IT departments across the globe always walk a very fine line trying to get efficient usage out of their servers. However, with the processing power of most servers now meaning that the majority of systems installed do not utilise their capacity, it is becoming increasingly common for servers to be left idle. Therefore, for end users, cloud hosting could well be the way to get maximum value for money.
A recent discussion in GigaOm highlighted that CPU management and server utilisation are increasingly difficult to manage, with even virtual installations via the cloud often being inefficient. The reasons are reasonably obvious when examined.
Server utilisation is limited by the input/output operations of the disc and services that are using the server. Most modern servers use processors that are so powerful that they can manage all the functions that are asked of them with significant capacity left to spare, meaning the CPU is left with significant and costly idle time.
The other issue is that managing the complex operations that are involved in inefficient use of the servers is extremely difficult and balancing them to ensure that maximum usage is achieved without compromising the server uptime is something that needs consistent usage requirements, which is not always possible.
At present even the use of the cloud has failed to address this at the data centre level, but for end users, such as the businesses that pay for a hosting service, the problem is much easier to manage, as you only need to pay for the amount of server space you require. Any excess server capacity is not the concern of the client company and the onus is still on the hosting company to ensure that the agreed service levels that are being paid for are achieved.
The other significant advantage for cloud users is that if they need to upgrade or downgrade the service levels they require, often all they need to do is make a call. The hosting company will be running at an excess so if you get sudden spikes in demand it is easily resolved by speaking to the host service.
If you are considering moving to cloud hosting and you need advice on hosting options then you should contact CWCS who are a company operating on the leading edge of hosting services and whose service agreement includes a 100% uptime commitment.