In the traditional model of implementation of Information Technology (IT), organizations allocate material, human and technological resources, which are grouped in an area responsible for solving problems related to the IT infrastructure and the development of applications for the organization.
Most of these areas are forced to devote a good part of their time in the tasks of implementing, configuring, maintaining and updating projects related to the infrastructure of their organization, which usually does not add value to the balance end of the production of it.
On the other hand, it is observed that the distribution of services such as: electricity, drinking water or telephony; They leave the supplier the total responsibility of generating, organizing and managing everything necessary for the end user to receive the agreed upon, paying only for the use made of them, while the provider is responsible for specifying the mechanisms by means of the which determines the consumption by which the collection is generated.
Thus, an interesting question arises: why not implement Internet services or resources under a scheme similar to that described, where the provider provides what is required and the user only pays for the use he makes?
If this happened, the user would not have to worry about acquiring computer equipment and its maintenance, updating the applications or operating system, as it would be the responsibility of the provider.
It is for this reason, that organizations are directing their eyes towards this technology known as cloud computing (cloud computig), which is able to minimize the time spent in activities of lower value and allow personnel working in areas of technology of information, focus your attention on strategic activities that have a real impact on the business processes of the organization.
The use of this concept is spreading with considerable speed, resulting in an increase in the number of companies that provide services through this technology, as well as organizations that are thinking seriously about the adoption of cloud computing as a totally viable alternative.
“Cloud computing is a paradigm that allows us to offer computer services through the Internet, in this context the cloud is a metaphor for the Internet” 1 . The types of services that can be provided through the cloud are extensive. According to this model, the client pays a provider for a service or for the use of a specific resource (memory, storage, processing, software, databases, etc.) and the latter provides said service through the Internet.
The commercialization and standardization of technologies; virtualization and the growth of service-oriented software architectures and the increase in the reliability of Internet business solutions; they are the bases on which the computation in the cloud has managed to grow.
These three trends, according to Christy Pettey, an analyst at Gartner Daryl Plummer, in their article Gartner Says Cloud Computing Will Be As Influential As E-business , constitute a discontinuity that will create a new form of relationship between those who use IT services and those who offer them. Essentially this will mean that users will be able to focus their attention on what the service provides instead of worrying about how it is implemented or where it is hosted.
ADVANTAGES OF CLOUD COMPUTING
Costs It could be the most attractive advantage that computing has in the cloud, and if it is not, at least it is the most obvious of all that this technology offers. By leaving the responsibility for the implementation of the infrastructure to the provider, the client does not have to worry about buying computer equipment, training personnel for the configuration and maintenance of these, and in some cases, the development of the software. In addition, the user of these services only pays for the resources he uses, allowing him to design a payment plan normally from the time it is used (memory, processing, storage).
Competitiveness By not having to buy expensive equipment, small businesses can have access to the newest technologies at prices within their reach paying only for consumption. In this way organizations of any kind could compete on an equal footing in IT areas with companies of any size. The competitive advantage is not in the one who has the computing resources but in the one who uses them best.
Availability. The provider is obliged to ensure that the service is always available to the customer. In this sense, virtualization plays a fundamental role, since the provider can make use of this technology to design a redundant infrastructure that allows it to offer a constant service according to the client’s specifications.
Abstraction of the technical part. As mentioned when talking about costs, the cloud computing allows the client the possibility of forgetting the implementation, configuration and maintenance of equipment; transferring this responsibility to the service provider.
Access from any geographical point. The use of applications designed on the paradigm of computing in the cloud can be accessed from any computer in the world that is connected to the Internet. The access is usually done from a web browser, which allows the application to be used not only from a desktop computer or a laptop, but goes further, allowing the user to make use of the application even from mobile devices such as smartphones .
Scalability The client does not have to worry about updating the computer equipment on which the application he/she is running is used, nor about updating operating systems or installing security patches, since it is the obligation of the service provider to perform this type of service. updates In addition, these are transparent to the client, so the application must continue to be available to the user at all times even when the process of updating the provider’s side is being performed. Updates and new features are installed almost immediately.
Concentration of efforts in business processes. As a result of the aforementioned advantages, the client can concentrate more resources and efforts towards a more strategic and transcendent aspect, which has a direct impact on the business processes of the organization, transferring to the provider the responsibility of the implementation, configuration and maintenance of the infrastructure necessary for the application to run.
DISADVANTAGES OF CLOUD COMPUTING
Privacy. It is understandable the perception of insecurity generated by a technology that puts information (sensitive in many cases), in servers outside the organization, leaving the data provider responsible for the data. The issue to be discussed here is that of privacy, since for many it is extremely difficult to entrust their sensitive information to third parties and consider that what the cloud computing proposes puts at risk the vital information for business processes.
Availability. While it is true that availability was previously included as an advantage, it remains a responsibility that belongs solely to the service provider, so if your redundancy system fails and fails to keep the service available to the user, it does not You can take no corrective action to restore the service. In this case, the client should wait until the problem is solved on the provider’s side.
Lack of control over resources. By having all the infrastructure and even the application running on servers that are in the cloud, that is, on the provider side, the client completely lacks control over resources and even information, once it is uploaded to Cloud.
Dependence. In a solution based on computing in the cloud, the client becomes dependent not only on the service provider but also on his Internet connection, because the user must be permanently connected in order to reach the system that is in the cloud .
Integration. Not all environments are easy or practical to integrate resources available through cloud computing infrastructures with systems developed in a traditional way, so this aspect must be taken into account by the client to see how viable it is Implement a cloud-based solution within your organization.
The cloud computing can be divided into three levels depending on the services offered by the providers. From the innermost level to the most external one, we find: Infrastructure as a Service, Platform as a Service and Software as a Service. Below is a brief description of each of these levels: