Article | June 7, 2021
The way we architect and build applications has changed over the last decade or so. Where monoliths (or single, large codebases) used to be the standard, modern applications are now built using a combination of new architecture patterns, operational models, and software delivery services. By shifting to a microservices architecture, teams can more easily update, replace, and innovate on small, modular codebases—driving faster business innovation while reducing risk, time to market, and total cost of ownership.
This modular microservices approach has spurred the use of containers as a lightweight, portable solution to the infrastructure needs garnered by these loosely coupled services. As such, containers have largely become the centerpiece of automation and DevOps in the enterprise. This gives teams the ability to capitalize on the flexibility and scalability offered by the use of containers, but it also means more moving parts and more perimeters to manage. Kubernetes has emerged as the gold standard for handling container orchestration.
CLOUD APP MANAGEMENT
Article | June 7, 2021
The enormous growth of modern technology and its rapid adoption worldwide has driven enterprises to dedicate their efforts to upgrade the business platform. Implementing a cloud or “cloud-first” initiative is one such step actualized by several small, mid, and large enterprises globally to stay competitive in the market. As a result, CIOs and CTOs across the globe are considering cloud migration and modernization as practical strategies to achieve respective business goals. However, there are other factors too to consider that drive enterprises to initiate cloud migration. A survey conducted by Deloitte reveals that out of more than 500 IT executives, 58 percent of respondents rank security as one of the primary concerns.
“With this rush to get everything on the cloud, all teams need to perform judicious due diligence for the critical company upgrades to ensure the shift to future-ready systems.”
-Ben Haynes, CEO at Monospace Inc and Project Lead at Directus (Interview with Media 7)
This article examines the key factors that propel cloud migration and modernization worldwide. Further, it also explains some enterprise instances, which you can refer to while understanding why the “cloud-first” strategy is crucial for the business to outgrow. However, before we delve into the primary drivers for adopting the cloud through migration or modernization, let us quickly look into the basics of both methods.
Migration Vs. Modernization: The Elementary Decisive Factors
Gartner projects that by 2022 the market size and growth of the cloud services industry will reach almost three times the growth of the overall IT industry. This growth is mainly driven by the urge for cloud adoption and tapping new technology to fortify business growth.
Cloud migration is the method to transfer the workloads, data, and other applications from an on-premise server to the cloud server. Some organizations also rely on the "lift and shift" method of migration. It allows the movement of specific workloads and applications to the cloud server to utilize the privilege of cloud features like automatic scaling, higher efficiency, and agile performance, security, storage, fast computation, and networking. On the other hand, modernization is the method of enhancing or changing the platform, architecture, and features of the existing applications to meet the business requirements. It simply means revamping your applications and making them cloud-native. As a result, your modernized applications get complete support of the cloud architecture. However, before choosing the cloud adoption models, you should analyze the scope to avoid any pitfalls associated with both.
Migration and cloud application modernization are effective in their ways. They are the different routes to achieve the same destination. Yet, most enterprises could not figure out the ideal choice for their business. So, what are the primary decision drivers to consider selecting a cloud environment?
Here are some of the fundamental factors that influence enterprises to implement cloud migration or modernization to achieve a rapid transformation journey.
Implementing a New Cloud Environment
"Moving to the cloud" or "cloud-first" initiative is one of the vital necessities in today’s market to stay ahead of the competition because organizations demand quick results to qualify the race. As a result, to obtain a faster business result, enterprises need an agile platform that provides data-driven insights to make informed decisions without any hindrance. Harvard Business Review Analytic Services report on the State of Cloud-Driven Transformation says that 83% of survey respondents emphasize the importance of cloud to boost their organizations’ future strategy and growth. Whereas, 69% say that, within two years, more than 60% of their organizations’ infrastructure and applications will be hosted in the cloud. If your company plans to adopt a ‘cloud-first’ strategy, then complete cloud application migration is the ideal option.
