What is the difference between Public, Private and Hybrid Cloud?

Source: Center for Internet Security

Cloud services are getting prominent with each passing day. More and more companies are adapting cloud services to run their applications. It is estimated that Cloud industry is expected to grow form $126 billion to $163 billion within just one year. There are different types of cloud deployment models to satisfy different needs of the customer. There are three types of cloud deployment models: Public Cloud, Private Cloud and Hybrid Cloud (mixture of Public and Private Cloud). Cloud deployment models dictate how data is stored, how customers interact with it and how applications (deployed on cloud) run. In this article, we will be analyzing the differences and use-cases of different types of cloud deployments. We would also be analyzing and discussing their advantages and disadvantages in this article.

Public Cloud

This is the most common form of cloud deployment model. In this deployment model, a service provider makes resources available to public via internet. In this case, you don’t have to worry about the local hardware cost or keeping the local hardware up-to-date. This provides an opportunity of salability and resource sharing that would not have been possible for a single organization to achieve. A common use case scenario is deploying a blog or a web application. Some of the common Public Cloud providers include Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform and IBM Cloud.

Here some of the advantages and disadvantages of Public Cloud:


  1. High salability which means that one doesn’t have to invest in new hardware to scale up the infrastructure according to the demand.
  2. Pay-as-you-go pricing model which means that you’ve to pay only for what you use.
  3. No responsibility of maintenance and update of hardware.
  4. Only minimal technical knowledge required to set up and use the public cloud resources.
  5. Services are available for anyone over the internet.


  1. Some specific security requirements may prohibit the use of public cloud.
  2. There may be government policies, industry standards, or legal requirements which public cloud platforms cannot meet.
  3. Since you don’t own the hardware and services, there may be some restrictions of usage.
  4. Sometimes unique business requirements can’t be fulfilled.

Private Cloud

In Private Cloud, one creates cloud environment in its own data-center and provides self-service access to compute resources for its own organization. Unlike Pubic Cloud, whose resources can be used by multiple organizations, Private Cloud platforms provides resources to solely one organization and they cannot be shared with other organizations (also known as single-tenant environment). Private Cloud leverages salability advantages of Pubic Cloud, but you’re solely responsible for purchase and maintenance of hardware and software resources. A use case scenario for Private Cloud is when the data cannot put in a Public Cloud due to legal and security reasons. Any legacy or government application may have such restriction. Some of the Private Cloud providers include HPE, IBM, VMware, Dell EMC and Oracle.

Here are some advantages and disadvantages of Private Cloud:


  1. We can ensure that configuration can support any legacy application or scenario.
  2. We have control over the security.
  3. Private cloud can meet strict security, compliance, or legal requirements.


  1. Some initial capital expenditure is required for purchase and maintenance of hardware.
  2. Requires higher skills to use and leverage Private Cloud.
  3. The are limitations to salability since you will need to purchase and install the new hardware.

Hybrid Cloud

Hybrid Cloud is a combination of Private and Public Cloud. It tries to leverage benefits of both type of cloud platforms, allowing you to run your application in most appropriate location. Hybrid Cloud is essentially useful when some data cannot be put in cloud due to legal reasons. Its also useful when you want to keep old hardware/system running locally for applications which run on old hardware that can’t be updated. For instance, you can deploy your website on a public cloud for leveraging salability advantages, and could deploy database in private cloud to secure the data.

Here are some advantages and disadvantages of Hybrid Cloud:


  1. You can keep any systems running and accessible that use out-of-date hardware or an out-of-date operating system.
  2. You can have more flexibility and salability compared to on-premises systems.
  3. Can take advantage of economics of scale of Public Cloud.
  4. You can use your own equipment to meet security, compliance, or legacy scenarios.


  1. Its more complicated to set-up and manage.
  2. Its more expensive than using one type of deployment techniques.

All of the three cloud deployment techniques come with their own set of advantages and disadvantages. Hence, it is important to understand the use-case and requirements of the organization before adapting any of the three cloud deployment techniques.

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