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EMC Glossary

Public Cloud

Public clouds have the private cloud capabilities of automation and self-service, but run in multi-tenant off-premises environments.

Why consider a public cloud?

Small to large corporate and government entities use services provided in the public cloud to address a variety of application needs such as CRM, email, and collaboration. Because transparency and control are low, organizations often limit use of the public cloud to non-mission critical applications and non-sensitive information. Public cloud services are also used for servers, storage, and backup infrastructure, as well as application development.

Leveraging the advantages of cloud computing, the public cloud enables organizations to access applications quickly, offload the cost of supporting infrastructure, and free limited IT staff for more valuable activities. It also enables IT departments to rapidly deploy applications and scale application environments quickly during periods of peak demand. The result is greater business agility and efficiency. Similarly, consumers use public cloud services to simplify software use, store, share, and protect content, and enable access from any web-connected device.

How does a public cloud work?

Public cloud infrastructure service providers, to include ISVs and various types of third party infrastructure and platform providers, use cloud computing. Built on a foundation of virtualization, IT resources are owned and managed by the service provider, pooled and shared across customers, and accessed via the Internet or dedicated network connection. A variation is the community cloud, a multi-company, members-only version of the public cloud centered on a common interest.

Resources are made available to customers on demand through a self-service online catalogue of pre-defined configurations. Resource usage is tracked and billed based on a service arrangement, such as by consumption or subscription.

What are the benefits of a public cloud?

  • Provisioning of infrastructure and services is simple.
  • You can convert capital expenditures to operating expenditures.
  • Public cloud users pay only for what is used, though this is now a common feature in private cloud deployments.
  • No administration of the underlying physical infrastructure is required.
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