Scaling up From Legacy Infrastructure
Most enterprises agree that the traditional legacy infrastructure has reservations to meet the spiked business demand. It is rigid and can’t accommodate the changes as and when expected. As a result, you can opt for data modernization or cloud migration to make your data effective. According to Cybercrime Magazine, the data stored in the cloud servers will exceed 100 zettabytes (1 zettabyte=1 billion terabytes) by 2025.
Automating Processes to Save Time
Ever since cloud technology has grabbed the market, enterprises have been keen to fast-track their operations in the interest of time. But the traditional ecosystem has been a hindrance to achieving quick and efficient transactions. As a result, the urgency to adopt cloud arises, which allows enterprises to automate their processes. Further, automated processes maintain the timeline and help to meet the business demand. For example, if you emphasize a section of your business process to be automated, you can go with a lift-and-shift mechanism and cloud app modernization as and when required. Otherwise, you can migrate the entire datacenter to the cloud server to make your entire ecosystem cloud-native.
Data Center Upgradations and Reduction in Capital Cost
Enterprises are aware of the difficulties in accessing data center facilities. It has an expensive set-up, and the upgrades are equally costly. If your data center license upgrades are anytime around the corner, it is high time to plan your organizational movement to the cloud. You can apply a lift-and-shift cloud migration strategy where you can move faster to the cloud. It will help you elevate your ecosystem and make it responsive. Additionally, it will cut down the expenses on regular maintenance and updates.
Improved Security, Efficiency, and Quick Computation
The legacy infrastructure faces challenges in terms of security, proficiency, and promptness during any computation. As a result, your entire network security can be at stake. Additionally, rigidity and sluggish operations might affect your business goals. A "cloud-first" initiative is a primary requisite to avoid such hindrances. To stay at a competitive edge, enterprises demand faster business outcomes. As a result, they require quick access to data for insightful decisions, efficient business processees that can run without interruption.
Should You Select Migration, Modernization, or both?
To implement cloud technology in your business environment, you need to review its current landscape and how it supports the cloud infrastructure. Along with the type of cloud migration, you should also consider business objectives and use cases when reviewing and updating your environment.
Here are some examples of how the leading enterprises planned their shift to the cloud. These instances will help you to resonate and make a fair choice about the cloud adoption strategy.
How Capital One Used AWS to Migrate their Data Centres?
Capital One is one of the largest banking and financial services organizations in the US. It helps the customers get intelligent banking services. Capital One has successfully migrated from Data Centers to AWS and has become the first US Bank to completely implement a "cloud-first" strategy.
With the growing demand from banking customers to deliver tailored experiences in real-time, Capital One realized they would need a robust customer engagement platform. To accomplish it, they needed a modern technology stack using the power of big data and machine learning. The leaders understood that moving their entire infrastructure from the data center to the cloud was the only way to accomplish it. Capital One leveraged AWS as their cloud service provider to focus on delivering customer-centric innovation without worrying about infrastructure management.
“We have successfully withdrawn all of our data centers and implemented all-out data on AWS. We can manage data efficiently at a larger scale and utilize the power of machine learning to deliver improved customer experiences. With AWS, our technology teams are free to focus on their core competency that is creating amazing software and delivering innovation to our customers."
- Rob Alexander, Chief Information Officer, Capital One.
How Bank of New Zealand Modernized their Internal Applications Using Microsoft Azure?
Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) aims to equip its customers with quick financial services. As per their aim, BNZ needed a quick response mechanism to ensure the customers get the services instantaneously.BNZ was using several traditional software at their branches and back-office, with the help of human-intervened .NET applications, running on an aging platform of Windows 2008 software. BNZ wanted to shift this legacy on-premise service to the Microsoft Azure cloud platform to scale its technological capabilities. In addition, the bank wanted to upgrade its customer service application in terms of rapidity, security, reliability, back-up, disaster recovery, and cost-efficiency. As a result, it leveraged the cloud app modernization technique. Additionally, BNZ could also consolidate different tools and platforms for documentation using the cloud platform. As a result, it helped in saving time and effort.
