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Cloud Computing by James F. Ransome, John W. Rittinghouse

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xix
Preface
There are lots of books on cloud computing in the market today. This one is
not intended for “supergeeks” looking for the next revelation in “geek
know-how.” In fact, it attempts to present cloud computing in a way that
anyone can understand. We do include technical material, but we do so in a
way that allows managers and technical people alike to understand what
exactly cloud computing is and what it is not. We try to clear up the confu-
sion about current buzzwords such as PaaS, SaaS, etc., and let the reader see
how and why the technology has evolved to become “the cloud” as we know
and use it today.
In the Introduction we explain what cloud computing is, its charac-
teristics, and the challenges it will face in the future. The biggest chal-
lenges that companies will face as they move into the cloud are secure data
storage, high-speed access to the Internet, and standardization. Storing
large amounts of data in centralized locations while preserving user pri-
vacy, security, identity, and their application-specific preferences raises
many concerns about data protection. These concerns, in turn, lead to
questions about the legal framework that should be implemented for a
cloud-oriented environment.
In Chapter 1 we discuss the evolution of cloud computing, including
hardware, software, and server virtualization. In order to discuss some of the
issues involved in the cloud concept, it is important to place the develop-
ment of computational technology in a historical context. Looking at the
cloud’s evolutionary development, and the problems encountered along the
way, provides some key reference points to help us understand the chal-
lenges that had to be overcome by those who were responsible for the devel-
opment of the Internet and the World Wide Web. These challenges fell into
three primary categories: hardware, software, and virtualization. We discuss
how the rules computers use to communicate came about, and how the
Preface.fm Page xix Friday, May 22, 2009 11:24 AM
xx Cloud Computing
development of networking and communications protocols helped drive the
technology growth we have seen in the last two decades or so. This, in turn,
has driven even more changes in protocols and forced the creation of new
technologies to mitigate concerns and improve the methods used to com-
municate over the Internet. The rise of web browsers led to huge growth in
use of the Internet and a migration away from the traditional data center
toward cloud computing.
In Chapter 2 we discuss the advent of web-based services delivered
from the cloud, including Communication-as-a-Service (CaaS), Infrastruc-
ture-as-a-Service (IaaS), Monitoring-as-a-Service (MaaS), Platform-as-a-
Service (PaaS), and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). As technology has
migrated from the traditional on-premises model to the new cloud model,
service offerings have evolved almost daily. We provide some basic exposure
to where the technology is today, and we give you a feel for where it will
likely be in the not too distant future.
In Chapter 3 we discuss what is required from service providers to
make the services described in Chapter 2 available. We describe the basic
approach to service-oriented architecture (SOA) as it applies to data center
design, how companies can build highly automated private cloud networks
that can be managed from a single point, and how server and storage virtu-
alization is used across distributed computing resources. We discuss what it
takes to build a cloud network, the evolution from the managed service pro-
vider model to cloud computing and SaaS and from single-purpose archi-
tectures to multipurpose architectures, the concept and design of data
center virtualization, the role and importance of collaboration, SOA as an
intermediate step and the basic approach to data center-based SOA, and
lastly, the role of open source software in data centers and where and how it
is used in the cloud architecture.
In Chapter 4 we provide a virtualization practicum that guides you
through a step-by-step process for building a virtualized computing infra-
structure using open source software. The beauty of virtualization solutions
is that you can run multiple operating systems simultaneously on a single
computer. So that you could really understand how powerful that capability
is, we show you how to do it for yourself. We show you how to download
and install the Sun VirtualBox, how to install and configure it, and how to
add a virtual operating environment on top of your existing operating sys-
tem. In learning the basics of using the Sun xVM VirtualBox, you will also
gain knowledge about what virtualization is and how it can be used.
Preface.fm Page xx Friday, May 22, 2009 11:24 AM

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