Understanding the Differences Between Private Cloud vs Public Cloud

Posted on September 17, 2020 Cloud

The cloud may be confusing to new computer users. To help better understand these are the differences between private vs public cloud.

The cloud can get quite confusing, especially when it is dissected into substrates of different varieties. Such as the public and private cloud. 

In premise, a public cloud is one that is offered to several users by the provider. Whereas, the private cloud is one that is offered to a single organization. 

And that might seem quite simple, as it is. However, that’s not all. In this article, we will cover the differences between the private cloud vs public cloud. 

So keep reading to learn more.

What Is the Public Cloud?

As mentioned earlier, a public cloud is a service that is offered to several customers by a provider. The term itself comes to differentiate the traditional cloud services accessed over the Internet from private cloud services. 

Public clouds include, but are not limited to IaaS, SaaS, Paas. Like any other cloud service, a public cloud runs on a remote server-location that the provider manages. Customers of the service access the provider’s resources over the internet.

Advantages/Disadvantages Of A Public Cloud

When it comes to figuring out if public cloud services are right for you, one must weigh the pros and cons. So let’s take a look at those. 


Moving to a public cloud is a great way for a company to cut down on IT costs of operation. Essentially, these costs are delegated to the third party whose sole job is to manage them at greater efficiency. 

Public clouds are also cheaper than private clouds because the provider is able to optimize the hardware usage, and the profits by selling the service to several users at once.

If a user/organization uses public clouds, in-house teams don’t have to waste time on management. Something that is required with internal private clouds and on-premises data centers.

Many businesses might not have the resources to implement quality security. By using the services of a public cloud provider, they can outsource the difficult aspects of cyber-defense.


Multitenancy can be a concern for users who need to meet compliance standards. It also comes with the risk of data leakage, which is more prevalent in certain business industries than others. The risk is minuscule, but still present. 

It can also be difficult to deploy the mirrored policies for security from the internal resources, as well as the public cloud as it is outside of the control of the organization. 

Vendor lock-in is a concern. A user that uses the public cloud will become more flexible and save money, but he might also become reliant upon the services: the applications, storage, VMs, other technologies provided. 

What Is the Private Cloud?

As one would expect, the private cloud is a service provided to a single user/organization. Through private cloud usage, the user can experience the benefits of cloud computing (computational services hosted in remote servers) without having to share resources with other entities. 

The private cloud can be remotely managed and accessed via the internet or be part of the organization. 

Advantages Of the Private Cloud

As you take a look at the structure, options, and services of the private cloud from several vendors, you have to keep in mind the advantages of each. 

The private environment helps deliver several benefits for each industry, but there are some general outliers that you should keep in mind.

For instance, one of the primary benefits of a private cloud is flexibility. There are no issues for compatibility and there are no limitations. It can become whatever you need it to be.

Public clouds limit the number of data, programs that can be deployed at any given time. Private clouds come with more options, meaning you can do what you want when you need to, without the fear of the cloud not keeping up with the computational needs. 

Private clouds are also better for security. In the private environment, the user has full control over security software and has control over all of their data.

A study has shown that private clouds can be significantly less expensive. The problem with public clouds is the premiums and hidden fees that come with it. If your company is in need of access to more bandwidth, that can come at a cost, and you will not be aware of it until your bill has arrived.

Disadvantages Of the Private Cloud

The separation between the advantages and disadvantages of a private cloud environment comes down to data-backed and measurable inference points. 

For instance, not all of the cons will apply to all of the companies that use a private cloud. Whereas, all of the advantages would apply to all of the users.

In any case, the cost of private clouds can also be a disadvantage. A private cloud can cost significantly more, and it will vary based on how it is deployed. An on-site managed private cloud could come with costs for network infrastructure, servers, data centers, software licenses, etc. 

However, hosted private clouds do not have these costs, as there is no need for IT staff to manage and deploy the processes. In both managed and hosted private cloud environments, you might find yourself paying more for maintenance. For instance, a private cloud requires capital for technology, whereas a virtual private cloud does not.

Also, another issue is the overwhelming quantity of choice. There are just so many options when it comes to developing your private cloud. Not each company needs unlimited storage for all of their data. They might also just need one software, rather than an entire array of various service options, applications, and software.

How Does An Internal Private Cloud Differ From On-Premises Data Centers?

An internal private cloud is subject to management by the user, hosted on their premises, and is only accessed by them. In some ways, this is next of kin to a traditional on-premises data center. 

However, the private cloud comes with cloud technology. The servers will run on virtual machines to optimize the use of technology. As a result, they are more efficient, more scalable, and more powerful. 

If a private cloud solution is like owning a hotel, a data center is like owning a motel. 

Besides virtualization, private clouds have certain qualities that on-premises data centers simply don’t possess:

  • Measurability

One can measure how much bandwidth and storage is under use, as well as how many users are active. This allows the accurate allocation of cloud resources.

  • Wide Access

All of the teams across the organization can access the resources when needed. This is a game-changer.

  • Scalability

Private clouds are easily scaled. This means that you can provide additional services without the need for additional configuration.

  • Self Service

The private cloud can be managed by users without the help of IT staff. It’s self-explanatory and easily accessed.

And that’s that. Now let’s take a look at the difference between a public cloud and private cloud in greater depth.

Private Cloud vs Public Cloud: Differences

Once again, going over the most important difference, and that being the fact that a private cloud is a service not shared with any other user. Therefore, the organization in control of the private cloud has the entire cloud to themselves.

Whereas, a public cloud is a service that shares the resources among several users, even though each of the organization’s data and software is running hidden from other users.

A public cloud is like living in a rented apartment, while the private cloud is like renting an equally-sized home. The house is private, but the costs are typically more to rent, and it’s not the most efficient. 

Maintenance in the apartment can be handed by the superintended, but it’s harder to hire a contractor to get to fix the home. In some cases, the resident has to do the maintenance on their own.

Hosted private clouds also exist which come from third-parties, as well as internal private clouds that are subject to management by the organization on their own.

Private/Public Cloud Services for You

Now that you know the differences between private cloud vs public cloud, you are well on your way to figuring out which is best for your organization/use case. As long as you understand the pros and cons of each, determine your needs and then determine which is best for you, you will not make a mistake. 

Both are great, especially when provided by a great vendor, so don’t stress too much about it. If you’re interested in getting either but are unsure of which to get, contact us and we will happily accommodate your needs.

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