GREEN IT: Moving From Data Center to Cloud Computing
Moving to Cloud Computing
Businesses are responsible for the outright purchase of servers, PCs, software and storage devices needed in datacenter. The condition may require significant capital expenditure, and further investment in terms of managing and maintaining the infrastructure. Companies which embrace cloud computing do not face the same start-up or maintenance costs. By outsourcing elements of IT function to the hosted services provider, business are able to switch to an investment model based upon operational expenditure. Rather than buying technology and product licences outright, cloud users simply to rent – companies pay for IT services on a scalable subscription basis, benefitting from the provider’s economy of scale.
Ten benefits of outsourcing a datacenter: (1) uptime, (2) risk mitigation, (3) tax incentives, (4) speed of delivery, (5) discounted power costs, (6) operational expense vs capital expense, (7) connectivity, (8) focus, (9) regulatory compliance/audits, and (10) ecosystem (Huffman, 2013, baselinemag.com).
Cloud computing provider can be a viable alternative to traditional datacenter expansion. It still suffers from growing pains and vendors entering and exiting the market. In its simplest form, cloud computing equals moving corporate applications onto hosted systems or virtual servers and accessing those applications via a web browser or other local client technology (Ohlhorst, 2010, searchdatacenter.techtarget.com).
Datacenter that utilize cloud technologies are more efficient than traditional datacenter. Energy is usually lost though server underutilization, because most of the time these servers are just in idle mode, but in a cloud environment the system is managed to run at the highest efficiency.
High-speed Internet, Web 2.0, and information explosion have facilitated the beginning of the cloud-computing era. As all kinds of cloud devices and cloud services emerge, the cloud-computing datacenter has become the foundation for promoting ICT convergence and deploying cloud services. Market transformations are creating demands to build cloud-computing datacenters.
Technical considerations when moving to the cloud: (1) which apps – how do we decide? (2) security considerations – how do we keep ourselves safe? (3) compliance considerations, (4) performance – when speed matters, (5) migration strategy (Kepes, 2012, infosecisland.com). Consideration before moving a datacenter to the cloud: (1) why should agencies set up an internal datacenter like a cloud? (2) what do agencies need to do to build a cloud? and (3) what obstacles prevent agencies from moving to a cloud? (Robinson, 2009, fcw.com).
In house datacenter versus cloud computing:
The main difference between a cloud and a datacenter is that a cloud is an off-premise form of computing that stores data on the internet, whereas a datacenter refers to on-premise hardware that stores data within an organization’s local network. While cloud services are outsourced to third-party cloud providers who perform all updates and ongoing maintenance, datacenters are typically run by an in-house IT department (Angeles, 2013, businessnewsdaily.com).