if you use five server instances for 100 hours, you will be paying for 500 hours. This cost includes that of back-up, security and maintenance. You can imagine the amount of headache this will save for an entrepreneur considering that hardware is a major portion of any project implementation. There are many types of instances from which you can choose depending on the nature of application.
This is from the stable of Microsoft. Realizing the power of cloud computing Microsoft has been forced to provide the services despite knowing that it will cannibalize their traditional Windows server offering. Azure is good for those who are used to working in Windows environment. There are some useful services which make life easier for users. The payment structure is suitable for people who need flexible infrastructure and want to pay based on usage. There are many other advantages to Microsoft Azure and the way things are panning out, this service will be more sought after as we go along. Those working on existing Windows platform can seamlessly migrate to Azure without any technical issues.
There can be no doubt that cloud offering the way to go for modern businesses. You need not commit costly resources on physical infrastructure and attendant maintenance costs are eliminated by hosting in the cloud. Additionally the level of security is also high in a cloud offering. It is likely that physical servers will soon become redundant in the near future.