June 30, 2023 | Technology
More enterprises around the world are adopting cloud computing and moving away from on-premises (on-prem) data centers. To balance the transition, some of these companies have adopted a hybrid approach, which consists of the integration of their systems with on-premises and cloud data centers.
Data center operations can be divided into two main types: on-premises (on-prem) and cloud.
On-prem data centers operate through servers located within the property of the owner organization. The privately hosted servers allow full control of the data center's infrastructure. The owners also maintain the facilities.
The on-prem approach is also used to run private clouds, which are accessible depending on the needs of the internal or external users.
Cloud-based data centers are virtual spaces that organizations lease from third-party infrastructure providers. This type of data center allows fast scaling up of capacity when the need arises.
A public cloud center has multiple users, and the infrastructure is maintained by a third-party provider. Although the cloud space is shared, the data is secured through encryptions and other safety measures.
On-premises data centers are deployed in-house and depend on the enterprise's IT infrastructure. The resources available depend on the scale of the physical servers that the company has invested in.
In addition, the company is also responsible for maintaining the entire data center pipeline.
The cost of on-premises data center deployment includes hardware, power consumption, space, and ongoing maintenance costs.
On-premises data centers provide full access and control to the organization that owns them. This option appeals to industries that handle sensitive data, such as banking and finance. The level of data security in this type of center is more suitable for these industries, despite the drawbacks and higher cost. Industries that are highly regulated and need to comply with many regulations usually opt for on-premises data centers.
Cloud computing centers are hosted on third-party premises. These premises can be public, private, or hybrid.
Cloud data centers allow users to access as much capacity or resources as they need, whenever they need them. This is why the cost that the enterprise pays for the cloud service depends on the amount of resources they use. The company incurs no maintenance or other ongoing costs for the unused resources.
The cloud service provider does not have any control or access to the data. For security, the cloud center relies on the third-party provider’s measures to protect the data, which include the highest standard of encryptions as on-premises centers.
Enterprises that decide to move to the cloud computing model must conduct due diligence to verify that their third-party provider is up to date and in compliance with all their industry's regulatory obligations.
Moving to the cloud can be a good decision for businesses that are not bound by highly regulated industries. Cloud computing offers long-term cost savings, regular data backups, and resource flexibility.
Since cloud storage is managed by a third-party provider, IT staff do not have to spend time installing new software patches and updates. This frees up IT staff to focus on other tasks.
On-premises data centers are considered capital expenses, while cloud storage is considered an operational expense. On-premises storage requires a large initial investment to purchase equipment and install it in-house. Cloud storage, on the other hand, is managed externally, so there is no capital investment required.
Businesses pay recurring monthly fees for cloud storage, which helps keep acquisition costs down. Most cloud-based storage companies can adjust their pricing to fit the budget, whether businesses scale up or down. Businesses can also customize, add, or omit cloud storage features as needed. This flexibility is ideal for businesses that anticipate change and do not want to pay for services they do not need.
Cloud-based servers handle backups instantaneously, which is more convenient than having to schedule backups on a local server. This gives businesses peace of mind knowing that they can retrieve their data even if their computer crashes or their local files are deleted.
Businesses can easily add or remove storage as needed without having to install new hardware. This is especially beneficial for fast-growing businesses that do not want to be slowed down by outdated equipment.
If your business is not bound by highly regulated industries, you may want to consider moving to the cloud.
The choice between on-premises and cloud data centers is a complex one. There is no single "best" solution. The best option for your organization will depend on your specific needs and requirements. By carefully considering the factors outlined above, you can make an informed decision about which data center option is right for you.
Author: Muhammad Hasnul