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What Is Cloud Computing? Part 2


Types of cloud services: IaaS, PaaS, SaaS

Most cloud services can be grouped into three broad categories: IaaS (infrastructure as a service), PaaS (platform as a service) and SaaS (software as a service). If you know what they are and how they are different, you can more easily reach your goals.

Infrastructure as a service (IaaS)

The most basic category of cloud services. With IaaS, you rent an IT infrastructure (servers, virtual machines, storage, networks, operating systems) from a cloud service provider with a usage-based payment. For more information, see Introducing IaaS

Platform as a service (PaaS)

Platform-as-a-service (PaaS) refers to the cloud service that provides an on-demand environment for developing, testing, distributing and managing software applications. PaaS is designed to enable developers to quickly create web or mobile applications without having to worry about configuring or managing the server, storage, network, and database infrastructure required for development. For more information, see Understanding PaaS.

Software as a service (SaaS)

Software-as-a-service (SaaS) is a method of distributing software applications via the Internet, on demand and in general on subscription. Users connect to the application over the Internet, usually via a web browser on their phone, tablet or PC. For more information, see the SaaS Overview section.

Types of cloud deployment: public, private, hybrid

All clouds are not identical. There are three types of cloud resource deployment: public cloud, private cloud, and hybrid cloud.

Private Cloud

The private cloud is the set of cloud computing resources used exclusively by a company or organization. The private cloud can be physically located in the local data center of the company. Some companies also pay service providers to host their private cloud. The private cloud is a cloud in which services and infrastructure are on a private network.

Hybrid cloud

The hybrid cloud brings together public and private clouds, linked by technology to share data and applications. By enabling data and applications to migrate from the private cloud to the public cloud, the hybrid cloud provides organizations with greater flexibility and more deployment options.

How cloud computing works

Cloud services all work in a slightly different way, depending on the provider. But most of them offer a user-friendly, browser-based dashboard that allows IT professionals and developers to control resources and manage their accounts.

Microsoft and cloud computing

Microsoft is a global leader in cloud services for businesses of all sizes. To learn more about our cloud platform, Microsoft Azure, and how it can be compared to other cloud service providers, check out What’s Azure? and Azure and AWS.


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