Cloud networking

What is cloud networking?

A cloud network is a Wide Area Network (WAN) that hosts users and resources and allows the two to communicate via cloud-based technologies. It consists of virtual routers, firewalls, and network management software.

  • Types of cloud networking
  • Use cases of cloud networking
  • Architecture of cloud networking
  • Security in cloud networking
  • Optimizing cloud networking performance
  • Cloud networking work
  • Cloud networking vs cloud computing
  • HPE and cloud networking
Types of cloud networking

What are types of cloud networking

Fundamentally, cloud networking provides organizations with lower costs, faster deployment, and easier capacity management. Determining which type of cloud network is appropriate for an enterprise requires a look at the four different options available:


Public cloud networks are administered by a third party, providing public access to a platform made up of servers, databases, applications, and storage. This type of cloud network provides an organization’s IT department with a system that can handle peak capacity loads at a low set-up cost. Because the network is configured for multi-latency coverage, many virtual desktops can access the system simultaneously with little to no downtime.


A Private cloud network is necessary for sensitive data. Private cloud networks offer the highest security possible by keeping the platform on site and limiting access to authenticated users only. In this case, workloads are contained within the system, and IT staff can maintain consistent standards and procedures across all network users. Also, a private cloud allows for resource customization not available on a public cloud network, which makes this option attractive for enterprises with proprietary processes and data.


A hybrid cloud network combines aspects of both public and private cloud networks. It works by connecting both private cloud and public cloud services into one flexible infrastructure. With a hybrid cloud network, organizations can easily shift workloads between both clouds as circumstances change.


Community networks provide a cloud computing solution to a limited number of individuals or organizations who collaborate by sharing infrastructure. The model allows for all controls to be managed and secured commonly by all the participating organizations or by a third-party managed service provider.

Use cases of cloud networking

Cloud networking use cases

The use of cloud networks continues to ramp up. Gartner forecasts more adoptions and increased revenue from cloud computing to exceed $330 billion by December 2022. As such, cloud networking has extended into most industries, with a few highlighted below:

  • Banking and finance: Banks use cloud networks to process a high volume of transactions and online loan applications. Traders have shifted trading platforms to a cloud network so clients can execute trades rapidly with the latest, most accurate pricing.
  • Healthcare: As regulations change and patient data volumes increase, cloud networking can handle updating back-office claims management and data security automatically. Delivering end-to-end patient care means tracking data from the doctor’s office, diagnostic information, hospital admissions, treatment, and follow-up—a high volume of information that requires the capacity of a cloud network.
  • Manufacturing: Industrial workers often have repetitive manual tasks, which can be automated and handled by a cloud network system.
  • Retail: Using a cloud network enables retail companies to consolidate systems to manage rapid order delivery and high-volume customer service. Some companies have even deployed AI-powered virtual assistants to answer customers’ most frequent questions.
  • Transportation: Tracking vehicles, loads, operators, schedules, deliveries, and customers is a complex process with huge data requirements that is perfectly suited for a cloud network where multiple users can access the data at any time from anywhere.
  • Government: Cities often monitor traffic flow and incidents using a city-wide network of surveillance cameras. Municipalities also deploy infrastructure maintenance based on analytics of millions of usage data points per day, a high-volume program hosted on a cloud network.
Architecture of cloud networking

Cloud networking architecture

Cloud Network Architecture refers to designing and organizing networking resources and services within a cloud computing environment. It involves various components and functionalities to ensure secure, efficient, and scalable network operations. Here's a brief context for each component:

A. Overview of Cloud Network Components: In cloud network architecture, there are several key components that work together to form a robust network infrastructure. These components include virtualization, Virtual Private Cloud (VPC), subnets, load balancers, firewalls, Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), and Content Delivery Networks (CDNs). These elements collectively enable organizations to create, manage, and optimize their network resources in the cloud.

  • Virtualization: Creating virtual instances of hardware for resource optimization.
  • Virtual Private Cloud (VPC): Private network within public cloud infrastructure.
  • Subnets: Segmented network segments for organization and isolation.
  • Load Balancers: Distribute network traffic for high availability and performance.
  • Firewalls: Control traffic based on security rules.
  • Virtual Private Network (VPN): Secure communication over public networks.
  • Content Delivery Network (CDN): Delivers web content efficiently.

B. Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) and its Functionalities: Virtual Private Cloud is a foundational building block provided by cloud service providers like AWS, Azure, and Google Cloud. It allows organizations to establish private, isolated network environments within the broader public cloud infrastructure. VPCs offer customization, security, connectivity, and scalability, making them essential for creating secure and tailored network setups in the cloud.

  • Isolation: Creates private networks within the public cloud.
  • Customization: Allows users to define IP ranges, subnets, and routing.
  • Security: Provides security features like network security groups and ACLs.
  • Connectivity: Links to on-premises data centers or other VPCs for hybrid and multi-cloud setups.
  • Scalability: Easily scales resources to meet demand.

