Virtual Private Cloud (VPC): What is it?

A virtual private cloud (VPC) is defined as an isolated private cloud environment typically hosted and secured within another cloud, which is usually a public cloud. Companies leverage VPC environments to test and execute applications, create and maintain databases, host and operate websites, and for other operations that regular private clouds are used for.

What is a Virtual Private Cloud (VPC)?

A virtual private cloud (VPC) is a secure, isolated private cloud hosted within a public cloud. VPC customers can run code, store data, host websites, and do anything else they could do in an ordinary private cloud, but the private cloud is hosted remotely by a public cloud provider. (Not all private clouds are hosted in this fashion.) VPCs combines the scalability and convenience of public cloud computing with the data isolation of private cloud computing.

Imagine a public cloud as a crowded restaurant and a virtual private cloud as a reserved table in that crowded restaurant. Even though the restaurant is full of people, a table with a “Reserved” sign on it can only be accessed by the party who made the reservation. Similarly, a public cloud is crowded with various cloud customers accessing computing resources – but a VPC reserves some of those resources for use by only one customer.

virtual private cloud

How does a VPC work?

The subscriber/tenant of a virtual private cloud is essentially purchasing an isolated environment for their data completely separate from every other customer’s data at all times – within the cloud provider’s network and in transit.

In addition, a public cloud subscriber can create resources that live on the public cloud but remain out of reach of other subscribers on the cloud. Instances of subscriber-created virtual machines, databases, or gateways can be accessed only by the subscriber.

However, while the tenant remains in control of network components, such as IP addresses, subnets, network gateways, and access control policies, security for a VPC is the responsibility of the service provider, rather than the subscriber’s IT department. To mitigate the risk of relinquishing that control, the tenant can require the provider to use security policies such as encryption, tunneling, private IP addressing, or allocating a unique virtual local area network (VLAN) to each customer, which gives their data nearly as much protection as an on-premises cloud.

What features do Virtual Private Clouds come with?

VPCs come with all the features you’d expect from a public cloud, including:

  • Agility: A VPC provides full control over the size of your network and the ability to deploy and scale resources at any time.
  • Security: Although a VPC is part of a public cloud, VPCs are logically isolated networks so your data and applications are entirely separate from your provider’s other clients. Access is limited to your resources unless you grant this. Logical isolation makes a VPC environment inherently more secure. However, public cloud security isn’t automatic, even with VPC – it must be intentionally deployed. Cloud security is always a shared responsibility between a cloud provider and its clients. Regardless of the cloud environment, users must take steps to secure data and applications in the cloud. For example, public cloud environments like Amazon AWS can be secured with third-party applications that automatically detect and manage threats.
  • Affordability: VPCs are cost-effective. You’ll save money on hardware, labor, and other related cloud resources. The cloud provider will be responsible for all maintenance and upkeep for all physical servers and software.
  • Availability: A virtual private cloud offers redundancy and fault-tolerant availability zone architectures to decrease downtime and keep applications and workloads available every moment.

Benefits of VPC

Each VPC’s main features readily translate into a benefit to help your business achieve agility, increased innovation, and faster growth.

  • Flexible business growth: Because cloud infrastructure resources – including virtual servers, storage, and networking – can be deployed dynamically, VPC customers can easily adapt to changes in business needs.
  • Satisfied customers: In today’s “always-on” digital business environments, customers expect uptime ratios of nearly 100%. The high availability of VPC environments enables reliable online experiences that build customer loyalty and increase trust in your brand.
  • Reduced risk across the entire data lifecycle: VPCs enjoy high levels of security at the instance or subnet level or both. This gives you peace of mind and further increases the trust of your customers.
  • More resources to channel toward business innovation: With reduced costs and fewer demands on your internal IT team, you can focus your efforts on achieving key business goals and exercising core competencies.

virtual private cloud

Is VPC Secure?

Virtual private clouds can be configured to tighten down security at the highest level. For instance, an organization can create virtualized replicas of access control features usually employed by traditional data centers. Like data center security, a VPC can control access to resources by IP address.

Is Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) the future?

Now you know the essentials of Virtual Private Cloud technology. It should help you as a cloud resource user, developer, or technology enthusiast. You might want to keep in mind that the global market valuation of VPC will soon reach a staggering $125 billion and grow.

Big IT companies like Microsoft, Google, Amazon, Alibaba, etc., are already in the game. Eventually, they will require skilled cloud computing specialists to develop user-friendly solutions for complex cloud computing challenges.


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