The last few years I spent a quite a bit of time talking about public clouds. When I published my cloud computing book, public clouds were mostly still believed to be a hype. Availability, security, persistence of data, and much much more was questioned.
Today only few IT professionals are stuck with this old school thinking. The major public clouds are a superset of what is provided by a classical data centers.
What features would you check for when looking at a potential cloud provider? Does your data center offer every feature and service listed below?
- All IT in the cloud is software. There is an API for everything. The whole data center is a set of APIs. This includes load balancers, servers, storage, databases, application servers, API gateways, firewalls, storage, etc.
- Short term capacity is very cheap.
- Since capacity is cheap, typically you don’t update or redeploy in the cloud, instead you spin up new immutable servers.
- Changing your hardware costs nothing. If you find out or assume that your application will run better on high-CPU instances instead of high-memory instances you can simply swap.
- Availability comes with no extra cost. You can place two instances in two fully redundant data centers for the same cost as placing two instances in the same data center.
- Also parallelism comes with no extra cost. Using 1000 instances for 1h costs as much as using 1 instance for 1000 hours. You’ve got a massively parallel supercomputer at your hands.
- You save the time for capacity planning since capacity is available on demand.
- Capacity planning still makes sense for predicting future costs.
- Procurement happens within seconds or minutes.
- You don’t pay for unused resources. Scaling down reduces your costs.
- You can put IT resources close to the customer location where they are needed since the public cloud will be globally available.
- Cost for resources in the cloud used to drop by around 30% every year. Long term projects with constant resource usage will cost less every year.
You care to disagree?