The Cloud Business

This week I spent several days at a tech conference where the primary topic was the “Cloud.” While the topic isn’t a surprise and certainly isn’t new, the message of the conference finally seemed to acknowledge the reality I have been seeing for the last few years – very few small- and medium-sized businesses can make the Cloud do everything for them in the way they want. Instead, these business are moving to a “Hybrid Cloud” environment.
Here are the primary definitions for the most prevalent types of Cloud:

Private Cloud

– This is where the services, servers and infrastructure are operated solely for a single organization and is not shared, as in the stereotypical Cloud environment. Usually, the servers and infrastructure are located in a data center, but many times they can be located within the organization’s own office.

Community Cloud

– This version of Cloud shares infrastructure between multiple organizations, similar to a Public Cloud. The difference is, users in a Community Cloud share a specific resource, such as a line of business applications, financial software or a specific service such as security or compliance.

Public Cloud

– This is where the services are offered via the internet over a network that is open the public. In some instances these services are free or offered at a minimal cost. The servers, storage and infrastructure is shared between all the users, creating an environment that can be problematic from a security standpoint but also offers the advantage of easily expanding services. The best examples of Public Clouds are Amazon AWS, Microsoft, DropBox and Google.

Hybrid Cloud

– This version of the Cloud is simply a combination of two or more Cloud types. For example, an organization may have a server in their office to store internal documents but may also utilize QuickBooks Online for their finances and DropBox for sharing files with clients.
In today’s technological world, there really is no “one size fits all” Cloud model that works well for small- and medium-sized businesses. However, combining the right services and offerings of traditional on premise infrastructure and Cloud offerings can make technology easier to handle, more cost- effective and provide users with a better experience.

KLH – Minneapolis IT Managed Services Provider

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Scott Johnson COO, KLH  651-328-6121