C. Subnets and Network Segmentation in the Cloud: Subnets are subdivisions of VPCs or cloud networks that play a crucial role in organizing resources and implementing network segmentation. They enable resource isolation, availability zone redundancy, customized routing, and efficient IP address management, ensuring that network resources are logically separated and efficiently managed.

  • Resource Isolation: Group resources and control traffic for enhanced security.
  • Availability Zones: Ensure redundancy and high availability in multi-zone setups.
  • Routing: Configure different routing for each subnet.
  • IP Address Management: Define IP ranges for resource allocation.

D. Network Security Groups and Access Control: Network Security Groups (NSGs) are vital for controlling inbound and outbound traffic within a VPC or subnet. They define rules for allowing or denying traffic based on source IP, port, and protocol, providing granular control over network security. NSGs also support stateful inspection and logging, enhancing security monitoring and management capabilities within the cloud network architecture.

  • Inbound Rules: Specify allowed/denied incoming traffic based on source IP, port, and protocol.
  • Outbound Rules: Control outgoing traffic to external networks.
  • Stateful Inspection: Track connection states for related inbound traffic.
  • Granular Control: Offer precise control over network traffic.
  • Logging and Monitoring: Allow configuration for network visibility and security monitoring.
Security in cloud networking

Cloud networking security

A. Virtual Network Connectivity:

  • Description: Site-to-Site VPN secures communication between on-premises networks or data centers and cloud virtual networks.
  • Function: It creates encrypted internet tunnels to safeguard data.Function: It creates encrypted internet tunnels to safeguard data.
  • Site-to-Site VPN connects geographically dispersed offices, extends on-premises networks into the cloud, and helps with disaster recovery.

Direct Connect:

  • Description: An organization's data center and a cloud provider's data center are connected through Direct Connect.
  • Functionality: It provides a private, low-latency connection that bypasses the public internet for greater reliability and security.
  • Use Cases: Direct Connect is ideal for data migration, high-traffic workloads, and secure and reliable environments.

Virtual Private Network (VPN) Gateway:

  • Description: VPN Gateway is a cloud-managed VPN solution that securely connects remote customers or on-premises networks to VPCs or clouds.
  • Functionality: It encrypts cloud resource access for data privacy and integrity.
  • Use Cases: VPN Gateways secure cloud access, communication with partners, and cloud connections.

    B: Load-balancing:

Load balancer types:

  • Application Load Balancer (ALB): Routes traffic at the application layer (HTTP/HTTPS) and is used for web applications and microservices.
  • Network Load Balancer (NLB): Handles high-throughput, low-latency TCP/UDP traffic.
  • Classic load balancer: Basic HTTP/HTTPS and TCP/UDP load balancing.

Strategies and methods for load balancing:

  • Common algorithms include round robin, least connections, and weighted algorithms. 
  • Strategies involve distributing traffic evenly, considering server health, and optimizing for specific application requirements.

Benefits and applications of cloud load balancing:

  • High Availability: Load balancers distribute traffic across numerous servers to ensure service availability if some fail.
  • Scalability: Traffic is sent to additional instances as demand rises, so they auto-scale.
  • Improved Performance: Load balancers minimize server latency.
  • Security: They can block DDoS assaults between clients and servers.
  • Use Cases: Load balancing is employed in web applications, APIs, microservices, and any other situation where it is crucial to distribute traffic among several resources.

    C. Content Delivery Network (CDN):

Overview of CDN and its role in cloud networking:

  • Description: CDNs are dispersed networks of servers that cache and deliver web pages, pictures, and videos to users from nearby locations.
  • Role: CDNs reduce latency, accelerate content delivery, and enhance the user experience by serving cached content quickly.

CDN providers/services:

  • Akamai, Cloudflare, Amazon CloudFront, and others offer CDNs.
  • Services offered include content caching, DDoS protection, SSL termination, and optimization.

Boosting content delivery and user experience:

  • Content distribution to edge locations worldwide using CDNs speeds up data retrieval and reduces trip distance.
  • Content is optimized for diverse devices and network circumstances for a consistent and speedy user experience.
  • Security measures on CDNs can prevent malicious attacks and illegal access.
Optimizing cloud networking performance

Optimizing cloud networking performance

Cloud networks must operate well to provide dependable and responsive services. Several crucial factors help achieve this:

A. Bandwidth and Scaling

  • Cloud networks need capacity provisioning and scalability to handle changing workloads and traffic. Cloud providers allow enterprises to alter bandwidth allocations as needed:
  • Scale Resources: Easily adjust broadband capacity to company demands and consumption.
  • Auto-Scaling: Adjust network resources to workload changes with auto-scaling rules.
  • Cost Efficiency: Avoid over- or under-provisioning bandwidth to save money.