“By leveraging present workload, we could establish the infrastructure for another project seamlessly. Earlier, setting up and configuring an infrastructure would take two to four weeks for a complete software development life cycle.”
- Yogesh Shetty, Azure Team Lead, BNZ.
How Twitter Leveraged GCP to Migrate and Modernize their Platform?
Twitter is a social platform that serves billions of ad engagement events. It aimed to have an ad engagement analytics platform to enable its advertisers to measure user management to monitor ad campaign efficiency. With analytics tools, APIs, and dashboards, the platform is supposed to collect and compute massive data spontaneously in real-time.
Initially, Twitter has developed vital data transformation infrastructures to deal with the traffic of its growing user base across the world. The early deployments for those infrastructures were running on their own data centers. However, with Twitters' ever-increasing user engagement workloads, its data center started to reach its limitations to cope with the scale. Further, the traditional system was expensive and couldn’t support massive data inflow. So, to accommodate the estimated rise in user management, Twitter chose to elevate its ad analytics platform to the flexible and scalable Google Cloud.The complete transition to Google Cloud has been advantageous for Twitter. Its IT team became more agile because they could easily configure the platform and build new features faster. As a result, Twitters' ad analytics platform has come up to be immensely reliable and accurate.
Cloud adoption strategy is entirely based on your business goal. If your business demands a newcloud platfrom, you can opt for cloud migration. Otherwise, if you only wish to upgrade a section of your workload, applications, and platform to make it cloud-ready, modernization is your tactic. You could also opt for a "Modernization after Migration" model to get the best of both. These solutions help to upgrade your on-premise infrastructure faster and then continuously modernize your workloads on the cloud.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Cloud Migration and Modernization?
Cloud migration is the process of totally moving from an on-premise server to a cloud server. Further, the “lift and shift” method of migration allows the movement of particular workloads and applications to the cloud server. At the same time, modernization is upgrading the traditional applications and platforms and making them cloud-native.
What are the Cloud Migration Strategies?
A cloud migration strategy is an approach to move the data and applications of an enterprise from its on-premises infrastructure to the cloud. It is implemented based on the priority and requirements of the business.
What is application modernization in the cloud?
Application modernization is the method of upgrading the platform and features of the existing legacy applications. The benefits of application modernization are to improve the scalability and performance of the data center to meet business requirements.
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"text": "A cloud migration strategy is an approach to move the data and applications of an enterprise from its on-premises infrastructure to the cloud. It is implemented based on the priority and requirements of the business."
"name": "What is application modernization in the cloud?",
"text": "Application modernization is the method of upgrading the platform and features of the existing legacy applications. The benefits of application modernization are to improve the scalability and performance of the data center to meet business requirements."
Article | June 7, 2021
In the recent weeks and months of the COVID-19 pandemic, marketers around the globe have had to come to terms with the fact that their carefully laid marketing plans can’t stand up to the new normal of social distancing, remote working and the near-complete shutdown of entire cities, regions and countries. Maybe it was a marketing plan that relied heavily upon generating leads at in-person tradeshows, which are all cancelled for the foreseeable future. Or perhaps it was a plan that called for a clever direct mailing to members of a B2B audience, who are now working from their homes instead of offices.
Article | June 7, 2021
Modern organizations need fast-paced solutions to scale their services and integrate their applications for a digital foothold, resulting in a demand to shift their ecosystem from on-premise to a cloud environment. Therefore, selecting the exemplary cloud architecture based on the organizational ecosystem is the need of the hour; otherwise, it may directly impact their business growth. Hence, companies are interested in opting for a hybrid cloud solution that will allow gradual migration of their workloads without affecting the daily operations, providing enhanced security by allowing segregation of the critical and general workloads to private and public clouds, respectively.
Many businesses across the globe are raising concerns on whether to adopt a public, private or hybrid cloud platform. According to Gartner, over 75% of midsize and large organizations will adopt a hybrid or multi-cloud strategy by 2021. Today, organizations realize that a hybrid platform is a good-to-go solution after managing IT resources and workloads in public and private cloud environments.
