Cloud Computing Research

1.1 IntroductionIn the introductory chapter we define the concept of cloud computing and cloud services, and we introduce layers and types of cloud computing. We discuss the differences between cloud computing and cloud services. New technologies that enabled cloud computing are presented next. We also discuss cloud computing features, standards, and security issues.We introduce the key cloud computing platforms, their vendors, and their offerings. We discuss cloud computing challenges and the future of cloud computing.

Cloud computing can be defined as a new style of computing in which dynamically scalable and often virtualized resources are provided as a services over the Internet. Cloud computing has become a significant technology trend, and many experts expect that cloud computing will reshape information technology (IT) processes and the IT marketplace.

With the cloud computing technology, users use a variety of devices, including PCs, laptops, smartphones, and PDAs to access programs, storage, and application-development platforms over the Internet, via services offered by cloud computing providers. Advantages of the cloud computing technology include cost savings, high availability, and easy scalability. Figure 1.1, adapted from Voas and Zhang (2009), shows six phases of computing paradigms, from dummy terminals/mainframes, to PCs, networking computing, to grid and cloud computing.

In phase 1, many users shared powerful mainframes using dummy terminals. In phase 2, stand-alone PCs became powerful enough to meet the majority of users’ needs. In phase 3, PCs, laptops, and servers were connected together through local networks to share resources and increase performance. In phase 4, local networks were connected to other local networks forming a global network such as the Internet to utilize remote applications and resources. In phase 5, grid computing provided shared computing power and storage through a distributed computing