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To Cloud or Not To Cloud

If one reads the computer press there is always another technological revolution about to happen. Take for example the uptake there has been in Cloud computing in the last few years.

It is true that that software as a service (SaaS) continues to gain traction in the marketplace but its growth is analogous to a slow burning fuse rather than a big bang. At the end of 2012 a client of mine had in house hardware that was reaching its end of life, coupled with software that needed upgrading. At that point I suggested that we compare the merits of cloud services against on premise virtualisation for a hundred user system. In the first place the client did not have a heavily bespoke application suite. Therefore a cloud solution was eminently possible. Although cost and security were considerations in the analysis, the major determining factor in rejecting cloud in this instance, was the uncertainty that the organisation would have access to sufficient bandwidth at a reasonable cost, as compared to a conventionally wired internal network. Also and somewhat surprisingly the software costs when measured over five years were slightly higher for cloud than for on-site. In conclusion cloud services have been very successful for the small and micro businesses with no legacy software, fewer security concerns and where capital investment is prohibitive. As electronic communications speeds increase and their associated costs continue to fall, then cloud becomes increasingly attractive for the medium to large organisation.