Stands for "Infrastructure as a Service."

Infrastructure as a Service is a type of cloud computing service that provides servers, data storage, virtual machines, and network connections as an on-demand service. Customers do not need to run their own data center or computer hardware; the IaaS provider handles all of the hardware maintenance and network connectivity, allowing the customer to focus entirely on the software they want to run.

IaaS is similar to other "as a Service" cloud computing products that offer managed server hosting services. IaaS provides only the managed hardware and network connection, leaving all software decisions and responsibilities to the customer. Other cloud products, like Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS), manage both the hardware infrastructure and the software platforms running on the hardware. IaaS customers handle their software installation, configuration, and updates. Allowing that much flexibility for software makes these services popular for software testing and development, web app and website servers, and high-powered computing and data analysis.

Like other cloud services, IaaS offers more flexibility than a company running its own data center. While a large enterprise can afford to build a data center, IaaS products are significantly cheaper for small and medium businesses to start using. Cloud services are scalable, allowing the customer to add computing or storage capacity when needed and then scale back later. Cloud data centers can also be placed around the world, offering redundancy and traffic balancing for the client.

Updated November 9, 2022

Definitions by TechTerms.com

The definition of IaaS on this page is an original TechTerms.com definition. If you would like to reference this page or cite this definition, you can use the green citation links above.

The goal of TechTerms.com is to explain computer terminology in a way that is easy to understand. We strive for simplicity and accuracy with every definition we publish. If you have feedback about the IaaS definition or would like to suggest a new technical term, please contact us.

Want to learn more tech terms? Subscribe to the daily or weekly newsletter and get featured terms and quizzes delivered to your inbox.

Sign up for the free TechTerms Newsletter

How often would you like to receive an email?

You can unsubscribe or change your frequency setting at any time using the links available in each email.

Questions? Please contact us.