A private cloud is a single-tenant cloud platform. On public cloud platforms, the underlying physical layer is shared between multiple users. Public cloud is a useful and popular modality, but there are many reasons an enterprise organization might prefer private infrastructure.
- Security. Although public cloud platforms are not inherently insecure, regulatory and privacy concerns lead many large organizations to prefer environments over which they have complete control and sole access.
- Cost. Whether a public cloud or a private cloud is the most economical option depends on the particular use-case of the organization. For established companies, the amortized cost of owned hardware colocated in a third-party data center often undercuts comparable public cloud costs.
- Control. Public cloud platforms are designed to be useful to a huge range of different clients, from which it follows that they aren’t optimized for any particular use-case. Private clouds on colocated hardware can be designed and configured to meet the requirements of individual companies.
A public cloud provides a range of services to anyone able to pay for them. They include on-demand self-service resources, increased utilization through virtualization, and rapid elasticity and scalability.
Private clouds offer the same advantages, with the major difference being the resources are only available to service-users within the same organization. For organizations with multiple business units and projects to manage, private clouds provide infrastructure flexibility and elasticity. Service users can deploy servers as required and scale their deployments as needed, all within the context of a secure single-tenant infrastructure environment.
There are many different ways an organization might go about deploying a private cloud, including in an on-premises data center, in a colocation data center, or using a managed private cloud platform.
Managed cloud platforms have advantages: they require less technical expertise to deploy and manage. But managed cloud platforms have hardware and software constraints. As with the public cloud, managed private clouds are built to suit the general use case. Additionally, users of managed private cloud platforms don’t choose, own, or control the underlying hardware.
By choosing to colocate hardware for their private cloud, organizations neatly sidestep many of these limitations. They have full control over their servers and networking equipment. Infrastructure can be specified and configured to match their use case. The organization has complete insight into the quality control, performance, and availability of the servers they depend on.
And by collocating infrastructure, organizations don’t have to build their own data center. They leverage an existing enterprise-grade data center with all the capabilities that implies: redundant power and bandwidth, a reliable network, and a service level agreement that specifies exactly what the organization can expect.
Private cloud colocation offers businesses the ideal combination of cost optimization, infrastructure control, and flexibility.