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Cloud Computing is all about...?

Definition: Cloud computing is an umbrella term used to describe the use of computing services that are hosted on a network (typically the internet) and used by PCs (or other devices) without having to specify specific servers or systems.

Cloud computing is a disruptive model for enabling on-demand, convenient, flexible access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be quickly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction.
Everybody is sure that cloud computing is key to the future of IT, but people often seem unsure quite what it is. In fact, it's an umbrella term for a number of different trends, all involving the internet and its potential to simplify the way we use computers and extend their capabilities.

The "cloud" is the internet, and the term is fitting – it's large, out there somewhere, and fuzzy at the edges. Cloud computing is about putting more of your material out there and less on PCs or servers that a business runs for itself.

You can do this in many ways, but with every vendor claiming to do cloud computing in some form it has become confusing. It is worth understanding terms such as SaaS (software-as-a- service) and PaaS (platform-as a-service) so as to evaluate vendor claims. There are radical differences between the various forms of cloud computing, and they do not all offer the same benefits.

Cloud computing is a general term for anything that involves delivering hosted services over the Internet. These services are broadly divided into three categories: Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). The name cloud computing was inspired by the cloud symbol that's often used to represent the Internet in flowcharts and diagrams.
A cloud service has three distinct characteristics that differentiate it from traditional hosting. It is sold on demand, typically by the minute or the hour; it is elastic -- a user can have as much or as little of a service as they want at any given time; and the service is fully managed by the provider (the consumer needs nothing but a personal computer and Internet access). Significant innovations in virtualization and distributed computing, as well as improved access to high-speed Internet and a weak economy, have accelerated interest in cloud computing.              
A cloud can be private or public. A public cloud sells services to anyone on the Internet. (Currently, Amazon Web Services is the largest public cloud provider.) A private cloud is a proprietary network or a data center that supplies hosted services to a limited number of people. When a service provider uses public cloud resources to create their private cloud, the result is called a virtual private cloud. Private or public, the goal of cloud computing is to provide easy, scalable access to computing resources and IT services.                                                                                                  -Techtarget                                    

Some figures to understand Cloud :


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