AWS and Cloud Computing For Dummies

AWS and Cloud Computing For Dummies

A beginners guide to what is Cloud Computing and AWS. This is going to be an introductory article for beginners who don’t have any prior knowledge of AWS or cloud services. The article is meant to develop an understanding for those new to the domain of cloud computing.

This would be my very first article of a series of writings on AWS services. This is going to be an introductory article for beginners who don’t have any prior knowledge of AWS or cloud services. The article is meant to develop an understanding for those new to the domain of cloud computing. The article will cover the following:

  • Traditional IT infrastructure.
  • What is Cloud Computing?
  • Traditional IT vs Cloud Infrastructure.
  • Introduction to Amazon Web Services.

Traditional IT infrastructure

When we log into our computer and browse over the internet via some web browser like Google Chrome to access our favorite websites such as YouTube.com or Facebook.com, a lot is happening behind the scenes. Many different physical and virtual, human, and nonhuman components are working in conjunction to enable a user to visit their favorite website or service.

For any organization, however small or large, when they have to provide access to any of their service, over the internet, to their users they need different components to do that. A traditional IT infrastructure for a web-based service includes the following core components:

  • Servers.
  • Storage and Databases.
  • Networking and Routing.
  • Labor and Space to operate and monitor the entire infrastructure.
  • Maintenance, Security, and Disaster Recovery.

This arrangement works pretty well if the number of users of a particular service is not that large. But as the service becomes more and more popular and the organization grows, scaling up the physical infrastructure and providing instant and uninterrupted access to users all the time becomes a daunting task. Take Facebook for example. About 2.6 billion users are using the platform. They have very large custom-built data centers, 15 as reported in 2019 around the globe, with more than 180,000 servers that are enabling these 2.6 billion users to get steady and uninterrupted access 24/7 to Facebook.com. At the core of each of these data centers are the above-mentioned components i.e. servers, storage, networking, and labor.

So we can see that not all organizations can afford this much physical hardware, labor, and operational space for their day to day activities.


What is Cloud Computing

To simply put, cloud computing is just data centers like any other data center having servers, storage, networking, labor and space, and all other necessities of a data center that are just not being managed by you. A trusted and independent party lends its entire infrastructure via the internet to the customers that are other organizations that either can’t afford to have their on-premise infrastructure or don’t feel the need to have one.

Cloud computing is the on-demand delivery of compute power, database storage, applications, and other IT resources with pay-as-you-go pricing. Access as many resources as you need and provision exactly the right type and size of computing resources, almost instantly.

Cloud service providers provide their customers with all the core services that are involved in a traditional on-premise IT infrastructure with added services and benefits in terms of pricing, availability of services, scaling up or down, security, maintenance, and much more. The customers usually pay for what they use at very reasonable costs and just have to worry about the kind of infrastructure they want and its deployment all virtually. Everything is accessible over the internet through some interface provided by the cloud service provider and users log in and simply deploy the kind of infrastructure they want.

Cloud Service Providers

Over the years cloud computing has seen massive growth with more and more organizations giving up physical data centers and moving to the cloud. In 2020, Top 3 cloud service providers would be:

  • Amazon(AWS) with a 60% market share in 2020
  • Microsoft(Azure) with 31% market share in 2020
  • Google(GCP) with 9% in 2020

amazon-web-services aws cloud-computing cloud-services cloud

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