With more companies today utilizing Cloud Services, Microsoft Azure is a term used more frequently.  However, what is Azure and how can it help my organization? Let’s focus on some of the basic Cloud Business Technology Terms by exploring Microsoft Azure. In its simplest definition, Azure is Microsoft’s Public Cloud Offering Platform.  However, Azure is much more dynamic than you may think.  Microsoft Azure launched in early 2010, and today is a comprehensive portal that encompasses different cloud service platforms such as Software as a Service (SaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), and Platform as a Service (PaaS). We will define and explore each below:

Software as a Service (SaaS) as the name implies is taking business application software, in the past, installed on traditional computer servers and moving these to a “Cloud Environment”. Cloud Environment and terms such as “In The Cloud” simply means that information is exchanged and resides in massive remote Data Centers. To access your software, you just need authorization and the internet.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), moves your company into a cloud environment even future by having business applications and previously common storage devices, cables, wires, etc into a hosted, “cloud” offering.  Instead of just applications that are delivered through the cloud, consider entire data centers, including physical servers, storage, and traditional software now being part of Cloud Systems: that is what Infrastructure as a Service encompasses.  Part of IaaS would also consist of network security and firewalls as cloud service as well.

PaaS (Platform as a Service)  PaaS is similar to IaaS in that you have Cloud Infrastructure basics such as Servers, Storage, and Networking, but is much more dynamic and complex with a complete development deployment environment.  Platform as a Service, therefore, allows you to develop and manage applications with key components such as development tools, business intelligence, middleware, and more

It’s important to define “The Cloud” which is simply a metaphor for a network of internet storage devices and services.  Think of the past when you had a Personal Computer (PC)  that you were considering to purchase. One of the specifications of your PC was the storage capacity, in addition to its speed, RAM, etc.  With these early PCs, you just stored your information on your computer.  Nowadays, when every you store anything outside of your computer, chances are it is being stored in a cloud environment.  You are therefore transferring your information via the internet to another destination outside of your company to a trusted network. Many companies, such a Microsoft, have a vast network of managed data centers around the world; currently, more than 4o, which are consistently being monitored for security.

Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform can therefore be used for Data Storage, Networking, Analytics, Virtual Computing, and Business Applications (apps).  Azure can also be used for Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning, Hybrid Cloud Computing, Security. plus much other business technology uses.   Typically, there are subscription models based on a pricing structure related to data usage. Microsoft claims more than 99% up-time in addition to having the largest resources dedicated to maintenance, and importantly, the best internet security protection measures.  Microsoft Azure is a growing set of cloud services that continue to expand to bring modern business applications with multiple uses.

Contact Us to Learn more about how Microsoft Azure can help your business.

Posted by iCepts Technology Group, Inca  A Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider in Pennsylvania 

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