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Cloud migration is the process of moving digital assets from an on-premises infrastructure to cloud infrastructure. It can also involve moving from one cloud platform to another. The cloud refers to a collection of services that provide easy and flexible access to a variety of services without the need for a complex setup. Cloud services can be utilized for a wide range of purposes. Cloud services can assist with data analysis, data storage, or serving resources to customers.
Companies opt for cloud migration to gain access to virtually unlimited resources and scalability. Similarly, moving to the cloud enables them to save costs on infrastructure, maintenance, and upgrades. At the same time, they benefit from the scalability, flexibility, and security provided by cloud service providers. The process empowers companies to enhance their digital capabilities and streamline their operations in an increasingly connected and data-driven world.
There are numerous benefits to migrating to the cloud. Let’s take a closer look at each of them in more detail:
One of the primary reasons for enterprises to migrate to the cloud is cost savings. By moving from on-premise infrastructure to a cloud-based environment, companies can eliminate the need for physical servers and equipment, reducing their hardware expenses. Moreover, cloud providers typically offer pay-as-you-go pricing models, allowing companies to only pay for the resources they use. This eliminates the need for costly upfront investments in IT infrastructure.
The cloud offers unparalleled scalability compared to traditional on-premise infrastructure. Cloud migration allows for easy scaling up or down of resources based on current needs. This eliminates the need to invest in expensive hardware upgrades when there is a sudden increase in demand for IT services.
Cloud migration also brings with it improved accessibility for businesses. By moving to the cloud, employees can access data and applications from anywhere. This is particularly beneficial for businesses with remote or distributed teams, as it allows for seamless collaboration and work.
Cloud providers typically have robust security measures in place to protect against cyber threats. This includes encryption, firewalls, and regular security updates. Companies can benefit from these advanced security measures without having to invest in expensive security infrastructure themselves. This not only provides peace of mind but also helps them comply with various regulations.
Before advancing to the migration, it’s important to understand the process behind it and the key steps that must be taken. Typically, cloud migration consists of a few essential steps.
Define Your Strategy & Goals
The first step in a successful cloud migration is to define your strategy and business goals. The process involves much more than simply switching technologies. It’s highly linked with the company’s goals. Take the time to consider various factors such as the resources available, potential obstacles, and desired outcomes.
Next, assess the current IT infrastructure. Identify all applications, data, and services that need to be migrated. Evaluate the existing infrastructure to determine which components can be moved as-is and which may require modifications or updates before the migration.
The actual migration process involves moving the identified applications, data, and services to the cloud. This involves moving them to their new virtual home, ensuring a smooth and efficient transition.
After migrating to the cloud, it’s important to monitor and optimize the environment to ensure it is functioning efficiently. Identify any performance issues and make the necessary adjustments to improve overall functionality.
Cloud migration involves three primary approaches: lift and shift, re-platforming, and refactoring. Each method offers distinct benefits and considerations, enabling organizations to transition their applications and infrastructure to the cloud seamlessly. Moving between cloud providers like Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and Amazon Web Services (AWS) often involves a careful consideration of the cloud migration approach. Let’s dive deeper into the 3 approaches.
Re-hosting: Lift and Shift
This method involves moving applications from on-premise infrastructure to a cloud service without making any changes. While this is a quick way to migrate, it may not take full advantage of all cloud capabilities. Failing to adapt applications to utilize cloud-specific features and optimizations may result in missed benefits and cost savings offered by the cloud. It is important to carefully consider the trade-offs and potential benefits of a more customized cloud migration approach.
With this type, applications are carefully modified to optimize their functionality and leverage specific cloud services or features. By tailoring the applications to make the most of available resources, such as scalable storage or AI capabilities, it becomes possible to enhance performance, streamline processes, and ultimately reduce operational costs. This strategic adaptation aligns the application architecture with the cloud environment, unlocking its full potential for efficiency and effectiveness.
Also known as cloud-native migration, this process entails redesigning applications from the ground up, taking into account the unique characteristics and capabilities of the cloud environment.
It involves rearchitecting and redeveloping the applications to fully leverage cloud-native technologies and services. While it’s true that cloud-native migration can be time-consuming and costly, the benefits it offers in terms of optimization are unparalleled. By embracing cloud-native principles and practices, companies can unlock the full potential of the cloud and improve their operations.
In the context of multi-cloud or cross-cloud migration, it’s crucial to tailor migration methods to the unique capabilities of each cloud provider. While re-hosting offers a quick transition, it may not leverage platform-specific features. Re-platforming optimizes applications for each cloud’s offerings, enhancing performance and cost-efficiency. For a more comprehensive approach, refactoring fully harnesses the cloud’s potential, despite potentially increased time and cost.
Successful migration between Azure, Google Cloud Platform, and Amazon Web Services requires a comprehensive assessment of the specific needs and advantages of each platform. Companies can ensure that the chosen migration method aligns with their goals and the capabilities of the targeted cloud provider.