Chapter 5. Understanding Abstraction and Virtualization


  • Understanding how abstraction makes cloud computing possible

  • Understanding how virtualization creates shared resource pools

  • Using load balancing to enable large cloud computing applications

  • Using hypervisors to make virtual machines possible

  • Discussing system imaging and application portability for the cloud

In this chapter, I discuss different technologies that create shared pools of resources. The key to creating a pool is to provide an abstraction mechanism so that a logical address can be mapped to a physical resource. Computers use this technique for placing files on disk drives, and cloud computing networks use a set of techniques to create virtual servers, virtual storage, virtual networks, and perhaps one day virtual applications. Abstraction enables the key benefit of cloud computing: shared, ubiquitous access.

In this chapter, you learn about how load balancing can be used to create high performance cloud-based solutions.'s network is an example of this approach. Google uses commodity servers to direct traffic appropriately.

Another technology involves creating virtual hardware systems. An example of this type of approach is hypervisors that create virtual machine technologies. Several important cloud computing approaches use a strictly hardware-based approach to abstraction. I describe VMware's vSphere infrastructure in some detail, along with some of the unique features and technologies that VMware ...

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