Cloud computing: IaaS, PaaS and SaaS explained

Monday 28 January 2013

Cloud computing primarily comes in three different forms, it has been claimed.

Writing for Digital Trends, Mika Turim-Nygren highlighted the existence of Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS).

She noted that IaaS is the foundation, or 'base layer' of cloud computing, and includes physical infrastructure such as servers, storage disks, and facilities.

"Organisations benefit from pay-as-you-go, on-demand storage and web hosting, which can be easily scaled bigger or smaller as need fluctuates," Ms Turim-Nygren said.

She noted that PaaS is the 'middle layer' of cloud computing, which provides the operating system from which applications run.

"Here, the service operator provides a programming language and web server, which allows application developers to create and run their software solutions," the expert stated.

She said the 'top layer' - SaaS - offers the software applications specifically developed for the internet.

Consumers generally pay a monthly or yearly fee in order to use a certain piece of software in the cloud, Ms Turim-Nygren noted.

"Because pricing is pay-per-user, organisations can quickly add or remove users without having to accordingly scale their associated platform and infrastructure," she explained.

"This on-demand approach allows for rapid, efficient adjustments in staffing."

Posted by Alex Boardman