Windows Server Migration
Migrating to Private Cloud - Part 2 OnDemand SelfService
Continuing our look at how Microsoft designed Windows Server 2012 to deliver private cloud solutions.
In our previous post we talked about how one of the things we’ll be reading about throughout the coming year is the migration to private cloud. We established that a private cloud is not necessarily located somewhere other than your own premises. In fact, a private cloud server may be located on your own premises, in a co-location facility or at a “cloud provider.” But wherever it is, it is dedicated solely to your organization.
To distinguish a private cloud server from what is traditionally thought of as a server, Microsoft has turned to the most well-established standard, the definition of cloud computing as published by NIST, the National Institute for Standards & Technology. We strongly recommend that you review the brief NIST Definition of Cloud Computing. We concluded that Microsoft has embraced the five essential characteristics of cloud computing from the NIST definition to help define what a private cloud truly is:
• On-demand self-service
• Broad network access
• Resource pooling
• Rapid elasticity
• Measured service
Today we will carefully examine the first of the five essential characteristics as defined by NIST:
On-demand self-service. A consumer can unilaterally provision computing capabilities, such as server time and network storage, as needed automatically without requiring human interaction with each service provider.
NIST’s choice of listing on-demand self-service first is difficult because we haven’t yet defined the services the user can request. Part of the core value proposition of cloud computing is that it reduces costs by pooling resources and dynamically making them available to users as needed, and doing so through automation without need for costly human intervention.
In a traditional setting if a user were to decide he needed more storage for his files, they would have to submit a requisition to their IT department. This would then need to be approved and then IT would either purchase and install a new hard drive to that user’s computer, or provision more storage to them on the company’s shared storage network. Lots of time, meaning lots of expense.
In the fifth post of this series we’ll talk about the “rapid elasticity” characteristic of cloud computing. Here, users can literally “throttle up” more storage, more memory, even more processing power as they need it. The self-service portal makes this easy for any user to accomplish. Similarly, the user can request new applications, utilities, and services all from one convenient, easy-to-understand and easy-to-use control portal.
The technology becomes transparent to the user.