Trendspotting - The service that saves
You’d need to have lived under a rock for the past year not to have heard of software as a service (SaaS). But what about infrastructure as a service?
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) is all about having the right technology at your disposal, but without spending a fortune up-front to acquire it.
Rather than go out and buy servers, PCs, software licenses, data centre capacity or network equipment, all this stuff can be delivered as an outsourced service, according to need. The service provider owns the equipment and has to run and maintain it for you. The user organisation is then typically billed on a utility basis, depending on the amount of resource consumed.
The essence of IaaS will be familiar to anyone experienced in using a web hosting1 service, or virtual private server1 offerings. And yet IaaS differs in that it potentially goes right down to the last detail of infrastructure that an enterprise might need.
Any organisation looking to benefit from an IaaS model should definitely consider the following prior to signing any contract:
- Service level agreements Check the details of an SLA to see what might happen in the event of a service failure.
- Billing Consider how a utility billing arrangement might work for you. For example, is billing by the hour or by instance of usage?
- Scale IaaS is especially useful for those organisations that need to scale fast. But is scalability one of your needs?
- Security If somebody else is looking after your infrastructure needs, how security-savvy are they? Are you OK with multiple tenants co-existing on the same shared infrastructure resources?
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