CSAS in the (private) cloud

Microsoft Azure and Amazon AWS

The cloud is changing the way that individuals and businesses share and store data and interact with applications. Adoption of cloud technologies within government organisations has been slower, but there appears to be a growing appetite for them and we’ve evolved CSAS to support ‘cloud deployment’.

The traditional deployment model is for CSAS to be installed on a physical PC as a desktop application. This requires administrator permissions and the involvement of the customers’ IT team. Updates and new versions similarly require IT support, which can slow down the rate at which new features and services can be accessed by end users.

Deployment in the cloud can simplify this process. In a CSAS cloud deployment, the CSAS client software is installed on a cloud server, rather than directly on the user’s PC. Access to the app is initiated via the browser, which then fires up a secure ‘remote desktop’ connection to the CSAS application. CSAS appears in a window on the user’s PC just as if it was running locally and operates in the same fast, accurate and intuitive manner that users have come to expect.

The benefits of this approach are legion – the operation of CSAS isn’t restricted by the capabilities of the host PC, so should run better on older PCs; software updates become faster to roll out as they’re not necessarily tied to the availability of IT staff to perform the updates; access to CSAS is no longer restricted to being from the user’s own PC, they could theoretically access CSAS from anywhere within the organisation’s network.

We support the two main flavours of cloud service – Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services (AWS) – and, as we’ve mentioned before, although we have the capability of hosting customers’ CSAS services in the cloud for them, we prefer to deploy CSAS into cloud instances that are operated by the customer, as this strikes us as a much more transparent and sustainable relationship.

We’re already in discussions with some existing clients to convert their ‘on PC’ deployments into ‘in cloud’ ones and we’ll be looking to broaden that conversation out to all customers over the coming months. If this service is of interest to you or your organisation, please get in touch to discuss the options: [email protected]

Joe Hoy, May 2019

See also Joe Hoy’s blog: The race to the cloud – but are all clouds equal?

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