When virtualization first came about, it separated the application from the hardware on which it ran. This gave benefits to mobility and hardware utilization. I see cloud as the next step of virtualization. With the cloud, the application is separated not only from the hardware but also from the data center. For instance take Office365….while you manage users, configurations, settings, you have no idea where the application is running—the city, the state or even the country. Cloud separates the application from the data center—not just the from the server — and there are strong inherent benefits with the cloud model.
Three popular reasons for migrating to the cloud today:
1. SaaS is easier in the Cloud. (click to tweet this)
Office productivity and salesforce CRM applications are readily adopted in off-site Cloud-hosted platforms. It is almost the standard for these business-critical applications to be cloud-based. You still manage access and configurations to meet business needs, regardless of where, geographically, the program is running.
2. Back up and disaster recovery improves with Cloud. (click to tweet this)
Often businesses begin with pushing backup data to the cloud rather than or in addition to physical tape backups being shipped and warehoused. With a cloud-based backup, your intellectual property is sent to the cloud. Your data is always available. You can restore it far more readily versus retrieving a tape—identifying it, fetching it, getting it in hand, uploading it and confirming it is the information you want.
While total disaster recovery from the cloud may be more time consuming, many cloud providers enable recovery in the cloud. In the rare event of a ‘smoking crater’ disaster, recovering services in the cloud can result in huge time savings as there is little to no time spent in standing up a new datacenter. the cloud does give an organization the opportunity to continue business as usual with primary storage availability while restoring the data center. Note that 99.9% of restores are for a small amount of data. The smoking crater is rare. In all instances, business continuance is smoothed with a cloud-based data center.
3. Reduce risk and responsibility with Cloud. (click to tweet this)
The majority of net-new businesses start with the cloud. Then they ‘kick the can’ down the road a while until business supports the possibility of building an in-house data center. The cost for cloud capacity includes people, processes and applications. If you are starting net-new, it is simplest to go to the cloud.
By going to the cloud, larger organizations can grow capacity without adding personnel or overburdening current personnel. Managing the data center is a process that can be shared or handed off to a cloud provider. It becomes “someone else’s headache.” When you go to the cloud, you have a more predictable cost structure. Management and accounting for the hardware and refreshes, and financials behind the acquisition, becomes purely an OPEX (Operational Expenditure) vs a CAPEX (Capital Expenditure).
Managing and troubleshooting the data center becomes somebody else’s problem—everything from infrastructure to power to cooling to refreshing to equipment lifespan. With regard to security, Cloud providers have greater built-in safety, optimized redundancy and resiliency than a typical private data center would install.
Cloud can appear more expensive at first glance. However, note that you are transferring the risk and management of hardware to the cloud provider so you don’t have to manage those daily tasks. Risk and responsibility—power, cooling, hardware lifespan, an amber light on some hardware—all become removed from worries. It’s tough to put a dollar value on that.
And by utilizing cloud technology, personnel can focus on managing business needs—rather than on managing the datacenter needs—with less troubleshooting hardware and more ensuring that end-users get what they need. Whether with SaaS or fully engaged with an offsite cloud provider to manage data center needs, you are almost definitely headed to the cloud.
Join cStor’s next Cloud Series Webinar: Backup and Data Recovery Utilizing the Public Cloud on May 13.