Cloud servers are seeing a lot of use these days as more and more companies adopt the cloud. But exactly how well do cloud servers stack up against a traditional dedicated server?
Speed of Set-up
One needs time to provision and set up dedicated servers: it may take days, or perhaps weeks. Same thing with modifying and upgrading—these need to be done during a specific schedule, with accompanying downtime if no other servers are there to act as back up.
Cloud servers, on the other hand, can be provisioned in a matter of minutes. You may also set auto-scaling and auto-provisioning as needed, paying as you go.
With dedicated servers, the business owns the machines used for the data center. That means they have to pay for capital expense, and later on, server maintenance, upgrades, and security. This also means hiring personnel to attend to these requirements.
Cloud servers do away with capital expense and replace it with operational expense. In cloud servers, you only pay for what you intend to use—as your needs rise or fall, so do your costs.
Availability and Reliability
In some cases, traditional servers offer better performance because you connect directly to your own server. This is especially important for high traffic usage. Your server will also run until failure or until it encounters problems, which is why it is imperative to have back up servers in order to avoid prolonged downtimes.
Cloud servers are highly available, and downtimes are extremely rare due to multiple servers. Amazon Web Services, for example, boasts 99.9% availability, given their multiple availability zones. The cloud can also be accessed anywhere you can go online, though your speed may vary depending on the quality of the connection.
Traditional servers are often required to fulfill high level requirements for data security. So far, one can only achieve complete compliance with dedicated servers. After all, you can keep the server physically safe and oversee other security measures such as anti-intrusion software and access control. Simply put, you have full control over your dedicated server.
Cloud Services generally offer a very high level of security protection to your data right out of the box, so to speak. Cloud service providers follow several compliance requirements and have multiple protection systems. While cloud servers have far fewer security issues than one may think, you should still read through each CSP’s service level agreements to determine what their guarantees are and how they fit with your own needs.
Of course, you can always combine the best of both worlds with hybrid hosting, where you can set up a VPN (Virtual Private Network) with encryption and your own firewall. If you are interested in knowing how, take a moment to discuss your plans with a PolarSeven cloud consultant.
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