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Serverless Computing and FaaS Model â€“ The Next Stage in Cloud Computing
Most of us would be forgiven for assuming that we were entering a brave new world of computing where we don't need a server to operate the applications if we heard the term "Serverless Computing." Despite the misleading name, serverless computing represents an important milestone in the evolution of the cloud.
Serverless computing is an application deployment and management paradigm that eliminates the need to provision servers in order to operate applications in the cloud. It frees up developers from worrying about server provisioning, scalability, and management so that they can concentrate on making and improving the core product.
The use of a server is still necessary when utilizing a cloud computing execution approach. Yet, by adding an additional layer of abstraction over the cloud infrastructure, it gives you everything you need to operate your application.
Characteristics of Serverless Computing
It's possible to run code while managing servers with serverless computing, with functions being executed in response to an event instead of continuously.
It allows for the request-based adaptive scaling of a function. There is no additional setup required.
Various event kinds, as well as API gateways, can activate the functions.
Model for Software as a Service (FaaS)
By elucidating the FaaS model, serverless computing may be better grasped.
SaaS, IaaS, & PaaS are all concepts that many of us are aware of. Before we dive into FaaS, let's define a few terminologies.
SaaS refers to a type of cloud computing service in which users pay a subscription fee for access to predefined software that is stored in a remote data center.
In addition to offering physical and virtual infrastructure, Cloud infrastructure (IaaS) also handles resource management and scalability.
In contrast to traditional methods of application creation, a Cloud provider (PaaS) delivers the necessary software and hardware to the developer. Services like AWS Beanstalk and Azur for building mobile apps are two such instances.
Let's dive into the FaaS paradigm, then. It's a FaaS approach, so developers can focus on making, running, and managing apps without having to manage the underlying application infrastructure. It works on the idea of functions, which are discrete sections of code that perform a specific task. Each function in this model is executed in response to a certain event being triggered by the model, such as an API request, a database event, a predefined event, etc. And many functions are combined to create serverless applications (FaaS).
Consider also that the FaaS paradigm has no notion of state. The state of previously-executed functions cannot be accessed under the FaaS architecture since they are executed in disposable containers. To avoid this, you can utilize a third-party service like Amazon S3 to temporarily store the data instances while you work on a permanent solution. This information can be passed around across departments.
Careless comparisons may lead you to believe that PaaS & FaaS are interchangeable. PaaS facilitates the release and administration of web apps, but it does not provide you the option to bring your complete app down upon demand.
However, this is possible with FaaS because of its adaptability.
Scaling applications in a PaaS environment requires the use of additional PaaS-based technologies, including AWS Elastic Beanstalk. FaaS infrastructure, on the other hand, provides effective means of managing application scalability that is not possible with the aforementioned methods.
The Pros and Cons of Serverless Computing
FaaS model and serverless computing have been covered thus far. Let's examine the pros and cons of Serverless computing now.
The Pros of Serverless Computing âˆ’ Predefined runtimes (infrastructure is really only used for a particular period) and shared runtimes can reduce operational costs significantly in FaaS.
Cloud providers handle infrastructure maintenance, freeing up developers to focus on building out features.
Expenses associated with the growth or contraction of an organization's resources are minimized thanks to its ability to automatically scale both horizontally and vertically. When compared to a PaaS model, the scaling costs for this model are drastically reduced.
When it comes to managing day-to-day operations, the FaaS is the easiest option available because it streamlines the process of deploying and administering software. Most importantly, you can bring your business concept to life quickly.
Constrictions of Serverless Computing âˆ’ While serverless computing has many advantages, it also has certain disadvantages. Check out the details below.
Since serverless designs are managed by cloud providers, you have no say over the underlying system.
The application must run for an extended amount of time because its predefined runtime characteristics conflict with the timeout periods of most cloud providers.
One of the biggest drawbacks is vendor lock, which prevents you from moving your cloud services to a different provider.
Since FaaS is just an incident design, the prospect of a soft start is of concern. If you have been inactive for a while, your reaction time may increase when something unexpected happens.
Because the serverless app utilizes a common infrastructure, it is possible to run multiple applications simultaneously, regardless of who owns the underlying servers. For this reason, neighboring applications' high-load-generating functionalities will have an impact on your code. Unfortunately, this issue is not exclusive to serverless services; it affects the vast majority of shared service models.
There are several advantages to serverless computing. It's not a No-Ops situation, though. It's true that you won't need a dedicated IT professional to keep the infrastructure functioning well, but there are still aspects of it that you'll want to keep an eye on to guarantee that your app stays online. However, there is no need to worry because FaaS includes data services for monitoring to keep tabs on your apps.
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