However, in practice, private cloud storage is frequently provided utilizing out-of-date storage infrastructure. The private cloud should perform the same for storage. Traditional data backup and storage technologies are unable to meet the elasticity and flexibility demanded of cloud infrastructure on a scale comparable to the cloud.
A private cloud is a type of cloud computing infrastructure that is utilized by just one enterprise, generally by several users. A private cloud’s crucial feature is its total separation from other businesses.
Contrary to popular belief, private clouds are not limited to on-premises deployment. A private cloud may be owned by one company and operated in another physical location by a separate company (a service provider).
The National Institute for Standards and Technology states that a computer system must meet the following criteria to be deemed a private cloud:
- Provide on-demand self-service to computing resources
- Make resources accessible from any type of device
- Pool resources with multi-tenant resource allocation
- Enable elasticity, with the ability to auto-scale resources up and down
- Rating and metering, with resources, billed to consumers or allocated according to quotas
What is Private Cloud Storage?
A service approach for providing storage to users within an enterprise is private cloud storage. The same private cloud capabilities—on-demand access, resource pooling, elasticity, and metering—that are used to provide compute resources on-demand (such as Linux machines) may also be used to provide storage resources.
Private cloud storage is typically purchased by businesses to meet compliance or security needs. On-premises applications that demand high-throughput or high-latency data access are another use case that necessitates placing the storage physically close to the storage consumer.
Private Cloud Storage Capabilities
Private cloud storage needs to ideally be made available as a service. Similar to other private cloud resources, it ought to facilitate:
- Elasticity: Users should have on-demand access to storage and be able to increase or reduce their storage capacity via a self-service system. Storage ought to be made available as a service that is separated from the underlying storage architecture.
- Multi-tenancy: Private cloud storage should be able to accommodate numerous users, who might be several departments or business units while maintaining isolation so that no user can access the data of another. No matter the load, every consumer should have a guarantee of performance.
- Reporting and billing: The private cloud should be able to track storage usage by various users and, in many situations, charge the appropriate division or business unit for their use, or at the very least, figure out their proportion of storage costs.
Private cloud storage is intrinsically constrained to the internal storage infrastructure maintained by the company, unlike public cloud storage services like Amazon S3, which enable limitless scalability. Hard drives, SAN, or NAS may be used to run storage, which may restrict an organization’s ability to implement resource pooling and multi-tenancy.
A storage device that offers complete cloud computing capabilities is called Cloudian Hyperstore. It clusters storage nodes and uses Software Defined Storage to enable natural resource pooling. Hyperstore supports multi-tenancy for various users inside the company, and the company may easily scale up storage by connecting more storage nodes.
Benefits and Challenges of Private Cloud Storage
Private cloud storage requires a specific explanation because it entails high initial costs and complicated maintenance, whereas pay-per-use public cloud providers offer identical services.
Benefits of private cloud storage
- Cost of ongoing operations – For big storage volumes, on-site storage is usually always more economical than public cloud storage.
- Customization – In the public cloud, businesses can only use a limited range of storage services with rigid setup and usage restrictions. Organizations in the private cloud are completely free to choose their storage technology and tailor it to their own needs.
- High performance—in the public cloud, a lot of users use the same storage infrastructure. Storage providers could not promise performance or might charge more for throughput or performance. Dedicated hardware installed on-site often perform far better than cloud-based alternatives.
- Low latency—local storage will offer substantially lower latency than storage placed in a faraway cloud data center for on-premises applications.
- Security – Due to its extreme isolation from other businesses, the private cloud may offer stronger security. However, substantial security protections that may not be present in a private cloud are provided by public clouds.
Challenges of private cloud storage
- Capital expenses and operating costs—A private cloud storage system demands significant upfront investment and ongoing IT efforts to maintain. Costs will be greater even if you rent a private cloud from a service provider because the resources are only for your company and not shared with anyone else.
- Complexity—For the deployment and management of private cloud storage, IT teams require particular knowledge.
- Hard to scale—It is challenging to scale up private cloud storage on-demand; it requires investing in and installing more storage.
Types of Private Cloud
A private cloud may be divided into four main categories: virtual private cloud, managed private cloud, hosted private cloud, and on-premise private cloud, depending on who controls the private cloud environment and where the cloud solution is located. Let’s examine each one in further depth.
1. Virtual private cloud
With the aid of public cloud resources, a virtual private cloud (VPC) provides the advantages of a private cloud (greater control and a more isolated environment). Although the terms private cloud and virtual private cloud are frequently used interchangeably, they have several differences.
The internal IT department of a firm serves as the service provider and the various business divisions serve as tenants in a typical private cloud. A public cloud provider serves as the service provider and the cloud users serve as the tenants in a virtual private cloud architecture. A virtual private cloud, to put it simply, is a hybrid form of cloud computing in which a private cloud solution is made available inside the architecture of a public cloud provider.
2. Managed private cloud
An unshared infrastructure private cloud concept is known as a managed private cloud. Additional names for it include dedicated and single-tenant clouds. A third-party provider is in charge of managing this particular private cloud. The company offers remote management, maintenance, updates, and support for the private cloud. Vendors occasionally also oversee cloud-based software solutions.
3. Hosted private cloud
Vendors of hosted private clouds provide cloud servers in their own data centers and are in charge of security administration. Users get access to more resources, a support staff, high-demand scaling options, and a user-friendly interface to help with server maintenance in a hosted private cloud model.
