Public Vs. Private Cloud

Cloud computing is not a new concept. In fact, cloud computing dates back to the 1950’s, where the concept of shared, centralised compute resources arose, allowing multiple users within a company to access information on separate terminals. Fast forward to the early 2000’s, post the infamous dotcom crash, the reborn technology and data driven world begun using cloud servers to store and access data anywhere, anytime.

In short, cloud computing is the delivery of computing services over the internet. The cloud is a service you are using right now and has become mainstream across business. Orchestrating the way in which we operate, the cloud is constantly introducing businesses to innovative, scalable and cost effective solutions for business growth. Underpinning a vast number of services, including your Microsoft Office 365 or Gmail account, through to the cloud services hosting all your data and running your applications, the cloud has become fundamental to all businesses.

The cloud is ultimately made up of storage, compute and network. However, you’ll find there are unique ways to deploy cloud resources in public and private cloud, both providing similar benefits and a gateway to cloud computing.

What is a Public Cloud?

The most common and cost effective way to deploy cloud computing is a public cloud environment, which is accessible by anybody, anywhere, over the internet. Public cloud resources are owned and operated by third party cloud service providers including Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Cloud. This means that all hardware, storage and network devices are shared with other organisations across the globe.

The public cloud environment provides organisations the ability to rapidly scale and is often used for less sensitive applications that demand a varying amount of resources. It is more suitable for large scale redundancy and is constantly updated by the service provider to provide the best possible services for its users. Therefore, the public cloud is not suitable in facilitating legacy applications and is often used to provide web based email, online office applications and storage.

What is a Private Cloud?

Private cloud is cloud infrastructure exclusively utilised by one organisation. This is hosted in a service providers (such as 5G Networks) privately owned data centre or physically located on premise within your organisation. In the private cloud, business services and infrastructure remains secure by being maintained on a private network, with components dedicated entirely to your own business. Within the private cloud, you are able to seamlessly customise your cloud environment to meet specific business IT objectives, providing flexible solutions to facilitate any business requirement.

More than 78% of Australian businesses are investing in private cloud technology to enable rapid service delivery.

Unlike the public cloud, a private cloud environment has the ability to facilitate legacy systems. Acting as a gateway for organisations stepping into the cloud, the private cloud can be customised to support any existing legacy application. Further to this, organisations may have strict security compliances in place around existing legacy applications, which can only be fulfilled within a private cloud environment.

Core differences between Public & Private cloud

Security

Security is one of the key differentiators between public and private cloud. Reflected in their respective terms, a private cloud will provide organisations the most secure cloud solution where an organisations data will not touch the public internet, significantly reducing the risk of intrusion. The private cloud is often used by government agencies, financial institutions and any other organisation with business critical operations seeking enhanced control over their environment.

Costs

The public cloud provides a cost effective solution with no need to purchase hardware or software, operating on a pay as you go model. Within a private cloud environment, a business will generally enter a contractual agreement involving a fixed cost arrangement. Businesses often value these agreements as they are able to forecast operational costs over a period of time.

A personal approach

When utilising a private cloud environment through a service provider, you will benefit from a personable approach and service. This involves being exposed to a service providers expert team, generally comprising of a dedicated account manager, on site and help desk support and project managers to develop the best possible private cloud solution to meet your business requirements.

Flexibility

A private cloud provides a customisable cloud solution with the ability to satisfy any business requirement. As you have no control over the cloud resources within the public cloud environment, organisations don’t have the luxury of making changes to suit their business needs within the public environment.

Finally, organisations have mixed business requirements that require the use of both Public and Private cloud solutions. This is where Hybrid Cloud steps in. Hybrid Cloud is the combination of both public and private cloud services allowing you to benefit from the best of both worlds. Organisations gain the scalability and computing power of the public cloud for basic and non-sensitive computing tasks, while keeping business critical applications and data stored in a data centre or on-premise, safely behind a company firewall within the private cloud.