Welcome!

Containers Expo Blog Authors: Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Zakia Bouachraoui, Pat Romanski

Related Topics: @CloudExpo

@CloudExpo: Blog Post

The Essential Cloud Considerations

How assessment, planning and preparation can lead to avoiding a potential Cloud nightmare

Cloud Computing Expo on Ulitzer

Thinking about jumping on the cloud? True, I’ve had no qualms in showing my skepticism towards the marketing of ‘cloud computing’ and it being the mere repackaging of solutions which have existed for years, but the fact is it still addresses a concept and reality that exists and one which holds numerous benefits.

Indeed abandoning an existing on-site IT infrastructure for a cloud provider that most often or not can’t offer the same level of security, control or performance is not an easy decision but one which CIOs and IT executives are seriously considering when weighing up the economic benefits. As with any change though, a move towards the cloud necessitates a sound and comprehensive assessment to avoid the trap of a short term benefit turning into a long term nightmare.

Integration Considerations
Firstly your company should assess its business strategy and whether a cloud computing infrastructure could integrate with it. With all the convenience that cloud offers, the risk of data residing beyond your company’s vicinity still presents a significant security risk. Hence depending on your company, whether that be a startup, small, medium or enterprise an assessment of how much risk you are prepared to take in order to cut costs will initially be the first factor in deciding which data / applications to outsource to the cloud. This is what often leads enterprises to be content with using the cloud for archival while smaller business find it easier to go the whole nine yards. Once that’s decided your design for integration should first evaluate each process and system and determine the number of simultaneous requests that need to be handled. As always availability of information also needs to be paramount, regardless of whether the information resides internally or on the cloud. Thus the key for enterprises is to not think of the cloud as a substitute for their processes, policies and security but rather an extension of their existent architecture.

Choosing the Right Cloud
If your company needs access to e-mail, e-commerce, gaming applications, etc. with cost reduction being the primary concern over security and availability then the public cloud provides the service to access such applications via a thin device with minimal financial overhead. Here the start up business can thrive but companies with an already substantial customer base and Tier 1 applications such as OLTP should think otherwise. In such an instance a hybrid cloud may be most suitable wherein the Tier1 application data remains in house with the cloud being utilized for backup, archiving and testing bringing in the consequent cost savings. Enterprises on the other hand with strict Sarbanes Oxley and security controls on customer data and service levels may outweigh the risk of information access control over cost and leave the cloud altogether, that is until security in the cloud becomes further enhanced.

Testing the Cloud with your Existent Virtualized Infrastructure
The balance of scales will always alternate between the reliable and secure nature of data centers with the far cheaper ‘pay as you use’ option of cloud computing. Therefore a way to get a taste of the cloud and assess its suitability to your environment is to utilize the virtualization that is already taking place within your data center. If you are one of the few archaic infrastructures that has not already moved towards the virtualization of applications and infrastructure then you are already missing out on immediate cost benefits which could be existent within your own data center or what the marketing teams tag ‘the internal’ or ‘private’ cloud. With the independence of applications from their physical infrastructure, your in house virtualisation already provides the gateway and flexibility to cloud offerings which are based on external virtual infrastructures. By choosing a non-core application to experiment with such as your e-mail archiving you can quickly set up a test environment and get a feel of the bottlenecks, security, performance and billing procedures of the cloud. Upon sufficient testing and having gained an idea of the metrics you required, you will have a better idea and peace of mind on how best to deploy more mature applications to the cloud.

Choosing the Right Applications
Choosing the right applications is also a serious precursor as not all applications are best suited for the cloud. If PaaS and IaaS are a consideration then a migration may be a necessity if the cloud may not support your application especially if there are incompatibility issues between the platform software and your application. Another issue is related to applications that require real time response that can’t be put at the risk of potential network latency, congestion or bandwidth clogging. Tight backup windows, graphics intensive applications or applications handling large I/O would need serious consideration and investigation of the SLAs provided by the cloud prior to any migration. On the flip side applications linked to your non core business operations may be ideal for deployment such as a marketing campaign website or a standalone application that doesn't require much interaction with other applications. Again applications which are used for testing purposes can easily be deployed to the cloud with minimal costs and risks to the business especially with many cloud providers offering free trial periods.

