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Re: Please let's not talk about "clouds"

On 04/29/2013 05:01 AM, Richard Stallman wrote:
>     It sounds like what you're talking about is rental of a remote virtual
>     computer with certain specific features that are useful for offering
>     Internet services to be accessed from various computers.
> if that is clearer.  Do you see anything wrong with that?
Hum... I think it's still not right.

IaaS cloud computing is *not* about "rental of a remote virtual computer".
There's absolutely nothing that binds it to a rental service. You could
an IaaS cloud at home, and be the only one using it, using your own
hardware. Nobody would sell a service, nobody would rent it. It still would
be cloud computing IaaS.

Besides this, the "certain specific features" are not useful for "offering
Internet services to be accessed by various computers". The features
of the cloud IaaS have nothing to do with the way to access the service.
They are an abstraction of the physical hardware.

Here is a typical cloud computing IaaS usage:

- Create a new network using
- Attach that network to a virtual router (using a public IP)
- Start a VM with HAProxy that will serve as reverse-proxy load balancer
- Assign a public IP to this HAProxy machine, so it can be accessed from
the outside
- Start 10 VMs running apache, which HAProxy will connect
- Start 2 machines running MySQL server
- Create 2 permanent block devices
- Attach these block devices over network to the above MySQL servers,
so that the dbs (stored in /var/lib/mysql) are stored permanently even
if the VMs are destroyed.
- Save regularly the MySQL server database as a backup using an
object storage API (S3 / Swift...).

All of the above will be done through an API, using the features of the
cloud computing IaaS. These features have nothing to do with the way
you access the VMs. Cloud computing isn't just about renting VMs, it
is about offering features so that you can manage a bunch of them.

I hope my (not so good) explanation helps you understanding better.


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