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Cloud technology has been around for decades, but it remains elusive to so many of us. This is an attempt to introduce you to the Linux Cloud Server technology.
To get to that, a few questions will have to be answered first:
Do you know what an OS is?
An operating system (OS) is the main software on the computer. It handles input and output devices.
It functions between the applications and the hardware, using the hardware drivers as an interface between the two.
A brief intro of UNIX and Linux
UNIX is an operating system. It was originally spelled UNICS which is an acronym for UNiplexed Information and Computing Systems.
It is a widely used multiuser and multitasking operating system. It was developed by a bunch of computer scientists in Bell Labs in the 1970s. UNIX was originally meant to be an OS for programmers.
Workstations are computers that are used for engineering applications like CAD/CAM, desktop publishing, and software development, etc. These computers make extensive use of UNIX now due to its portability, flexibility, and capability.
Then, in early 1991, 21-year-old Finn Linus Torvalds wasn’t happy with MS-DOS and the simplified version of UNIX- MINIX; he wanted to buy a proper UNIX system but he didn’t have money.
So he decided to build UNIX or its clone for himself from scratch. Dell, IBM, and HP, all supported Linux to tackle Microsoft’s supremacy and that marked the commercial usage of Linux.
Linus Torvalds made what is termed as a kernel and he named it Freax which later was renamed as Linux. A kernel is the central part of an OS and it has complete control over everything in the system.
Linux is open-source which means that it is free to download, but there are many other free operating systems. It’s the most used among all of them.
Cloud technology at its simplest
Cloud in simple words refers to the storage of data and programs over the internet instead of the computer’s hard disk. Cloud is only a metaphor for the internet.
And this line simply overcomes the decades that we relied on hard disks inside our computers. Storing data and programs on the internet has opened up a whole new level of freedom and empowerment.
It is offered as a service in the following three models:
Infrastructure as a Service aka IaaS- businesses outsource their infrastructure requirements to IaaS providers who maintain the hardware, provide storage, servers, and data center space, etc.
Platform as a Service aka PaaS- it provides the users with a resilient environment to develop applications.
The users focus only on their goal of application development and all the underlying services and infrastructure is maintained by the service provider.
Software as a Service aka SaaS- a software hosted on the internet is provided to the end-users over the internet. SaaS is analogous to ASPs or application service providers.
Definition of a server
It is a specialized computer or computer program which manages access to centralized storage or resource in a network.
When all the above knowledge is put together and we come to talk of the Linux cloud server, you may realize that it is now easier than before to understand the technology and to be able to go further into it.
What does cloud computing technology offer businesses?
Your enterprise’s data is remotely stored with a cloud. It is placed at a location that is not near you- it may be across the street or in the opposite part of the world.
This is like insurance from the physical damage to your servers. It eliminates the need to maintain a team of trained staff, saves you from electricity bills, lack of space, continuous upkeep commitments, and whatnot.
Cloud services offer scalability and flexibility. With a minuscule of effort you can resize the capacity of your cloud storage or computing power. The server instance that you are provided gives you that liberating experience.
Costs are apt as you pay for what you use; no hidden or additional costs are thrown at you. Plans range from hourly to monthly,, depending upon the service and the provider.
Physical data security in a cloud server is much higher than is the case of an in-house server. Although, some raise concerns on the cloud as the technology runs on the network of networks-the internet.
Linux Cloud Server
When a business is looking for a Linux-powered cloud host-, they have multiple Linux instances to choose from- Debian, Fedora, CentOS, FreeBSD, Arch Linux, and Ubuntu.
Linux cloud server is cost-effective. If you were to choose a Windows server, you’d have to pay for additional software. With open source Linux, all the software that you need is easily accessible.
The open-source network does not belong to anyone: anyone can contribute to it and that is the power of this huge network. This creates a free environment and promotes innovation.
It is a fairly secure server operating system that is available out there. In many of the biggest cyber-attacks, Linux has remained largely unhurt. Open source network makes detection of any vulnerability easier.
The vulnerabilities get fixed quickly as well, while the rest of the proprietary software has to depend upon in-house teams who first detect and then release software patches for security.
The entire process takes a longer time. Microsoft may rule the world of operating systems but that does not make it any secure against cybercrimes. In fact, its software is largely targeted.
Linux gives you the privacy you need. Windows 10 has been accused of playing with users’ privacy recently because operating systems collect more than reasonable information to record their users.
While this results in improved usability for some, for others, it’s a simple breach of privacy. In contrast, Linux collects minimum user information and also you get the option to do away with any software you fail to trust.
Linux provides ease of use, versatility, fast throughput, and a bag of choices.
Customization is the USP of a Linux cloud server. It gives you much more control over your server.