“Cloud Computing” and “The Cloud” have become widely used buzzwords within the IT community. But what do these terms actually mean and how does cloud computing work?

Cloud computing is the process of co-locating a company’s computing resources into one or more servers that are then delivered as a service over a network, usually the Internet. Co-locating a company’s computer resources can consist of many different components but normally consists of consolidating the hardware and software utilized by the company. Typically, the location of the servers is remote to the business’ standard operations. The term “cloud” indicates that it goes beyond being a local or wide area network.

The cloud computing network model allows a company to shift the workload from the employee’s separate client computers to computers located in the cloud that serve multiple users, allowing employees to access the programs and computing power as they are needed to perform their work from any location. This reduces the number of advanced computers that need to be maintained at the business’ place of standard operations while allowing for a higher percentage of the computing capacity to be utilized more often and in a more dispersed manner. Maximizing the computing capacity usage reduces the company’s overhead.

Cloud computing software works in a similar fashion. Instead of installing separate instances of the software on each employee’s computer, one instance can be installed on the cloud network and then be accessed by each employee whenever needed provided that the company has the proper license for the software. Cloud computing software can be more cost effective and easier to maintain than individual client software options. Instead of updating each instance of the software running on each employee computer, the one instance of the software in the cloud is updated. This reduces the time spent updating software by IT employees and it also reduces variability from one employee’s computer to the next.

Cloud computing can reduce both software and hardware costs, while providing the necessary tools to continue operating the business. Cloud models are scalable to the business’ needs, but are not a fixit all solution for every technical need. The cloud is not limited to cloud computing, but offers a wide range of advantages to companies willing to enter and properly implement their cloud.

There are several companies that offer cloud computing server space in the greater Seattle area. One such company is Stratus Rack. Stratus Rack provides small businesses in the Greater Seattle area with affordable cloud server space. Businesses requiring more that 2GB RAM and 60GB storage space are encouraged to contact Optic Fusion to request a quote.