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There are three forms of computing going on in the cloud:
- Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
- Software as a Service (SaaS)
- Platform as a Service (PaaS)
These three are all big cloud players because they all fill a very important need, but this page is about IaaS – Infrastructure as a Service.
In IaaS, a third party – usually a data center – hosts the entire infrastructure that its customers may need: all the hardware, all the software, all the servers, and all the storage. It also meets the infrastructure’s power needs as well as providing security (physical and online), backup, system maintenance, and resilience.
The benefits to the customer are:
- Scalability – in either direction. The user can acquire instant access to an increased amount of equipment or a reduced amount of equipment;
- Cost effectiveness. Users pay only for what they need, instead of having to buy enough equipment to handle their peak demand and see some of it stand idle for part of the year;
- Better admin, backup, resilience and virtualization than any but the largest users can afford for themselves.
Sounds great? A lot of OFFSITE’s customers think so, and there’s no question that our IaaS business is growing and will continue to grow. Are we for you? Well, here are the things you should be aware of when choosing an IaaS provider:
You’re putting a central part of your business into the hands of the provider. Make sure those hands are reliable and secure.
You want management and monitoring 24/7, and you want it 365 days a year. Unless it’s a leap year, in which case you want 366 days. And that management and monitoring should be conducted with the most capable analytic software tools, so that your provider knows – and can tell you – what is going on at every single moment. Especially if something that is going on should not be going on, and needs immediate attention.
Are your demands for IT time constant and unchanging? No, we didn’t think so – so make sure your provider can handle your workload, however it fluctuates.
Every IaaS user is different – so every contract has to be different, too. Make sure your provider analyses your needs and then tailors the service to you. You don’t want to allow your needs to be tailored to the service, because if that happens, then you will never get the flexibility we’ve agreed you must have.
And that means SLAs – Service Level Agreements – that guarantee that you will get what you need, when you need it and how you need it. The SLA is probably the most important document you will sign all year.
When you weighed up those options, come and talk to us. You won’t find us lacking.