When it comes to business, few things are as misunderstood as ‘the cloud’. The major issue it seems, is a common lack of knowledge: many professionals see the cloud as a single product, and therefore hold judgement on the cloud industry as a whole, based on stories of major cloud failure they may have seen in the news. It’s understandable to see how such stories may cast shadows of doubt over cloud services, with high-profile cases of network failure from the likes of Amazon, Microsoft and Google in past years doing little to reinforce public opinion. However, what is often overlooked is that the cloud in these instances is a very different product to the cloud designed for single business use. Public Cloud Public cloud services, including applications, storage, email and other on-demand resources are made available to the general public by a service provider, such as Amazon, Google, or […]

When it comes to business, few things are as misunderstood as ‘the cloud’. The major issue it seems, is a common lack of knowledge: many professionals see the cloud as a single product, and therefore hold judgement on the cloud industry as a whole, based on stories of major cloud failure they may have seen in the news.
It’s understandable to see how such stories may cast shadows of doubt over cloud services, with high-profile cases of network failure from the likes of Amazon, Microsoft and Google in past years doing little to reinforce public opinion. However, what is often overlooked is that the cloud in these instances is a very different product to the cloud designed for single business use.
Public Cloud
Public cloud services, including applications, storage, email and other on-demand resources are made available to the general public by a service provider, such as Amazon, Google, or Microsoft. The type of services that these providers offer – Gmail & Google Docs, or Microsoft Hotmail, for example – are usually free to use, or available on a pay-per-use model. Essentially, anyone with an internet connection is free to access these cloud services whenever and wherever they want.
For domestic use, the public cloud is more than adequate, as most people require little more than email services, and perhaps a few GB (Gigabytes) of storage on any given day. If these systems fail and data is inaccessible for a few hours, it’s usually not a big deal, albeit annoying. However, for businesses and organisations who rely on the ability to access data and services, even the smallest amount of downtime can have extremely damaging consequences.
Private Cloud
Private cloud services are completely different to public; usually bespoke, managed either internally, or outsourced to a cloud services provider, private cloud infrastructure is designed for and delivered to a single organisation, as opposed to the general public. Managed cloud services allow businesses to utilise a number of virtual business applications: including Hosted IP telephony (voice); data management; server hosting; and Software as a Service (SaaS), which covers everything from accounting software and email, to database and virtual desktop software.
By opting for the private cloud, and by working with a reliable services provider, businesses can enjoy the following benefits:
A proactively monitored network – core systems are monitored 24/7/365, meaning the likelihood of downtime is significantly reduced, even extinguished completely.
Resilient application platforms – platforms meet the highest standards in security and service.
Next generation data centres – access to the best modern technology, with round-the-clock monitoring and support.
The differences between public and private networks are clear to see, so next time you read a case of public cloud failure, rather than let it deter you from the cloud, it should instead highlight the importance of hosting platforms and operating systems with a reliable private cloud network provider. By doing this businesses can enjoy cost savings, improved efficiency, better security, and above all else, access to data when and where they need it.