The hybrid cloud definition says that it is a combination of storage, computing, and services environments of an on-premise, private and public cloud. It creates a single platform to operate both in on-premises, private resources, and public cloud resources, such as those offered by Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Google Cloud Platform (GCP). It allows seamless sharing of data and applications when computing and processing requests vary within the organization. A hybrid ecosystem establishes interconnectivity initially through data virtualization, following via connection tools and protocols such as application programming interfaces (APIs), virtual private networks (VPNs), and/or wide area networks (WANs). The goal is to create a collaborative, automated, secured, and organized environment, where integrating these applications among one another and with on-premises systems is easy and fast.
How is Hybrid Platform Different from Others?
Deployment of a hybrid infrastructure describes the organization's ecosystem where on-premise, public, and private cloud environment conglomerate to provide a secure and unified platform. Hybrid cloud platforms allow you to leverage the utilities of the private and public cloud ecosystem.
The private cloud is an infrastructure that can isolate all your vital business data of an organization behind firewalls on a single server, which are non-sharable and thus is a perfect fit for businesses dealing with confidential and sensitive information.Whereas public cloud platforms are shared spaces that offer massive amounts of storage capacity and other resources, they are highly scalable. In addition, due to the shared architecture, public clouds are affordable and allow organizations to control the security and backups provided by the server's data center.
Hybrid platforms are secured, scalable, and cost-effective, allowing you to have a flexible option to separate the workloads and benefit private and public cloud platforms.
Benefits of Hybrid Cloud
According to the Mordor Intelligence research report, Hybrid Cloud Market was valued at USD 52.16 billion in 2020 and projects to record USD 145 billion by 2026, at a CAGR of 18.73% for the forecast period 2021 to 2026. The vital factors such as flexibility, reliability, scalability, cost-effectiveness, security, and rapidity drive its progress.
Flexibility and Reliability
One of the prime benefits of a hybrid environment is its flexibility. A typical hybrid cloud solutions flexibility refers to the service that enables you to utilize the ecosystem as per their needs. Hybrid cloud architecture can use traditional on-premise systems and the latest cloud technology, with/without registering to a third-party host. Organizations with hybrid infrastructure can migrate workloads and access information to and from their traditional systems and to the public/private cloud whenever necessary, without any service interruption.
As we know, a hybrid cloud infrastructure allows us to utilize both a public cloud and a private cloud. It permits more resources via the public cloud services that enable the organizations to expand their storage capacity and computing resources. Thus, workload migration to a hybrid ecosystem makes it easier to facilitate, implement and scale the resources whenever demand exceeds the ability of the on-premise infrastructure.
Typically comprised of private cloud and public cloud architectures, hybrid cloud management allows you to own and operate the data center infrastructure with a significant capital expense. On the other hand, it also enables the public cloud infrastructure to offer resources and services accountable as variable and operational expenses. Thus, hybrid cloud users can select any infrastructures that make it affordable to run the workloads. Moreover, it can accommodate the business demand upsurge and increase its capacity without additional cost. As cost-saving is one of the prime aims of organizations, a hybrid infrastructure leverages a cost-effective approach with no compromise on your ecosystem's scalability, flexibility, security, and agility. According to a study by IT management solution provider Flexera, 76 % of organizations use cost efficiency and savings to measure cloud progress.
Securing business-critical information is always a challenge in any network-enabled ecosystem. Typically for a public cloud, susceptibility to data breaches and data leakages are common. While cloud service providers make exhaustive efforts to ensure data protection for their clients, yet public cloud infrastructure remains at high risk because of its open environment framework. Whereas, for the private cloud ecosystem, companies hold direct control over the stored data. They can manage and establish strict protocols for accesses because the data stored in the private ecosystem are generally highly critical and confidential. However, with a hybrid service, companies can leverage the security of a private cloud with the flexibility and benefits of a public cloud. You can migrate the business-critical data from the private ecosystem to a public cloud for different operations, analytics, and applications. You can also implement extensive encoding methods to ensure data security as much as possible. Hence, Hybrid cloud security is simply protecting the data, applications, and infrastructure that incorporates a certain degree of workload sharing, consistency, and management across multiple cloud environments.
