Common Strategies for Cloud Migration

An evolving global business environment that is primarily data-driven has made cloud adoption an essential requirement for most businesses that want to thrive in this highly competitive business world. The extent to which cloud solutions are capable of being utilized by an organization is specified by its present state, goals and its resources.

Cloud Migration Strategy

The detailed plan that an enterprise makes for the purpose of transferring its data as well as applications to the cloud from an on-premises architecture is known as cloud migration strategy. It is essential to validate the best way for migrating applications before going live. Hence, it is crucial to have a strategy that is systematic and documented.

Before proceeding and touching upon the cloud migration process, let us digress and mention briefly that cloud computing is used in cloud hosting as well. Cloud hosting is a type of web hosting service. There are a few other types of web hosting services that are available, such as shared, dedicated, VPS, reseller, WordPress etc. Web hosting makes it possible for websites to be accessible over the Internet by providing server space and the necessary technologies. The most renowned web hosting companies are often referred to as the “Best Website Hosting Company”, the “Best Windows Hosting Company”, the “Top Cloud Hosting Company” etc.

The Cloud Migration Process

The exact plan for migrating to the cloud and its details depend on the complexity and the size of the data that needs to be moved and the environment but the basic steps remain the same and these are mentioned below.

  • Planning: The reasons for migrating to the cloud should be clear along with the best strategy to support this move. The current environment needs to be assessed along with the cloud server requirements in order to avoid purchasing more than a business’ requirement. An APM (Application Performance Management) solution helps in gaining a thorough, real-time visibility into the environment along with its dependencies.

  • Choosing: The next step is to choose the kind of cloud model that needs to be used. The options can range from public cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud or multicloud and the choice will depend on the organization’s current as well as future needs.

  • Migrating: While migrating the data and the apps it is important to pay attention to cloud security concerns. It needs to be ensured that there are proper and adequate measures for data backup and recovery and that security related policies have been implemented and observed. If an APM solution has been availed then it needs to be ensured that it is used to baseline premigration performance.

  • Validating: It is vital to validate the success of cloud migration. This can be ensured through comparison of applications’ performance before and after the move.

Benefits of Cloud Migration

There are numerous benefits of cloud migration which have led to a significant rise in it. Some of its main advantages are agility, scalability, reduced carbon footprint as well as reduced hosting costs and enhanced security.

Strategies for Cloud Migration

There are six most common strategies with regard to cloud migration. It is usually recommended to use a combination of these strategies for the purpose of migration. The first of these strategies is rehosting. Enterprises that have servers on which packaged software is being run or when the move needs to be made swiftly, rehosting makes it possible for the existing virtual and physical servers to migrate to a complementary Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) architecture. It involves shifting the data and the applications from on-premises hosting to the cloud. An exact copy of the current environment is transferred for the purpose of the quickest return on investment. Such a strategy balances the investment that has to do with migration against long-term optimization and businesses that have a conservative culture as well as those with no long-term strategy with regard to using advanced cloud capabilities usually opt for rehosting.

The next strategy is referred to as re-platforming. Re-platforming makes adjustments for optimizing the cloud landscape while maintaining the core architecture of applications. Re-platforming makes specific updates to the deployed applications during the process of migration in order to bring it into line with the current standards. Often these version updates are sufficient for companies to leverage cloud services. It serves as a good strategy for businesses that are conservative and those that want to reap the benefits of enhanced system performance.

Repurchasing is another strategy that is used for cloud migration. It involves moving the applications to a new, cloud product, usually a SaaS (Software as a service) platform. It presents the challenge of training the users with regard to the new platform. It can be a cost-effective option when there is a move involved from a highly customized legacy landscape.

Rearchitecting or refactoring offers another way for cloud migration. In it the applications are built anew. This happens because of a business’ need for leveraging cloud capabilities that are not available in its existing environment, which might include sever less computing or cloud auto-scaling. Despite being the most expensive option, it is the most compatible with the future versions.

The second last option that will be touched upon here is retiring. If a set of applications or a dataset is either not needed or do not succeed to justify their overhead, these can be retired or turned off. This saves costs along with reducing the attack surface and complexity that is involved.

The last one among the most common strategies for cloud migration is known as retaining. It is used in the event that only a certain part of one’s data and applications are migrated. Retaining a few applications, as per the need, gives rise to a situation where a part of one’s operations run outside the cloud for a certain specific time, which is usually short, while the rest of the systems migrate to the cloud. Retaining applications serves as an ideal option when it is complex to move certain assets.

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