Back to blog PaaS Advantages, Disadvantages and Best Practices

Platform as a Service (PaaS) is a cloud computing model that helps with speedy and accurate application development. It is a system in which a third party provider delivers these app development tools via a internet connection, with the necessary hardware and software supporting it hosted off-site.

With a PaaS, everything you need in a platform is managed: operating systems, server software, firewall and security systems. You do not need to pay to set any of this up.

Exploring PaaS advantages and disadvantages can help you determine if this system is right for your business. If you choose to go with PaaS, there are ways to use it effectively to make the most of its benefits.

upward shot of office building - paas advantages and disadvantages

Disadvantages of PaaS

Exploring PaaS advantages and disadvantages, we will start with the bad news first.

  • With a PaaS, data security needs to be considered and scrutinised, as information is stored off-site. With the right measures and data practices in place to keep confidential information out of the cloud, you can ensure that the system is private enough for your uses. This can sometimes be a hard sell, however, to executives and other staff outside of the IT department.  
  • Not every part of your company’s existing infrastructure may be built for the cloud. If some elements cannot be cloud-enabled successfully, you might have to switch various apps and programs to integrate fully. Or you may need to leave some of these things out of the cloud and within your existing infrastructure.

  • Finally, a less than ideal PaaS provider could leave your company feeling frustrated. You need good levels of speed, reliability, and support to make PaaS worthwhile.

Top Advantages of PaaS

  Of course, there are many great advantages to a PaaS. Here are some of our clients’ favorites.

  • One clear advantage to using PaaS is that you only pay for what you need via cloud computing, you are saving money that can be used for other business operations. You will not have to maintain, upgrade, or replace systems and software, and will get the best of the best when it comes to updating technology for your business to use. Freeing up this time and money allows your company to focus on development and operations, promoting visionary thinking and business growth from within.  

  • With a PaaS, you can test and implement new applications you have developed quickly. Faster deployment means better business success. Your development teams can try various configurations of an app, test it in different environments and perfect it far faster than is possible in a traditional, on-site manner.

  • As with most cloud services, PaaS offers dynamic scaling. When you need more robust infrastructure, your provider will make it happen, scaling back when the demand is low. You will only pay for what you use, so you can save money overall, while ensuring that your clients and customers do not have to deal with slow, lagging connections owing to a lack of network capabilities.
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Best Practices for PaaS

If - like our clients - you decide that the advantages of a PaaS outweigh the disadvantages, there are ways to use a PaaS that will maximise these benefits and give you the best experience.

To ensure you are paired with the right PaaS provider — a key step in having a good experience with this system — you should choose a provider that will:

  • analyze mobile applications
  • scan web applications on the internet or private networks
  • scan source code for security vulnerabilities
  • use single sign-on capabilities
  • drain logs over the Syslog, Syslog-tls or HTTPS, including the events related to the app
  • distinguish logs from instances of the same application encrypt data at rest
  • facilitate secure communication between the application and database instance, and discover sensitive data and use storage procedures for masking sensitive data.

All of these features help with security, which takes care of the first problem on the disadvantages list.   When you can show your staff that your provider takes security seriously, by using all of these methods, they are more likely to buy into the idea of PaaS, which makes implementation easier overall.

Before you switch over to PaaS, consider planning to ensure that your company will stay in compliance, have the right security measures in place, have redundancy and backup processes sorted out before something can go wrong. You should take every opportunity to tailor your PaaS system to exactly what you need.

You can do this by analyzing your data, existing resources, business goals, and current needs, and by working with your provider to find the right environment for your company.   If you are concerned about the migration to PaaS, work with a provider that offers setup and migration in full. Whether you completely hand over this aspect of the system to your trusted provider, or integrate a member of the provider’s setup/integration team into your own IT team to complete the process together, having an expert on board is a great way to migrate your existing systems without running into problems.

Along these lines, ensure that your provider is always ready and willing to provide support at any stage, from the initial implementation and deployment, through monitoring operations, performing upgrades and security patches, and so on.

Your PaaS provider should be there to help you, 24/7, with expert support. By working alongside your PaaS provider, and having a clear idea and understanding of what it is that you need from Platform as a Service, you will be able to steer clear of the few disadvantages of PaaS, and focus on the advantages.

Posted in Cloud Development on Jan 24, 2018