Speed/Rapidity is one of the noteworthy attributes of network-enabled applications. Although a hybrid platform is not fundamentally quicker than a public cloud platform, it allows network optimization to curtail latency and simplify data migration. In addition, hybrid cloud storage transfers non-critical workloads to the public cloud and critical workload on the private cloud and optimizes the network to streamline the traffic. As a result, you can work faster and increase their productivity.
Few Setbacks to Keep in Mind
Despite several benefits, you should consider some of the hybrid cloud challenges before workload migration. Flexera's 2020 State of the Cloud Report says that the complexity and dynamic nature, the hybrid/multi-cloud environment brings many challenges, such as assessing the suitability of on-premises apps for migrating to the cloud. However, analyzing and noting the limitations can make it easy for organizations to utilize their hybrid ecosystem optimally.
Latency and Compatibility
As we know that a hybrid cloud strategy is derived by combining private and public cloud platforms, there can be compatibility issues between them because of their distinct properties. Moreover, analyzing the compatibility of the on-premise applications before migrating to the cloud requires a lot of effort and bandwidth. For example, the private cloud component of a hybrid application cannot respond as fast as the front-end public cloud component and can cause operational latency and other complexities.
Temporary Risk Due to Data Transfers
Data transfers across a hybrid cloud platform can involve third-party (public cloud host) for many organizations, resulting in unnecessary and unacceptable security risks. In addition, data leakages are also a common concern while shifting the on-premise applications to the cloud infrastructure. Therefore, organizations must consider encryption of all traffic to protect the network and avoid temporary security risks for the data in transit.
Using Identity and Access Management (IAM) protocols steadily across private and public clouds requires a highly synchronized effort to meet security and compliance requirements. It is also an essential protocol to ensure no gaps are present in the hybrid cloud design. However, organizations dealing with confidential data, such as the healthcare or finance industries, may face few compliance setbacks. In addition, knowing the actual position of the data and who has access can be a real challenge in a hybrid environment. Hence, organizations need to adopt single sign-on applications and allocate authorizations only when critical and necessary.
Initial Implementation Cost
The on-premise or private cloud component requires substantial investment, maintenance, and operational skills for traditional hybrid cloud architecture. Thus, implementing additional software, though necessary, can further add to the initial cost for a private cloud. At the same time, proper data planning, security tools, employee training, and cloud certifications can boost the initial investment for the public cloud.
Is Hybrid Cloud Environment A Right Choice for Your Business?
Advanced companies align their business transformation strategy with the orchestration of their cloud platforms to achieve a 'GenX' business model. This model establishes an automated and agile organization, empowered by data, directed by AI insights. IBM's Voice of the Enterprise Digital Pulse report by 451 Research says that 3 out of 5 of approximately 1,000 organizations surveyed have implemented a hybrid ecosystem with integrated on-and off-premises cloud services.
Here are some hybrid cloud use cases to help you analyze whether a hybrid infrastructure fits your organizational ecosystem.
Hybrid cloud is particularly effective for dynamic workloads. For example, a trading company entry system that experiences significant demand surges is ideal for implementing hybrid cloud infrastructure. Using an easily scalable public cloud for your dynamic workloads while leaving more sensitive workloads to a private cloud or on-premises data center helps to increase your operational efficiency without hampering the security of your critical data.
Segregation of Critical and Non-Critical Workloads
When your company leverages several SaaS applications, it requires identifying and segregating their workloads to perform while keeping the data security aspect high priority optimally. In comparison, hybrid cloud storage diversification allows moving business-critical workloads to the private cloud with access control mechanisms for security. You can shift the non-critical applications to a public environment and utilize them for business analytics. Under a hybrid ecosystem, both these platforms share information under the same data management yet remain distinct.
