What Does Plumbing Mean?

Plumbing is a term used to describe the technology and connections between systems in a cloud computing model. It includes the systems, storage, network and the interconnection components that form the cloud environment. The term is an analogy to the plumbing of water systems. Just as water is carried from reservoirs to homes and usage centers, the data from data centers is delivered to the end stations via its plumbing. The quality of plumbing decides the efficiency of the applications and services delivered.


Techopedia Explains Plumbing

Plumbing is the way cloud computing has its resources and network wired together via a variety of channels. It defines the way the services are delivered to the end users in a cloud computing model. The details of the specification of plumbing are devised by professionals and are kept hidden from a normal end user.

The success of cloud computing itself depends on the quality of plumbing. It is an important factor to achieve operational excellence. If the plumbing is not designed properly, it can lead to huge traffic jams on the Web, as inefficient plumbing creates problems in the movement of data through the network connections.

One particular plumbing problem can be caused due to the high volumes of data sets being generated every minute. Immense data sets stored on enterprise servers like Google, Facebook and YouTube require servers with several petabytes of storage. The amount of data generated also nearly doubles every year. Data is created at a higher rate than the growth of data storage capacity. Thus, plumbing problems arise as data storing resources cannot satisfy the data demands.

To prevent the “pipes” from clogging, better ways must be employed to improve plumbing in cloud computing. Data can be moved out of cloud storage and free cloud resources for better delivery of services. But when more of external disk drives are used, the upload time and costs get higher and contribute to other plumbing problems. In this case, fast data set compression and decompression are required to speed up the upload time.


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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.