A Guide to Private Cloud Networks

Cloud networking solutions are a fantastic way to streamline your business operations and make the most of your technological investment—but with multiple service options, how can you be sure you are choosing the right setup for your business? Every type of cloud infrastructure provides computing services such as servers, storage, databases, and software over the Internet, but the similarities between public and private cloud networks end there.

To decide whether or not a public or a private cloud solution is ideal for your business, it is important to understand the differences between the two. While both public and private cloud services are incredibly secure and reliable, comparing their key differences will help you compare them and determine what will complement your business goals the most.

1. What is a private cloud and how does it work?

Private Cloud Networks

A private cloud system, also called an internal or corporate cloud, is a system that is accessible only to selected users. This differs from most cloud products that are on the market, which can be accessed by anyone who is using the company’s services. While the selected users will still access a private cloud system via the Internet or a private network connection, it provides a more secure structure for the valuable data that is stored.

Private clouds provide the same services as public clouds do, including self-service, scalability, and elasticity, and are available for use with Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) functionality. They not only increase the customization available to the business, but they also create more stringent security protocols, as businesses can implement firewalls and internal hosting to prevent third parties from accessing their operations. Additionally, private clouds can be used in tandem with public clouds to create a hybrid model known as cloud bursting.

2. The benefits of a private cloud for businesses

benefits of a private cloud

Implementing a private cloud can have more benefits for businesses than investing in off-site server space. Businesses are able to get more control and more functionality out of a private cloud in many instances so that they can be in complete charge of their data storage solutions. Some of the benefits of private cloud systems for businesses include:

Hassle-Free Scalability

Being able to scale your cloud storage up and down as needed is a great asset for businesses whose needs might change throughout the year, such as those with peak seasons or large surges in usage. With a private cloud system, your business can quickly adapt its storage to meet its needs—and this model also ensures that businesses are only paying for the cloud storage they use. While public cloud computing solutions are also pay-as-you-go models in most cases, scaling up or down can be difficult and force businesses into paying for underused services.

Easy Accessibility

With a private cloud system, you and your employees can access what is stored within the system from anywhere there is an internet connection, without compromising on safety and security. With the rise of remote work and off-site accessibility needs, this can enable you and your team to do your jobs from anywhere without opening your system up to vulnerabilities.

High Volume Capability

If your business utilizes a lot of data on a daily basis, a private cloud system might be the best choice due to its capability of processing high data volumes. This ensures you are able to easily capture and process any amount of data necessary to continue your business’ work, and are not hindered by throttling or other limitations of third-party systems.

Extreme Customizability

Most public cloud systems, like Microsoft’s Azure or Amazon’s AWS, utilize rigid systems that might not fit the needs of every business. With a private cloud system, you can easily customize your environments to be certain that they meet all of your business needs. This is also important for businesses that are in highly regulated fields, such as those dealing with medical, financial, or government data on a regular basis.

3. How to set up your own private cloud

set up your own private cloud

Setting up a private cloud for your business on your own is possible, but it does require quite a bit of management and knowledge to get right. All private clouds will require a business to use an operating system such as Linux as its base but can work alongside other software to increase the functionality of services. Additionally, you will need to build, maintain, and manage the cloud infrastructure and provide the staff to deal with upkeep and unforeseen outages. 

If you are interested in implementing a private cloud system without that much legwork, a managed private cloud system might be the best choice for you. In this scenario, a company will build your private cloud system and handle the management and maintenance of it. This means that businesses will not have to invest in IT teams or niche hardware, and can instead reap the benefits of a private cloud system without having to implement it themselves. This is often an ideal scenario for smaller businesses or those that do not want to build out an in-house technical team to manage their IT needs.

4. Private Cloud vs Public Cloud

private cloud vs public cloud

In the simplest of terms, a public cloud is a system that is utilized by multiple businesses on a free or paid basis, while a private cloud is a system used only for a single organization. With a public cloud, the business is using a service from another company in a symbiotic relationship—meaning the business pays the provider, and the provider provides a cloud computing service. With a private cloud, the business is managing their own cloud computing services, including the procurement, maintenance, and upkeep (or, more likely, they are letting a third-party IT company handle these details on their behalf).

Public clouds are considered public in that any company with a payment method and an internet connection can sign up for their products. Essentially, the company is renting out cloud computing space to individual companies, allowing them to use what they need to each day. Private clouds are only utilized and accessed by one organization, leading to more personalization and tailored services than what is offered by a public provider.

5. Tips on deciding if you should use a public or private cloud

Determining the best IT stack for your business can be a tricky thing, but below are some of our top tips to help you make the decision.

Reasons Why a Business Might Decide to Use a Public Cloud Service

Public cloud systems are the most common type of cloud computing service and for good reason. Brands such as Microsoft and Amazon have invested heavily in their cloud computing services, creating reliable and scalable cloud computing models that are easy for businesses to integrate with.

Because public cloud services are handled by the provider, that means they also handle the scaling, maintenance, and management that goes along with the cloud computing system. These systems are also extremely reliable because they typically use decentralized data centers and have a variety of fail-safes put into place to reduce and prevent unexpected outages and data loss. A public cloud service also provides nearly unlimited scalability, because their systems are prepared to handle a high amount of volume since they support businesses all over the globe.

Reasons Why a Business Might Decide to Use a Private Cloud Service

For many businesses and industries, a public cloud service will not suit their needs. This is especially true of businesses that work in heavily regulated fields, such as healthcare, government, or financial services, which are often subject to strict regulations surrounding the handling and storage of data. Even for businesses in less regulated industries, private cloud services can be a great option if you need a tailored approach to your cloud computing capabilities. 

Because private clouds are only accessed by a specific group of people, they are considered to be more secure than public cloud storage options. Public cloud systems are either stored on-site or at a third-party service provider’s datacenter, but can still only be accessed by approved users. Additionally, because the company is in charge of their own usage with a private cloud, they can ensure that they are not paying for underused computing services and can scale up or down more easily than a system in a public cloud infrastructure. Essentially, public cloud services provide businesses with more flexibility and control over their cloud computing system so they can be in charge of every element of their data storage.

The main downside of implementing a private cloud service is the need to implement, staff, manage, and maintain the system, but by working with a third-party IT provider, businesses can circumvent this roadblock and still reap the rewards of having a private cloud service. By choosing an IT company to handle your private cloud service implementation, you can get all the benefits of a public cloud service and a private cloud service at the same time.

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