Learn Cloud Computing

A Comprehensive Guide to Start Learning Cloud Computing

Cloud computing is a type of computing that involves delivering hosted services over the internet. It typically involves leveraging a combination of hardware and software to deliver various services, such as storage, networks, databases, software, analytics, and more.

Cloud computing is the act of using remote servers on a network to store, process, and manage data and other services. It eliminates the need to store content on a personal computer or local server, saving companies a significant amount of money and increasing their production capability. If you’ve always wanted to learn cloud computing but aren’t sure how to get started, this guide is for you. Here, you’ll learn more about the various ways to learn cloud computing, free resources to explore and the types of careers that commonly use cloud computing.

What is Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing involves delivering computing services, such as databases, servers, software, intelligence, analytics, and storage, over the internet, or the “cloud.” Instead of storing files on a local storage device or one’s hard drive, cloud-based storage provides a way to save them to a remote database. Any electronic device that can access the internet can then access the data, as well as the software programs needed to run it.

Different types of clouds, as well as cloud computing options, are available, including various services and models. Cloud services can be deployed in three ways: on a private cloud, a public cloud, or a hybrid cloud. Private clouds are used solely by one organization. It is either physically located in the organization’s onsite data center or is hosted by a third-party service provider. Public clouds are owned and run by third-party cloud service providers. This provider delivers computing resources via the internet. In public clouds, the cloud provider owns all the supporting infrastructure like software and hardware and is in charge of managing it. Hybrid clouds are a combination of private and public clouds that share data and applications. Since apps and data move between public and private clouds in a hybrid cloud, this format provides organizations with additional deployment options, security, and flexibility. 

Nearly all cloud computing services fall into four categories: infrastructure as a service, platform as a service, serverless, and software as a service. Since they build on one another, these four services are often called the cloud computing “stack.”

Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) is the most rudimentary of the four services. Those using IaaS rent their IT infrastructures, such as virtual machines, servers, networks, and storage, from a cloud provider using a pay-as-you-go structure. Platform as a service (PaaS) provides on-demand environments to develop, test, deliver, and manage various software apps. PaaS allows Developers to easily and quickly design mobile or web apps since they do not need to create or manage the servers’ databases, storage capacity, or network. Serverless computing allows users to focus their efforts on creating apps rather than managing the infrastructure and services needed to do so. Instead, the cloud provider takes care of setup and server management. The fourth cloud computing service is software as a service (SaaS). This method delivers software apps on an on-demand basis over the internet and generally involves a subscription. Cloud providers are tasked with hosting and managing the infrastructure and apps, as well as performing maintenance tasks like updating software. Those who wish to connect to the app do so over the internet. 

Read more about what cloud computing is and why you should learn it.

What Can You Do with Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing is a skill that can open many professional doors, lead to competitive salaries, and provide you with the training and skills to stand out to a range of recruiters and employers. Currently, cloud computing is one of the most in-demand skills you can have on your resume. According to U.S. News and World Report, the number-one job in America in 2022 is Information Security Analyst. These individuals safeguard the information stored in an organization’s computer system from cyberattacks and data breaches, often in the cloud environment. Whether you want to pursue a cybersecurity career or employment in a related field like web development or cloud development, cloud computing is likely to play an integral role in your professional responsibilities. The demand for those with cloud computing skills will likely increase over the next decade as more companies realize the benefits of cloud environments.

Cloud computing allows businesses and organizations to reduce expenses by using resources from several providers instead of just one. This can lead to a significant reduction in operating costs. Not only does cloud computing save money, but it improves a company’s flexibility. It provides a way for users to access apps and data when and where it’s needed. Working in the cloud environment also improves an organization’s agility by allowing users to easily and quickly deploy services and applications. 

