Cloud Computing Explained To Dummies

Cloud computing, or “cloud computing”, is everywhere. But this computer concept is still vague for the general public. Catch up session.

The phenomenon of “cloud computing” is becoming more and more widespread in companies and the general public is starting to know it in the form of remote storage services, or streaming music. The cloud is on everyone’s lips.

Bernard Ourghanlian is technical director and security of Microsoft France. For L’Express, he explains what the cloud is, and what he point.

How do you define cloud computing?

The general public has long used cloud computing without knowing it. When you use your webmail, Hotmail, Gmail or other, we make the cloud. Cloud computing is accessing computer resources that are somewhere through the internet. It can be accessed for free, as is the case with the webmail. On subscription, with a guaranteed level of service, Companies buy capacity, and are billed a little like water, gas or electricity: we pay for consumption. Like the electric current, you can consume as much as you want. Virtually, the power is infinite.

Can we say that cloud computing is a revolution for IT?

It is an economic revolution, but not technological. Because of it is based on long established technologies.

What is the interest of cloud computing?

It is mostly economic. If you are a very small company, you can launch a service without any capital investment in hardware. Thus, virtually no software start-up is investing in heavy equipment today. The second advantage is to be able to benefit from economies of scale that have economic repercussions. For example, IT resources that are not used by French companies at night, are by companies on the other side of the planet. It’s like a 24-hour factory with shared resources. This allows, for example, businesses such as e-merchants, who have a peak load at Christmas and much less charge the rest of the year, to have the necessary resources during this peak without investing in capabilities they would not use the rest of the year. That’s how Amazon started cloud services initially. They had invested in huge capacities and sought to amortize them.

What allows us to do the cloud, which we could not do before?

For example, preserve the context when changing terminals. Example: You start an Xbox Live game on your Xbox console, and you continue to play on your mobile phone.

Where are these computer resources, which are no longer local? Are some of them in France?

They may be “in the cloud”, they are on Earth, in giant datacenters that are a dozen times the size of a football field, and are filled with machines. At Microsoft, two datacenters are currently under construction. We have one in Europe, in Dublin, which has cost $ 500 million, and we have a backup in Amsterdam, which we rent to hosts. The further a data center is from the user, the longer the response time. We know how to increase the bandwidth but not decrease the latency of requests. For the general public, basically only couriers are hosted in France.

The problem is that data is held by a small number of companies, and access is based on maintaining an internet connection.

The big players in the cloud are indeed few. Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Salesforce. For more security, for businesses, there are private clouds, which are not shared. The goal is to have the same benefits, but to keep control of the environment. This type of service is offered by many actors, such as hosting companies, IBM …

As far as the general public is concerned, is it possible to know where the stored data are?

The average Internet user can not know. These data can also move. No commitment is made at this level vis-à-vis the general public.

Can the general public also lock their data in a private area, a digital safe?

This kind of service exists. To make sure that no one can access it, including the provider, you have to encrypt the data. Thus, only the user has the keys of his safe. As long as you want to store private data, it works. But copies of keys on a large scale, today we do not know how to do. If you want to share and collaborate, allow a large number of people to search in a field of encrypted data (in business for example), it is not possible because the response time becomes a lot of diving. It’s the grail of today’s cloud research.

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The Cloud, The Other SAP Bet … But Not Quite Like Everyone Else

After the launch of SAP C4 / HANA the day before, SAP announced on Wednesday, June 6, 2018 on the occasion of SAPPHIRE NOW its ambitions for SAP Cloud Platform and its extension to all major providers of cloud infrastructure. In addition to Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services, SAP signs with Google Cloud.

“All we will do now (…), we will do it through SAP Cloud Platform,” said Hasso Plattner, co-founder and president of SAP, June 6, 2018 at SAPPHIRE NOW, the annual event of the German company. Objective: to connect all the applications between them, those of SAP as the external applications, to “develop and especially launch products faster without touching the product”. According to the professor, this should reduce maintenance efforts and speed up the marketing of products.

