Defining cloud

The WHAT…

Software as a Service (SaaS)

Software is licensed on a subscription basis and is centrally hosted by an independent software vendor or application service provider. Eliminates the need to install and maintain applications on the relevant firms IT systems, removing the cost and complexity of hardware and software management. This method of delivery allows a firm to quickly provide access to important features, and functionality to their lawyers, without needing to build and manage an infrastructure to support them

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

Offers computing resources on a subscription or demand basis – servers and additional resources such as storage, databases, operating systems, firewalls, load balancers, virtual local area networks (VLANs), web servers and software bundles. In this model, the cloud user patches and maintains the application software. Cloud providers typically bill their services on a utility computing basis with the costs reflecting the amount of resources allocated and consumed.

Desktop as a Service (DaaS)

A service in which the back-end of a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), along with the applications needed to run the desktop, is hosted by a cloud service. For users, this means they can access their desktop from any location, without having to use a fixed device. The DaaS provider typically takes full responsibility for hosting and maintaining the computer, storage, and access infrastructure, as well as applications and application software licenses needed to provide the desktop service in return for a fixed monthly fee

Platform as a Service (PaaS)

PaaS is defined as a combination of IaaS, SaaS and DaaS to provide the consumers with a full enterprise computing solution. In PaaS all the components necessary to deploy, configure, run, manage and access the customers preferred application and management software is delivered on a subscription basis. The delivery of an entire IT solution as a service i.e. a full combination of cloud services including desktop, applications and platform, is still very much in its infancy in the legal sector.

The HOW…

Private

A vendor supplies, builds and manages a ‘cloud’ infrastructure specifically for the client. Involves dedicated physical servers and storage.

Virtual private

Multi-tenanted, shared hardware but defined and dedicated computing resources e.g. CPUs, RAM etc using virtualisation.

Public

Multi-tenanted, shared hardware. Delivered as a service using shared computing resources.

Hybrid – virtual public and virtual private cloud

Combines virtual, public and private cloud.

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