What is cloud hosting and what are its advantages?

The term ‘cloud hosting’ has been a common one since the 21st century. Apple is one reason for the rise in popularity of cloud hosting because of its services and the ability to store files and applications in the cloud. As far as the definition of cloud hosting is concerned, there are many ambiguities. There are few cloud hosting providers, and the parties present rewrite each other’s definitions. What is cloud hosting, and why does it work for my company?

cloud hosting
cloud hosting

The definition

If we simplify, we see that the term consists of two words. Cloud (cloud) and hosting (the service itself or web hosting). This type of hosting does not use a server that is available in one location, but one that is available in several locations. Cloud hosting makes use of a virtual server that uses multiple servers to host a website. This is also called the high availability platform. The collection of servers used in cloud hosting can be seen as a cloud, or the cloud. We will use this definition to illustrate two practical examples.

Advantage 1: scalability

One of the advantages of cloud hosting is scalability. Imagine a group of clouds on which your website is running. Suddenly, the number of visitors shoots through the ceiling. With regular hosting, the website pops. This is not the case with cloud servers. If there are peaks in visitor numbers, a search is made for other clouds, so to speak, so that your website remains online. That’s why with cloud hosting, a website is always online 24 hours a day. So for websites with large peaks in visitor numbers, cloud hosting is highly recommended!

Practical example: Martijn and his Christmas website

Martijn sells cherry-oriented products at the end of the year, such as Christmas hampers, baubles, Christmas trees and Christmas decorations. Martijn’s website is online throughout the year, but it is in the fourth quarter of the year that his traffic really picks up. His website is online throughout the year. The website runs well but crashes in November due to the many requests for his Christmas hampers and the increase in visitors visiting his website in one day. Martijn is now experiencing ‘downtime’ which is causing him to miss out on income. With cloud hosting, he can use fewer clouds in a quiet period and if he needs more cloud servers, this is always possible at a moment’s notice.

Advantage 2: costs according to use (pay for what you use)

With cloud hosting, you only pay for what you use. If your website outgrows a shared hosting package, a dedicated server is the only solution. These are often packages that cost more money. In the case of Martijn’s example above, it is not necessary to use a heavier hosting package throughout the year. Martijn only needs a hosting package in the fourth quarter of the year that can handle the increase in visitors. This makes it financially more attractive for him to invest in cloud hosting than in conventional hosting.

Scalability and pay for what you use are one of the many advantages of using cloud hosting.

Where did the cloud initially come from?

The internet-related ‘cloud’ is probably as old as the Internet itself. In network diagrams, the Internet is usually depicted in the form of a cloud:

Drawing a cloud is a lot easier than drawing the entire infrastructure between location A and B. In addition, the Internet has a specific property that makes a cloud a very good metaphor for the Internet; the only thing that needs to be known for successful communication between A and B is the IP address of the addressee. This is because the infrastructure of the Internet handles the processing (routing) of the traffic completely automatically. The route does not have to be known or chosen.

Another property is location independence. Communication is possible from any point with any other point. A final characteristic is device independence. Whether it is a tablet, a computer or a smartphone, the communication infrastructure and software standards ensure that the source to be consulted is accessible.

Because of this automatic character, the actual content of the cloud, the infrastructure, is no longer important. Therefore, this very complex infrastructure is represented in a simplified way by means of a cloud. This is the first use of ‘cloud’ in relation to the Internet.

Different clouds, No information is stored in a cloud in this context. The cloud in the network diagram is nothing more than a transport medium. For most Internet users it is therefore not a point of interest. But the metaphor, which can simplify extremely complex and automated matters, has been used for years in other fields.