Sap Cloud Platform Server Intelligent

SAP’s cloud platform is at the heart of all of the company’s solutions. An orientate that fits on his concept “The smart business”. “For business, intelligence is also about speed and accuracy, and how you apply it,” says Bjoern Goerke, CTO of SAP, President of SAP Cloud Platform in front of an entire audience. Customers and potential customers gathered for the occasion. This gives you a competitive advantage, which reduces your time cycle and helps you deliver better for a better customer experience. “And adding:” But it’s not just a matter of speed of execution. is also a question of how quickly to change market conditions and adapt to consumer behavior. It’s agility business “.

Ability to connect all SAP products to each other, as well as external solutions, possibility to link the frontoffice backoffice, propensity to be agile … All arguments put forward by the President of SAP Cloud Platform. The proof of success according to him: “In two years, we won 5000 customers,” he says. But Bjoern Goerke plans to go further. “SAP’s cloud platform is now a cockpit”, he says. A cockpit to control all the data of the company, whatever their origin or the solutions is used. Finally, not quite yet …

A Cloud Platform ” Almost”1 00% Open

To achieve this goal, SAP multiplies partnerships. The company takes advantage of SAPPHIRE NOW 2018 to announce its signature with Google. “SAP Cloud Platform is now available on Google Cloud Platform,” says Bjoern Goerke. Google joins Microsoft with Azure and Amazon with AWS. SAP also reports working with IBM for private publishing.

Bjoern Goerke also announced the addition of 150 additional connectors for cloud-based “non-SAP” business applications, including Salesforce, ServiceNow, Marketo, Zendesk and even the Oracle NetSuite ERP reader. Another novelty, after Apple’s iOS, SAP announces an Android SDK.

Rather than attacking front-end existing cloud platforms and an already highly competitive market, SAP is committed to partnering with market leaders. A reasoned to choice. Will it pay? The future will tell.

Why Companies Opt For Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing is of interest to more and more small companies. Three SMEs with different profiles tell their experiences. The benefits lie in both cost and flexibility

It is a large, anonymous six-storey gray building in the suburbs of Lausanne. A few steps from the highway, nothing from the outside, can guess what it contains in his basement. At the exit of the elevator, we see a dozen gray bottles of more than one meter long each. “They contain Inergen gas. In case of fire, they explode immediately to deprive the fire of oxygen, “says Jean-Michel Melinand, commercial director of SyselCloud. A little further, we reach the computer server room. Ruled in rows for tens of meters, placed in locked cages, the machines are silent.

Marc Boudriot approaches three cabinets. “All the data of our customers are there. They are also duplicated in another secure center located in the area – but do not write any place names, we must keep our locations secret. “The SyselCloud director, who has 24 employees, continues:” This region is one of the most the best covered fiber optics in the country. Data transmissions are ultrafast. This is the perfect place for our cloud computing activities. “SyselCloud, with its administrative headquarters in Mont-sur-Lausanne, is one of a dozen companies in the French-speaking part of Switzerland to offer so-called cloud computing services. His clients? Above all, SMEs. These have not only decided to outsource all or part of their IT, but also, for some of them, to move from buying to renting software.

“The cloud is comparable to the arrival of electricity”

Cloud computing is therefore computer servers hidden and connected to fiber. But still? “To measure the importance of the phenomenon, consider the beginnings of electrification, around the 1890s. Before, each company produced its own electricity. Then networks were created and electricity became a service. Cloud computing is the same thing: the company focuses on its business and subcontracts its IT, which becomes a remotely accessible service via the power of the current internet connections “, explains Jacques Boschung, Director of EMC for Western Europe. Cloud infrastructure provider, EMC finds revenue from these services up 15% per year. “And especially thanks to the demands of SMEs,” says Jacques Boschung. According to the manager, 30% of SMEs worldwide have already opted for cloud solutions.

