More and more organisations are opting to move to the cloud today. There are a lot of advantages in moving into the cloud, but the confusion lies in choosing the correct infrastructure and the correct way to do it.
There is a lot of hype about shifting the entire infrastructure of a company to a public cloud; a total “lift and shift.” There certainly are advantages in doing so, however, a complete lift and shift poses two major challenges:
Cost: If you have applications that run continuously, then migrating them entirely to a public cloud can set you back a lot of money. This is because it becomes difficult for you to take advantage of your ability to shut down the infrastructure.
Time: Moving an infrastructure completely to the cloud takes a significant amount of time. A total cloud migration can take weeks or months, and it might cause a massive amount of downtime.
Blending public-cloud and private cloud solutions to a hybrid cloud configuration is thus the best way to go. With hybrid cloud infrastructure, you can quickly benefit from the sophisticated cloud services while still maintaining some level of control of your in-house applications. To understand a hybrid cloud, one must understand the pros and cons of both cloud platform varieties: public and private cloud.
Public cloud platforms give companies access to a broad range of services that includes advanced analytics, virtual-reality development, and machine learning along with basic storage and networking. The services they offer expands all the time, and these cutting-edge services benefit an organisation hugely. On the other hand, however, big organisations might be apprehensive about placing their sensitive information in the shared data centers of public cloud platforms.
Private cloud platforms have some automation features similar to public-cloud platforms including the likes of automated scripting of architecture patterns and one-click provisioning of servers. Companies can thus deploy new capabilities and protect their critical applications and data with security controls provided by private cloud platforms.
Hybrid cloud migration is thus the go-to choice for many organisations. It gives you the best of both cloud services by allowing you to bring public-cloud capabilities with private cloud security. A hybrid cloud does not only ease the burden of managing costs, but it can also help prioritise which workloads to move to the cloud and when.
There are three primary variants of hybrid-cloud systems:
Private-front or back-hauling topology
This topology routes the traffic through private data centers while deploying applications completely or partly in the public cloud. This allows companies to apply internal cybersecurity controls as per their needs along with taking advantage of public cloud services.
This topology places applications in the public cloud. However, users can access them directly with the help of CSP provided cybersecurity controls that are applied by default. The data is stored in a private cloud, and additional security controls are applied to it.
Public-cloud or cleansheet topology
This topology places applications and data in the public cloud. However, the cybersecurity controls are applied by using third-party services.
The first step for a company which cannot directly move to a public cloud solution in one go would be to shift applications from a private cloud to hybrid, by deploying the private-front topology first. The next step would be to opt for a public front topology and finally the public-cloud or cleansheet topology.
How do we help you deploy progressive cloud systems?
Yes, a hybrid-cloud technology is better than a complete cloud solution. However, progressive hybrid-cloud platforms still rely on some elements of public-cloud platforms. Hence, companies willing to migrate to the hybrid-cloud infrastructure will still need to manage the complexities of public cloud platforms. We help you deploy progressive hybrid-cloud infrastructure by helping you:
Assess the costs of progressive configurations
To devise a progressive hybrid-cloud configuration, we help you consider how to deploy innovative capabilities and security controls in your existing infrastructure. Since the price and pricing models for public cloud platforms change over time, it is important to keep an eye on those changes and assess the effects those changes will have on your company costs.
Migrating to the cloud has these cost considerations:
Kind of application
A company with I/O applications are costly to host in the public cloud. Storage-intensive apps, however, cost less in the public cloud.
Day to day expenses
Migrating to the cloud changes the day to day expenses of your organisation too. Using the infrastructure-as-a-service capability in the public cloud requires regular maintenance as it would for private infrastructure. Hence day to day expenses is another consideration to be analysed before moving to a hybrid cloud model.
Hence, it is important to define the financial aspects when migrating to the cloud. As experts in the cloud technology, we help you understand the pricing of the technology stacks and operating models. We also help you make adjustments as your business needs change and the pricing schemes evolve. Migrating to the hybrid cloud and choosing the correct cost plan is not a one-time deal, but rather a continuous process that requires the right kind of expertise.
Create a cloud-migration road map
It is established that migrating just about everything to the cloud at the same time is not a good idea. You hence need to sequence your migration efforts and create a road map. We help you in doing that. We help you determine the applications which offer big performance improvements and cost savings when in the cloud and the applications which don’t.
One approach for determining which applications need to go to the cloud and which needs to remain private is to establish a rubric where applications are assessed on the basis of their performance and cost consideration. When assessing and scoring the applications, the areas to explore are:
• Security controls required
• Dependencies on other applications
• Data requirements of the application
• Services consumed by the application
• Underlying technology
• The effort required to move it into the cloud (development and testing)
• Business risks associated with carrying out the migration
• Costs associated with deploying the application in the cloud
Once the scores of the applications are put into place, we help you create a roadmap for carrying out the transition of the high scoring applications to the cloud followed by the gradual migration of the low scoring applications.
Create an automation-oriented cloud unit
Companies tend to visualise the cloud as an infrastructure service and often assume wrongly that their existing infrastructure will operate perfectly alongside legacy services. Companies are also under the assumption that their existing teams can easily cope up with the pressure of moving into the cloud.
Existing resources and teams can find it difficult to get familiar with new technologies, and it will certainly be difficult to carry out cloud migration with the existing team capacity.
Just telling your existing team to adapt to the cloud environment and expecting the work to get done is unrealistic. This is also where we come into the equation. We create a specialised cloud delivery team for you, who communicate closely with your teams and help you get moving to the cloud.
Provision the environment and start the migration
After the planning phase is complete, we help you create a new infrastructure, and provision the software and hardware based on the agreed architecture. We help you configure virtual machines, install software, and assess performance settings.
The next step in the cloud migration process is to create a test cloud environment and compare its performance with the older data centre.
It is important first, to migrate development and test environments for core applications and then plan to rebuild entirely new applications on the cloud. Use the lessons learnt along the way to ease the process that follows.
It can be quite daunting to migrate to a public cloud directly. To truly benefit from the advantages of cloud services without having to deal with a huge amount of downtime and cost, it is best to migrate to hybrid-cloud platforms progressively. With our help, you can migrate to the cloud and make your organisation leaner, nimble and give it access to innovative capabilities that will power your digital transformation.