Organisations throughout the world are under constant pressure to continuously innovate in order to maintain their competitiveness. The transition to a digital economy via the utilisation of cloud services and platforms is no longer a choice, but a need to ensure the businesses’ long-term existence. As cloud computing services have increased in popularity over the recent decade, a variety of providers and platforms have emerged, each with its own distinct advantages and limitations. One of the focal points when it comes to the adoption of cloud computing is the utilisation of a hybrid cloud model. What exactly is hybrid cloud computing? Why is it gaining so much attention for discussion? Why are more and more businesses starting to adopt this model of cloud computing? Read on to learn more about it and understand why it’s probably not such a good idea to ignore it if you still want to maintain your business’s competitive edge.
WHAT EXACTLY IS HYBRID CLOUD?
A hybrid cloud, or otherwise called a cloud hybrid, is a computing system that integrates private cloud services, public cloud services, and local data centres, allowing for orchestration, administration, and application mobility across all three. By integrating both public clouds and private IT environments, data can easily migrate between the two. Interconnectivity is enabled initially by data virtualization, then by linked devices and applications like APIs, VPNs, and WANs. By linking them all into a hybrid cloud, your firm obtains better control over data storage, security, accessibility, confidentiality, authenticity, and privacy for your IT framework. The hybrid cloud environment is also said to be a convenient alternative for cost reduction and risk mitigation since it combines the excellent features of both cloud computing as well as local data centres. Some also characterise hybrid cloud as a “multi-cloud” arrangement, in which a company employs more than one public cloud in inclusion to its on-premises datacenter as well as its private cloud network.
As a result of the adoption of the hybrid cloud setup, your firm is now also able to execute and expand its traditional or cloud-native workloads on the most appropriate computing model using a single, unified, and flexible distributed computing environment. It helps the firm to fulfil its technical and commercial goals more successfully and cost-effectively than either just public cloud, private cloud or local data centre alone.
To better understand better the 3 types of computing systems that constitute to the hybrid cloud; namely the private cloud services, public cloud service and local data centre, see the elaboration below
1. PRIVATE CLOUD
A private cloud (also called an internal cloud or corporate cloud) is a cloud computing platform in which all hardware and software resources are allocated to a single client and are only available to that user and not exposed to the public. Many of the advantages of it include elasticity, scalability, and simplicity of service delivery, are combined with the authentication and authorization, privacy, and resource modification of on-premises infrastructure.
2. PUBLIC CLOUD
The public cloud is described as computer services provided by a third-party via the public Internet to anyone who intends to use or acquire them, and can be paid for either on a per-use basis or sometimes, even entirely free-of-charge. In such a case, most likely users only need to pay for the CPU cycles, storage, or bandwidth they utilise. Unlike private clouds, public clouds might even save firms money by eliminating the need to buy, administer, and maintain on-premises hardware and application infrastructure which means the cloud service provider is accountable for all system administration and maintenance.
3. LOCAL DATA CENTRE
A data centre, in its most basic form, is a physical structure that firms utilise to host their crucial applications and data. The whole setup of a data centre is structured on a system of computing and storage resources that allows all the authorised users access to the shared data and applications. Routers, switches, firewalls, storage devices, servers, and application-delivery processors are vital components of a data centre design.
WHAT ARE THE TYPES OF HYBRID CLOUD SERVICE MODELS
The global hybrid cloud market is classified mainly into 3 types of service models, namely Software as a service (SaaS), Infrastructure as a service (IaaS), and Platform as a service (PaaS).
1. SAAS (Software as a Service)
Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) is a software licensing model in which users pay a monthly fee to use the software that is hosted on external servers (provided by the service supplier) rather than in-house servers. Instead of installing the software on each user’s computer, it is made accessible for the users via a web browser or the internet by utilizing a username and password. SaaS is one of the cases of endogenous growth theory, which holds that economic development can be obtained by driving innovation and improving productivity levels. Technology firms, financial services firms, and utiSaaS offerings are made available by vendors who have cloud-based applications with a broad range of functionality allowing the firm to expand up as necessary. Microsoft Office 365, Salesforce customer relationship management, and Gmail are a few examples.lities have paved the way in the adoption of SaaS technology in the world of business. SaaS offerings are made available by sellers who have cloud-based applications with extensive functionality, allowing the firm to expand as necessary. Microsoft Office 365, Salesforce customer relationship management, and Gmail are a few examples.
