What are Cloud/IaaS/PaaS tools?
Three fundamental ‘layers’ form the basis of the cloud computing model. These include Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) tools. The third is Software as a Service (SaaS).
IaaS tools provide access to computing resources through virtualized environments. With IaaS tools, the computing resources being accessed replicate the capabilities of hardware. These virtual hardware offerings can include server space, load balancers, IP addresses, network connections and additional bandwidth.
While IaaS tools provide virtual hardware, PaaS tools grant access to platforms and environments which allow developers to build services and applications online. PaaS tools are cloud-hosted and are accessed through web browsers.
What do they do?
IaaS tools are provided by a third-party which hosts infrastructure components, such as hardware, software and servers. These virtual platforms are highly scalable and can be adjusted by users on-demand, making them ideal for temporary workloads or jobs that may change unexpectedly. IaaS environments also include a deep level of administrative automation, and are capable of dynamic scaling and desktop virtualization. As IaaS tools normally charge per-use, they eliminate the cost of having to deploy costly in-house hardware and software.
PaaS supports the entire development cycle, from conception through to creation, testing and deployment. They provide a high level of management from both providers and support channels. PaaS tools are frequently updated with new and features and functionality – as they are mostly provided on a ‘pay-as-you-go’ tariff, customers can choose and pay for what they need without getting lumped with bloatware.
What are the benefits?
Both IaaS and PasS eliminate the need for costly infrastructures. They provide cost effective scalable solutions, freeing organizations from time consuming and complex maintenance procedures, which will instead be handled by the provider. The solutions allow companies to quickly scale, as the resources are available almost instantly. This means there are no more delays in capacity expansion, or software wastage. Also, as IaaS and PaaS are cloud-based solutions, working habits are no longer restricted by location. Employees can access these facilities from anywhere with an internet connection.