Ever heard of Server less computing? If you haven’t you should know that it is the new buzz word in IT. The term ‘Server less Computing’ speaks about a form of deployment where the server is abstracted away. This does not mean that there are no servers, it’s just that you don’t have to provision the servers by yourself. It’s a modern way of hosting applications and services on infrastructure which is not managed by the end users. In server less computing, resources are provisioned on cloud only when a specific event occurs. Resources are no longer assigned only to stay idle until called upon. In some cases, server less infra can free your business from the overheads of maintaining infra, upgrades and provisioning servers.

Time spent in configuring the cloud infrastructure for scalability is also reduced as server less computing promises faster delivery and highly-reliable software solutions. Server less computing is a form of cloud computing, but in this case the Cloud Services Provider manages the provisioning of resources on run time basis rather than planning storage capacity in advance, and consumers just have to pay for what they use instead of buying blocks of storage in advance. It is much more granular, and thus more cost-effective as compared to the traditional cloud module. Applications may seem to be ‘server less’ as server management, maintenance as well as capacity planning are completely hidden from the end users. The normalization of server less computing is a major hop towards spreading the capability to perform complex tasks without the need of expensive hardware. Brands ranging from Atlassian to Vogue have made the leap to server less computing, according to a presentation named ‘The State of Server less Computing’ by AWS.

Let’s see what server less computing means on a technical level? It’s a process where developers can assemble services from small functions, these functions are building blocks of code. The small code blocks can be executed in response to particular request call using HTTPS/HTTP. These functions are sometimes-infrequent app components, triggered when needed by catalysts. This data is stored in a distinct environment that synchronizes with the active production environment.

Why is Server less computing essential as a paradigm?

Server less computing is an evolution of the micro services approach to architecting applications and software’s. The idea behind this is to let the CSPs manage the fundamental compute infra and let developers focus only on the functionality that needs to be delivered. Here are some advantages:

• Ideal for event-driven scenarios: The traditional auto-scaling feature can have critical warm-up times for clusters and scaling, both during up-scaling and down-scaling and it is also possible that it may not be in continuation. Server less is a perfect computing model when it comes to execution of small blocks of code aka functions as they turn out to be the response to event triggers and you pay only for the fractional resource times that you actually consumed. Thus, saving a lot of expenses. Server less computing is optimal for event-driven architectures for example the IoT scenarios.

• Assemble low-cost micro services architecture: By going server less, a lot of cloud computing functions can be executed simultaneously. These functions are independent of each other in response to the event mirroring concurrently in the execution. The smaller blocks of code set up in server less computing are easy to manage and the testing becomes easy too. The various functions in the cloud environment can themselves expose clean, Representational State Transfer (RESTful) interfaces to work with more such functions of an app. Software developers can swiftly put together an architecture mirroring micro services by deploying several cloud functions that work together. Most leading platform developers are implementing this strategy to deploy software in a cost-effective way.

Despite these advantages, there are some limitations in the server less environment. A restriction on the size of code is found and which when deployed supports only a few programming languages. Typical code blocks and monolithic i.e. single-tiered software application architectures, should also be avoided. Another limitation being that developers should be highly disciplined in the way they are using server less computing.

Big savings with Server less infra

Server less paradigm helps cut on a lot of cost. About 60 per cent cost saving is achieved along with considerably lower administrative efforts. This calculation is based on an e-Commerce app using Lambda by Amazon Web Services which is a FaaS model, versus hosting the app on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) by Amazon Web Service and instances in a high availability architecture were calculated on hourly basis. Server less computing is all set to rise as interest and adoption grow. Various tools to manage multiple kinds of functions and compound service incorporation are evolving using server less computing. Server less frameworks along with commercial per-packaged functions, are becoming popular, players like ESDS, Google, AWS and others will continue to rule the market in the future.