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, new labs, and quizzes , 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 Servicecloud providers such as  Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Compute Engine and Rackspace Cloud. As well as Platform as a Serviceproviders 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 on information technology.

Wrong assumptions about learning cloud computing:

  1. To learn cloud computing you should be able to code.


A. To learn cloud computing,you can start using a public or private cloud computing service, even if you are not a software developer.

  1. You should have some previous experience in the IT world.


A. 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 a cloud infrastructure.

3.Cloud computing is only for technical people and developers.


A. 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.

Anyone can learn the Cloud Computing.

Operating systems, Virtualization and Networking

Since Cloud Computing is a broad area, to learn Cloud Computingyou should have some skills related to basic concepts of Operating Systems (how they work and operate at a high level): Windows, Linux and a bit of 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.

irtualization 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 an 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 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 lecture 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 Academy offers learning paths, video courses, hands-on labs, and quizzes on all major cloud computing platforms. The best way to learn cloud computing is by doing and Cloud Academy features a free 7-day trial subscription where anyone may dig in and start learning. The labs offer access to the actual AWS environment with no need for an AWS account.

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  • Arneil Pacula

    thanks for this nice article. I am actually at a point where I am thinking over if it is really worth the effort to invest my time in learning a new field in my career and I’m targeting Cloud Computing as one. Thanks for this article it somehow motivates me.


  • Sreedhar

    Excellent Info!! Given clear idea on basics of cloud computing!! Thanks a lot!!

  • Cristian Cojocaru

    Nice article, but I think that cloud technology could be effectively used only by software developers who know exactly what the desired virtual core needs in terms of performance and development

    • Suzuki

      Cloud technology can be used by anyone. Cloud is a broad term describing different technologies. Yes, it can definitely be used by software developers, but we are coming to an age where we are starting to move on premises technologies to the cloud, such as taking an Active Directory server and integrating it with Azure. Or, perhaps hosting servers through Amazon Web Services. Cloud storage is also becoming more popular, with all the different services such as Microsoft OneDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox etc…

  • nagraj ullas gokarnkar

    is it is necessary to learn microsoft server to learn the cloud computing

    • No but knowing how to stand up servers (microsoft, vmware, linux et al) is a transposable skill in cloud environments. You will see the similarities and pick things up quickly with the CA courses. You have a valuable point of difference in knowing Microsoft right now. You can launch an R3 instance or SQL server on AWS, and of course you can Microsoft apps in Azure. What is the difference / considerations for customers in running business apps in either platform. Should they consider GCP as well, I’m sure you get the picture! //

  • Bhavesh Nijap

    Want to learn the cloud computing , just wanted to know is there any languages to learn before i start learning Cloud technology as i am from network field so not familiar with any programming or software languages

    • I got started with Perl so I am a bit biased. Python or Node.JS would be my pick for use of learning/ .NET probably the pick for cross platform portability right now cheers AL

    • Stuart Scott

      If you are just starting out with Cloud Computing then it’s not essential to know any language to allow you to understand the concepts and principles of Cloud technology. Even from a Cloud architectural perspective, learning a language is not essential as you can still learn how each of the different cloud services work and how they interact with each other.

      Some services do require you to have knowledge of certain languages to perform specific functions, but if you are starting out with Cloud Computing then learning a language is not a prerequisite.

      I hope this helps!

      Many thanks,


  • Prince A David

    I just presented a seminar on cloud computing. I know wish to do my final year project on same cloud computing in my degree course of Communication Technology. I need your assistance to know if its advisable for me to do and what area of cloud computing?

  • somenath ghosh

    I am very much interested to learn cloud technology. currently I work as Linux & Weblogic support, shell scripting etc. How do you advise to start from ? Do I need to be specific from starting about the google cloud or amazon cloud etc ?

  • Julie Tessaro

    Hi Somenath! If you want to start with Cloud Computing, I will recommend learning the fundamental concepts with this introductive course: https://cloudacademy.com/cloud-computing/what-is-cloud-computing-introductory-course/. Good luck and feel free to reach us for more advice!

    • somenath ghosh

      Thanks Julie!!
      If I want to concentrate on any of Google or Amazon product, which one do you suggest ?

      • Julie Tessaro

        Hi Somenath, for AWS you can concentrate on EC2, Elastic Load Balancing or Amazon Kinesis. But I will recommend to get an overview of AWS fundamentals before, this learning path can help you: https://cloudacademy.com/learning-paths/aws-fundamentals-1/. For GCP, Google App Engine or Virtual Machine can be 2 topics to focus on. Hope it helps!

  • durga rao

    I want to learn cloud computing can you guide me

  • anilbabu

    Hello everyone, i am basically from CSC backgroung and currently working as java developer , iam very much intrested to learn cloud technologies is there any pre requisites to start how do i go forword please give ur valuble suggetions.

  • Vijay Kumar

    Hello Everyone,I’m working as System Admin and want to learn Cloud, is scripting is mandatory to work on cloud technologies

  • Ravi

    Hello, I am from Finance background with 14 years of experience in Finance operations and consultant. Now thinking to move into Cloud. Any requirements or basics i should be aware? or Where should I start to become Cloud consultant/designer.

    • Diego Tiziani

      Hi Ravi, there are no requirements to learn about cloud computing. Given your experience, your interests, your goals, and the market needs, if I were you I’d start from Cloud Computing for Business Professionals, https://cloudacademy.com/learning-paths/cloud-computing-business-professionals-37/. Once you have finished up this learning path, you’ll have a clear idea on what trajectory you could follow for your career.


    Hi Everyone. I am working as SQL Support project for last 4 months. i would like to learn and work in Cloud technology. I am not aware of this technology. please any one can suggest me about what should i do?

  • Srikanth

    Hello,Currently I am working on Digital Marketing platforms like SEO,PPC,SMM, Now I want to learn cloud computing.Is there any coding and technical knowledge skills are required to learn this cloud computing?