As the cloud computing market continues to mature, and as server virtualization technology continues to catch on in health care organizations, a private cloud architecture becomes both attractive and viable — to a point.
Providers are increasingly learning that virtualization begets private cloud architecture, since the infrastructure is already there and, as a result, there’s little need for hardware configuration.
However, defining a private cloud is not easy. It involves equal parts virtualization and process automation. As The Register puts it, a private cloud should provide “intelligence and responsiveness to demands from a virtual machine for resources.” The building blocks of a private cloud architecture, then, include resource pooling, powerful (and elastic) service provisioning and network access that can be transported among platforms.
In this context, the focus is on service delivery, not infrastructure. It also helps explain why cloud computing is not for everything, especially if it involves backup, disaster recovery or sharing large files. As time has told us (pun intended), the Internet isn’t necessarily the best option for such tasks. Fortunately, the health care industry is used to considering information technology investments very carefully. A private cloud architecture implementation won’t be the exception.