Private clouds represent one variety of cloud computing options that are offered exclusively to one user or organization, whether through a private internal network or via the internet. These services allow users to experience all the beneficial areas of cloud computing, like flexibility, expandability, and self-service, without needing to divide resources among any other users or organizations.
Such a concept seemed incredibly practical, powerful, and appealing when it first rolled out, which might explain why private cloud hosting quickly gained such massive popularity within the IT sector. But although an undoubtedly efficient and beneficial service, private cloud hosting isn’t necessarily the most appropriate choice for everyone.
To that end, here are all necessary aspects of private clouds you should know about, as well as how they operate, and the different variations that exist, giving you the opportunity to make a more informed decision:
How exactly do private clouds function?
Cloud computing works through virtualization or the construction of certain servers managed and defined by software. In other words, cloud computing gives you the opportunity to store and gain access to your information through the web, as opposed to your local hard drive.
As its name suggests, private cloud hosting (PCH) is a version of cloud-centered computing that is only devoted to one user or organization, being easily adjusted to account for their specific concerns. When utilizing private clouds, an institution would have the opportunity to combine the resources from different physical hardware into an online information pool shareable among the institution, without the requirement for outside sources.
Private clouds represent only one area of the available cloud computing solutions, which are made up of hybrid and public options as well. And even though all of these models function in a similar way, there are certain aspects that determine exactly how these models operate, thus distinguishing them from one another.
Private versus public cloud hosting
When third-party services provide certain computing resources which any user can access on the web, that is known as public cloud hosting. This usually represents a multi-user environment, where public cloud subscribers could share and utilize the given data and information.
Private clouds are more commonly selected instead of public clouds whenever a user needs a more appropriate and adequate solution to their operating needs, such as increased workload, privacy and safety issues, or an elevated level of service.
Of course, that doesn’t automatically mean that public clouds don’t have any advantages, as they offer a typically low price and the effortlessness of implementation, which could be critical to some users.
Private versus hybrid cloud hosting
Hybrid clouds, contrastingly, represent a mode of operation where private clouds are linked to certain public cloud spaces, thus giving their users the option to arrange their information across these two separate spaces. In that case, the utilized public cloud would then serve as an extended private cloud for its users, creating a more homogenous environment.
Mostly utilized by businesses, the hybrid version of cloud hosting generally provides a larger level of adaptability, allowing for an easily shareable and movable workload, in line with the user’s requirements. Hybrid clouds are usually the most fitting solution for the institutions which handle data processing, or those that generally tend to have bigger, more dynamic workloads, as this model allows users to divide their information between the cloud spaces for the highest efficacy.
However, hybrid clouds do have their drawbacks, as it’s exactly this beneficial elasticity that often sacrifices the higher control that’s provided by private clouds, along with the ease of use and also the convenience which public clouds tend to offer.
Different varieties of available private cloud options
In line with their manner of conduction and hosting, private clouds could be broken down into several different types, all serving unique functions:
- Hosted – In this space, the servers are reserved solely for one institution, and aren’t split between any other institutions or users. While the provider will configure the user’s network, and perform maintenance on all vital hardware and software, the server itself will just be utilized by one user.
- Virtual – This version represents a closed-off space within any public cloud, which gives its users the opportunity to control all their information privately, separately from other subscribers of that particular public cloud. While the server would be shared among a number of users in this instance, organizations can be certain that their information will remain private.
- Managed – This variety of private cloud represents a hosted space where providers manage all areas of cloud computing, often offering added services like management of storage and identity. This might be the most suitable option for those businesses and institutions which don’t have specifically trained staff members who would manage their private clouds.
Additionally, the available private cloud choices could also be divided by the form of infrastructure that they offer:
- Software-only – Mostly used in highly virtualized spaces, this option only offers the software which is vital for operating the cloud, often utilizing the user’s already available hardware.
- Hardware and software – Certain providers might also offer all-encompassing bundles that include both the essential software, as well as any hardware needed for operating the cloud. These options tend to be much more straightforward platforms installed on the institution’s premises, and could also be maintained by the specific provider, but not necessarily.
The positive and negative sides of private clouds
Now that you’re more familiar with what private cloud hosting represents, along with the different variations that are available, it’s time to weigh its positive and negative sides in an effort to realize whether it’s the right option for you:
The most significant positive aspect of private clouds is precisely the fact that users aren’t forced to divide their resources. Thanks to this, private clouds are incredibly helpful when it comes to those organizations which have bigger and more unpredictable workloads, and also the users who require higher safety, security, and potential regulatory conformity.
Whenever private clouds are enforced properly, they will also provide the same advantages which public clouds are touted for, like flexibility, self-service, and the opportunity to optimize resources or implement virtual machines.
Apart from these great advantages, PCH could also offer other positive aspects, such as higher customization options, improved security and safety of private networks, and also better performances thanks to privately managed resources.
Unfortunately, private clouds could also have certain drawbacks. For example, some technologies utilized within these private clouds, like self-service or higher automation, tend to bring additional layers of difficulties and complications. These aspects often require specialized IT teams to reorganize some existing infrastructures or include new management tools. In turn, this generally forces users to expand or otherwise adjust their staff, thus suffering certain losses.
What’s more, private clouds could often turn out to be much more costly options. Whether users choose to install and keep up private clouds by themselves, or even hire the services of their specific provider for managing, a significant sum will regularly have to be spent in either case. However, this is often a necessary evil of PCH, as the failure to properly establish and maintain the servers will likely lead to a lack of oversight and overall undependability of this service.
Who is PCH the best choice for?
Once you’ve determined your own priorities and needs in regards to cloud hosting, you can see whether private clouds are the most satisfactory environment for you.
For some businesses and institutions, PCH might be the only viable option that ensures conformity to laws and regulations, for example when needing to ensure the safety, integrity, and confidentiality of stored information.
Similarly, organizations that have relatively consistent and predictable resource needs might also see improvements from establishing private clouds, considering the fact that they have a higher chance of maximizing their resources, without requiring the full elasticity of public clouds.
Users who might benefit from a highly virtualized space might also want to consider PCH, as it will likely lead to improved performance, while potentially providing cost savings in certain areas.
Overall, unless you’re dealing with sensitive information of any kind, the choice of whether or not to opt for PCH will come down to your hosting requirements (like security, elasticity, and necessary compliances) as well as your available budget.
Largest providers of PCH services
In case you’ve realized that PCH is a great choice for you, here is a list of a couple of the most trusted and most commonly used providers to consider:
- HPE (Hewlett Packard) – Provides necessary cloud hosting software and hardware, and also virtual (or managed) private clouds.
- Dell EMC – Has virtual PCH, along with special cloud-management, and additional security programs.
- IBM – Has essential hardware, security features, managed cloud tools, and added operation and maintenance tools.
- Oracle – Has a special private cloud device, which allows for certain storage and computing abilities that are optimized for establishing PCH.
- VMware – Gives a specific product that allows for virtualization, as well as a specific data center that’s defined by software, and also management solutions for any private clouds.
Private cloud hosting can evidently be an incredibly useful and beneficial option for any users or institutions that have a need for a safer, more malleable, and more reliable hosting solution, while also having the vital means to support such high-level networks.
The guide detailed above will have hopefully allowed you to get more familiar with the different areas of private cloud hosting, thus giving you the opportunity to make the wisest and most satisfactory decision for you.