What is Cloud and Distributed Computing

More and more people are outsourcing everything about their lives. This includes data storage. We use cloud computing and distributed systems every day, from backing up our phone and email contacts to using online word processing software. Unfortunately, cloud computing and distributed systems are frequently confused, bundled together, or otherwise improperly defined. So, just what is the difference between distributed and cloud computing

What is Cloud Computing

Cloud computing, at its very core, involves systems that are managed remotely and virtually, and are typically geographically distributed. The system of using cloud computing came out of a need to maintain 100 percent uptime on all applications. Clients will readily drop applications that go down routinely, which means one physical mainframe simply will not do for most application. Cloud computing is scalable en masse, and allows users access to a pre-built service rather than having to build their own infrastructure. If you need help implementing a cloud computing system, Winnipeg managed IT firm, ResoluteTS can assist you in getting started.

Examples of Cloud Computing

No matter what your career is, or what your hobbies are, you have likely utilized some form of cloud computing. YouTube is one example. It allows users to upload their videos and host them there, instead of needing to create their own database. Google Docs is another great example. With Google Docs, users do not need to download a word processing software, nor do they need to save their documents to their own hard drives.

What is Distributed Computing

For nearly as long as computing has existed, so have mainframes, or other centralized computing systems. With centralized computing, there is one main computer responsible for handling all of the operations and peripherals. These are ineffective when it comes to handling a large amount of data or providing services for a multitude of online users. This inefficiency has led to the development of distributed computing. Best defined as the use of a widespread system in which a large problem is solved by breaking it out into different parts that can be computed by different computers within the system, a distributed system always has more than one computer that communicates with other computers through the network. It allows for a multitude of online users to access the service by separating their needs into different nodes. Distributed systems also often have the ability to tolerate the failure of individual computers on the network, but this is dynamic.

Examples of Distributed Computing

If you have used the internet before (if you are reading this article, it is clear you have) then you have accessed a distributed computing system. The whole World Wide Web is a distributed system; could you imagine if it were not? Either access would be severely restricted or the mainframe would need to occupy the space of an entire moderately sized country. Facebook, Google Bots, Google Web Server, and Cloud Network Systems also use distributed computing.

Going Forward

So, what does the future hold for data storage and computations? We can look forward to a more efficiently used computing grid, cheaper computing costs, and more emphasis on distributed systems as opposed to cloud computing.


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