Another benefit of working with cloud computing is that it provides a secure data environment with which users can securely access their data from any location. Because it’s made the internet more reliable and improved the speed by which information can be accessed, cloud computing often improves employee productivity. It also provides a way to stay current with technology trends. Additionally, because cloud computing relies on state-of-the-art data centers and cutting-edge technology, it can also reduce an organization’s carbon footprint.

Careers that Use Cloud Computing

Cloud computing plays an integral role in many fields and professions. Nearly all major companies use cloud computing, and this trend is expected to continue in the coming years. Those with cloud computing skills are in high demand and typically can find high-paying jobs in different industries. The following paragraphs will explore some of the most popular cloud computing professions currently available and the responsibilities associated with each role.

Cloud System Engineers use their cloud computing skills to create and maintain a company’s cloud infrastructure. Cloud Developers are involved with developing cloud applications and designing hack-proof applications and programs. Cloud Network Engineers focus on the architecture behind cloud infrastructures to improve their productivity and flexibility. This often involves moving functions and networks to public, private, or hybrid clouds. Those who work as Cloud Database Administrators manage and maintain cloud infrastructures. Their daily tasks involve migrating cloud infrastructure data, designing and analyzing database applications, and performing optimization testing.

Cloud computing also plays an integral role in daily work of Back End Web Developers. These professionals create the code used to define application functions. This work requires an understanding of various programming languages to create server-side applications. Cloud Architects are those who oversee a company’s cloud computing system. These IT experts perform tasks like designing cloud applications, managing cloud storage systems, and okaying cloud storage plans. Individuals who work as Cloud Security Analysts ensure a cloud environment is secure. They also devise solutions to problems that can arise in cloud environments.

Why Learn Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing provides users with many benefits. It offers flexible resources, quicker innovation capacities, and economies of scale. Cloud computing is typically a cost-effective solution for businesses because you only need to pay for the cloud services you use, which can significantly reduce operating costs. In addition, it can help organizations run their infrastructures more efficiently. When working with cloud computing, tasks such as disaster recovery and data backups are easier to perform and less expensive since the data can be mirrored at various redundant sites on the provider’s network.

Before the advent of cloud computing, the costs associated with buying hardware and software, as well as time and energy setting it up on onsite data centers, quickly added up. These data centers require constant electricity for powering and cooling, and organizations needed to hire employees with IT training to manage it all. Cloud computing eliminates those costs so IT professionals can devote their time and effort to more pressing business endeavors. In addition, because the majority of cloud computing services are available as self-service, on-demand services, they provide fast access to huge stores of computing resources. Another benefit of working with cloud computing is that the largest services operate on a global network of secure data centers. These centers receive regular updates and often operate with the most efficient hardware, which leads to better performance.

Read more about why you should learn cloud computing.

How to Learn Cloud Computing

If you want to learn more about the skills needed for cloud computing, studying cybersecurity is an excellent first step. For those who study in person, classes take place in a computer lab with the most up-to-date cybersecurity and web development software and applications. In-person and live online courses are conducted in real-time, which means participants can ask questions and receive immediate feedback. This interactive, engaging format also allows students to network with other learners, a benefit that extends well beyond class meetings. Those interested in learning cybersecurity in a live online environment still receive hands-on training from an instructor with industry experience but will complete coursework remotely from their own home or office space rather than commuting to campus for meetings.

Live online cybersecurity classes are available from Noble Desktop and other reputable educational providers in topics like Linux Operation System & Bash Scripting, Cybersecurity with Python, and Online Cybersecurity Analytics. For those who are interested in finding a study option close to home, Noble’s Classes Near Me tool can help you locate nearby in-person and live online cybersecurity courses.

In addition to in-person and live online courses, another popular way to learn cybersecurity and related skills is through self-paced course material. Students can study these materials at their own speed, pausing, rewinding, and re-watching as often as necessary. Since all course content is available online, it can be accessed from any location with an internet connection. This makes on-demand cybersecurity materials an excellent resource for those who need to balance their studies with other professional and personal commitments, like travel, family, and full-time work. However, because no instructor is available to answer questions, it may be challenging to learn more advanced cybersecurity or web development skills through asynchronous material. While on-demand content is a good starting point to provide a basic overview of cybersecurity, for those who need to master more complex skills for work or professional development, in-person or live online coursework may be a better option. 

