Cloud computing is transforming the way users and businesses interact with mobile devices and computers. Gone are the days when people used racks of disk drives, expensive data centers, and even large IT support teams to manage and store a wide variety of their data.
Due to the rise of modern and more innovative technological trends, cloud computing becomes an excellent substitute for the centralization of computer services under one server.
If you’re the person who is planning to move your business to the cloud or ready to acquire the benefits that cloud computing offers, you need to understand the three service models of cloud computing like Saas, Paas, and Iaas solutions, their comparisons, testing process, and much more information in detail.
Three Most Important Service Models of Cloud Computing
Saas refers to Software as a Service that is a software licensing and delivery model in which software licensing is provided based on subscription, and it is hosted from the center.
Saas (Software as a Service) is also popular as cloud application services, “software plus services” by Microsoft, and an “On-demand software” that is used by businesses in the cloud market.
Saas aims to deliver applications via the internet, which are further managed by third-party vendors like Salesforce, Microsoft 365, Zoho, Google G Suite, SAP, and more.
Saas users can work on the procured software without worrying about how the underlying software or infrastructure is maintained.
The procured software or procurement software is a kind of business software used to automate organizational purchasing functions. Software functions can involve:
- Issuing and evaluating tenders.
- Selecting and ordering the product or service.
- Raising and approving purchase orders.
- Payment of invoices.
- Receiving and matching the invoice numbers and orders.
It allows the procurement department to ensure that nothing can be ordered without proper approvals. It also assures that the performance for the same type of product will be the same whether it is bought by a single user or multiple users.
The best part of Saas applications that are sometimes called hosted software, on-demand software, or web-based software, is there is no need to install and maintain the software. One can simply access it from the internet and work without worrying about complex hardware and software management.
Furthermore, Saas applications operate on the servers of SaaS providers, in which they manage access to the application and ensure to provide the proper availability, security, and required performance to its users.
Who are the Users of SaaS in Cloud Computing?
The most-commonly available cloud computing services or Saas products are widely used by companies for developing and growing their businesses.
There are numerous Saas tools available on the internet for small businesses that one can use for content curation, document collaboration, email marketing, customer relationship management, performing fundamental business functions of accounting, increasing productivity, and knowledge management.
Saas products are easy to use and manageable. As we discussed earlier, there is no downloading and installation required by an organization or entire company to deploy it on individual devices.
Saas products are beneficial for distributed global teams, mostly those who don’t work in close physical proximity.
Advantages of SaaS (Software as a Service)
Obtain Access to App’s Data from Anywhere & Anytime
The benefit of using Saas in cloud computing is that you can access the information from anywhere, like from mobile devices or internet-connected computers, due to data storage in the cloud.
The data is already stored in the cloud, so you will not experience any data loss issues even if the device or computer fails.
For using Saas-based applications or software, you need to hire onboarding expertise to manage the in-built security issues in mobile computing as the service provider already ensures the security of your data without concerning the type of device you will use.
Saas makes it easy to empower the employees because they can access the data of SaaS apps from any internet-connected mobile devices or desktop systems. Thus, you don’t need to develop an app for running the Saas product on the computer and devices because the service provider has already completed this task for you.
Saas has become the hot-selling business model as it offers greater flexibility to every consumer and the Saas business owner. It allows you to run the SaaS business on unique verticals and make it easier for you to differentiate your product from others.
Direct Access from Web Browsers
Saas apps can be directly used from the web browser, so you don’t need to take any hassle of downloading and installing software. Some Saas apps may require plugins to provide you extra features. Still, you don’t need to purchase or install anything. All you need to do is use the client software for free.
Easily Accessible Sophisticated Applications
As you’re clear with that, there is no need to purchase, install, update, or maintain hardware, middleware, or software to access the SaaS apps. SaaS applications for enterprise use are very sophisticated.
For example, CRM (Customer Relationship Management) and ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning). Both these apps are affordable for organizations who have a shortage of resources and don’t want to develop, deploy, and manage the desired infrastructure by themselves.
In the modern world, each user's purpose is to get the customized app because it allows streamlining of the business processes without affecting the basic infrastructure. The architecture of Saas is prepared well, so the unique customization feature is provided to each Saas user and company.
Saas providers make the upgrades in customization more frequently to help you adopt the software with low risks and costs.
PaaS (Platform as a Service)
Paas in cloud computing is a Platform as a Service that is a complete development and deployment environment with resources in the cloud, which allows you to deliver everything from simple to sophisticated cloud-based apps.
Like Saas, you need to purchase the PaaS from the cloud service provider and pay-as-you-go basis, and finally, you can access the resources over a secure internet connection.
PaaS involves infrastructure that are servers, storage, and networking, including development tools, middleware, database management systems, business intelligence (BI) services, and more.
PaaS is specially designed to support the full web application lifecycle from building, testing, deploying, managing to updation.
With PaaS, you are free from buying and managing expensive and complicated software licenses, the underlying app’s infrastructure, middleware, development tools, container orchestrators like Kubernetes, or other resources.
