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Cloud Bursting: What It Is and How to Use It

Cloud bursting is a term that you may have heard before, but what does it actually mean? In short, cloud bursting is the process of using cloud-based resources to supplement or replace on-premises resources. For example, if your company’s website is experiencing high traffic volumes, you can use a public cloud provider to temporarily increase the available bandwidth and CPU power. This can help to prevent your website from becoming overloaded and crashing. In this blog post, we will discuss how cloud bursting works and how you can start using it today!

What is Cloud Bursting?

Cloud bursting is the process of using cloud resources to handle an unexpected surge in demand for IT services. When demand exceeds capacity, cloud bursting allows organizations to call on extra resources from the cloud to meet that demand. This can be done by either adding more instances to an existing pool or spinning up new servers.

When used effectively, cloud bursting can help businesses avoid service disruptions and keep costs under control. It also gives them the flexibility to scale their infrastructure up and down as needed.

How Cloud Bursting Works

There are two main ways to use cloud resources for burst capacity: through dynamic scaling and spot instances.

With dynamic scaling, the cloud provider will automatically add or remove instances as needed to meet demand. This can be done in real time or according to a pre-determined schedule.

Spot instances are instances that are available for a lower price than regular instances. They can be used for burst capacity by bidding on them when demand is high and releasing them when demand drops.

Difference between cloud bursting and load balancing

Cloud bursting is a type of load balancing. Load balancing distributes incoming traffic across multiple servers to ensure that all requests are handled quickly and efficiently. Cloud bursting takes this a step further by using the cloud as an added layer of capacity when demand exceeds your on-premises resources. This allows businesses to scale their applications up and down as needed, without having to invest in extra hardware. Cloud bursting provides the benefits of both worlds – the flexibility of the cloud and the performance of on-premises resources.

Benefits of Cloud Bursting

There are several benefits to using cloud bursting:

  • It can help businesses avoid service disruptions and keep costs under control.
  • Cloud brusting gives businesses the flexibility to scale their infrastructure up and down as needed.
  • It can be used for both short-term and long-term capacity needs.
  • It is an effective way to use public cloud resources for peak demand.

Cloud Bursting Strategies

There are several ways to set up a cloud bursting strategy:

By instance type: You can use different instance types for your on-premises and cloud resources. For example, you could use smaller instances for your on-premises environment and larger instances for the cloud.

By application: You can also group applications together based on their workloads and burst capacity needs. This will help you to better manage resources and avoid overloading any one area.

Inline or out of line: You can either use the cloud as an overflow buffer or as a primary resource. Inline mode means that the cloud is used only when demand exceeds capacity on-premises. Out of line mode means that the cloud is always used, even when capacity is available on-premises.

Industries Using Cloud Bursting

There are several industries that can benefit from using cloud bursting:

Retail: In retail, there is always a need to be prepared for the busy holiday season. By using cloud bursting, retailers can handle the surge in traffic without having to worry about their website crashing.

Hospitality: The hospitality industry is also prone to seasonal spikes in demand. Hotels and resorts can use cloud bursting to ensure that they have enough resources available during peak times.

Manufacturing: The manufacturing industry is another one that often experiences peaks and valleys in demand. Cloud bursting can help manufacturers meet customer demands while keeping costs under control.

How Can I Start Using Cloud Bursting?

If you’re ready to start using cloud bursting, there are a few things you need to do:

  • Set up your on-premises and cloud environments. This includes installing the necessary software and configuring your instances.
  • Decide which applications will be used for cloud bursting.
  • Establish a pricing strategy for using spot instances.
  • Test your setup to make sure it is working properly.

Cloud Bursting Use Cases

There are many different use cases for cloud bursting. Some of the most common include:

  • Handling unexpected traffic spikes
  • Supporting seasonal peaks in demand
  • Meeting compliance requirements
  • Backing up or disaster recovery purposes

Cloud bursting can be a great way to handle unexpected spikes in demand. For example, if you’re running a website, you may see a surge in traffic during holiday shopping season. By using cloud resources for burst capacity, you can ensure that your site stays up and running even when demand is high.

Cloud bursting can also be used to meet compliance requirements. For example, many financial institutions are required to keep certain data backups off-site in order to meet regulations. By using the cloud for backup storage, businesses can easily comply with these regulations without having to invest in extra hardware.


Finally, cloud bursting can be used for disaster recovery purposes. If your business experiences a major outage, you can use the cloud to quickly bring services back online. This can be a lifesaver in cases of emergency.

Cloud Bursting FAQs

How much does cloud bursting cost?

The cost of cloud bursting depends on several factors, including the instance type, the provider, and the amount of time the resources are used. It is important to carefully plan out your costs before implementing a cloud bursting strategy.

What happens if I need more resources than the cloud can provide?

In most cases, the cloud provider will simply add more instances to meet demand. However, if there is a significant difference in capacity between the on-premises and cloud environments, you may need to reevaluate your strategy.

What happens if I don’t use all of my cloud resources?

You can either release the resources or save them for later use. It is important to be aware of how much you are spending on spot instances so that you don’t go over budget.

There are several benefits to using cloud bursting, including avoiding service disruptions and keeping costs under control, scalability, short-term and long-term capacity needs

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