4. On-Premise private cloud
In addition to providing cloud servers in their own data centers, hosted private cloud suppliers are also in charge of security administration. Users of a hosted private cloud model have access to more resources, a support staff, high-demand scaling options, and a user-friendly interface to help manage servers.
Top 8 Best Practices for Implementing Private Cloud Storage
The worldwide cloud market is dominated by private clouds. According to Denodo, a data virtualization provider, about a quarter of all workloads across 150 worldwide enterprises were housed on a private cloud as of the fourth annual cloud utilization study. Private cloud adoption is critical for your IT strategy as businesses move away from generic public cloud solutions and toward something more specialized and secure.
Here are the top 8 best practices for getting started.
1. Choose a hyper-scale private cloud provider
The lack of scalability is a major obstacle to the broad adoption of private clouds. The private cloud has always been challenging to grow because it depends on a pre-specified set of resources controlled by the organization or its cloud partner. Working together with a hyper-scale organization like IBM or Equinix could be able to solve this issue.
Hyperscale basically indicates that the cloud architecture was created to grow in response to increased demand. The advantages of public and private cloud systems are successfully combined with hyper-scale-compatible private clouds.
2. Ensure that your private cloud partner offers managed services
Private cloud solutions often demand more IT work and more regular involvement than public clouds, which can be set up once and forgotten. For a company to maintain an end-to-end private cloud that receives outside assistance, it will take a sizable in-house IT team, complex technologies, ongoing training, and major resources.
It is advised to work with a private cloud provider that also provides managed services and manages the setup, use, and maintenance remotely. Another emerging approach is managed private cloud as a service, which is now provided through a collaboration between Cisco and IBM. Under this model, an outside partner runs your private servers, in this instance VMware and IBM, on a subscription basis.
3. Carefully assess the front end for ease of use
Enterprises want a strong front-end interface that can assist in tracking ongoing private cloud activity, even with managed services. What is the state of the storage? How are network resources and virtual machines provisioned? Can issue automated resolution procedures be defined?
All of these and more are possible thanks to the front-end user interface (UI). It lessens the manual work required of the internal IT staff and aids businesses in maintaining communication with their managed services provider. Additionally, your private cloud partner should be able to provide tailored automation frameworks in line with your company’s needs.
4. Make private cloud storage interoperable with other environments
Private clouds are officially intended to be isolated infrastructure pieces that interface with other resources seldom, however, this might hinder productivity and performance. Because of this, interoperability is necessary, even if it results in a setting that resembles a hybrid cloud just a little bit.
In fact, hybrid cloud-enabling interoperability is mentioned as a crucial component for private cloud adoption, which may assist offer a strategic and competitive advantage, in the 2021 IDC Survey Spotlight on on-premise private cloud solutions. The usage of identical management tools, server images, frameworks, and other cloud components across various settings will also be made possible via interoperability, resulting in a simpler, more affordable IT stack.
5. Bring uniformity into your application and hardware stack
Implementing a totally private cloud environment carries some hazards, one of which is that it can cause eventual spread and fragmentation. Consider, for instance, a situation in which IT begins provisioning.NET programs for Windows servers while providing Java apps for Linux servers, and two servers from separate manufacturers are operating on distinct settings.
This gradually raises your maintenance expenses, muddles the process map, and adds to your overhead. Therefore, it is desirable to unify hardware configurations when outdated equipment is decommissioned as you grow your private cloud environment. To record all applications across operating systems and settings, the corporate application policy should allow for exceptions.
6. Leverage PaaS to accelerate your cloud application roadmap
Developers may design and host apps using a cloud-native approach with Platform as a Service (PaaS). To significantly reduce your time to go live, PaaS solutions offer standardized software components, essential middleware, dev tools, automation scripts, and pertinent web services.
Given that the private cloud requires a significant financial commitment, PaaS could hasten ROI creation. PaaS solutions are also self-service, user-friendly, and prepared for implementation with little assistance from a third-party provider. A private cloud and PaaS may support company activities and allow more effective resource usage.
7. Monitor CPU, memory, and storage issues on a per-application basis
The three most important variables need to be tracked in real-time. Your IT team can learn from a business intelligence dashboard what the current level of private cloud utilization is, which apps are the most resource-intensive, whether an app is using more resources than expected, and whether resource availability is keeping up with demand.
You may need to invest in more private cloud resources if utilization is nearly always close to 100% or thereabouts. Additionally, creating long-term value can benefit from a dashboard that tracks CPU, memory, and storage usage. When historical data is visualized as time-bound trends, you can determine exactly when demand is at its highest and when your resources are idle.
8. Establish policies for backup and disaster recovery
Your IT infrastructure’s private cloud is crucial since it may be utilized as a working environment and to store very private data. A private cloud outage can seriously harm both your business’s operations and its clients. For this reason, you need a solid backup and disaster recovery plan that specifies failover procedures where crucial services are moved to a backup component in your cloud environment.
There are more options available now than ever before if you’re thinking about deploying a private cloud. However, to maximize the benefits of the private cloud, a thorough and well-thought-out approach is essential. Businesses must evaluate their operational procedures before deciding which kind of private cloud would work best for them. The appropriate cloud solution boosts an organization’s business growth, speeds up innovation, and improves performance, enabling it to compete successfully in a market. (*)