When you choose PaaS in cloud computing for development, you need to manage both applications and services. However, the responsibility of the cloud service provider is to manage everything else.
Platform as a Service (PaaS), also known as cloud platform services, offer you cloud components that are being used mostly for applications.
Furthermore, PaaS delivers a framework to developers that they can expand and use it to create tailor-fit applications. A third-party provider or enterprise can manage all servers, networking, and storage. On the other hand, developers need to maintain the management of the PaaS applications.
Who are the Users of PaaS in Cloud Computing?
The end-users of PaaS (Platform as a Service) in cloud computing are tech-geeks, developers. Semi-technical persons, programmers, or can be anyone who knows about working with PaaS-based tools and platforms.
The PaaS service company is responsible for all the operational activities, their management, and maintenance of their own product life cycle. Developers can use the PaaS environment for development.
Advantages of PaaS (Platform as a Service)
The middleware, business tools, and development tools are the additional features of PaaS that give you more advantages like:
More Manageable & Efficient Application Lifecycle
PaaS has all the abilities to support the complete lifecycle of the web application. Whether it is the matter of building, testing, managing, deploying, and updating with the same integrated environment, the lifecycle of PaaS applications is efficient and more manageable.
No Installation Needed
PaaS is an intermediator of Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS), in which you get access to a cloud-based environment to build and deliver customized applications without any integrated development environment and installation that further costs you more expense.
The advantage of PaaS in cloud computing is that you can quickly get multi-platform support for the development because some service providers provide the option to make the cross-platform app fully compatible with various mobile devices, computers, and browsers.
Remote Working Support
As access to the development environment is given over the internet, the development teams can get ease to work together on projects even while working from home or from anywhere.
Minimize the Coding Time
It takes so much time to develop the new application as there are so many codes required to complete the different phases.
However, Paas development tools are designed to save your coding time because it has already available and pre-coded app’s components into the platform, such as directory services, search, workflow, security features, and many more.
IaaS is defined as Infrastructure as a Service, an instant computing infrastructure supplied and managed over the internet.
It offers a standardized way of obtaining on-demand computing capabilities over the web. Its resources involve networks, storage, processing power, and virtual private servers.
IaaS in cloud computing is one of the types, including platform as a service (PaaS), software as a service (SaaS), and serverless.
Unlike PaaS, you will pay for what you use. There is no worry of buying and managing own physical servers and other data centre infrastructures.
You will get a separate service component for each resource and pay rent until you need it. Azure, which is a cloud computing service provider, manages the infrastructure for you. Still, you need to purchase, install, configure, and manage your own software such as middleware, operating systems, and applications with the IaaS (Information as a Service) model.
IaaS allows end-users to scale and shrink resources based on their needs and eliminates the requirement for buying unnecessary owned infrastructure.
The cloud provider hosts the infrastructure components in an IaaS service model, which are traditionally present in on-premises data centers. It contains storage and networking hardware, servers, and virtualization.
IaaS providers also offer a wide array of services to support those infrastructure components involving security, detailed billing, monitoring, load balancing, log access, Clustering, and storage resilience, such as backup and recovery.
Advantages of IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service)
Higher-level of Security
A cloud service provider can provide security features for your data and applications if the service agreement is appropriate.
Disaster Recovery & Improves Business Continuity
It is costly to recover from the disaster and maintain continuity in business processes as it requires well-experienced staff and some technologies.
Yet when it comes to considering the IaaS in cloud computing, you can have the right service level agreement (SLA), minimize the cost, use the data and applications throughout the failure or any disaster.
It takes minutes or hours to launch a new product or very innovative computing infrastructure rather than days, weeks, or months. Apart from that, IaaS allows you and your team to focus on your company’s core business instead of thinking about IT infrastructure.
Faster Access to New Apps
As in the Iaas service model, you don’t need to take the headache of setting up infrastructure before development. All you have to do is get the new app’s infrastructure access with IaaS.
No Troubleshoot Problems
With IaaS, there is no need to upgrade and maintain the software and hardware. Even, there will be no troubleshooting issues occurring in the app. With the right service agreement in your place, you can experience better results because the service provider ensures you that your SLA (service level agreement) will fulfill all your needs, which you want in terms of reliability, stability, and supportability.
SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS Examples
SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS are the most popular service models in cloud computing and are preferred by many businesses for different purposes. Let’s check their examples below:
SaaS - The common examples for SaaS (Software as a service) are GoToMeeting, Salesforce, Dropbox, Google Workspace (formerly suite), Gmail, Cisco WebEx, SAP Concur, MailChimp, DocuSign, Hubspot, Slack, ZenDesk, BigCommerce, etc.
PaaS - Windows Azure, OpenShift, Magento Commerce Cloud, Heroku, AWS Elastic Beanstalk, Apache Stratos, Force.com, Netflix, Facebook, Google App Engine are the best examples of the platform as a service model.
The examples of IaaS in cloud computing are Rackspace, Cisco Metacloud, Linode, DigitalOcean, Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, Google Computer Engine (GCE), IBM Cloud, Alibaba Cloud, CenturyLink Cloud.