B. Network Optimization and Latency

Data transmission delays, or network latency, can affect application performance and user experience. Consider these methods to minimize latency and improve network performance:

  • Content Delivery: Use CDNs to cache and provide content from edge locations to reduce user latency.
  • Edge computing: Reduce round-trip latency by placing computational resources closer to the edge where data is being processed.
  • Traffic Routing: Route users to the nearest server or data center using intelligent traffic routing.
  • Compress data before transmission to decrease network traffic.
  • Data compression: To limit the quantity of data transferred over the network, compress data before transmission.

C. Cloud Networking QoS

Quality of Service (QoS) methods grant key applications network resources and prioritize traffic according to regulations. Quality of Service in cloud networking:

  • Traffic Prioritization: Allocate higher bandwidth or lower latency to mission-critical applications.
  • Traffic Shaping: Control the rate of data transfer to prevent network congestion.
  • Priority-based packet queuing: Send time-sensitive data first.
  • Monitoring and Adjustment: QoS measurements and policies should be monitored and adjusted to maintain service levels.

D. Network Monitoring and Troubleshooting Tools

Maintaining and enhancing cloud network performance requires robust monitoring and troubleshooting tools. Important tools and methods:

  • Network Monitoring Tools: Monitor network traffic, bandwidth, and latency in real time.
  • Logging and Analytics: Discover performance issues by analysing logs and network data.
  • Packet Capture and Analysis: Troubleshooting with packet capture tools provides in-depth network traffic analysis.
  • Automation and alerts: Set alerts to warn administrators of network concerns and automate typical fixes.
  • Past Performance Analysis: Identify patterns and plan capacity modifications using past network performance data.

Optimizing cloud network performance requires bandwidth allocation, latency reduction, QoS implementation, and effective monitoring and troubleshooting to provide a dependable and responsive network architecture.

Cloud networking work

How does cloud networking work?

Cloud networking stores, manages, and processes data on Internet-hosted network servers. The basics of cloud networking are as follows:

  • Infrastructure: Cloud networking uses Internet-connected data centers. These data centers are managed by specialized cloud providers. They ensure high availability, security, and efficient resource management.
  • Virtualization: Cloud providers virtualize servers, storage, and networking resources. This lets them efficiently allocate resources to various users while isolating them.
  • Network connectivity: Cloud users connect to faraway servers using VPNs, dedicated leased lines, or public Internet connections.
  • Data transport: The network is used to transport data between the user's devices and cloud servers. Data transport can be encrypted using SSL/TLS for privacy and integrity.
  • Scalability: Cloud networking offers scalability. Cloud customers do not need physical infrastructure to scale their network resources up or down based on demand and needs.
  • Service models: Cloud networking includes Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS). Each model controls and manages network infrastructure differently.
  • Management and monitoring: Cloud providers provide dashboards and tools for managing network resources, including load balancing, auto-scaling, and network security.

Cloud networking lets enterprises scale and adapt their network infrastructure without investing in physical hardware. It makes IT infrastructure building, deployment, and management affordable for all sizes of enterprises.

Cloud networking vs cloud computing

What's the difference between cloud networking and cloud computing?

Cloud networking  

Cloud networking emphasizes cloud-hosted network infrastructure and services. It uses cloud platforms to manage, regulate, and secure network resources and connections. Including virtual routers, switches, load balancers, and network administration tools. Cloud networking optimizes data flow and connection between cloud and on-premises systems.

Cloud computing

Cloud computing includes more services that provide computer power, storage, and applications online. It consists of platform as a service (PaaS), software as a service (SaaS), and infrastructure as a service (IaaS). Cloud computing allows on-demand access to scalable and flexible computing resources for application development, data processing, and storage without hardware expenditures.

In conclusion, cloud networking focuses on cloud networks, whereas cloud computing encompasses a more extensive range of cloud-based IT resources and services.

HPE and cloud networking

HPE and cloud networking

HPE's cloud networking solutions optimize workloads, unify data, manage cloud networks, and promote corporate innovation.

Network-as-a-service HPE GreenLake for networking bundles HPE Aruba Networking products and services into a monthly subscription model. With automated procedures, this solution speeds up network operations and gives enterprises financial flexibility to grow and cut capital investment.

A cloud-based network management tool, Aruba Central simplifies wired and wireless network implementation and optimization. It supports multi-site administration and zero-touch provisioning with powerful analytics, AI-powered insights, and strong security.

Aruba EdgeConnect SD-WAN optimizes traffic, improves application performance, and reduces costs with many connectivity choices. It provides stable user experience across scattered sites with route conditioning, application-aware routing, and integrated security.

EdgeConnect SD-WAN enables automated branch to multi-cloud connectivity to AWS, Google Cloud, and Azure backbones assuring that EdgeConnect application-aware capabilities enhance cloud-hosted applications from any transport network. Enterprises enjoy the flexibility to select the best cloud provider for the right application.

HPE streamlines cloud network administration, improves performance, and boosts financial efficiency with these solutions.

HPE hybrid cloud

A hybrid cloud is designed to help simplify and transform your hybrid cloud operations. Turn the data you have into the intelligence you need with security features built in.

Related topics

Hybrid cloud networking

Cloud networking

Edge network