Sumit Sharma

Going the Hybrid Cloud route?

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Some argue that private Cloud computing is a natural evolution for IT modernization investments that enterprises continue to make over the years.
The risk with investing in private Cloud infrastructure, processes and organizational re-structuring is it is difficult to change course once the commitment has been made. Depending on the scale involved, the financial justification will be realized over a prolonged time period and during this time there may have been some innovations in Cloud architectures that leapfrog how private Clouds are architected today. There is a high level of uncertainty around this given the rapid snow-balling effect of Oracle, HP, Dell, Cisco and IBM all continually innovating to provide ‘Cloud in a Box’ solutions and we anticipate the market getting more and more competitive as Moore’s law continues to take effect.

In many cases, the best solution is to then go for a hybrid model, one in which you still gain the benefits of having a dedicated Cloud environment, but leave most of the ‘heavy lifting’ and investment to an external vendor’s multi-tenant virtual private Cloud environment. This not only reduces cost and overhead, but also dramatically decreases the time to market for Cloud services. An IaaS Cloud provider can rapidly set up a hosted virtual private Cloud on an enterprise’s behalf. These cloud environments are bounded by specific enterprise security parameters.
A hybrid solution also makes sense in cases where an application, or some functionality (e.g., testing environment) is hosted on a public Cloud, perhaps because it needs to be customer facing for example but it still needs to interface with some APIs that are hosted via the internal Private cloud. In such a case, the application can be spread amongst the internal Cloud infrastructure as well as on the public Cloud. This calls for Cloud interoperability, which is extremely important, given the connected environment and expanding ecosystem of innovation.

Regardless of the decision of whether to actually operate a Cloud, or source a private Cloud, there will be a host of operational implications to address – but at the end of the day, the ability to host or operate a cloud can be satisfied through capital investment and organizational change, however the decision to operate or source will be a strategic level decision. Will the business model be supported through a Cloud platform on-premise or will it be supported through a Cloud platform sourced externally – that is the question to ask.

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Written by Sumit

October 26, 2010 at 10:07 am

Posted in Cloud Computing

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