Features: Difference Between Iaas, PaaS, and Saas
The difference between IaaS, Paas, and Saas features are mentioned below:
- Internet connectivity
- Dynamic scaling
- GUI and API-based access
- Automated administrative tasks
- Platform virtualization technology
- Multiple users accessibility
- Web-based user interface
- Multi-tenant architecture
- Load balancing and failover
- Scalability, adaptability, and flexibility
- No infrastructure investments
- Virtualization technology-based build
- Allows easy integration of databases and web services
- A variety of services offering for the development, testing, and deployment of apps
- Availability on the internet
- Data security
- Subscription-based billing
- Application security
- Automated provisioning
- Easy to use
- Multi-tenancy model
- High availability
- Single sign-on
- Infrastructure elasticity
Importance of Cloud Testing
Cloud testing is critical to ensure that the software which you use as a platform as a service (PaaS), software as a service (SaaS), or infrastructure as a service (IaaS) will perform the function as expected.
The testing is performed on the software application using cloud computing services. It also fulfills the non-functional requirements of the cloud. It ensures flexibility, scalability, faster availability, cost & time-saving options when the right software testing company tests the software app.
Several Types of Testing in the Cloud are as follow:
Testing of the Whole Cloud
In this process, the cloud is checked as a whole entity, and the testing is done based on its features. One can get this testing done from end-users, Cloud and SaaS vendors.
Testing within a Cloud
The tester thoroughly checks all the internal features present in the cloud, and then testing is carried out. This type of testing is performed only by cloud vendors.
Testing across cloud
There are three ways to get such types of tests done: private cloud testing, public, and hybrid cloud testing.
SaaS-based Cloud Testing
As per the application requirements, both functional and non-functional testing can be carried out.
Other Types of Cloud Testing
In SDLC (software development life cycle), there are numerous testing types like unit testing, component testing, integration testing, smoke testing, regression testing, sanity testing, system testing, and user acceptance testing.
Similarly, the other types of cloud testing are availability testing, performance testing, compliance testing, live upgrade testing, scalability testing, security, and multi-tenancy testing.
Challenges Occur in Cloud Testing
- Data privacy and security
- Data migration
- Enterprise application integration
- Interface compatibility validation
- Live upgrade testing simulation
Difference Between Traditional and Modern Cloud Testing
The primary testing objective of conventional cloud testing is to check the application's usability, interoperability, and compatibility. Based on the given specification, the system's quality is verified by the company to meet the functional and performance criteria.
Nevertheless, the biggest aim of modern cloud testing is to confirm the quality of functions and performance of clouds, SaaS, and applications so that users can acquire as many benefits while working in a cloud environment.
Traditional-based cloud testing is expensive due to fulfilling the hardware and software requirements. On the flip side, current cloud testing allows you to pay for what you use.
Previously, it was essential to validate the functions and features of the system. With the latest one, you need to perform the testing on the end-to-end application functions either on cloud or SaaS.
The conventional-based cloud testing relies on a configured and pre-fixed testing environment of the test lab. But, modern cloud testing can be done on an open public test environment using diverse computing resources.
When it comes to testing the security features, the traditional process allows conducting security testing based on servers and privacy. In contrast, the modern cloud testing approach helps perform real-time testing of security features as per SaaS and cloud vendors.
SaaS-based integration testing is possible with the trendy cloud testing. In the traditional time, you need to check the architecture, components, and functions while performing any software integrations.
Conventional testing enables you to conduct performance and scalability testing on a fixed test environment. Having said that, you are allowed to get the performance and scalable testing done based on the real-time scenarios and virtual-based online test data.
Cloud-Based Application Testing in QA Cloud
Well, companies use different forms of clouds such as IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS. They also use the combination of IaaS and SaaS cloud computing service models to achieve a competitive edge.
Mainly, there are three scenarios involved in the testing of cloud-based applications:
- Some part of the application is migrating into the cloud.
- An application is fully developed on the cloud itself.
- An application has been thoroughly integrated into the cloud.
The testing methodology can be made based on these scenarios. One may need to consider the network, virtualized infrastructure, business logic, application, data, and end-user experience for the cloud testing.
Moreover, cloud-based apps' testing requires proper business workflow, exception mechanisms, disaster recovery scenarios, and simulating failure scenarios. In the case of enterprise and cloud application integration scenarios, one needs to focus on testing comprehensive integration testing, billing mechanism testing (for SaaS), and API testing.
Scenarios that include partial or full migration of an application into the cloud require testing for data security, data migration, and data privacy. As a tester, you need to confirm cloud-based applications' accuracy with their attributes like elasticity, multi-tenancy, interoperability, security, etc.
To validate cloud-based applications' security, it is essential to call for cross-site scripting, user access & roles testing, script injection, multi-tenancy isolation testing, cookie & session isolation testing.
Keep in mind, there is no specific approach developed for cloud testing because every company has unique requirements that they can demand anything while migrating their data into the cloud. Factors like cloud architecture design, compliance, and non-functional requirements should be taken into account to ensure complete and successful testing.
Get Cloud Testing Services (IaaS, SaaS, PaaS) from Us
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