Learn Cloud Computing: Basic Requirements Introduction
What are the prerequisites and requirements to start learning Cloud Computing?
This is the first article in a series to introduce our members to the Prerequisites to learning Cloud Computing. This was a question I got a thousand times via email from our users and while we’ve got Learning Paths, AWS Certification Training courses, Hands-on Labs, and Skill Assessment, I think we can still provide a useful guide on this topic.
Prerequisites to learn Cloud Computing
Most of the members of Cloud Academy ask us, “What are the prerequisites and requirements to start learning Cloud Computing?”
In this article, we’ll give you the necessary information needed to answer this and make sure you’re ready to start learning cloud computing without worries.
The term Cloud Computing refers to a big area of Information Technology that involves: hardware infrastructures, software infrastructures, data center facilities, virtualization technologies, and software engineering concepts.
All these areas are connected and provide you with a strong background for your journey of learning to use and work with cloud computing platforms. However, in this article, we’ll focus only on Infrastructure as a Service cloud providers such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Compute Engine and Rackspace Cloud. As well as Platform as a Service, providers such as Salesforce.com, Microsoft Azure, Google App Engine.
We can start with a basic assumption: you don’t need a particular degree or a Computer Science or Computer Engineering Degree to learn cloud computing. You can start learning cloud computing from scratch even if you have very basic skills in information technology.
Wrong assumptions about learning cloud computing:
1. To learn cloud computing you should be able to code.
To learn cloud computing, you can start using a public or private cloud computing service, even if you are not a software developer.
2. You should have some previous experience in the IT world.
Cloud Computing is a technology used in all industries globally. Understanding it will help everyone, not just technical people. Chances are, you work at a company that is already using cloud infrastructure.
3. Cloud computing is only for technical people and developers.
Cloud Computing is changing how companies build and use IT systems, involving all their software. Cloud Computing is a topic that managers, marketing people, executives, system administrators, and developers must learn. Of course, with different approaches and specific aspects for the different roles and responsibilities.
Operating systems, Virtualization and Networking
Since Cloud Computing is a broad area, to learn Cloud Computing you should have some skills related to basic concepts of Operating Systems (how they work and operate at a high level): Windows, Linux and a few basic concepts about them.
If you are pretty confident with them then you know that Virtualization Technologies play a very big role when we speak about cloud computing: there is nothing like trying to start your own virtual machine (you can do that with VirtualBox) to understand how a virtualized environment works. Virtualization allows you to create virtual environments that have specific amounts of CPU, RAM and disk space assigned and their own installation of an Operating System like Linux or Windows.
They share the same physical hardware and all the network equipment but they are virtually separated from the other virtual machines. One of the first pioneers in this industry is a company called VMware. Virtualization was a well-known technology before VMware, but this company basically changed the landscape by commercializing it as packaged software that is now very common in small, medium and big sized companies.
Virtualization has introduced an economical and strategical concept called Consolidation. It means that companies around the world, using Virtualization, don’t have to allocate a single, physical server for every type of application or workload they run, but they can share resources across many virtual machines.
Basic concepts you should know about Virtualization
Hypervisor: the name of the Virtualization Core that runs all the virtualization machines. An example is VMware, KVM, Xen or OpenVZ. All the cloud environments use a (modified) hypervisor. Amazon Web Services uses Xen. Learn what is a Hypervisor here.
Virtual Machine: this is the basic element. You should know that a virtual machine has its own operating system, CPU, RAM, disk space, and may have a more articulated configuration on the networking side.
Virtualization advantages: consolidation, possibility to move VMs among different physical nodes, flexibility to add new resources to an existing virtual machine. If you want to deepen your understanding of the most important technical advantages of server virtualization, this course on Virtualization Technologies gives you everything you need to get started.
Once you have basic knowledge of Virtualization Technologies and Operating Systems, you should consider some introductory course to Networking. Then, you will easily learn cloud computing.
