Choosing Between Flexibility and Control
Failed servers can have catastrophic effects on businesses in any industry, and yet many are still reluctant in moving toward a cloud-based system.
This is why many IT departments still wrestle with whether they want to adopt cloud computing technologies or stick with more traditional on-premises servers.
What are the pros and cons of Cloud and traditional in-house servers? Let’s take a look:
- No Need for Onsite Hardware: With a public cloud like AWS or Azure, there is no hardware to maintain. The cloud service provider spins up new servers, replaces old machines, swaps out buggy components, and ensures that security mechanisms are up-to-date.
- Cloud is Scalable: If most operations are conducted on-premises, scaling typically requires buying and deploying new servers, which can be costly and time-consuming. With cloud services, storage can be added as needed, with most solutions being on-demand so businesses only pay for what is needed. If an organization sees a seasonal peak in activity, cloud resources or user licenses can be added when the load is heavy and can be scaled back down when things slow down.
- Simple Setup: Getting started with a SaaS solution like cloud help desk or a filesharing application can be as simple as filling out an online form and clicking submit, depending on the service. Compare that to procuring hardware, project managing and installing, and maintaining a traditional on-premises alternative.
- The costs of data recovery could outweigh the benefits for companies that are not as dependent on uptime and instant recovery.
- Every organization will have a limit to data that can be stored in the cloud due to storage availability and cost.
- Though data can be backed up regularly, full data recovery can be time-consuming and impactful on systems.
- Better Performance: At its core, cloud computing is IT resources delivered over an IP network therefore, if your internet connection is slow, you can expect latency, which can lead to reduced productivity. An in-house approach to computing means that data resides locally so it can be accessed quickly, and it doesn’t have to leave your private network
- Efficient Security: With your own infrastructure, you know where your data is going and where it resides at rest. There is more control over potentially sensitive information, making sure it won’t end up on the hard drives of some server in a random data center.
- On-premise Costs: Businesses that work in-house are less bound by providers in charge of cloud services. This solution can be more cost-effective, especially for mid-sized companies.
- In-house setups may be more susceptible to data loss during disaster situations.
- In-house servers require space in an office for a rack or server room, or closet, in addition to dedicated IT support.
- There is no uptime or recovery time guarantees with in-house servers.
There are pros and cons for both setups, which is why most recommend some form of hybrid model, where there is a combination of both in-house and cloud-based solutions in place. Having in-house server hardware can be suitable for companies that do not want to rely on the internet, and at the same time, can benefit from a high degree of uptime through the cloud.
In the end, carefully evaluating your businesses needs and costs is the best way to choose the perfect setup. Be sure to check out our Windows Server Calculator to track your business’s cloud computing costs.
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