On-demand cybersecurity classes offer pre-recorded lessons, videos, and instructional material. Course offerings are currently available in a range of cybersecurity topics and are offered for beginners and more advanced learners. Udacity’s Introduction to Cybersecurity is a four-month, intermediate-level course that covers how to work with operating systems and networks, as well as how to assess and mitigate risks. For beginner-level instruction, Springboard’s Cyber Security Career Track provides training for the CompTIA Security+ exam.

Read the full guide on how to learn web development and cybersecurity skills.

Free Introductory Cloud Computing Course Online 

If you’re not quite ready to dive into a full course on cloud computing, other online learning options are available. For those interested in an overview of this field, you can start learning for free online. Many top educational providers offer free online content devoted to cloud computing and related topics.

Udacity’s Introduction to Cloud Computing is a two-month, beginner-level course in which participants prepare for a career in cloud computing. This class provides instruction on deployment models, AWS, and serverless architecture. For those who want to learn how to work with AWS, Cloud Computing with Amazon Web Services is offered for free from Amazon. Three hours of video content is available about AWS services, S3 cloud storage, and cloud infrastructure. Coursera also provides a free course, Introduction to Cloud Computing. Instruction is provided on the evolution of cloud computing, as well as the various cloud deployment models. If you want to become familiar with Microsoft Azure, Udemy’s Learning Microsoft Azure offers an hour of video content that prepares students to work with its infrastructure and services. For those who wish to gain an overview of cloud computing, Pluralsight’s Fundamentals of Cloud Computing provides two hours of introductory-level videos on the risks and benefits of working with cloud computing.

Read about more free cloud computing videos and online tutorials.

Level of Difficulty, Prerequisites, & Cost 

Over the past several years, cloud computing has become increasingly popular. Many businesses are seeing the value in the efficiency and cost reductions cloud computing provides and are adopting the technologies needed to make the switch. Because of the increasing interest in this field, individuals from both technical and non-technical backgrounds are considering learning more about working in the cloud environment. If you’re interested in a cloud computing career, you may wonder how hard it is to learn.

Most people who pursue cloud computing consider it to be a relatively difficult field to learn, especially when leatheir own. Because this skill requires studying a range of business requirements, such as implementing back-office enterprise systems, it takes time and expert training to acquire cloud computing skills. Because networks serve as the foundation of cloud computing, it’s also important for learners to have a detailed understanding of core networking concepts. In addition to business knowledge, those who wish to become Cloud Developers typically must also have a background in API design and programming. This requires technical training in a field like computer science, as well as knowledge of at least one programming language, such as Python. The good news is that most programming languages are open-source, which means they are available for free. 

Another reason why learning cloud computing is considered a challenging task is because it requires that students handle a lot of complexity. Cloud Developers and Cloud Computing Architects must deal with large-scale complexity, such as when working with large platforms such as the Google cloud computing platform, Microsoft Azure, or AWS. This generally requires designing blueprints that help an application function. Additionally, these professionals must manage both minor and major details, such as various services on the cloud computing platform, as well as the services a software app calls upon. This can require extensive note-taking and record-keeping. Those who work with cloud computing also should be familiar with Linux, a family of open-source operating systems that is available for free. This often requires hands-on training.

Read about how difficult it is to learn cloud computing.

How Does Learning Cloud Computing Compare to Other Tech Skills?

If you are considering learning cloud computing, you may wonder how it compares to other technology-related skills and fields. One skill set commonly compared to cloud computing is data science. Data science involves gathering data from different resources, then preparing, modeling, and analyzing the data. On the other hand, cloud computing refers to the technology or infrastructure used to provide an organization with continuous IT services. Both of these fields require a background in technology, programming, and other related skills, which is why they are considered relatively difficult to learn. These two fields have several similarities, as well as some key differences.