Networking can be a very difficult topic, and even those with some strong skills, typically require time to fully understand it. Please refer to the networking section of this article to understand what the prerequisites are.
Finally, we want you to have a clear idea of what Public Cloud Computing vs Private Cloud Computing means.
Public Cloud: we refer to a publicly accessible infrastructure where you can store data, virtual machines, and any other kind of cloud resources. You can do that autonomously, and you don’t have to invest in hardware or infrastructure. You use public clouds with a pay per use approach. You are not buying the car, you are renting it for a specific period of time.
Private Cloud: as a company, you want all the flexibility and advantages of Cloud Computing but you may still have your own data center and infrastructure. You are responsible for managing the whole thing.
In this short lecture, you’ll gain the knowledge you need to understand the differences between these models: Cloud Deployment Models: Public, Private, and Hybrid Clouds.
Cloud Computing Solutions: 7 Trends for the Future
The world of cloud computing is in a state of flux. Not long ago, the cloud was considered an emerging technology, known only to IT specialists. Today it is a part of everyday life – 96% of businesses use the cloud in one form or another, and this number only looks set to grow. Whether ...
Which Certifications Should I Get?
As we mentioned in an earlier post, the old AWS slogan, “Cloud is the new normal” is indeed a reality today. Really, cloud has been the new normal for a while now and getting credentials has become an increasingly effective way to quickly showcase your abilities to recruiters and compan...
8 Surprising Ways Cloud Computing Is Changing Education
Cloud computing: Empowering the education industry Over the years, the education industry has come a long way. Teaching and learning are no longer confined to textbooks and classrooms and now reaches computers and mobile devices. Today, learners are always connected — whether they are ...
What Exactly Is a Cloud Architect and How Do You Become One?
One of the buzzwords surrounding the cloud that I'm sure you've heard is "Cloud Architect." In this article, I will outline my understanding of what a cloud architect does and I'll analyze the skills and certifications necessary to become one. I will also list some of the types of jobs ...
Disadvantages of Cloud Computing
If you want to deliver digital services of any kind, you’ll need to estimate all types of resources, not the least of which are CPU, memory, storage, and network connectivity. Which resources you choose for your delivery — cloud-based or local — is up to you. But you’ll definitely want...
What is Kubernetes? An Introductory Overview
In part 1 of my webinar series on Kubernetes, I introduced Kubernetes at a high level with hands-on demos aiming to answer the question, "What is Kubernetes?" After polling our audience, we found that most of the webinar attendees had never used Kubernetes before, or had only been expos...
How Does Cloud Computing Work?
Whether you're looking to become a cloud engineer or you're a manager wanting to gain more knowledge, learn the basics of how cloud computing works. Are you wondering about how cloud computing actually works? We can help explain the basic principles behind this technology. Cloud comput...
What is Ansible?
What is Ansible? Ansible is an open-source IT automation engine, which can remove drudgery from your work life, and will also dramatically improve the scalability, consistency, and reliability of your IT environment. We'll start to explore how to automate repetitive system administratio...
What is Puppet? Get Started With Our Course
When it comes to building and configuring IT infrastructure, especially across dozens or even thousands of servers, developers need tools that automate and streamline this process. Enter Puppet, one of the leading DevOps tools for automating delivery and operation of software no matter ...
2018 Was a Big Year for Content at Cloud Academy
As Head of Content at Cloud Academy I work closely with our customers and my domain leads to prioritize quarterly content plans that will achieve the best outcomes for our customers. We started 2018 with two content objectives: To show customer teams how to use Cloud Services to solv...
2019 Cloud Computing Predictions
2018 was a banner year in cloud computing, with Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) all continuing to launch new and innovative services. We also saw growth among enterprises in the adoption of methodologies supporting the move toward cloud-native...
Introducing Assessment Cycles
Today, cloud technology platforms and best practices around them move faster than ever, resulting in a paradigm shift for how organizations onboard and train their employees. While assessing employee skills on an annual basis might have sufficed a decade ago, the reality is that organiz...