The Battle Begins – Private Cloud vs Public Cloud?


Many companies, large and small, are transferring their data to the cloud for its flexibility and agility – especially when it comes to distributing workloads without raising the company’s budget. One of the first decisions a company has to make when deciding to make the switch to the cloud is whether to go with the public cloud or a private cloud. Each option has its pros and cons, which ultimately makes the decision unique for every company, based on its own specific needs.

Public Cloud

The public cloud is essentially a shared option, available over the internet – where the customer’s applications and infrastructure is hosted on the cloud provider’s premises. While the public cloud is shared by multiple organizations, each company’s data is separated, so only authorized users can access a particular group’s information.

The public option is great because it is inexpensive. There is no physical hardware needed, and companies can pay for a specific amount of people to access it (and cloud storage) to keep costs low. Overall, the public option takes the maintenance and time consuming complexity out of the mix, since it is hosted off site, and can be maintained from a simple configuration screen or cloud dashboard.

The issue with the public option, is that there is little to no control over the actual services offered (as third party providers are in charge of the data systems). Since the public cloud utilizes the internet to provide its services, transfer rates and page loading speeds can be slower based on one’s internet connection. Overall, the public cloud is probably not an ideal option for companies storing larger amounts of data.

Private Cloud

The private cloud entails a cloud solution where the infrastructure is hosted on a private platform (that is not shared with other companies or organizations). A private cloud allows for more control and customization, giving you the ability to add and delete services based on your company’s preferences and needs.

The private cloud option is great because it offers optimal control for the company and their customers. The hardware is onsite, and inherently maintained by the company. Companies are also able to ensure the highest levels of data security, and can ward off hacking and threats since the service is run on their own hardware infrastructure. The data on the private cloud is stored on the company’s intranet, as opposed to the internet, making transfer speeds much faster.

The down side of the private cloud is the higher costs of in house hosting and staffing, which are both necessary to maintain cloud services. With onsite hardware comes the high costs of actually maintaining it, including providing adequate energy and cooling. There is also a risk of data loss if there is any physical damage to the server due to overheating. The amount of storage is not infinite with a private cloud, either, as there is only so much space available within a given company’s datacenter. Even with all of the positives, companies have to purchase, build, and maintain when it comes to hosting their own private clouds.

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