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Cloud Computing Reference Architecture

Get a complete overview of the actors and their roles and the necessary architectural components for managing and providing cloud services.


1.65 MB | 3 files | null PDF

The adoption of cloud computing into the U.S. Government and its implementation depend upon a variety of technical and non-technical factors. A fundamental reference point, based on the NIST definition of cloud computing, is needed to describe an overall framework that can be used government-wide. This document presents the NIST Cloud Computing Reference Architecture (RA) and Taxonomy (Tax) that will accurately communicate the components and offerings of cloud computing.

The guiding principles used to create the RA were 1) develop a vendor-neutral architecture that is consistent with the NIST definition and 2) develop a solution that does not stifle innovation by defining a prescribed technical solution. This solution will create a level playing field for industry to discuss and compare their cloud offerings with the U.S. Government. The resulting reference architecture and taxonomy for cloud computing were developed as an actor/role-based model that lays out the central elements of cloud computing for Federal CIOs, Procurement Officials and IT Program Managers. The cloudscape is open and diversified and the accompanying taxonomy provides a means to describe it in an unambiguous manner.

The RA is presented in two parts: a complete overview of the actors and their roles and the necessary architectural components for managing and providing cloud services such as service deployment, service orchestration, cloud service management, security and privacy. The taxonomy is presented in its own section and appendices are dedicated to terms and definitions and examples of cloud services.

Included in this ZIP file are:

  • Intro Page.pdf
  • Terms and Conditions.pdf
  • Cloud Computing Reference Architecture.pdf

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