Business

Behind the Cloud: How Cloud operates

By KELVIN DAVIS Kelvin Davis is the director of Greymouse, a cloud service-provider that supplies high quality, time-bound and cost-efficient services through its own facility in Fiji. “How can data
15 Oct 2012 08:07

By KELVIN DAVIS

Kelvin Davis is the director of Greymouse, a cloud service-provider that supplies high quality, time-bound and cost-efficient services through its own facility in Fiji.

“How can data be stored in the sky?” Peter asked, “The Cloud is up there and not on the ground”. Peter is a long time business friend whom I was sharing coffee with. “Where is my data located if it’s in the Cloud?”
I thought to myself these are very good questions, so I tried my best to explain to Peter internet concept of Cloud data storage.
“Cloud is a metaphor (description) of a service that delivers data which are physically stored in a data center located around the world”.
“If your business needs to store furniture, paper and documents it needs storage space. Your option is either to build a new storage warehouse, or rent the space.
The good thing about renting is that it has lower capital costs compared to building an entirely new warehouse.
By renting, it gives you the freedom to increase or decrease the space as required.”Continuing I explained concepts
It’s the same with your data storage. You now have the option of renting data storage from a company somewhere on the Internet.
Continuing the analogy, I described the difference between

1. Public Cloud
2. Private Cloud

In Public Cloud Storage, both businesses and the general public can enter the warehouse area.
With a key, you have access to the door of your storage locker or room in that building. The public cloud has only one level of security and that is your room key.
Unlike the Private Cloud Storage which is specially built for higher security levels. Here, only you have access to the building, security grills and the keys to the storage rooms building.
You can then give staff access to different rooms inside that building whether it is in finance, operations and sales.
While the size of the building may vary, the general public and other businesses are locked out of your building.
Simply put, a private cloud storage provider has a block of land surrounded with high security fences and multiple buildings.
A data storage provider offers you storage space at a much lower cost compared to the excess costs you have to pay when buying the equipment and operating it in the office.
Some examples of Public data centers are provided by Google, Microsoft and Amazon.
Some of Microsoft’s renowned web services like Hotmail, Outlook, MSN and office 365 are located in various data centers in Singapore and Dublin.
On the other hand, Gmail and Google apps are located in Google Data centers around Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Finland, and Belgium as well as in six data centers in the United States of America.
Microsoft data center in Singapore has hundreds of shipping containers strategically built as one service with computing equipment linked together (containing servers and millions of disk drives) providing access to storage space. Microsoft sells the Public Cloud disk space.
Private Cloud data centers are provided by CT4, Host Networks, Rackspace plus many more.
Suddenly I could see Peter’s face lit up saying that, “The Internet provides a simple way to access data wherever it is located. So it’s no longer my problem because my personal Gmail is located in one or more of Google’s data centers.”
“Yes that is absolutely right”, I told him.
Soon after that we finished our coffee. It was a really interesting catch up and I promised Peter that I will definitely look him up on my next trip to town.




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