To conclude, while network latency, data availability, security and application support are all valid concerns for customers thinking of utilizing the cloud, a sound approach and pre-analysis could easily alleviate them, bringing in major cost savings to your business. In other words jumping on the cloud bandwagon without the right assessment might see you falling straight through from the sky; but making sure the cloud you do jump on is substantial enough to support and sustain your company could also be the soundest business investment you’ll ever make.

More Stories By Archie Hendryx

SAN, NAS, Back Up / Recovery & Virtualisation Specialist.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


IoT & Smart Cities Stories
The platform combines the strengths of Singtel's extensive, intelligent network capabilities with Microsoft's cloud expertise to create a unique solution that sets new standards for IoT applications," said Mr Diomedes Kastanis, Head of IoT at Singtel. "Our solution provides speed, transparency and flexibility, paving the way for a more pervasive use of IoT to accelerate enterprises' digitalisation efforts. AI-powered intelligent connectivity over Microsoft Azure will be the fastest connected pat...
There are many examples of disruption in consumer space – Uber disrupting the cab industry, Airbnb disrupting the hospitality industry and so on; but have you wondered who is disrupting support and operations? AISERA helps make businesses and customers successful by offering consumer-like user experience for support and operations. We have built the world’s first AI-driven IT / HR / Cloud / Customer Support and Operations solution.
Codete accelerates their clients growth through technological expertise and experience. Codite team works with organizations to meet the challenges that digitalization presents. Their clients include digital start-ups as well as established enterprises in the IT industry. To stay competitive in a highly innovative IT industry, strong R&D departments and bold spin-off initiatives is a must. Codete Data Science and Software Architects teams help corporate clients to stay up to date with the mod...
At CloudEXPO Silicon Valley, June 24-26, 2019, Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with expanded DevOpsSUMMIT and FinTechEXPO programs within the DXWorldEXPO agenda. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term. A total of 88% of Fortune 500 companies from a generation ago are now out of business. Only 12% still survive. Similar percentages are found throug...
Druva is the global leader in Cloud Data Protection and Management, delivering the industry's first data management-as-a-service solution that aggregates data from endpoints, servers and cloud applications and leverages the public cloud to offer a single pane of glass to enable data protection, governance and intelligence-dramatically increasing the availability and visibility of business critical information, while reducing the risk, cost and complexity of managing and protecting it. Druva's...
BMC has unmatched experience in IT management, supporting 92 of the Forbes Global 100, and earning recognition as an ITSM Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader for five years running. Our solutions offer speed, agility, and efficiency to tackle business challenges in the areas of service management, automation, operations, and the mainframe.
The Jevons Paradox suggests that when technological advances increase efficiency of a resource, it results in an overall increase in consumption. Writing on the increased use of coal as a result of technological improvements, 19th-century economist William Stanley Jevons found that these improvements led to the development of new ways to utilize coal. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Thiele, Chief Strategy Officer for Apcera, compared the Jevons Paradox to modern-day enterprise IT, examin...
With 10 simultaneous tracks, keynotes, general sessions and targeted breakout classes, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO are two of the most important technology events of the year. Since its launch over eight years ago, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO have presented a rock star faculty as well as showcased hundreds of sponsors and exhibitors! In this blog post, we provide 7 tips on how, as part of our world-class faculty, you can deliver one of the most popular sessions at our events. But before reading...
DSR is a supplier of project management, consultancy services and IT solutions that increase effectiveness of a company's operations in the production sector. The company combines in-depth knowledge of international companies with expert knowledge utilising IT tools that support manufacturing and distribution processes. DSR ensures optimization and integration of internal processes which is necessary for companies to grow rapidly. The rapid growth is possible thanks, to specialized services an...
At CloudEXPO Silicon Valley, June 24-26, 2019, Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with expanded DevOpsSUMMIT and FinTechEXPO programs within the DXWorldEXPO agenda. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term. A total of 88% of Fortune 500 companies from a generation ago are now out of business. Only 12% still survive. Similar percentages are found throug...