Are all SMEs eligible? “Whether you have 5 or 300 employees, there are interesting cloud solutions,” said Marc Boudriot. For example, the company may decide to host all of its data remotely for security reasons: a data center will always be safer than an IT office in an SME. And we have the obligation to duplicate this data in two of our centers, at least 60 kilometers apart. “The SME can go more or less in the cloud. “It may want to outsource all of its IT infrastructure or simply rent out access to a specific application such as, for example, Microsoft Office or a human resources management system for its employees,” continues Marc Boudriot.

4 Tips For Improving Data Security In The Cloud

Data security is a hot topic in cloud computing. Still, it must be addressed on the bright side and look at the opportunities offered to enterprise data managers to improve the security of their Information System. For this post, I called Alban Ondrejeck, Head of Cloud Client Security at Orange Cloud for Business. It is published following a webinar on this topic, which was held on June 21, 2017 at 11:00 am, as part of our 15th webinathon.

Security: not just a computer business

Data security is becoming increasingly central to businesses as they become digitalized. In recent years we have seen the technical nature of security (data encryption, firewall installation, etc.) enriched by a more humane approach, focused on monitoring and consulting.

“Customers are starting to realize that technology has its limits,” said Alban Ondrejeck. It is necessary to have visibility on its security system, expertise, advice: “the need for what is called a Business Security Officer is felt.”

This person, somehow RSSI (Responsible for the Security of Information Systems) dedicated client, is guarantor of the security of the customer on the selected cloud solution. He is the single security contact for the customer within the cloud provider. The goal is to reassure him by ensuring the implementation and effectiveness of security measures, by setting up indicators and playing a role of advice on its strategic security priorities.

What is the value of your data?

Data security requires first and foremost a reflection on their value. The investment will not be the same depending on the level of criticality. To evaluate this one, at least 3 additional criteria come into play:

Confidentiality: resources are used by authorized persons, unauthorized access must be denied;

Integrity: the data is complete, accurate and lawful;

Availability: the information system works properly with the least possible interruptions.

Depending on the security objectives, it is possible to define the value of the data and the level of security required. For example, an e-commerce site requires a low level of confidentiality, but its availability will be crucial, especially during promotions. These e-commerce companies have little expectation of price confidentiality (as these are public), but have a strong need for availability.

Conversely, some companies require a great deal of data confidentiality, for example banks. On the other hand, the availability may be, for this type of customers, less priority according to the services. Here, the location of the host, the legislation in force and the traceability of the data will be criteria to be taken into account first and foremost.

4 essential precautions to ensure data security

To ensure maximum security of its data, 4 points should be checked:

Localization and availability: it is essential, when entrusting data to a third party, to know where they are stored. Indeed, the legal risks vary from country to country, and data protection guarantees differ within and outside the European Union (see the interview with Master Iteanu). In addition, the location of the data must be sufficiently close to where it will be processed to minimize latency due to remoteness in the network based on the requirements of the customer’s information system.

The link between customer and supplier: the security of an information system is equal to that of its weakest link. If the protection of the telecom links, or the authentication to the access to these data, is not up to the requirements of the customer, all the security device is questioned. Storage encryption will lose its appeal if the link is not also encrypted or if access to data is not based on a robust authentication system. In the same way, if this link is not doubled, the customer can be deprived of his data in case of break. It is therefore the responsibility of the customer to know who will provide the telecom link.

Validate the competence of your provider: it is necessary to check elements such as the reputation of the supplier, the standards and labels that it has obtained, or the publications of its own experts. The ISO 27001 standard validates the fact that the company has implemented the necessary measures to prevent the loss, theft or alteration of its data. ANSSI is currently working on the creation of labels, SecnumCloud Essential and SecNumCloud Advanced, which based on a repository of requirements certify that a company offers necessary guarantees in data security.

Trust: You must also require specific contractual documents from your supplier and invest in audits to verify their reliability. Some audit bodies are qualified by ANSSI to guarantee competence, ethics and methodologies.

By following these tips, you are relieving your teams of responsibility by minimizing the risks of outsourcing to the cloud.

