Private cloud is a particular model of cloud computing that involves a distinct and secure cloud-based environment in which only a specified client can operate. In contrast to public cloud, which has multiple clients accessing virtualized services from the same pool of servers, private cloud utilizes a distinct pool of physical computers hosted internally or externally and may be accessed across private leased lines or secure encrypted connections.
The additional security offered by private cloud is ideal for any organization that needs to store and process private data or carry out sensitive tasks. For example, a private cloud service could be utilized by a financial company that is required by regulation to store sensitive data internally and who will still want to benefit from some of the advantages of cloud computing within their business infrastructure, such as on demand resource allocation.
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Some of the features of private cloud:
Higher security and privacy - using distinct pools of resources with access restricted to connections made from behind one organization’s firewall, dedicated leased lines and/or on-site internal hosting - can ensure that operations are kept out of the reach of prying eyes.
More control - private cloud is only accessible by a single client, that client will have the ability to configure and manage it in-line with their need to achieve a tailored network solution. However, this higher level of control removes some of the economies of scale associated with public cloud by having centralized management of the hardware.
Cost and energy efficiency - implementing a private cloud model can improve the allocation of resources within an organization by ensuring the availability of resources to individual departments/business functions in order to directly respond to their demand. Although private cloud is not as cost effective as public cloud due to smaller economies of scale and increased management costs, they do make more efficient use of the computing resource than traditional LANs as they minimize the investment into unused capacity. Not only does this provide a cost saving but it can reduce an organization’s carbon footprint too.
Improved reliability - even where resources (servers, networks etc.) are hosted internally, the creation of virtualized operating environments mean that the network is more resilient to individual failures across the physical infrastructure. Virtual partitions can, for example, pull their resource from the remaining unaffected servers. In addition, private cloud that is hosted with a third party can still benefit from the physical security afforded to infrastructure hosted within a data center.
Cloud bursting - some providers may offer the opportunity to employ cloud bursting, within a private cloud offering, in the event of spikes in demand. This service allows the provider to switch certain non-sensitive functions to a public cloud to free up more space in the private cloud for the sensitive functions that require it. Private cloud can be integrated with public cloud services to form hybrid clouds where non-sensitive functions are always allocated to the public cloud to maximize efficiencies.