Multi-tenant Architecture For Cloud Apps

Cloud Computing is now an essential technology with more benefits continuously emerging and driving up usage with every passing day. By some estimates, the cloud market is worth over 300 billion USD with SaaS offerings being on the top of the charts followed by IaaS and PaaS solutions respectively.

Some reports say that by 2022, the SaaS, IaaS, and PaaS global market size will be 172 billion USD, 122 billion USD, and 101 billion USD respectively.

As users grow, use-cases surge, and usage rises, optimal and effective resource sharing becomes critical to effectively serve users on cloud apps and services.

Multi-tenant architecture makes that possible by enabling them to effectively get the resources they need.

Multi-tenant Architecture for Cloud Apps

What is Multi-tenant Architecture?

Single-tenant architectures dedicate infrastructure to specific users. Multi-tenant architectures utilize advanced scheduling algorithms and virtualization to divide infrastructure amongst multiple users whilst maintaining strict isolation between tenant workloads and strive to impart “single tenant” experience to the tenants. That leads to greater scalability and flexibility.

Multi-tenant Architecture Benefits for Cloud Apps

The multi-tenant architecture has a positive impact on cloud service delivery. In this architecture, multiple customers share the same resources, such as the hardware, storage, network, etc. The cloud provider applies overarching rules to address performance expectations. However, the provider ensures that the architecture does not compromise the privacy and security of the customers and their datasets.

#1: Better Flexibility and Scalability –

The cloud vendors only have to update a single application or codebase and the changes reflect for all the users. Upgrades are often easier with the multi-tenant architecture with changes instantly visible to the customers. The architecture also supports greater agility and responsiveness.

#2: Cost-Savings –

There is a positive impact on costs. The server/cloud needs for applications with multi-tenant architecture are proportionally lesser than for single-tenant architecture. The maintenance costs also go down with this environment. As a result, cost savings are possible for the cloud providers as well as the customers.

#3: Optimal Resource Usage –

This is one of the primary benefits of using multi-tenant architecture for cloud applications. With these architectures comes the ability to utilize the same infrastructure and resources to address multiple needs. The data centers also do not require individual increments for every single customer. This allows providers to utilize every bit of the considerable computing power the servers and other devices in the ecosystem command. All of this brings down the performance overheads while maximizing resource usage.

Types of Multi-tenant Architecture for Cloud Apps

End-users may have different priorities for a cloud app depending upon the type of application, information categories, user types, and interfaces. Multi-tenant architecture comes with the following two options to suit these customer requirements and priorities.

Type #1: One App Instance, One Database –

In this multi-tenant architecture, a single instance of the cloud application supports one database. The users accessing the application have their data present in the same database. With the increase in the number of users, the multi-tenant architecture enhances the resources and capacity to offer better scalability. The costs also come down due to the concept of resource sharing.

There are, however, a few drawbacks to this option. The primary drawback is the noisy-neighbor effect. In such a case, network performance issues may emerge for one or more tenants due to the other tenant using a majority of the available resources.

Type #2: One App Instance, Several Databases:

This is the multi-tenant architecture that includes one instance of the cloud application and supports multiple databases. There is a mapping of a dedicated database for each of the tenants. The maintenance and management of these database instances are also independent of one another. This brings down the overall complexity levels and also introduces ease of management. The drawback around the noisy neighbor effect in one app instance, one database option is also not present in this case. However, the option has lower scalability and higher costs. It can be expensive to have a separate data storage space. To promote scalability, additional database nodes can also have adverse implications on the costs.

To Sum Up Multi-tenant Architecture:

The demand for cloud apps is rising due to the wide range of benefits made possible with cloud technology. That being the case, for cloud providers, the challenge is to provide an acceptable level of services without letting infrastructure costs get out of hand. In that situation, multi-tenant architecture for cloud apps promotes scalability, flexibility, and cost savings through effective resource sharing and utilization.

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