Tencent Open Source Its Tars Microservices Management Project

The Chinese Tencent becomes Platinum member of the Linux foundation and open source its frameworks, Tars and TSeer. The first deals with microservice management, the second with service discovery and registration. In March, Tencent had already created an AI project with 9 other suppliers, including Baidu, Huawei and ZTE.

Tencent, one of China’s leading providers of web services, becomes a Platinum member of the Linux Foundation alongside its fellow Huawei. This means that it supports the foundation overseeing part of the major global open source projects for more than $ 500,000 annually. By becoming a Platinum member, the Shenzhen-based group also brings one of its directors to the board of directors of the Linux Foundation. This is Liu Xin, general manager of Tencent’s mobile Internet entity. Two other Chinese suppliers, Alibaba and Baidu, are also Gold members of the foundation, spending $ 100,000 a year to support the organization.

In the process, Tencent announces that it is open source two of its projects under the leadership of the Linux Foundation. The 1st, Tars, is a high performance RPC framework designed for the development, implementation and maintenance of microservices. It is based on service naming using the tars protocol and provides a platform for semi-automatic operation. The project allows users to execute remote procedures and supports C ++, Java, Node.js, PHP and Python languages. It comes with a build system and a code generation tool for agile development. The 2nd project, TSeer, is a light version of Tars. This fault-tolerant framework enables service discovery and registration. It is used in Tencent products such as QQ Browser, the App Store or Mobile Manager and handles an average of 10 billion queries per day. In a statement, Zeng Yu, vice president of Tencent, said the Chinese group has more than 10 years of experience managing interactions with a massive number of users, “which allows Tars and TSeer to optimize fully load-balancing and fault-tolerant systems. ”

Founding member of LF Deep Learning Foundation

This increased involvement of Tencent in open source comes just months from the creation in March, already within the Linux Foundation, of LF Deep Learning Foundation. This project aims to support innovation in artificial intelligence, machine learning and deep learning by making these technologies available to developers. Tencent is among its founding members alongside three other Chinese suppliers, Baidu, Huawei and ZTE, and nine other members, including Frenchman Orange. The Shenzhen Group is contributing to the LF Deep Learning Foundation through its Angel Artificial Intelligence Project, a high-performance distributed machine learning platform it has developed with Peking University. The description of this platform, cut for big data models, mentions that it can support more than one billion parameters. At the end of 2017, Tencent was the first Chinese technology company to be valued more than $ 500 million on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, ahead of Alibaba. The latter, also very involved in artificial intelligence, announced February AI services in its cloud in Europe.

My Computer In The Cloud

Preamble: on the road to C2i1 academic certification

This MOOC is part of the MOOC collection “Numerical Skills and C2i”. The first 4 MOOCs of this collection make it possible to train to the skills of the C2i reference level 1 (C2i1). The present MOOC trains all the skills of the D1 domain of this repository: “Work in an evolving digital environment”. At the end of this MOOC you will be able to obtain a free certificate of follow-up of the MOOC.

You aim for the certification of your skills? You will be able to register for a university and national certification, the C2i level 1, and accomplish at the end of this MOOC a step towards the certificate by officially validating the domain D1. Special moments during this MOOC will be dedicated to the preparation for certification of the corresponding field: methodology of elaboration of the digital skills file, methods of certification MCQ and contact to higher education institutions certifying associated with the MOOC. Registration for certification is not free about the course

This MOOC is part of the MOOC collection “Numerical Skills and C2i”. The first 4 MOOCs of this collection open in 2014 and make it possible to train to the C2i level 1 skills.

The day before yesterday, the computer has transformed the way we work individually.

Yesterday, networks have transformed the way we work together.

Internet, then allowed us to access documents, data, regardless of their location.

Today, everything happens in the cloud: wherever we are, from a simple phone, we can communicate, produce, share, collaborate.

All this is possible thanks to efficient techniques, put in place by the giants of the internet. The choices we make for hardware, software and services are not simple and we do not always understand the implications, whether it’s interoperability, security, protecting our data, and more broadly freedom of action. This MOOC’s main objective is to bring you knowledge to enlighten your choices, and basic technical skills to evolve in this complex digital environment.