Periodical Migration to Cloud Environment
Suppose you are planning to upgrade your operational infrastructure but not sure about its operability. In that case, you can migrate a portion of your critical workload to the private cloud and general applications to the public environment of the hybrid cloud platform and analyze the performance. You can continue expanding your cloud presence as needed by periodical migration of the workload, utilizing the hybrid structure. It enables you to assess the platform in terms of your current requirements and potential future growth.
Big Data Management
Hence, opting for a more brilliant choice by implementing a hybrid cloud strategy will allow you to run a portion of the big data analytics using a highly scalable public cloud platform. Furthermore, you can ensure data security and retain your confidential big data behind the firewall while using the private cloud.
A hybrid cloud allows you to assign public cloud resources for short-term projects at a much lower cost than the on-premise data center. Thus, you can maintain efficient investment by controlling over-expenditures on the equipment that you may require temporarily.
Additionally, utilizing a hybrid environment to supplement your on-premise infrastructure is a better choice for projects that require multi-user collaboration or significant data storage and may hinder your current network performance or surpass your network capacity.
Multiple Business Requirements
Assume your organization needs to fulfill several business requirements. You can cater to some of your critical business needs by only a private cloud and other essentials through a public cloud. Under such circumstances, the hybrid solution is perfect for you. Hybrid cloud services help in many ways to provide benefits of both solutions for a business.
A well-integrated and balanced hybrid approach gives your business the best of both worlds. It allows you to leverage public cloud and private cloud services without completely offloading your data to a third-party data center. Hybrid Cloud Computing can be an ideal solution for your high-focussed businesses.
With the extensive features and benefits of the hybrid ecosystem, your organization will be able to take a step ahead to the world of modern technology and get to see the advantage of combining the security and control of private infrastructure with the scalability and versatility of public cloud computing.
How do hybrid clouds work?
The hybrid cloud creates a single platform for the on-premise, private, and public cloud data, allowing gradual migration of the workloads without disturbing the daily transactions by establishing interconnectivity between different platforms. In addition, the hybrid cloud provides the security of the private ecosystem and the flexibility of the public infrastructure.
Are hybrid clouds secure?
Hybrid clouds allow the migration of sensitive workload to its private infrastructure that you can protect behind the company's firewall. Thus, you can secure all the confidential data within the hybrid cloud infrastructure. In addition, you can shift the remaining non-critical workloads to the public portion of the hybrid cloud ecosystem, which you can utilize for several computational purposes.
Why hybrid cloud?
Hybrid cloud provides the security of the private environment and the scalability and flexibility of the private environment, which makes it one of the most preferred infrastructures for several organizations.
What is hybrid cloud storage?
Hybrid cloud storage is a method to manage cloud storage that uses both local and off-site data. With hybrid cloud storage, businesses can shift their workloads between on-premises or private clouds. In addition, hybrid clouds help organizations to get the most out of containers, which simplifies shifting workloads among clouds.
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"text": "The hybrid cloud creates a single platform to operate for the on-premise, private and public cloud data. It allows gradual migration of the workloads without disturbing the daily transactions by establishing interconnectivity between different platforms. It provides the security of the private ecosystem and the flexibility of the public infrastructure."
"name": "Are hybrid clouds secure?",
"text": "Hybrid clouds allow the migration of sensitive workload to its private infrastructure that can be protected behind the company’s firewall. Thus, all the confidential data can be kept secured within the hybrid cloud infrastructure. The remaining noncritical workloads can be shifted to the public portion of the hybrid cloud ecosystem, which can be utilized for several computational purposes."
"name": "Why hybrid cloud?",
"text": "Hybrid cloud provides the security of the private environment and the scalability and flexibility of the private environment, which makes it one of the most preferred infrastructures for several organizations."
"name": "What is hybrid cloud storage?",
"text": "Hybrid cloud storage is a method to manage cloud storage that uses both local and off-site data. With hybrid cloud storage, businesses can shift their workloads between on-premises or private clouds. Hybrid clouds help organizations to get the most out of containers, which simplify shifting workloads among clouds."