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Azure Service Model : Platform as a Service (PaaS)

Updated: Oct 26




Table of Contents


1. Introduction

2. Platform as a Service (PaaS) in Azure Cloud

3. Where is the Azure PaaS used?

4. Advantages of Azure PaaS

5. Challenges of Azure PaaS



Introduction


As we know that, we had overviewed Azure and PaaS separately in our previous blogs which contained the concepts of Cloud Computing, Azure Cloud and the Sections of Azure Cloud. You all can visit those blogs from the link provided below.


In this blog, we are going to have a look at Azure PaaS concisely. Before jumping off to Azure PaaS, let’s acknowledge from where this term pops out from.

As we know that, Cloud Computing is the delivery of computing services including servers, storage, databases, networking, software, analytics and intelligence over the Internet to offer fast innovation, flexibility of resources and economies of scale. Cloud Computing consists of 3 different Service Models, i.e., :

  1. IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service)

  2. PaaS (Platform as a Service)

  3. SaaS (Software as a Service)




Shifting towards our main focus of our blog, i.e., Platform as a Service (PaaS); PaaS is a cloud computing model that delivers a frame work for developers that they can build upon and use to create customized applications. PaaS, mainly provides us with cloud components to certain software while being used for applications. For e.g., Microsoft Azure, Google App., AWS, etc.




Platform as a Service (PaaS) in Azure Cloud



Azure Platform as a Service (PaaS) is a deployment and development ecosystem which the provides hardware and software tools to create, test, host and maintain created applications for users over the secure Internet connection.

This platform is delivered via the cloud service provider on a pay-as-you-go basis, giving the developers the freedom to concentrate on building the software without having to worry about operating systems, software updates, storage or infrastructure. In many cases, the users can also decide where their application is physically hosted and is given a choice over how secure that environment is, often at an additional cost.

This cloud service also can greatly reduce costs and it can simplify some challenges that come up if we are rapidly developing or deploying an application.

Considering the above scenarios, utilization of PaaS is very beneficial even necessary in several situations. For example, PaaS can streamline workflows when multiple developers are working on the same development project. If other vendors must be included, PaaS can provide great speed and flexibility to the entire process. PaaS is particularly beneficial if we need to create customized applications.




Where is the Azure PaaS used?


Specific PaaS capabilities may vary between vendors and products. However, the core suite of PaaS features typically includes infrastructure, development framework, middleware, operating system, and database management tools.




  • Development Framework: PaaS provides customers (mainly applications developers) with everything they need to build and manage applications using its built-in software components of PaaS such as scalability, multi-tenancy and high availability which highly reduces the amount of coding for the applications that the developers must do, making the lifecycle significantly shorter.


  • Analytics/ Business Intelligence: Additional intelligence tools provided as a service allow organizations to mine and analyze both user behavior data and applications data, application usage patterns, predicting the outcomes to improve product design decisions, business decisions and increasing the return on investment by analyzing insights.


  • Additional Services: PaaS also includes additional services that enables users to have a stable and enhances applications hosted PaaS. These services include enhancement of security, workflow and scheduling.



Advantages of Azure PaaS



  • Time Efficiency: Here, the developers can reduce the time spent for coding the new app since they can integrate the pre-coded components built into the platform such as security features, directory services, search options and so on.


  • Application Lifecycle: PaaS provides all of the capabilities to manage Applications Lifecycle efficiently because it is designed to support complete web application lifecycle of building, testing, deploying, managing and updating.


  • Multi-Platform Support: Some providers gives us multiple platforms via their development options, such as computers, mobile devices and browser makes application development much easier and quicker.


  • Geo-distributed development: Since, the development ecosystem is accessible through the Internet, multiple development teams can work together on application development.


  • Cost: The primary benefit of using PaaS is its pay-as-you-go model, i.e., we only have to pay for the services we used which makes it possible for individuals as well as organizations to use hardware and software infrastructure who could not afford to purchase outright. PaaS also offers us with components that can give our development team new capabilities without a need for adding a new staff having the required skills.




Challenges of Azure PaaS

PAAS services has few challenges like :

  • Security Risks: Organizations can run their own apps and services using PaaS solutions, but the data residing in third-party, vendor-controlled cloud servers poses security risks and concerns. However, Cloud providers are taking all steps to provide best in class security and confidentiality to the data. Also, if developers follow the principal of SECOPS then this security challenge can be handled appropriately.


  • Vendor Dependency: This is another common concern because users cannot easily migrate many of the services and data from one PaaS product to another competing product. Users must evaluate the business risks of service downtime and vendor lock-in when they select a PaaS provider. But with the hybrid model and cloud interoperability this can also be taken care.



Although PAAS services has few challenges but these are not enough to stop organizations to work on the Cloud PAAS services. Most of these challenges are very well handled by major cloud providers by adopting the higher security, data protection standards. And allowing the Hybrid approaches.

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