Scalability, Elasticity and Cloud Computing


Scalability, Elasticity and Cloud Computing are three terms that have become synonymous with the technology industry. As we enter a new era of computing, these terms have become more important than ever before. This article will take a look at what each term means, when they can be used together, and why you should care about them if you’re a big company or small startup.


Scalability is the ability to increase or decrease the amount of resources available, depending on demand.

It is also possible to expand or contract computing power when needed, which makes it possible for you to provide more capacity when it’s needed, without having to invest in new hardware.


Elasticity is the ability to expand or contract resources based on demand. As you can imagine, this is very important for cloud computing environments. For example, if there’s a spike in traffic for your website and servers get overloaded, you can expand your capacity by adding new servers (or “instances”) to handle the load instead of waiting for them to be built from scratch. This allows you to scale up quickly when needed without having to redesign your application architecture each time there’s an increase in demand for it–and it saves money as well!

Cloud Computing

Cloud computing is a model for enabling ubiquitous, on-demand access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction.

Cloud computing shares characteristics with:

  • Utility computing;
  • Grid computing;
  • Virtualization;
  • Software as a Service (SaaS);
  • Platform as a Service (PaaS).

Scalability, Elasticity and Cloud Computing

Scalability is the ability of a system, network or process to handle increasing amounts of work or its potential to be enlarged in various ways. It can be measured as the ratio between two values:

  • the amount of work that can be performed by a system (or component) under particular circumstances; and
  • the amount of resources required by that system (or component) to perform at that level.


In this article, we looked at the three key concepts of scalability, elasticity and cloud computing. We explored how these concepts can help you with your business and how they are related to one another.

Zenia Beseke

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