Private Cloud Computing as an Alternative to Public Cloud Computing

Cloud Computing and SAAS for Collaboration


Private Cloud Computing and an Alternative to Public Cloud Computing




     Many IT departments may not be able to move to the Cloud for countless reasons.  This could stem from disadvantages explained previously such as privacy, security, reliability, access or regulations.[iii]

Other reasons could be based off of trust. Rather than trust their operations and data to an external Cloud or SaaS, some companies look for alternatives. If you want some of the benefits of Cloud Computing but can't use external Cloud Computing, most turn to Private Cloud Computing.  Some of the advantages of Private Cloud Computing include combining resources so that they are one, computing "elasticity" which is allocating resources for spikes and controlling the security. [iv]  While there may be a few benefits when it comes to Private Cloud Computing there is more you lose.


What You Lose


     When considering Private Cloud Computing one must keep in mind what will be sacrificed.  Most of the advantages of Public Cloud Computing do not carry over into Private Cloud Computing.  One of the driving factors in any business is money.  When making a decision on Private vs. Public you must consider that most IT infrastructure until this point has been a fixed cost (hardware and software).  Some may argue that a fixed cost can be better than a variable cost (public cloud computing).  However, in bleak economic times like the late 2000's a company that has much of its IT infrastructure in variable costs will be better equipped to change.  Having the IT structure in the Cloud allows you to pay for what you need.  As demand increases you can quickly and agilely add resources.  When profit increases so does your variable cost, when profits decrease you can reduce your consumption of resources (virtual servers, storage and SaaS) and your cost follows. [v] 


     Costs carry into other considerations for IT infrastructure.  When hardware is moved into the Cloud an IT department no longer has to invest in square-footage, cooling, electricity and security (video surveillance/card access).  This structure could lead to a greener IT infrastructure as well.


In-House Applications


     This approach, often considered “status quo,” allows users and organizations complete control over their environments and data. Upgrades, backups and all maintenance is performed on the environment by in house IT personnel. When data is deemed too risky to move or a case for using the cloud cannot be established, this is often the best alternative. Many view this as the “if it’s not broken, don’t fix it” approach.


Open Source Software


     Open source software may provide an inexpensive alternative to traditional software and may be run either in a cloud or within an organization’s infrastructure. Some of the defining points of open source software include: free distribution; the inclusion of all source code with the ability and rights to modify by any; a license that’s distributed, not specific to a product, does not restrict other software, and is technology neutral.[i]

Many open source projects are offered by vendors as SaaS, to allow users lower cost options for applications such as document management, invoicing or CRM.




     If an organization has the hardware and staffing available, creating “virtual machines” may give them many of the Cloud advantages without having to rely on an outside source. Virtualization can offer many benefits[ii].