From on-premise to cloudChoose the perfect offer for your application

There is now a wide range of offerings for the operation of software: in-house, on-premise, housing, dedicated and shared hosting, ASP, SaaS, public cloud and private cloud.

This article will help you understand the jungle of different types of offers and provide recommendations on which type of offer is best suited for which purpose.

Basically, there are two different approaches to the different types of offerings: Either the software is operated within your influence or outside your influence.



In the following offer variations, the software is within your area of influence:

Premise or Inhouse

The software is operated in your own data centre.


The software is operated in an external data centre in which you maintain your own infrastructure in a separate area that is only accessible to you. This can be, for example, a separate, fenced-in area (cage) or tower-like lockable cabinets (racks) in which you keep your own servers.

Dedicated or Shared Housing

The software is operated in an external data centre on a server infrastructure that the data centre operator makes available to you in full. The servers can either be provided exclusively for you (dedicated) or shared with other customers (shared).

In the following offer variations, the software is outside your area of influence

Private Cloud

The software is operated by a service provider in an external data centre on an infrastructure that is provided exclusively for you. In contrast to dedicated hosting, the service provider not only takes care of your hardware, but also your software.

Public Cloud

Die Software wird durch einen Dienstleister in einem externen Rechenzentrum auf einer Infrastruktur betrieben, die Sie sich mit seinen anderen Kunden teilen. Auch hier kümmert sich der Dienstleister im Unterschied zum shared Hosting um die Hardware und Software.

In 2010, services in the cloud were referred to as ASP (Application Service Provider) in the 0s and SaaS (Software as a Service). But ultimately, they are different names for the same type of offering.

Find the right type of offer for your application

The first step is to decide how sensitive the data you want to manage with the software is. For particularly sensitive data, you should choose a type of service where the software is operated within your sphere of influence, i.e. on-premise, housing or dedicated hosting and, if applicable, private cloud. However, the latter only applies if the operator is based in the EU and is not a US provider subject to the CLOUD Act and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), as otherwise US intelligence services could access your data.

If the data is less worthy of protection, shared hosting or a public cloud is sufficient. However, it has recently become apparent that public clouds are a highly attractive target for hackers because the data of a large number of companies can be accessed for industrial espionage or blackmail with a single intrusion. The effort put in by hackers – some of whom are state-supported – is correspondingly high. As a result, the effort required by the service provider for countermeasures should be just as high. However, this is not always successful, as the hacks of Microsoft cloud services last year show.

In the second step, you need to decide whether you want to take over the technical operation of the software. If you have IT expertise and an in-house data centre, then on-premise operation is recommended. This is usually also the cheapest option because you do everything yourself.

If you have IT expertise but no data centre of your own, housing or hosting in an external data centre is recommended. This is a little more expensive because you have to rent the IT infrastructure from the data centre operator.

If, on the other hand, you want to outsource the technical support completely, the public cloud or the exclusive but even more expensive private cloud are the right choice. In both cases, you rent a complete solution consisting of hardware and software.

As you can see, there is no one perfect solution when it comes to operating software, but rather a variety of offerings for each individual case, and each offering has its justification.

P.S. Since AGNITAS AG, as a provider of software for e-mail and marketing automation, offers its customers all of the above-mentioned forms of offer, we consider ourselves to be in a position to assess these forms of offer neutrally.