Private Cloud vs. Public Cloud: What is the difference?

The emergence of cloud and cloud-based hosting possibilities have brought in revolutions. Be it cost-effectiveness or optimal performance, cloud services are a new way to host your websites and utilise the resource in an effective way.
Now even while choosing among cloud-based hosting services you face a dilemma on what to choose among the various types of cloud options available. Well, that’s what this blog is for to let you understand the basic differences between Public and Private cloud hosting so that you can easily decide what is good for your needs.
Put shortly, as the name suggests, public cloud leverages shared infrastructure, while on the other hand, private clouds use an organization’s own infrastructure for hosting the website.
Private clouds are sometimes called data centres that reside safely on a company’s own infrastructure. They are mostly firewall-protected and physically secure as well ensuring complete security of data. Various mature organizations heavily invest in the on-premise infrastructures very frequently to leverage the investments to curate their own private clouds. This offers a huge financial benefit but it is also important that private clouds are supported, managed and gradually upgraded or replaced with time for better functioning of everything and ensuring proper upgradation as time flows. The duty of providing complete security to the private clouds relies completely upon the shoulder of the organization starting from physical security to encryption to the network as well as the cyber security. As the private clouds are owned by organizations, there is no scene of shared infrastructure, multitenancy and almost zero latency for local applications as well as users.
On the other hand, public cloud alleviates the responsibility for the management of the infrastructure as they are hosted publicly by providers such as AWS, Azure or Google Cloud. The infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) public cloud deployment method is used for storing enterprise data and an application code is generated that resides on the cloud service provider that simulates a multi-tenant shared environment with various other organizations’ IT resources utilizing the same cloud space. Some of the typical use cases of public clouds are as a backup and archival medium for the enterprise-level data, in order to support business initiatives. Also, the physical security of hyper-scale cloud providers is almost unmatched as there is a shared responsibility model that requires organizations that subscribe to the cloud services so that they can ensure the application, as well as the network, are secure. For example, monitoring packets for the presence of malware or even providing encryption of data at rest or in motion.

To understand these in a very simple manner, there are many analogies of private and public clouds such as

  • Private cloud is your own house but public cloud as an apartment
  • Private cloud watching videos on your local system while public cloud streaming videos online
In the simplest ways possible, a private cloud is a service that is single-handedly controlled by a single parent organization and not shared with others. On the other hand, a public cloud is a kind of subscription service that is offered to any and all the customers looking for similar kinds of services.
Is a private cloud cheaper than a public cloud?

Organizations must keep in mind that cost is not the primary driver for adopting or retaining the private clouds. There are often regulatory demands or financial governance that demands data needs to be protected in a certain geography. Some other organizations may demand the lowest possible latency, whilst keeping all the IT resources on a single on-premise data centre also helps in reducing the round-trip network times to an absolute minimum.

The respondents found that the biggest savings and cost efficiencies for private clouds were realised by utilizing automation, capacity planning tools, very flexible licensing arrangements and cost and budgetary management tools.

The needs of every organization are different based on their business models, their traffic and user bases. So based on the needs one should go and opt for either of these services. If someone expects the highest traffic needing higher resources then a private cloud would be a go-to option incurring higher costs as the dedicated resources are being utilised.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of Private Cloud?

Private clouds come with many disadvantages due to their ability to allow autonomy of being ‘owned’ by a single entity. Another important thing is the level of security one can expect in the case of private clouds. On-premise clouds can offer the highest and most superlative degrees of securities and privacy since that enterprise authentication ensure access is granted to only those who send the requests and needs it. There is also a high chance of the lowest latencies in the case of private clouds as all the recourses are co-located in the private data centres.

One of the top drawbacks of private clouds is the incurring higher costs required to maintain, procure, configure and most importantly frequently upgrade the hardware and software for keeping up to date with trends. Also, training expenses can be considered as another major bottom-line that impacts private cloud deployments costs.