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IT Masters Short Courses


Week 1 Study Guide

We start our study of Cloud Computing with a reasonably wide ranging introduction to the Cloud, its technologies
and economics. One of the reasons that Business is apparently so focused on the Cloud is that it offers, or seems to
offer, Business the chance to reduce some relatively large up-front Capital Expenditure (CAPEX) on IT infrastructure
and software with relatively modest Operational Expenditure (OPEX). Of course, this possible advantage can also be
coupled with the possibility of a cheap(er) method of scaling infrastructure and resources to meet increasing
So, with such keen interest and focus from Business, we, as IT professionals, need to ensure that we have the
knowledge and skills necessary to assess, plan, migrate and manage infrastructure and services that are hosted on
premise in a company data centre, or partly hosted internally and partly hosted in the Cloud, or hosted internally
with storage in a hybrid cloud or even fully hosted in a Cloud service.
The NIST Cloud Computing Reference Architecture is considered to be the definitive Reference Architecture. This
document will give you the overall structure of the Cloud Architecture. The Cloud Reference Architecture diagram,
shown below in Fig. 1, is worth considering in detail.

Figure 1: NIST Cloud Reference Architecture

This topic touches lightly on most, but not all, of the technologies that are used to support Cloud Computing. These
are technologies that you need to know about in order to properly assess the usefulness of a Cloud or an as a
service offering. So you need to ensure that you understand the technical concepts of:
Networks and Internet architecture;
Data Centre technologies;

Virtualization technologies;

Web technologies;
Multi-tenant technologies, and
Service technologies.
These technologies normally would probably each be a separate subject of intensive study. But we need more of an
overview here. You need a good technical understanding, but you don't need to be able to implement or maintain
these technologies.
Mell, P., & Grance, T. (2011). The NIST Definition of Cloud Computing. Gaithersburg, MD, USA: National Institute
of Standards and Technology. Retrieved from
Last modified: Wednesday, 8 April 2015, 10:36 AM

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Cloud Models, Architecture, and Risk Management
Cloud Models, Architecture, and Risk Management
Week 1: Cloud Technology
Week 1 Study Guide
Week 1 Webinar Slides (PDF)
Read: The Economics of the Cloud
Read: NIST Cloud Computing Reference Architecture
Watch: Stephen Frys Utility Computing
Watch: NIST Cloud Computing definition Part 1 Essential Characteristic
Watch: Introduction to Cloud Computing
Week 1 Quiz
Week 2: Cloud Concepts and Models
Week 3: Cloud Architecture
Week 4: Cloud Security
Week 5: Risk Management
Week 6: Final Test
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