fbpx

What Is Azure Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Why It May Be the Cloud Solution You Need

The benefits of migrating to the cloud are obvious for most businesses and organizations. Firstly, nearly all businesses currently rely on a variety of cloud-based software as a service (SaaS) applications, meaning they are already on the cloud to a degree. Secondly (as we have covered in a variety of articles), the cloud offers a range of advantages, including simplified administration, ease of application integration, scalability, reduced capital expenditures, and much more.

But after that, things get more complicated. There are different types of cloud platforms to choose from. There are also a number of advanced considerations that could lead from one to another. In this article, we’ll be looking at the cloud from a bigger picture perspective in the form of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Microsoft’s Azure.

What Is Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)?

IaaS is a type of cloud-based service that offers the fundamental computing infrastructure most organizations need, including servers, storage, and networking resources.1 A central value proposition of IaaS is that it offers better performance at a lower cost than onsite-only solutions.

Rather than buying, managing, and maintaining your own servers and data center infrastructure, you pay for the resources that you need as you need them. As the leading IaaS providers are global powerhouses like Microsoft, it’s safe to assume that their hardware and resources are far superior to what nearly all of their customers can afford.

What Are Some of the Advantages of IaaS?

Flexibility

IaaS is perhaps the easiest path for a business to migrate to and operate on the cloud. IaaS can integrate with on-premise infrastructure, either enabling an organization to migrate completely over time or remain indefinitely in a hybrid cloud environment.

Scalability

One of the major advantages of IaaS and the cloud, in general, is that resources can be scaled up and down as needed. With purely onsite solutions, businesses are often forced to invest in upgrades or additions to physical infrastructure to innovate or respond to growth in demand. And if it turns out that the additional capacity is not needed in the long term, the investment is a sunk cost.

Security

Quality IaaS providers offer enterprise-grade cyber security solutions, including firewalls, encryption, identity and access management, and compliance certifications to protect data and infrastructure. Additionally, these companies can afford to have teams of world-class cybersecurity experts and the highest levels of physical security measures at their facilities.

Easier Administration

IaaS offers a range of management services and tools, including Infrastructure as Code (IaC), to automate the provisioning and management of resources and programs to monitor and control the network in granular detail. Additionally, IaaS heavily reduces the cyber security burden on administrators while freeing them from being responsible for servers, storage, and networking equipment.

Reduce Costs and Increase Revenue

As discussed, IaaS is typically very cost-effective because it does not require a significant up-front investment in hardware and physical infrastructure, it can integrate seamlessly with existing on-premise technologies, and resources can be scaled at will. As the IaaS provider has to shoulder the costs of securing and maintaining the physical infrastructure, IaaS customers can save countless dollars on payroll. IaaS enables businesses and their employees to focus on their core competencies while making it easier and faster to innovate and expand.

What Is Microsoft Azure?

Commonly referred to as “Azure” and featuring more than 200 applications and services, it’s Microsoft’s IaaS platform and perhaps the most popular cloud computing solution globally. Built on Microsoft’s global network of data centers, Azure provides an enterprise-grade cloud infrastructure used by businesses, both gargantuan and small, to host applications, manage data, and leverage cloud services. Here are some of the biggest features that make it stand out.

Extreme Flexibility

Although flexibility is a fundamental aspect of IaaS, Azure takes it further, enabling seamless integration across multiple clouds, edge, and on-premise technologies. To do so, Azure supports all languages and frameworks. This enables Azure users to seamlessly integrate virtually any UCaaS or SaaS offering.2

World-Class Security

Microsoft has invested more than $1 billion into Azure’s security and tasks 8,500 cybersecurity experts with monitoring and protecting Azure customer’s assets and data.3

100+ Compliance Offerings

For businesses in heavily regulated industries, such as healthcare, government, and healthcare, compliance can be a major barrier to reaping the benefits of the cloud. Azure offers more than 100 compliance certifications, including certificates for global regions and countries, and configuration management tools, implementation and guidance resources.4

Built for Everyone

Aside from compliance, Azure is a global solution that can work for nearly every business, both big and small. For small businesses with limited resources, there are no upfront costs to Azure, and anyone can open an account for free. Big businesses can take comfort in knowing that 95% of Fortune 500 companies are on Azure as well.5 For those types of organizations and everyone in between, Azure has a comprehensive combination of products and services designed for the whole gamut of industries and operations.6

1 https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/resources/cloud-computing-dictionary/what-is-iaas
2 https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/products/category/integration
3 https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/explore/trusted-cloud/
4 https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/explore/trusted-cloud/compliance/
5 https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/resources/cloud-computing-dictionary/what-is-azure/
6 https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/solutions/#solutions-by-industry

Is Azure IaaS the Right Solution for You?

Due to the extreme flexibility of Azure IaaS and its capacity to seamlessly integrate with both on-premise and cloud-based technologies, Azure can work for your business. But is it really the best solution? That depends entirely on your unique needs and goals.

Amazon, Google, IBM, and Oracle (among others) offer competing platforms. Having an expert like IPC Tech on your side can help you drill down to the critical details to make a decision that can carry your business forward.