We have previously talked about the different types of cloud computing. Here we want to take a closer look at what people actually mean when they talk about the ‘elastic cloud.’
To put it quite simply, the elastic cloud refers to resource elasticity. A publication from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany defines it as, “the degree to which a system is able to adapt to workload changes by provisioning and de-provisioning resources in an automatic manner, such that at each point in time the available resources match the current demand as closely as possible.”
This essentially means that the system can increase or decrease the amount of resources used at any time to adapt to demand changes. The benefit of this is that it is extremely cost effective as no resources are being used unnecessarily, and you are only paying for what you need.
It is important to note however that this is not the same as scalability. Scalability is the ability of the system to accommodate a load increase by improving resources such as either scaling up – improving on their hardware or by scaling out – increasing nodes. The key difference between elasticity and scalability is time. Elasticity is how to adapt live to workload changes and scalability is the planning for future demands.
Clouds that are truly elastic are able to support dynamic cloud-based applications so that they are fully self-managing, as well as resilient to workloads surges that would normally cause a system failure. They are specially designed to maximize on-demand, scaled-out infrastructures independent of other cloud service providers.
An example of this is Cloudscaling. They are an elastic cloud provider that takes it one step further – they help you get there. They do this with their ‘cloud concierge’ service. This service provides enterprises with the tools and resources necessary to set up a fully equipped, OpenStack-powered private or hybrid cloud solution.
Azmir Mohamed, the vice president of product management at Cloudscaling explained, “Many IT professionals today are unsure how to adopt OpenStack or leverage it for business and IT transformation…We created Cloud Concierge to reduce the complexity of deploying OpenStack and enable IT teams to gain the skills and insight required for operating in the modern cloud era. Our Solution Architects take an organization from zero to full-production cloud in less than six months, all at an all-inclusive price with no costly surprises, and in a way that makes sense for their particular business.”