Cloud computing has transformed the IT industry, but managing cloud infrastructures remains a difficult task. We make a case for putting today’s management practices, known as “Infrastructure-as-Code,” on a firmer ground via a principled design. We call this end goal Cloudless Computing: it aims to simplify cloud infrastructure management tasks by supporting them “as-a-service,” analogous to serverless computing that relieves users of the burden of managing server instances. By assisting tenants with these tasks, cloud resources will be presented to their users more readily without the undue burden of complex control. We describe the research problems by examining the typical lifecycle of today’s cloud infrastructure management, and identify places where a cloudless approach will advance the state of the art.

Figure 1: The vision of Cloudless Computing.

*We call the end goal of an ideal management scheme “cloudless computing”. (a) Today’s practices, known as Infrastructure-as-code (IaC) suffer from a range of limitations, which undercut the benefit they bring and make the management process foreign and “cloudy”. (b) We believe that a principled design will result in a better framework for cloud infrastructure management, providing a correct and streamlined process for the entire cloud lifecycle..


Yiming Qiu, Patrick Tser Jern Kon, Jiarong Xing, Yibo Huang, Hongyi Liu, Xinyu Wang, Peng Huang, Mosharaf Chowdhury, Ang Chen. “Cloudless Computing: Simplifying Cloud Management with Infrastructure Clarity. In HotNets 2023.