Data science and cloud computing are powerful tools for enabling business agility since they provide improved organizational efficiency and reduced costs. Cloud computing professionals and Data Scientists often work in concert to ensure their organization has sufficient IT infrastructures, as well as network bandwidth, to enable fast data modeling and flow. Another similarity these fields share is that they both seek ways to improve organizational performance. Cloud computing is concerned with solutions for data processes, and data science is concerned with locating important insights that can help an organization perform better. This is why both fields provide competitive salaries for qualified individuals. Because organizations require an environment that can handle and maintain their data processes, cloud computing services have a range of data science applications that provide better value and performance for a business when used together.

Noble Desktop’s Data ScienceBlog & Learning Resources provides more information about the field of data science, career paths, and the tools and software commonly used by Data Scientists. 

How to Decide the Best Way to Learn Cloud Computing

Once you’ve decided that you want to study cloud computing, the next step is deciding which learning format is best for you. Ultimately, this decision will depend on various factors, such as your current schedule and what you want to do with your cloud computing knowledge.

For those who are new to cloud computing and want to learn the basics without committing to a full course, free introductory classes and online content are good resources. Since these materials are pre-recorded, they provide much more flexibility than live courses. You can complete lessons from any location at any time. In addition, you can set your own learning pace and pause, rewind, or rewatch YouTube videos as often as needed to understand a concept. The flexibility of on-demand materials allows you to learn cloud computing around other commitments, such as full-time employment, family occasions, and travel. Plus, it’s free, so it’s a low-stakes way to get started learning more about this field.

For individuals who wish to learn about cloud computing to plug a skill gap or grow within a career track, bootcamps provide a more structured way to explore this topic. Cloud computing bootcamps are available in the in-person and live online formats. Because they provide students with access to a live instructor, those enrolled can freely ask questions and receive guidance on complicated cloud concepts. Bootcamps generally cost several hundred to several thousand dollars and span several days or weeks. Enrolling in a bootcamp is a great way to help you acquire the skills to bring more value to your organization. 

A certificate program is likely your best option if you’re looking to study cloud computing to begin a new career or switch industries. These intensive courses typically span several weeks or months and provide students with many real-world benefits. Although these tend to be the most expensive learning option for cloud computing (most certificates cost several thousand dollars), this comes with many benefits like one-on-one mentoring, career coaching, the option of a free course retake, and support creating a professional portfolio. Noble Desktop currently offers a Data Science Certificate, which is available in-person and in the live online format. This hands-on course teaches students to use Python for data analysis, query databases using SQL, and design machine learning models. Many of these skills are useful not only in data science but in cloud computing as well. 

Learn Web Development & Cybersecurity Skills with Hands-on Training at Noble Desktop

One great way to learn many of the skills associated with cloud computing is to enroll in a course or bootcamp with Noble Desktop. Noble’s Cloud Computing with AWS prepares students to create and secure an enterprise-level cloud environment. Those enrolled in this hands-on class receive expert instruction on how to work with Amazon Web Services (AWS), the most popular cloud computing platform. Participants learn how to navigate the cloud’s infrastructure, as well as how Security Operation Centers can be used in AWS. These relevant skills can help students pursue a career in cybersecurity. Tuition includes the option of a free course retake for up to one year for all students.

Another great option for those interested in working with cybersecurity is Noble’s Cybersecurity Bootcamp. Instruction is provided on protecting networks and apps, evaluating security threats, and using cloud computing, Python, and Linux to prevent cyberattacks. By course completion, students will have a working knowledge of the skills required to work in several in-demand cybersecurity professions, such as Cybersecurity Analyst and Cybersecurity Engineer. In addition to the option of a free course retake, all participants in this intensive program receive one-on-one mentoring.

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