What is Latency in Cloud Computing?
Cloud computing is a remote computing or storage model where multiple users can access a central computing or data storage facility like a data center without having to physically maintain or manage computing resources.
Microsoft and Amazon offer Cloud services like Azure and AWS respectively, which are examples of public Clouds where other organizations pay to use computing resources. The Cloud makes deploying new hardware, software, and storage easier and more feasible.
However, latency in Cloud computing is a basic central issue faced by both the user and the service provider, and it is not always dependent on an issue as basic as network connectivity.
What is Latency in Cloud Computing?
Nowadays, all major IT companies use their enterprise Cloud or use other public Cloud solutions. The most important metric of a Cloud service is their SLA uptime, guaranteeing fast and reliable response times. The two major factors affecting this are Latency and Bandwidth:
Technically, bandwidth is the amount of data that can be carried across a network per unit time. Bandwidth can be explained as a pipe carrying water; thicker the pipe, more the amount of water that can be carried. It is the same with computer networks where the performance of the network depends on its breadth.
Latency in Cloud computing can be simply defined as the TAT of a Cloud service provider’s response to the user or client’s request. This request can as simple a task as deleting stored data or a more complex task like rendering a 3D image.
Although network complexity and routing protocols affect the distance between the source and the destination and hence affect latency, it is important to note that Cloud computing latency is calculated after considering network bandwidth.
How to reduce Cloud Latency?
Anyone waiting impatiently for a video to load on Facebook or YouTube knows how frustrating latency issues can be. For some businesses like stock trading a few millionths of a second can have substantial financial ramifications.
Cloud Latency Solutions
Use a WAN to directly connect to the Cloud and bypass the internet transport layer. This solution is provided by AWS as Direct Connect and Azure Express Route, which resolves unnecessary routing and jitter issues associated with the internet TCP.
For latency-sensitive software such as real-time processing apps – a hybrid Cloud approach is very sensible where the real-time processes are run on local systems while the other portion of the application is kept on the Cloud.
For a big corporation spread across large geographical areas a distributed Cloud architecture is the way to go. Assuring that no node in the network is too far away, i.e. with too many routers in between, from a Cloud server.
Software not meant to operate on the Cloud can cause software latency which does not correlate with network latency, however, hampering process flow. Developing apps that can help software migrate to the Cloud and utilize its resources can significantly improve the ‘last mile’ delay.
IaaS services can be used to set up virtual SD-WAN (Software-defined Wide Area Networks) between your network and the Cloud. SD-WAN routers can intelligently route the network traffic based on various metrics like packet loss, latency, jitter and increase network output.
Summary – Latency in Cloud Computing
Reducing the latency to public Cloud services will require better adaptation to the Cloud in the first place. It is vital to understand that the Cloud does not just represent data storage and computing. It can completely change how data is accessed in and across networks as well.