Cloud Migration

What is Cloud Migration?

Cloud migration is the process of moving applications, infrastructure, data, and other workloads from on-premises locations – such as company data centers – to cloud environments or from one cloud to another. Cloud-to-cloud migrations are getting more and more popular. However, cloud-to-cloud moves are also significant because they can increase your security, efficiency, and scalability. The cloud migration plan designates a public, private, or hybrid cloud as the destination for the assets in question. The types of cloud migration are pretty varied, from simple rehosting operations to more complex rearchitecting to a series of options in between.

What is the purpose of cloud migration?

For any workload or deployment environment, a migration strategy aims to deliver some combination of increased operational scalability, flexibility, performance, and cost savings. When a company moves to the cloud, it often does so to address the problems caused by its use of legacy infrastructure, pursue digital transformation initiatives, and provide new solutions and services to customers. By moving beyond legacy IT infrastructure, organizations can improve capacity planning without owning and managing the underlying physical IT equipment. A cloud migration plan addresses the risks of data and application security, storage capacity, and network performance.

Aging IT infrastructure does not consistently deliver the features or performance necessary for reliably serving employees and customers. It may not even provide the required components to enable digital transformation.

Older hardware and software are also more likely to expose your data to harm than newer, cloud-based alternatives. They might lack the latest security updates or be built on old technology that’s inherently more vulnerable to attack.

It costs companies a lot to maintain their legacy systems. Servers must be updated, applications must be secured, and capacity must be scaled—tasks that can require significant upfront capital expenditures and expensive ongoing maintenance, too.

Cloud computing allows organizations to grow beyond such limits imposed by their on-site datacenters and the assets housed within them. For example, a cloud migration plan may be designed to enable more resilient disaster recovery than would be possible with self-hosted infrastructure or to deliver real-time SaaS collaboration applications to an increasingly remote workforce instead of hosting business apps on-site.

What are the benefits of cloud migration?

With a proper cloud migration planning strategy in place, the right supporting solution services can help organizations build an architecture that will allow them to be more sustainable and cost-effective. Here are the benefits of such a cloud migration strategy:

Operational flexibility

Successful cloud migration helps IT more easily deliver applications to end-users when and where they need them. You can build applications to run in the cloud that can scale up or down at any moment to meet demand. Security updates and general maintenance are also much more accessible. It all adds to more flexible, sustainable operations that can better support customers, not to mention geographically distributed workforces.

Resource scalability

If your company undergoes a merger or acquisition suddenly has more demand for its services than its internal capacity or has increased demands for its products, it might have to provide more resources to its existing users to address their needs. Cloud computing platforms make it easier to procure and scale compute, storage, and networking resources on-demand without having to procure and set up the physical infrastructure and connectivity contracts required in on-premises paradigms.

Cost savings

Cloud providers sell most of their services using operating expenditure business models, with customers spending based on actual consumption (prepayment commitments are also available on some platforms). This is a compelling technology that can cut the capital expenses of any company. In addition, upgrades and maintenance are also bundled into the cost of cloud computing services, saving you time and money.

Workload performance

The versatile, scalable resources of cloud computing services can improve the performance of some workloads in multiple ways. You first need to think about how your application might be hosted. It’s pretty common for organizations to have different environments, and the best strategy depends on the circumstances. Cloud applications will provide access to a deeper and broader pool of resources, APIs, and security protections than their on-premises counterparts, letting IT maintain performance even with heavy usage.

benefits of cloud migration

How does cloud migration work?

Any successful cloud migration strategy begins with a clear, detailed plan. The project needs to include a clear set of objectives and steps, outlining the overall project goals and requirements for the cloud infrastructure. It should also have a bunch of workstreams that will consist of the actual execution of the conditions and steps.

cloud migration process

Migration projects vary widely in type and scope, but they always include at least some of the following actions:

  • Goal setting: We recommend that any IT department planning to migrate to the cloud focus on these three main areas: Is it meant to lower costs, improve performance, or support digital transformation?
  • Cost and time calculations: It’s essential to determine how much the migration might cost and how long it may take. These decisions play a role in selecting the vendor and migration tool.
  • Security and performance due diligence: It’s not enough to know which cloud environment is right for your business; you have to be aware of how it will affect your workload. Cloud migration planning requires new considerations, such as how new hardware and software may need to be deployed.
  • Data migration: Databases for existing projects will be moved to cloud environments. A cloud service provider might offer specific services and tools to minimize database downtime and help simplify the entire transition.
  • Network transformation with SD-WAN: SD-WANs will replace hub-and-spoke MPLS WANs with efficient, easy-to-deploy, highly cost-effective architectures that route all their traffic through the cloud for inspection. You can use any transport (broadband, MPLS, cellular, satellite) and enable DIA between end-users and applications in the cloud for a better user experience.
  • Additional moves add and changes: When moving a traditional database to a cloud-based environment, it’s essential to make sure that data can be accessed by any application that might use it and that the data structure is compatible with the application.

Once these steps are completed, production can shift from the on-premises environment to the cloud.

What are the different types of cloud migrations?

Many companies start by migrating a few workloads to a public cloud, then scale up. They do this by moving their entire workloads to the cloud and making incremental improvements to the infrastructure. From there, they may follow more complex migration paths. Alternatively, a company may choose a complex migration strategy due to its particular business requirements and the nature of the assets being moved.

The primary types of cloud migration are:

  • Rehosting: A website, app, or operating system hosted on an existing server or infrastructure is moved to a cloud server. This is the most straightforward migration.
  • Re-platforming: The asset is moved while some minor optimizations are made to its middleware, APIs, OS, or other attributes to make it run better in the cloud.
  • Refactoring: The asset’s existing code is modified to run better in the cloud, with possible support from technologies such as containers and PaaS solutions.
  • Rebuilding: Teams completely rebuilt the app or workload from scratch using PaaS so that it is cloud-native.
  • Retiring: An unneeded legacy app is retired in favor of a more convenient SaaS equivalent.
  • Retaining: A hybrid on-premises and cloud computing solution that uses on-premises data centers and cloud computing is used to deliver IT solutions in an enterprise.

types of cloud migration

What are the everyday challenges of cloud migration?

Challenges in cloud migrations encompass various issues in data integrity and security, business continuity, cost overruns, interoperability, and portability:

Data integrity and security

Data must maintain integrity when it moves from an on-premises environment into the cloud. Additionally, the communication channel must not leak or be intercepted along the way. Ensuring data integrity and security is more challenging in light of the vast scope of migration projects, which often involve the movement of extensive databases.

Business continuity

Business-critical systems need to stay up during cloud migrations because you’ll lose the benefits of cloud upgrades without them. Creating redundancy and moving assets one at a time, instead of all at once, is a typical approach for avoiding the catastrophic failure that could result from a migration to the cloud.

Cost overruns

Workloads should not be moved to the cloud without proper planning. They can cause sticker shock. For example, on-premises cloud-based email services would run operating costs when not in use and incur minor operational charges in the cloud. “Overprovisioning” is one of the top causes of cost overrun in the cloud.

Interoperability and portability

Multi-cloud environments are becoming increasingly popular as organizations realize how powerful and valuable they can be. With cloud computing becoming more and more popular, it is imperative to find a migration solution that will guarantee your migrations work with the different cloud services.
AppViewX solutions for multi-cloud or hybrid-cloud environments

AppViewX ADC+ support application delivery across the multi-cloud or hybrid-cloud environment. With a focus on security, scalability, reliability, and performance, organizations can easily migrate their load balancer devices across multiple clouds such as AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud using automated workflows.