Imagine your infrastructure as a city with defined buildings that handle inbound and outbound information as well as information circulating within the city. One of the buildings may be a bank where data is kept safe, although, as you well know, this bank is best located outside of the city. In this scenario, Azure is the sky above your city – a virtual layer that borders the infinite space.
Within 12 years’ time, The Cloud has pushed itself into basic vocabulary. By reputation The Cloud is a place of storage, yet Azure has evolved into an even more abstract space. Azure is not just a static database but a virtual organism, where things “happen”. While Software as a Service (SaaS) has gained quite a bit of popularity with heavily utilized applications such as Salesforce, Dropbox, and Office 365, Azure has two other hybrid networking packages.
Platform as a Service (PaaS)
Management level : moderate. PaaS enables you to utilize Azure services such as AzureSQL, AzureBackup, or AppServices without having to manage the underlying operating system or specialized services. This frees up resources to focus on tasks that are important to your business instead of worrying about system updates or security patches.
Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
Management level : high. IaaS allows you complete control over the piece of sky above your city. Instead of purchasing a physical infrastructure that needs its own management and planning, Azure allows you to use only what you need, and remove a significant portion of IT management. IaaS provides 3 major items in your hybrid cloud/physical infrastructure strategy:
- Storage – holds your data for you and it keeps it safe from floods, fires and other sudden environmental disasters.
- Computing – enables fast changes and quick set-up of users through Virtual Machines (VMs).
- Networking – polices your users through authentication and authorization.
Now, you are wondering – Is Azure right for me? Or, better yet – Am I ready for Azure? Let’s take a look at the benefits of a Cloud over an On-Premise set-up.
|Installation||– Order hardware and software, deliver, configure and install it
– Large project planning to refresh old equipment
|– Buy online and set up right away via automation
|Maintenance||– Physical maintenance by network administrator
– Scheduled and unscheduled restarts
– Apply updates and patches
|– Updates and Patches are scheduled and applied automatically.|
|Capacity||– Purchase hardware that includes planning for growth potential||– Scalable, unlimited purchase on-line, made available right away|
|Redundancy||– Extra hardware must be purchased if outages cannot be tolerated||– Servers and Services can be brought up in alternate regions should a disaster occur|
If you have not yet considered PaaS or IaaS as an option for your business, now is the time – before planning for your next big IT purchase. Call us – our team can help assess which Azure service is best for your business. For a list of specific software integration, visit the Microsoft Azure Solutions page.