Format: this MOOC is planned over 7 weeks, and proposes:

Basic on training: videos, multiple choice questions and practical activities, to acquire the essential knowledge and put it into practice simply and directly; an additional optional course: assignments to be conducted solo or in teams, to test your skills in real-life situations and to build up your digital skills record for certification.

At the beginning of this MOOC, you will decide if you just want to train at least, or if you want to invest in the optional course complement. The first week will be devoted to the introduction to the theme of this MOOC and to the discovery of the principles of elaboration of a numerical record of skills that can be valorized in itself (in particular to expand an e-portfolio) and useful to present oneself to the C2i level 1 certification. This will allow you to determine for one or the other option.

Who should attend to?

This course is for people who want to improve their digital skills for personal, professional, or educational purposes.

Prerequisites

The prerequisites are those of an intuitive digital practice, without any specific requirement.

Tribune – Cloud Security: What Trends In 2017?

As every year, the big game of predictions of new trends is in full swing. So I decided to offer some thoughts on the cloud market and security by relying on the latest developments that I have seen.

Threats to IoT will force nations to engage in international fight against piracy

After the incidents that hit critical infrastructures in France, the United States and Ukraine this year, and faced with the risks of piracy of electronic voting machines, the administrations of many countries have decided to take up the problem of cyber espionage with arms. the body. If the United States has succeeded, through closed-door diplomatic negotiations, in reducing China’s computer attacks on private sector companies, piracy of connected objects is a challenge for the United States. another dimension.

On the defense side, the European Union has enacted legislation calling for a minimum of cybersecurity measures to protect critical infrastructure, and the US is expected to follow suit in 2017.

Strict regulations affect corporate cybersecurity policy

Consumer privacy laws are meant to act as a deterrent and punish security breaches that lead to data breaches. However, until now, regulators seem to have limited themselves to mere reprimands. At the instigation of Europe and the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the data protection authorities are increasing their vigilance and reviewing the amount of the fines upwards. The importance of the financial penalties imposed at the end of 2016 for violating the HIPAA regulations and EU directives on personal data set the tone for the coming year. There is no doubt that the entry into force of the GDPR in 2018 will encourage international companies to introduce additional controls for the protection of confidentiality.

Data breaches affecting cloud service providers sensitize businesses to the risks of the “logistical fabric”

The Cloud has transformed the traditional supply chain into a “logistics canvas” where trading partners exchange data via digital gateways on the Internet. An average company deals with 1,555 different business partners via cloud services, and 9.3% of files hosted in the Cloud and shared externally contain sensitive data. In the new cloud economy, data passes into the hands of more people than ever before. A data breach can affect the external partner of a company whose IT department and purchasing department have never heard of.

Restructuring IT departments with the promotion of CISOs

With the advent of virtualization, information technology occupies such a strategic place in the business that CIOs now assume the role of chief operating officer and CEO. In 2017, security will become a driving force for strategic business, both in internal systems and products. Today, all companies use software, so they need the expertise of software security providers. In 2017, security will confirm its role as a competitive advantage by helping CISOs reduce time to market for products and ensure the confidentiality of customer and employee data.

Cheops Technology Unveils A Managed WiFi Offering With Aruba

French IT integrator Cheops Technology has announced Hyper WiFi, a packaged wireless network infrastructure offering based on HPE-Aruba access points. Objective: to accompany the explosion of mobile uses, connected commerce and the Internet of Things.

A little less than a year and a half ago, Cheops Technology teamed up with HPE to launch a hosted cloud infrastructure package called Hyper IaaS. Last Friday, the French IT integrator and the American met in Paris at a press conference to announce the arrival of Hyper WiFi. This is a packaged offer of wireless network infrastructure based on the access points of the equipment manufacturer Aruba, bought by the US giant in 2015 for $ 2.7 billion.

