Almost everyone has heard someone talking about the Cloud. Even with all of the popularity it’s fairly difficult to find what the cloud is, how it works, and why it’s helpful. A large part of the confusion is that there is not just one type of cloud. There are many types of “Cloud Service Providers” available whose product offerings generally fit into one of the common Service Models: IaaS, PaaS, or SaaS. Beyond the individual service model each cloud provides their service with different software, architecture, and techniques which significantly change the overall product.
I’d like to elaborate on Infrastructure – IaaS or Infrastructure as a Service – that we provide at ServedBy the Net. Cloud Infrastructure is a service where a user can lease the virtualized equivalents of conventional server components as they are needed. Using Cloud Infrastructure allows the user to create new servers and modify existing servers – add vRAM (Virtual Memory), vCPU(s) (Virtual Processors), or vStorage (Hard Disk Storage) – without the hassle of purchasing, configuring, or even touching a physical server.
In order to understand how this works I’d like to explain the operational process behind the cloud. A server running in the cloud, or cloud instance, is very similar to a virtualized server instance. Virtualization has been around for much longer than Cloud Computing and describes the process of running multiple (Guest) Operating Systems on the same (Host) server through the use of a Virtualization Hypervisor. ServedBy the Net uses the VMware vSphere ESXi hypervisor installed on the host (physical or bare-metal) servers in our cloud. The hypervisor takes all of the physical resources (Processors, Memory, Networking, & Storage) and places them into resource pools so that they can be allocated to different Guest Operating Systems as they are needed. There are many advantages to virtualizing infrastructure which range from cost & power savings to high availability (enables the guest OS to restart on another physical Host Server should a physical server fail).
Cloud Infrastructure is managed through a web-site where you are able to create virtual servers (choose from pre-installed Operating System “templates” or install your own OS) which provisions your new machines onto the Hypervisor. ServedBy the Net is a VMware Service Provider using VMware vCloud Director to manage the Host Servers that make up our cloud. In vCloud Director you are able to create and manage virtual servers, virtual networks, and virtual firewall appliances all without leaving your desk. It’s like having a virtualized equivalent of global datacenter staff ready to place servers where you want them – without the wait.
If you would like to get started the process is very simple:
- Create your first Virtual Cloud Server:
Custom Cloud Servers