Acquia Cloud, Site Factory, Drupal FAQ

We answer questions frequently asked about Acquia Cloud, Acquia Cloud Site Factory, and Drupal.

Have you ever looked through Acquia’s website and thought “Hmmmm … what does that mean exactly?” If you answered yes, then this post is for you. We’ve heard your questions and we’re answering them in plain English for you.

What is the difference between Acquia Cloud and Acquia Cloud Site Factory?

Acquia Cloud is a platform that manages Drupal applications. Site Factory adds the ability to manage multisite Drupal applications. "Multisite" is a specific configuration that enables a single Drupal application to support multiple websites. When one application supports just one website – as is the case for most Acquia Cloud customers – technical and business processes are relatively streamlined.

Applying a security patch your Drupal application, for example, only impacts one website. Giving your site administrator rights to the Drupal website just means adding credentials in one place.

Imagine if one Drupal application supported 50 websites. Applying the security patch will impact 50 websites. Adding admin users to 50 websites becomes a cumbersome task. Now imagine that same scenario across 5000 websites. Acquia Cloud Site Factory provides tools that make managing that complexity easier for both technical and business users.

One of the big differences between Acquia Cloud and Acquia Cloud Site Factory is that Acquia Cloud is intended to be used by technical teams such as developers and devops engineers, whereas Acquia Cloud Site Factory offers features for both technical and non-technical users such as marketers.

Most notably, Acquia Cloud Site Factory gives marketers the ability to create sites from their Drupal application with just a few clicks – no development expertise needed. In addition to this no-code site creation capability, organizations look to Acquia Cloud Site Factory when they want to scale to hundreds or thousands of sites in a short amount of time.

This isn’t to say that Acquia Cloud isn’t for organizations looking to scale their digital presence; we’re simply saying that Site Factory is best for digital experiences at a mass scale.  

What do I get with managed service?

When we talk about managed services we are talking about a cloud platform where we have already orchestrated all of the parts of the cloud for you. We operate the cloud so you don’t have to. So what exactly are you getting with managed services? The short answer is a platform that is orchestrated, automated and operated for you so all you have to do is start building your applications.

Why do I need Acquia to host Drupal?

You don’t need Acquia to host Drupal per se; anyone can do that. However, Acquia provides the support, security and scale so you can build faster. That translates to less for your IT teams to manage than they would with a DIY approach, more robust than hosting since it’s a PaaS, and it’s more cost effective than other proprietary vendors because we don’t charge a licensing fee. Basically, you get the beauty of open source but with all the support and security bells and whistles.

We’ll be back in a few weeks with a whole new set of questions. Is there something you need to know right this very second (OK, probably not that quickly, but you get the point)? Hit us up on Twitter at @acquia. Otherwise, stay tuned.

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