“The challenge is to provide businesses with a robust, reliable and scalable WiFi with advanced management in terms of monitoring and support and taking advantage of the benefits of the cloud,” said Nicolas Leroy-Fleuriot, CEO of Cheops Technology. “Hyper WiFi is more than WiFi,” said Alain Carpentier, vice president of global sales of Aruba-HPE. “We have entered a new field of computing that consists of knowing how to make the edge smart.” With this offer, the two partners hope to meet not only the needs of companies to connect their nomadic workforce, but also support the explosion of uses related to the Internet of Things and in particular connected stores, factories and hospitals.

Standard 802.1X and supported captive portal

Cheops Technology’s Hyper WiFi is based on a network infrastructure technology provided by HPE Aruba, namely physical WiFi and LAN access points that can be controlled by a cloud management platform. The integrator highlights its packaged aspect allowing companies to fully delegate the implementation of this solution, from design phases to integration through deployment through administration. On the security side, Cheops says that Hyper WiFi supports, among other things, the 802.1X standard and captive portals of forcing HTTP clients to go through an authentication web page before accessing the Internet.

This packaged network solution is the first managed service offer offered by HPE-Aruba in France in partnership with Cheops Technology. A similar offering has been launched in other markets including the United States (with AT & T), Mexico (Telmex), Switzerland (Swisscom), Spain (Telefonica) and South America.

This type of database is widely used by companies that make social networks, or fraud detection applications.

“At the heart of Neptune is a high performance graphical database engine specifically designed to store billions of relationships and query the graph with millisecond latencies.Neptune supports two popular graphical models, Property Graph and RDF, via Apache. TinkerPop Gremlin and SPARQL, which allows you to easily create queries that efficiently navigate highly connected datasets, “says AWS.

Papers, The Cloud: Write Or Store?

With the evolution of technology, the means of storing data and files have also evolved. If before we used tapes, film or simple paper for data storage, then floppy disks and CDs, today USB flash drives have become fashionable. But now comes the new system of online storage of files, called the cloud, or French cloud. The question arises as to whether this new technology will in turn supplant the USB keys, which are capable of receiving a data volume of 256 GB.

At one time, writings have been preserved to serve as a database for future generations. But scientists have found it difficult, if not almost impossible to read their content after several years. Then the creation of computers revolutionized this memory storage. Thus, various means have been made available to users to store and transport their data: floppy disks, cd, internal and external hard drives, and USB keys. These are data storage tools that use flash memory. They can be connected to a computer, a DVD player, a TV or a Hi-Fi system for playback.

3 USB sticks with exponential performances  !!

USB key manufacturers have developed increasingly powerful keys as their ability to store data increases. Indeed, the capacity to store data from USB sticks has reached and exceeded 120 GB. Thus, administrative papers, personal documents, music, photos or videos can be stored there as long as they are digitized. In addition to this ability, they offer absolute security for the user. The latter can erase his data as many times as he wants. Easy to carry with their size, the USB key can slip into the pocket, in a bag or be attached to a key ring when moving.

It’s a way to always keep your personal documents safe and secure. Only be careful not to lose them or to connect them to a machine infested with viruses, at the risk of losing all data. Because of their small size, you can often forget it and it can be a big inconvenience if the file you urgently need is there.

Does the Cloud sign the renewal of USB keys?

With this technological breakthrough, the big brands have decided to create other means of storage. Hence the creation of the “Cloud”, an online storage and data processing tool. It uses remote servers to store, transfer and even modify files from various locations and various tools such as laptops or smartphones. If you need a particular file, if it’s in your database, you do not have to travel from home or from your office to find it. So just have an internet connection and a password that you have created to access it.

Like any tool, Cloud also has its disadvantages. It only works with an internet connect, otherwise you can not access your folders. The server takes a long time to answer. In addition, users have no control over the stored data. And espionage problems are added to this list

The Cloud is no doubt a powerful storage medium, but the USB key remains the best data storage tool that has a promising future with its great capacity to store data, its ease of use, but above all thanks to the security and the confidentiality it brings.