"Cloud" Hosting Question

'k - might be a boneheaded question - but I don't really feel like doing a ton of research on the matter right now (too many things on my plate) - so a quick discussion is probably easiest.

Right now I've got a couple of companies woo'ing my company about new hosting solutions.  I keep getting pitched on the idea of "cloud hosting".  FYI - I've always opted for dedicated hosting plans.

When I search around at various hosting companies - it seems to me a lot of them are no longer proposing "shared hosting" plans - yet I see a ton of cloud hosting options.

Is "cloud hosting" simply the new euphemism for shared hosting (dressing up a pig in a wedding dress) - where if I were to sign on to such a plan I'd be riddled with all sorts of the things that plague shared hosting consumers (bandwidth throttling, denial of service due to bandwidth consumption, etc)?
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erzoolanderAsked:
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hdazCommented:
I would think it depends on what your trying to serve ??

a lot of the cloud hosting is simuliar to shared hosting, a lot of the time you are purchasing a VM(s) with soft or hard limits i.e memory.. cpu etc..

If your looking at the bigger companies in the cloud like Amazon then it depends how fast you want to scale, i.e. try scaling on a shared hosting plan something the size of facebook is going to cause a lot of problems.

Theres a lot of detail to be looked at...

hope this helps
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jhyieslaCommented:
I think you are partially right; its just a new buzzword for whatever the vendor want's it to be.

I think it can also the new name for Software as a Service.

So, there's hosting your data; think of DropBox or iCloud or SugarSync. Simply giving you a place, not in your data center, supposedly with a secure site and good backups to drop your data. A neat way to share and to meet many Disaster recovery plans.

Then there's things like hosted solutions for email. Think Google Apps/Gmail and Exchange in the cloud.

Finally hosted applications like HR applications and the like. In this case letting the experts in that field do the heavy lifting so that you can concentrate on what you do best.

All would probably be considered cloud solutions.
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CallandorCommented:
It's more than shared hosting - it's using distributed resources (clusters) so that there's no single point of failure, so in this sense, it's not shared hosting.  For example, every time you use Google, you are using an example of cloud hosting.  See http://webhosting.about.com/od/Clouding-Hosting/a/What-Is-Cloud-Hosting-And-Should-You-Consider-It.htm
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hdazCommented:
Callandor,

I agree with what your saying but again it depends on whats being served and by whom..
hence I left that part as "VM(s)" just because someone is selling "cloud" does not mean they have such clusting, networking resources in place.

Are these resources being shared?? the below simpe configuration to me would be "shared cloud hosting" even if there were multiple clustered services.

server 1
customer1_clustered_node1
customer2_clustered_node4
customer3_clustered_node9

server 2
customer1_clustered_node2
customer2_clustered_node5
customer3_clustered_node7

Just an example

:)

If  your talking something as big as Gmail then thats a different kettle of fish and would think the abstraction of what the nodes are doing e.g.

db, app, buisiness logic, storage, security, something-else etc would be broken down even more... this is what I think of as cloud but thats not the only type of architectures being sold or talked about in the market as far as I know.

Ask different cloud companies what is cloud and what they provide i.e data centres, hardware, software ISPs etc all give a different perspective, hence the first question asking what is being served i.e. youtube's architecture probably looks a lot different to something like foursquare.com.

Hdaz

http://www.redhat.com/promo/eap6beta/cloud_ready/
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CallandorCommented:
Hdaz,

It's true that cloud computing can mean many things - I should have said it can potentially be the model that Google presents, but I was focused on answering the question of whether it was just the same thing as shared hosting.  You presented a good view of possibilities that need to be considered.
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