There are many options available to IT teams for organizing and running hybrid multi-cloud environments at scale – for how they use infrastructure in public clouds, private clouds, and on-premise environments as well as how they connect all the enterprise applications that run in these environments. Cloud adoption is no longer an if, but how, so companies are focused on creating the best mix of public and private clouds to minimize spending and maximize their efficiency.
Today, the majority of enterprises are developing strategies that include multiple clouds but also plan to implement hybrid-cloud solutions. Utilizing both public and private clouds comes with many benefits but also with different challenges that enterprises need to address to ensure efficiency and security.
Some enterprises find running cloud services across environments or with multiple providers a challenge, but it doesn’t have to be that way. IT network teams can do it with a centralized management system across all cloud environments, regardless of where the applications are running. Public and private cloud infrastructures operate independently, so it’s essential to use the right technology that allows for portability of applications and data between clouds.
Let’s take application networking services for example. Software load balancers that combine per-app delivery services with central management enable enough flexibility and customization. In the case of deploying a monolithic and expensive hardware load balances for running multiple applications creates a series of problems when each application needs to be updated or maintained.
Hybrid clouds need automation to thrive; that’s how they were designed to work. For example, predictive app auto-scaling is allowed thanks to using next-gen load-balancing solutions. These systems are driven by analytics and can automatically recognize any changing patterns in traffic (in real time) and spin up instances without the need for human intervention. Having a hybrid-cloud traffic management system in place enables this kind of end-to-end automation across the cloud environment.
IT teams can build the self-service infrastructure on shifting workloads as needed and optimize computing provisions and resources. These capabilities provide the agility that hybrid-clouds promise along with efficiency, responsiveness, and elasticity.
When it comes to security in hybrid and multi-cloud environments, understanding all the types of security threats helps address them appropriately. Many of these threats revolve around access, and the rise in the use of hybrid clouds also brought an increase in the amount of encrypted traffic that your networking solutions need to address. For example, load balances are often responsible for decrypting incoming traffic. To address the specific needs of each application, they need to support the latest encryption ciphers and protocols such as ECC (elliptic curve cryptography) as well as scale horizontally and support granular per-app services.
Optimizing costs is one of the top initiatives of all cloud users. As public clouds can appear as a low-cost option, with heavy usage come higher prices, especially for enterprises that utilize a dynamic cloud that continues to scale when needed. Given the physical hardware environments that enterprises require, setting up a private cloud is not negligible, so one way to reduce costs is to look at different ways to minimize your investment in hardware load balancers. Expanding and shrinking load-balancing capacities dynamically (in response to one’s real-time traffic needs) is made possible by software load balancers designed to cloud-native applications.
There are two growing trends in the world of cloud computing:
The role of DevOps is to enable automation of the processes between IT and software development teams so they can build, test and release software more reliable and quick. The future of DevOps is in the mastery of multi-cloud environments. There is more and more data created and collected so IT teams must manage more complex infrastructures and enable users to do more with received data. DataOps is there to help organize and deliver data from multiple sources to many users. DevOps teams need to become more scalable and agile. Their methods and concepts (such as continuous release and continuous integration) will implement more broadly. Also, automation will have to play a much more significant role.
Moving DevOps to a multi-cloud world requires new tools and platforms. Also, it would be better to build cloud-native applications because they’re more service-oriented and modular, comprised of collections of services and containers, easy to automate, scale and move, and based on a scale-out architecture.
Hybrid and multi-cloud adoptions, like any other rapidly evolving space, come with their sets of challenges. Early-adopting organizations need to tread their strategy carefully, taking into account the pitfalls, costs, and complexity that these challenges might entail. There isn’t a point solution for hybrid-cloud and multi-cloud, and it never will be. It’s an integrated and holistic approach in an organization’s overall cloud strategy. To overcome the challenges; organizations should prioritize hybrid and multi-cloud solutions with strong interface consistency, security, and automation.