Three Tools to Help You Choose the Right Cloud Service Provider

By Jared Thibodeau
Friday, July 14th, 2017

Now that we have taken a high level look at the cloud service provider marketplace, now it’s time to go deeper and review what tools are available to make an informed choice.

Canadian Data Centres

For Canadians, the first deciding factor is having a data centre in Canada. The good news is that Microsoft’s recent data centers launched in Toronto and Quebec City will be the first Microsoft cloud expansion in Canada. This is a historic event marking the beginning of a significant expansion of trusted cloud services into Canada. Microsoft says, this “reflects their deep – and growing – commitment to this country.” You can learn more about Microsoft’s global data centres here and what you need to consider when choosing a region.

This announcement was welcome news for organizations in Canada who were concerned with data sovereignty, or the idea that access to data stored within a country’s borders should be governed by that country’s laws.

On March 9, 2017 Google announced that it is building its first cloud data center in Montreal, Canada. Google says the new data center will allow businesses to keep sensitive data within the country, while also speeding up services like machine learning to better analyze corporate data.

Choosing the Right Cloud Service Provider

If you have been tasked with evaluating cloud service providers and determining viability for your organization, take the time to review all the options available to you.

Here are three free tools you can use to evaluate Cloud Service Providers:

The Azure TCO Calculator

The Azure TCO Calculator tool gives you the ability to manually input your current organizational configuration such computational, storage and networking requirements to determine the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) and possible ROI by moving to the cloud.

Azure TCO Calculator

The Amazon TCO Calculator

The Amazon TCO Calculator comes in both basic and advanced versions. Here is what the basic tool looks like:

AWS TCO Calculator


As seen in the image below, the advanced version of the tool allows consumers to also input networking requirements, and Data Center Staff details. This information is used to calculate the possible ROI for using Amazon as a provider. However, this tool does not offer the option to select Canadian Dollars as a currency, which reflects some of the footprint lacking on Canadian soil.

AWS TCO Calculator advanced

The Google Cloud Platform Calculator

The Google Cloud Platform Calculator is much more in-depth than any other TCO calculators available, and allows consumers to select and calculate a wide variety of solutions provided by Google:

Google Cloud Platform Calculator

Currently Amazon and Google do not have any cloud data centres in Canada, thus Microsoft Azure may be the best option for small to large Canadian based consumers preparing for their migration to the cloud, while ensuring data sovereignty. This I am sure however will change substantially over the next couple years with Google and Amazon moving quickly into the Canadian market

If not, you definitely have a lot of other choices!

Jared Thibodeau is a bilingual, senior ctc TrainCanada instructor with over 20 years of IT and teaching experience. His area of expertise includes SharePoint, Windows Server and Azure. He holds an MCSE certification from Microsoft as well as a Cloud Technology Associate designation from the Cloud Credential Council.