Cloud computing Definitions

This glossary explains the meaning of key words and phrases that information technology (IT) and business professionals use when discussing cloud computing and related software products. You can find additional definitions by visiting WhatIs.com or using the search box below.

  • O

    OASIS Cloud Application Management for Platforms (CAMP)

    OASIS Cloud Application Management for Platforms (CAMP) is a specification intended to foster interoperability between cloud environments and to simplify the management of cloud applications.

  • OpenStack

    OpenStack is a collection of open source software modules that provides a framework to create and manage both public cloud and private cloud infrastructure.

  • OpenStack Horizon

    OpenStack Horizon is a web-based graphical interface that cloud administrators and users can access to manage OpenStack compute, storage and networking services.

  • OpenStack Innovation Center

    The OpenStack Innovation Center is a research and development facility dedicated to the open source cloud platform OpenStack. Rackspace and Intel opened the center in September 2015.

  • P

    Platform as a Service (PaaS)

    Platform as a service (PaaS) is a cloud computing model where a third-party provider delivers hardware and software tools to users over the internet.

  • portable app

    A portable application (portable app) is a software product designed to be easily moved from one computing environment to another.

  • private cloud (internal cloud or corporate cloud)

    Private cloud is a type of cloud computing that delivers similar advantages to public cloud, including scalability and self-service, but through a proprietary architecture.

  • private PaaS (private platform as a service)

    Private platform as a service (private PaaS) is software that facilitates development, deployment and operations for IT on a private infrastructure or behind a firewall.

  • What is public cloud? Everything you need to know

    A public cloud is a platform that uses the standard cloud computing model to make resources -- such as virtual machines (VMs), applications or storage -- available to users remotely.

  • R

    Racemi

    Racemi is a data center software vendor that specializes in cloud provisioning and cloud migration products. Racemi’s products enable physical-to-cloud (P2C), cloud-to-physical (C2P) and cloud-to-cloud (C2C) migration.

  • Rackspace Fanatical Support

    Rackspace Fanatical Support is Rackspace's customer service program, which provides support for customers using its managed hosting services and cloud platforms.

  • Red Hat OpenShift

    Red Hat OpenShift is a multifaceted, open source container application platform from Red Hat Inc. for the development, deployment and management of applications.

  • RightScale Inc.

    RightScale is a software as a service (SaaS) provider that offers cloud management and analytics tools for public, private and hybrid clouds.

  • S

    Scalr

    Scalr is an information technology (IT) vendor that offers a management platform for cloud computing.

  • shadow IT

    Shadow IT is hardware or software that is not supported by an organization's IT department.  The term often carries a negative connotation because it implies the IT department has not approved the technology or doesn’t even know that employees are using it.

  • shared responsibility model

    A shared responsibility model is a cloud security framework that dictates the security obligations of a cloud computing provider and its users to ensure accountability.

  • single-tenancy

    Single-tenancy is an architecture in which a single instance of a software application and supporting infrastructure serves one customer.

  • SnapLogic

    SnapLogic is a software company that offers cloud integration products to allow customers to connect cloud-based data and applications with on-premise business systems.

  • Software as a Service (SaaS)

    Software as a service (SaaS) is a software distribution model in which a third-party provider hosts applications and makes them available to customers over the Internet.

  • SPI model

    SPI is an acronym for the most common cloud computing service models, software as a service, platform as a service and infrastructure as a service.

  • subscription-based pricing model

    A subscription-based pricing model is a payment structure that allows a customer or organization to purchase or subscribe to a vendor's IT services for a specific period of time for a set price.

  • T

    testing as a service (TaaS)

    Testing as a service (TaaS) is an outsourcing model in which testing activities associated with some of an organization's business activities are performed by a service provider rather than in-house employees.

  • TOSCA (Topology and Orchestration Specification for Cloud Applications)

    The Topology and Orchestration Specification for Cloud Applications (TOSCA) is an open-source language used to describe the relationships and dependencies between services and applications that reside on a cloud computing platform.

  • turnkey cloud

    A turnkey cloud is a product that includes pre-tested and certified packages of software and/or hardware and storage that a cloud provider or enterprise can deploy quickly.

  • U

    usage-based pricing

    Usage-based pricing is a consumption-based pricing model in which customers are only charged when they use a product or service. Typically, the customer is billed at the end of the billing cycle.

  • V

    vertical cloud

    A vertical cloud is a set of cloud computing services optimized for use in a particular industry, or for a specific business model.

  • virtual private cloud (VPC)

    A virtual private cloud (VPC) is the logical division of a service provider's public cloud multi-tenant architecture to support private cloud computing.

  • W

    web application development

    Web app development is the creation of application programs that reside on remote servers and are delivered to the user’s device over the Internet.

  • Windows Azure Fabric Controller (FC)

    The Azure Fabric Controller (FC) is the part of the Windows Azure platform that monitors and manages virtual and physical servers and coordinates resources for software applications.

  • X

    XaaS (Anything as a Service)

    XaaS is a general, collective term that refers to the delivery of anything as a service.

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