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What is cloud hosting?

on in Website technologies

Cloud hosting diagram

What is the “cloud”?

The cloud is software that allows the computing capacity of computers or servers on the internet to be shared.  The concept of the cloud can be compared to how your local power company delivers electricity to your home.   Rather than each home possessing and maintaining individual generators to handle each homes peak demand, power companies link the demands of the entire service area into a network of power grids.   The power company still has capacity limitations but for example not everyone uses their oven at the same time; business peak requirements differ from residential; power can be shifted where needed within the grid.


Computation or server capacity can be shared much like electric power.  Dedicated servers typically operate at 10%-20% capacity, the balance is typically idle, required just to avoid your site "crashing" with peak demands.   Cloud hosting avoids that type of problem by linking servers together; when internet users access a specific website they find that site at a ‘virtual location’ which may shift from one server to another as demand shifts.   Networked properly; peak demand is not an issue and if one server crashes (we've all seen that) the website merely moves to another virtual site.


If I have a website what will be the effect of moving to the cloud?

Most sites will find the cloud not only more reliable and secure but also less costly.  The security of a local or in-house server was often the result of being too small to be a target for hackers; that is no longer an adequate deterrence. Cloud vendors are certainly a target but they have dedicated resources to avoid viruses and hackers.  Also, it is also inevitable that a single server on the internet will at some point either crash or require maintenance; your cloud hosted site merely moves to a new ‘virtual location’.  That does not mean you will never have a problem; and beware not all cloud vendors are created equal.   We have experience with and have developed a relationship with a few preferred cloud hosting vendors.  


What is the process to move from a dedicated server to the cloud?

At Santek we had previously operated and maintained dedicated servers but have transitioned all of our nearly 300 clients to the cloud.   There is a process to this transition; depending on the site it is generally not time consuming nor expensive but it does require attention to detail.   Having gone through the process so many times, we can help you avoid the pitfalls if you are considering such a change.   We feature ‘state of the art’ cloud hosting.   We have commercial bandwidth or computing capacity at commercial rates.   This allows us to split this capacity while handling all billing and support for your website in-house.   The result competitive rates and the best personalized support available. 

Tagged in: Technology