Thursday, August 20, 2009

What do you get against the monthly recurring fee from your Platform-as-a-Service vendor?

Cloud Computing and particularly Platform-as-a-Service should work almost like any other essential service. True PaaS environments will work like any of your utility services and also provide additional cover protecting your business data/processes & applications. Somewhat like obtaining a service and getting insurance cover as well...

Consider the following scenario: WOLF delivers the complete software infrastructure which includes Database Layer + Middleware Layer and the Application Layer along with Infrastructure + storage + automated maintenance & feature upgrades.
Customers have access to this integrated environment (24/7/365) which makes it easy for them to quickly use, develop, diagnose & deliver effective solutions which takes care of their business challenges & needs.

So while it seems like a PaaS provider only gets you access – software – storage & maybe trained support team members – a true PaaS comes along with certain de-facto standard offerings, such as a great Service Level Assurance (SLA), explicit insurance from any loss of data for your SaaS applications, disaster recovery procedures to restore applications & even custom performance/scalability benchmarks if required.

Now contrast the above with a phone, electricity or a Governmental Medical & Health Care Service and you might not find some of these as new dimensions of service. Wondering what does that entail PaaS provider such as WOLF Frameworks to undertake?

Well, lots I must say. A very complex set of routine runs which takes care of data backups in multiple locations, higher infrastructure cost, complex version control mechanism, high physical security with NO access to data, built-in features within WOLF application Designer for customers to access-extract & take periodic data backups themselves in Relational Database Formats in their own preferred location, ability to extract SaaS application Design in portable XML format and also to run Database Server in a different private server, etc.

While all of these are efforts to minimize risk for customer’s data loss, high service availability standards, well trained staff for support, etc -- We consider them in hindsight as the basic Insurance which customers require before they start building applications using our platform as a service.

What’s your opinion on PaaS Services vs. other Utility Services-Insurance covers? Does the service analogy resonate well with your thought? What kind of service level standards you expect your PaaS provider to deliver. I am interested in your take, thought & feedback...

Sunny Ghosh
Director & CEO
Wolf Platform-as-a-Service

NOTE: The views expressed above are purely personal and for informational purposes only. WOLF FRAMEWORKS INDIA PVT. LTD MAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THIS SUMMARY. The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

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