PaaS is an abbreviation for Platform as a Service. This term refers to cloud services through which providers provide development environments and tools for developing new applications. Thus, PaaS as a service above all makes sense especially for developers and software companies who want to create and publish new programs or applications quickly and easily, without having to worry about the required infrastructure itself.
What is PaaS?
In cloud computing, PaaS is the link between Software as a Service (SaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), while IaaS only provides the infrastructure that companies need to do their work, PaaS goes further. Targeting a package of useful tools to start application development. Designing, testing, changing and delivering products to users is possible with the Platform as a Service.
Popular Platform-as-a-Service solutions include Google App Engine (GAE), Microsoft Azure, and force.com from Salesforce.
What is the PaaS structure?
The PaaS offering includes basic infrastructure such as servers, operating systems, storage space, and middleware, which are programs that connect multiple applications. There are also resources such as development tools, programming languages, database management systems and container techniques. Various solutions included on the platform can be developed by vendors or third parties. The aim is to enable customers to develop new web applications comfortably and quickly.
So when you take advantage of PaaS, you no longer have to worry about infrastructure procurement and management, or find the solutions you need for development, but can focus entirely on programming your application and your customers. The resulting program can then be used as software as a service through the cloud. For example, they might be commercial applications, or they might be internal software designed for use in their own organizations.
How does PaaS work?
With Platform as a Service, you basically develop your product as you would in a self-developed development environment. After creating the code, transfer it to the platform, where the code will be used and executed in a container that meets the resource requirements. So you can see changes immediately. Many PaaS services are capable of running multiple versions of a program simultaneously. This can be used, for example, to create a direct test environment or restore from a previous version.
Web hosting deals are simple examples of how Platform as a Service works. As a customer, you create a code and enter it into a web hosting service. This executes the code and displays the web pages that you have created. You don't need to worry about disk space, maintenance, or database settings. However, PaaS offerings can be far more complex and contain more features.
What are the special features of PaaS?
If you use Platform as a Service, only certain programming languages are available. So you have to choose a provider that supports the language you use. Pay close attention to your own project requirements and which programming language is used by each PaaS solution.
Also, consider what services you hope will be needed in the future, when the application you develop is successful and generates more traffic. Because even with user incursions, your service must remain stable - poor performance adversely affects your company, because it causes a long load time. And that, in turn, makes customers dissatisfied.
Even though the service you ordered can usually be upgraded, so can the price. These costs must be considered before deciding on the provider.
Platform application area as a service
In addition to application development, there are other application areas where PaaS is widely used:
- For example, to develop or expand a new programming interface (API).
- In addition, it can be used to analyze broad data, for example, to better estimate specific product demand.
- Paas is also responsible for accessing or building business process management platforms that store business rules or service level agreements.
- This platform can also be used to manage important business data: this platform provides a quick review of data, even if it is excessively stored on a different system.
- In addition, the Platform as a Service can act as a communication platform offering content or voice or video messages.
- As a database PaaS, this service is also used for automated databases.
- The area of future growth is the Internet of Things in particular. This is important for cloud services, because the PaaS environment is also ideal for developing new applications that can be used for the Internet of Things.
What kind of PaaS is there?
Given the large supply of platforms as a service solution, it is difficult to match this unique category. Because individual models are sometimes very different and adapted to different needs. However, there are certain characteristics that can be used to identify various types.
For example, a distinction is made between PaaS Application (aPaaS) and Integration and Governance PaaS (iPaaS). The previous model explained the application provisions provided with a graphical interface for operations. For example, this can be an internal program that employees can access and use through the cloud.
Instead, iPaaS aims to integrate cloud services, with platforms that eliminate the need for middleware to deliver applications. An example is the Anypoint Platform developed by MuleSoft.
The pure application turn deployment allows not the development or testing of applications, but only their operation.
Then there is an open PaaS offer. This means applications such as Google App Engine, which allow work in open source environments and where programming languages, databases, servers or operating systems are not specified.
As mentioned above, there are also platforms that are used for communication purposes. This type is called a Communication Platform as a Service (cPaaS).
Pros and Cons of Platform as a Service
Using PaaS offers many benefits for developers. The biggest thing is that the development is much faster and easier without the acquisition and management of the infrastructure itself. Products can be brought to market faster. Performance can also be measured, so like other cloud services, you can flexibly expand or reduce the capacity ordered as needed. In addition, it is possible to save costs, because you are not charged an initial fee and you don't even have to do maintenance and updates or obtain a new software license.
The fact that the provider takes care of the configuration of the infrastructure is the advantages and disadvantages of PaaS. As a result, you have no influence on the infrastructure and cannot implement the features yourself. In addition, only languages and programming tools available are provided by the provider.
Another factor to consider when deciding for or against a Platform as a Service is the fact that your project is more or less tied to the chosen development environment. Although a small project can be migrated, in larger applications this code cannot always be fully adopted when moving to another platform and may need to be at least partially rewritten.
Very disturbing, that is also when the chosen provider decides the set or bankrupt service. To minimize this risk, you must select established market participants who have established themselves in the market.