Organizations must ensure speed, scalability and reliability of their applications to meet the needs of customers. This includes scaling up when needed and backing down when demand reduces. This can provide a financial benefit, but also an operational advantage when it comes to right-sizing on-demand infrastructure.
One way organizations are meeting these challenges is through modernization of their applications and transformation of their infrastructure. While there are multiple strategies to achieve this, cloud migration is often a first step in this journey. For one, moving to the cloud allows faster and more frequent application releases. In addition, it can reduce cost through data center consolidation and greater management efficiency.
A successful cloud journey consists of four key steps: Migration, Modernization, Unification and Innovation. The following sections explain how you can follow those steps successfully.
Migrating to a cloud platform is not something you should do without a thorough plan. Changing the platform might raise a new set of issues for your application, such as whether your existing servers are compatible with your new environment, or ‘hidden’ costs such as the egress fees for each data request. The best way to overcome them is to leverage your cloud provider’s expertise and create a deployment plan.
Here at Data Canopy, we have AWS experts who will evaluate your business and technology goals to determine what AWS services and programs will help you achieve them. Depending on what you are trying to accomplish that may in include some or all of the following: Storage Services, Compute Services, Networking Services, Container Services, and Hybrid Services.
Once you have selected the infrastructure resources, the next step is to plan the actual migration. It should include how to upload your code, starting the application, and the necessary complementary services.. In order to make sure your application works as expected in the new environment, you need to perform thorough testing. Therefore, your deployment plan should include a test plan as well.
Moving to a cloud platform can be done in two ways. The first is, migrating to the cloud without making any changes to the application or its architecture. This is known as “lift and shift.” This is the fastest method to move to a cloud. You’ll want to evaluate if that meets your goals, or if your applications are cloud-ready. Again, testing is a critical component here.
Conversely, should you have a legacy application or system that is not cloud-ready, applications go through a process called refactoring (rearchitecting). This can involve adopting a modular design, sometimes including microservices architecture. Microservice architecture reduces the total cost of ownership (TCO) by improving operational efficiency and resource utilization. It also improves agility as it reduces the time and resources necessary to build, deploy, scale, and maintain applications. Further down the modernization path for most companies, is adopting serverless architecture, you can eliminate the operational overhead.
The recommended way to begin refactoring is by starting the process with non-business-critical applications. Your migration plan will include the order in which you are going to refactor applications. You can also adopt this approach for all your future, more critical, applications and services once the methodology has been established. This will reduce the number of resources you need, and you can also eliminate the unnecessary network calls in your application which can improve performance. For some applications, replacing them with new offerings across SaaS, serverless architecture, and/or containers is the best approach, rather than rebuilding what you have today. Many companies replace such applications with the help of SaaS vendors. Your cloud provider can advise you to enable your SaaS strategy using AWS Marketplace.
If you are not sure which approach is the best for you, discuss it with your cloud provider and trusted consultants. They will evaluate your application and let you know which method will give you the maximum benefits from moving to a cloud. Often it is not just a technology conversation, but a business conversation as well.
Most cloud platforms have built-in DevOps facilities for engineers, security teams, site reliability, engineers (SREs), and IT managers. They will provide dashboards to monitor your applications, optimize resource utilization, and respond to system-wide performance changes, and provide a unified view of operational health. For example, AWS provides applications such as CloudWatch to collect these operational data and gives you a wholistic view of your resources, services, and applications that run on the cloud as well as potential on-premise servers. If you do not have the expertise to handle DevOps-related issues, your cloud provider will be able to assist.
These unified views will allow you to see all the details and context in one place and find the root cause easily by drilling down on historical data when an issue occurs.
Another advantage is the ability to break down data silos and unify your data. As a result, you can make your data more accessible to everyone who needs it. You can also access and analyze your data seamlessly in a secure and governed way.
Moving to a cloud increases the opportunity to innovate. You can build new applications following best practices that accelerate modern applications with a lower total cost of ownership and increased agility.
Since cloud migration can unify the environment, the teams can get access and view to a vast amount of data, leading to innovation with data analytics and machine learning, to mention a few. This can allow your organization to make decisions quickly along with data warehousing. These innovation steps can help to expose the previously hidden opportunities with insights that can transform industries and change how customers use your products and services.. With better infrastructure and resources at hand, you can even extend your application to give customized user experiences.
If you are thinking about cloud migration, Data Canopy has the experts and the team in place to assist you on your journey. Data Canopy specializes in working with organizations that need a seamless plan for their cloud solutions and the expertise to implement that plan. A good provider will help you, and challenge you, along the way to come up with the best plan for your business needs.