Cloud migration to enable multi- and hybrid cloud strategy

There are different types of cloud migration techniques and various ways to arrange the cloud. Among them, there are two increasingly popular approaches – multiclouds and hybrid clouds, which are often confused with each other.

What is a multicloud?

A multicloud is a cloud infrastructure, built on the basis of technologies and tools from various vendors and architectures.

When does it become necessary to use a multicloud? For example, business leaders decide to migrate their workloads to a cloud infrastructure. Their decision to move from on-premise servers to the public cloud is primarily motivated by the necessity to support a certain client-centric application with utilization rates that vary drastically over time. After some research, they find a public cloud provider that has the right combination of features and meets all the requirements, which makes this provider a perfect choice. However, clients may start asking for features that cannot be realized with a current cloud configuration. The best way to implement those features may require a certain application that runs on a specific cloud only – consequently, this leads to the adoption of two clouds from two different vendors: a multicloud. 

This is just one of the many multicloud use cases, and their variety is on the rise, along with the multicloud popularity. Back in 2015, only 10% of cloud users adopted multicloud approach; now, 81% of them say that they are working with two or more cloud providers, according to a recent Gartner survey.

What is the hybrid cloud?

While multicloud is all about sourcing from different vendors, choosing a hybrid cloud is an approach that entails different types of deployments – public and private. For instance, an organization can use a private cloud to store sensitive internal data and get the most out of resources of a public cloud at the same time. 

A hybrid cloud environment provides organizations with the advantages of both private and public clouds, enabling them to choose the right cloud type for their unique data processing requirements. With a hybrid cloud, companies can quickly and cost-effectively improve existing resources allocation and usage. They can secure sensitive data in a private cloud and quickly add computing, storage or network bandwidth in a public cloud to address a temporary load increase.

What are the main differences between a multicloud and a hybrid cloud strategies?

So, we’ve already mentioned the most important difference between multicloud and hybrid cloud: multicloud is an arrangement of two or more public clouds, while hybrid cloud always comprises private and public ones. 

Unlike a multicloud strategy, where IT specialists need to manage each cloud environment separately, hybrid cloud relies on a single control plane. Consequently, hybrid clouds are more focused on native cloud usage and cost management, native tools and native performance analytics, while, when it comes to multiclouds, it’s more common and more convenient to use third-party services.

On the other hand, these strategies have much in common. By default, both hybrid clouds and multiclouds require different security approaches tools across clouds. They feature some common advantages (data can be shared between clouds, and databases can span clouds) and disadvantages (cloud-native workloads are hard to move). To be able to use hybrid clouds and multiclouds to their fullest potential, it’s always a good idea to refer to cloud migration tools and cloud management tools.

How to choose a proper cloud migration solution?

Cloud migration is a painful process full of important nuances that should be taken into account in order to succeed with the cloud transformation. That’s why many organizations opt for using migration solutions that facilitate the cloud migration process and reduce the risk of failure. 

But what makes a cloud migration solution?

  1. It should support all main cloud platforms, allowing your organization’s data, applications and workloads to migrate from any source cloud platform or physical machine to any other cloud platform.
  2. It should be rich with out of the box features, like an unlimited number of test migrations, a fully managed migration process, an orchestrated launch and a predictable cutover – all that make cloud migration a simple process, and an appropriate cloud migration solution reliable and fail-safe.
  3. It should help save time to maximize cloud migration cost efficiency.
  4. It should be easy to use and flexible to be equally convenient for advanced users, which are capable of creating a migration plan from scratch, and for basic users that prefer to use some predefined settings.
  5. It should be secure.
  6. Last but not least, it should be as automated as possible so that minimum manual actions are required.

What makes a decent cloud management tool?

There are numerous vendors that provide multicloud and hybrid cloud management tools.

When choosing the proper, one should take into consideration the following properties: 

  1. Usability. Every new tool implementation requires time and money to train IT specialists.
  2. Management capabilities. A proper tool should cover all required use cases.
  3. Security – once again. Cloud management tools can be vulnerable to threats, so it’s important to find the tool that will meet your security requirements.
  4. Monitoring capabilities. It’s impossible to manage such complex environments as a multicloud or a hybrid cloud without proper monitoring – they always go hand in hand.
  5. Versatility. Being able to work – properly – with various hybrid cloud and multicloud arrangements is truly a great advantage for a cloud management tool. Otherwise, it could pose additional problems for users dealing with complex cloud environments.

Conclusion

Hybrid clouds and multiclouds are the nearest future of cloud computing, with so many advantages under their belt. However, there are still many issues when it comes to cloud migration and cloud management. This is where appropriate solutions and tools come to the rescue – undoubtedly, they make IT specialists’ and business owners’ lives easier, helping save time and money. To find the most suitable tool and solution, you need to take into account the considerations we outlined above. It is utterly important, since finding the right software will likely boost the efficiency of your organization manifold.

Nick Smirnov, CEO and Co-Founder

Nick Smirnov, CEO at Hystax

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