Private cloud storage is a form of cloud storage where the enterprise data and cloud storage resources both reside within the enterprise’s data center and behind the firewall. Also known as internal storage clouds, private cloud storage services are managed inside the data center. As a result, they almost always carry higher capital and maintenance costs than public cloud storage services because they require enterprises to provide data center space, network connectivity, power, and cooling.
Private cloud storage solutions are either developed and deployed by the enterprise itself or purchased through a dedicated private cloud hosting provider. Dedicated private cloud environments are hosted remotely in the provider’s data center, but they are isolated from other cloud environments, unlike public clouds.
Advantages of private cloud storage
Private cloud storage helps resolve the potential for security and performance concerns while still offering many of the benefits of cloud storage, such as scalability, reliability, and the option of management by a specialized cloud storage provider. Other benefits include:
- Security—Because private cloud storage solutions are typically hosted on their parent organization’s premises or nearby, they’re more secure than public clouds. An organization has all the control over that storage solution, including who can access it. Compliance-focused businesses may want the increased security and control of a private cloud, so they can manage data storage and handling closely.
- Performance—Enterprises have more control over the resources their private cloud uses, including the network on which the storage solution runs. They can improve network performance when needed. Also, having the storage solution closer to the business’s applications and workloads also improves performance.
- Management—The owner of the private cloud is responsible for all upkeep and management of the storage solution. They can choose to customize it to their business needs, integrate it with software, and choose who may access the storage solution.
Disadvantages of private cloud storage
Private cloud storage can be challenging because it requires a company to entirely manage their hardware and software resources, unless they outsource components to an external provider. This is an expensive task. The enterprise shoulders all of the costs of servers, computers, and software as well as the cost associated with hiring employees who can engineer these solutions.
Additionally, with high customizability comes high maintenance. Unlike a public cloud solution, in which every maintenance responsibility falls under the provider, a private cloud solution has to be developed, configured, troubleshot, and maintained by the business that manages it.
High customizability also requires not just upkeep and troubleshooting, but also improving the solution to meet the increasing data requirements within the storage industry. Such requirements can include faster data access, data protection and compliance, and security software to shield the data from theft. All of those components have to be designed or developed by the private cloud owner or at least installed within it.
Private cloud market growth and major players
IDC estimates that global spending in the dedicated private cloud hosting market will increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 31.0% from 2021 to 2025, starting at $5 billion in 2021. According to IDC, this is much lower than the public cloud market size—an estimated $385 billion in 2021. But the predicted growth rate is very high, almost a third of the starting value.
Major private cloud service providers include HPE, Oracle, Red Hat, and VMware.
Read more: Top Cloud Service Providers & Companies
Basic tips before migrating to a private cloud storage solution
Migrating company data to a private cloud environment requires extensive preparation and cataloging of data and applications. The following steps are basic stages of the cloud implementation or migration process:
- Take stock of all your applications and stored data. If your business is migrating to private cloud storage, whether building your own or using a private cloud hosting provider, you’ll want to have all data accounted for so that nothing is lost.
- Determine which data needs to be stored in the private cloud solution, if you’re putting data in different places. This might include data for applications that need to run as close to your company’s physical location as possible or customer information that needs to be kept private.
- Coordinate with your IT and security teams or employees to determine the exact requirements for data protection. This includes knowing what data is subject to regulations and what environments are required for each dataset. For example, does important customer data require microsegmentation? Will the servers hosting the private cloud need a firewall? What access controls will be placed around data?