How to Handle Workloads in Cloud Computing - dummies

How to Handle Workloads in Cloud Computing

By Judith Hurwitz, Robin Bloor, Marcia Kaufman, Fern Halper

How do you organize the cloud when setting up a cloud computing system? The basic requirement is that workloads need to be organized. A workload is an independent service or collection of code that can be executed. Therefore, a workload doesn’t depend on outside elements. A workload can be a small or complete application.

Organizations have to actively manage workloads so they know how their applications are running, what they’re doing, and how much an individual department should be charged for its use of services.

Thinking of cloud computing workloads as well-planned services

The cloud requires that workloads have to be handled in a very abstracted manner. The abstraction is a way to keep the technical details away from the user. The result of this abstraction is a type of service that makes it easier to have a well-defined function with a defined purpose. This service lives inside a container with an Application Programming Interface (API) so it can be easily moved from one place to another.

Different workload types

Two types of workloads exist: Workloads that can be executed at any time in batch mode and workloads that need to be executed in real time.

You might have a single workload that’s an entire application used by a group of customers. In other situations, a smaller service may be used in many different contexts.

Workloads as self-contained entities

If workloads are self-contained entities, what are the characteristics of these services?

  • A workload has no dependencies. It’s a discrete set of application logic that can be executed independently of a specific application.

  • The workload interface must be consistent. Currently, the most pragmatic, well-accepted interfaces are based on XML(eXtensible Markup Language).

  • A workload may have rules or policies that apply in specific situations. There may be authorization and security policies associated with using a service for a particular function.

Creating interfaces between containers in cloud computing

Providing interfaces such as XML-based or APIs is a key factor in ensuring that workloads can be managed effectively in the cloud. With a well-defined interface, a developer has a method of cleanly linking one service to another. If you have a series of workloads placed in neat containers without dependencies to other services, you have a better chance of ensuring a flexible environment that can support changing workloads.

Therefore, one of the imperatives of the cloud is that workloads be dynamic.

Discovering how XML fits into cloud computing

XML-based web services interfaces may become the primary way that the cloud connects containers. To understand the value of XML, break it into parts:

  • A set of instructions that you add to a collection of words, pictures, and so on, that controls their on-screen appearance, formatting, and behavior.

  • Tags that you define and embed in the content, and then write programs that write programs that agree on how data is defined within the context of your container.

If many different containers or services all use the same language to explain to each other what they do and how they can be used, these services can much more easily talk, connect, and send messages to each other.

The bottom line is that creating workloads with well-defined interfaces makes delivery software in the cloud a pragmatic and cost-effective way to work with customers.