Cloud Taxonomy: Platform vs Infrastructure

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Here are some slides I use to distinguish between the different types of clouds in use out there.


  • 1. The Cloud Pyramid Applications, Platform, Infrastructure Sam Charrington Appistry 1
  • 2. Cloud Infrastructure Provides access to Compute and Storage instances, on-demand Based an virtualization technology Advantages: Full control of environments and infrastructure Disadvantages: Provide little or no abstraction Examples: Amazon EC2, GoGrid, Amazon S3, Nirvanix, Linode
  • 3. What About the Applications? After a few hours, the fog of hype starts to lift and it becomes apparent that the clouds are pretty much shared servers just as the Greek gods are filled with the same flaws as earthbound humans. Yes, these services let you pull more CPU cycles from thin air whenever demand appears, but they can't solve the deepest problems that make it hard for applications to scale gracefully. Many of the real challenges lie at the architectural level, and simply pouring more server cycles on the fire won't solve fundamental mistakes in design.
  • 4. The Challenge: Cloud Presents New Application Requirements Modular, service-oriented Unpredictable load Dynamic Distributed Connected Multi-tenant Traditional Application Infrastructure Wasnt Built to Meet the Requirements of Cloud Applications
  • 5. The Solution: Cloud Platforms Abstract applications across individual cloud servers (application virtualization) Ensure application QoS: scalability, reliability, availability Provide run-time services for cloud applications via APIs, e.g. state, workload management Simplify and automate app deployment and management Cloud Platforms Provide the Glue that Allows Cloud Applications to Fully Leverage Cloud Infrastructure
  • 6. Cloud Layers Infrastructure vs. Platform Characteristic Infrastructure Platform e.g. Amazon EC2 e.g. Appistry EAF, Google App Engine Scope Virtual Machine Application Management Manual; machine-by-machine Automated; single step Ease-of-use Easy to provision new Easy to build/migrate cloud-enabled infrastructure applications; cut time-to-market Scalability Create new servers on demand Applications scale linearly Risk Reduce infrastructure investment Reduce project/development risk Reliability Reliable infrastructure Reliable applications Cost Pay only for what you use; use Enable application agility and reduce only what you need development costs Security Provide secure infrastructure Enable secure applications
  • 7. Hosted Cloud Platforms (PaaS) Provides platform benefits, but: Focus on single application stack (e.g. Ruby, Python) Lock applications to single cloud infrastructure provider Restricted to available services, e.g. cant use SQL compliant DBs as-a-Service
  • 8. Cloud Application Platforms Delivered as software Used in-cloud or on-premise Support standard enterprise software development stacks (e.g. Java, .NET, C++ via Eclipse, Visual Studio) Provide portability across cloud environments Provide essential services such as data Cloud App. caching and workload management


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