2. IAAS (Infrastructure as a service)
Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) is a cloud computing service in which businesses can rent or lease servers in the cloud for compute and storage purposes. Users can run their own applications or operating system on the rented servers without incurring the fees associated with server maintenance and operations. Shifting the firm’s infrastructure to an IaaS solution aims to decrease on-premises data centre upkeep, save finances on manufacturing costs, and acquire real-time business information and insight. IaaS solutions enable users to leverage their IT resources up and down in response to demand. They also assist in the rapid provisioning of new applications and the increased reliability of underlying infrastructure. Users can eliminate both cost and complexity of purchasing and having to manage physical servers and datacenter infrastructure through the help of IaaS. Each resource is provided as a separate service component, and users only pay for the resources that they require. Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure are two of the most well-known IaaS systems and a cloud computing service provider, which handles the infrastructure while users acquire, download, configure, and maintain their own software.
3. PAAS (Platform as a service)
PaaS, or Platform-as-a-Service, is a combo of SaaS and IaaS that offers users with a comprehensive cloud platform like hardware, software, and infrastructure for improving, operating, and managing applications without fee, ambiguity, and lack of flexibility that often accompany creating and running that platform on-premises. Firms that seek to improve and host their own applications and aim to optimise full efficiency in the software development life cycle usually prefer PaaS services. The PaaS provider’s data center can provide the required IT infrastructure, components and softwares such as servers, networks, storage, operating system, databases, development tools etc., and users often only have to pay a fixed charge to supply a certain quantity of resources for a certain number of users, or they can opt “pay-as-you-go” billing to pay only for the resources they utilise. Either approach allows PaaS clients to design, test, deploy, operate, upgrade, and expand applications more rapidly and inexpensively than if they had to establish and operate their own on-premises platform. Some of the examples include Atlassian, Heroku, Force.com, Google App Engine, and Apache Stratos.
BENEFITS OF HYBRID CLOUD
1. HIGH COST EFFECTIVENESS
One of the most inherent benefits of the adoption of Hybrid Cloud solutions is in its cost effectiveness. Adding capacity on-premises will usually incur added expenditures by a great jump. Expanding on-premise computing capabilities necessitates the expenditure of capital funds to purchase extra servers, storage, electricity, or, in some cases, the construction of completely new data centres facilities. Organisations may be able to save a significant amount of money if they adopt the Hybrid Cloud solutions. Using cloud resources allows users to avoid having to make large purchases of these local resources; rather, they can “pay-as-they-go” instead.
2. HIGH SCALABILITY
Hybrid Clouds provide practically limitless scale, allowing businesses to expand by leaps and bounds, and not be restricted by their on-premise IT infrastructure capacity. This increased flexibility and usefulness across a variety of storage solutions enables organisations to scale up (and down) their operations seamlessly. Hybrid cloud gives most enterprises the scalability they need to bring new features to their end users, while at the same time, avoid paying the hefty expenses of installing new on-premise IT infrastructure. In essence, hybrid cloud solutions provide enterprises with infinite on-demand resources while leveraging their existing infrastructure investments.
3. High Security And Redundancy
All enterprises’ IT departments highly prioritise security because they need to ensure their data are protected and IT business operations are in continuous operations. These are critical business assets to the company. Hybrid Cloud solutions empowers an enterprise to benefit from the security and redundancy that the cloud solution providers offer. They help to safeguard data by enforcing a firewall that restricts access to only authorised resources. In addition, the odds of losing critical data are reduced to a minimum because the hybrid cloud approach is based on numerous cloud environments and data centres, which means that the data is backed up in multiple servers situated in multiple locations.
DRAWBACKS OF HYBRID CLOUD
All forms of data storage and computing solutions come with their own set of pros and cons, and the hybrid cloud model isn’t without limitations either. Some companies still prefer a fully local on-premise solution because theoretically, it provides greater security since data is kept and analysed locally rather than over the internet (although this point may also be a case for further discussion because on-premise solution is a silo model that bears the full risk as a single potential failure point for the company). The same group of people may also think that hybrid cloud security is a source of concern, particularly if you deal with pooled data and client information.. Another case for concern is with regard to reliability and consistency of service; are the cloud collusion providers’ data centres disaster management protocols robust enough to protect their data and ensure continuity in their IT operations?
The truth is, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. However, it is critical to assess all of these benefits and drawbacks before deciding whether the cloud is the ideal fit for you or your organisation.
SHOULD I USE HYBRID CLOUD?
Businesses across a wide range of industries have shifted toward hybrid solutions in order to minimise costs and put less demand on their on-premise IT resources. Hybrid cloud environments have shown to be beneficial not only in enhancing computing and storage power, but also in maximising the usage of physical space. From the financial sector to the healthcare business, many businesses simply do not have the luxury to allocate large areas of space to house servers on-site. In some industries, such as the healthcare sector, data privacy is highly important. But at the same time, facilities and private computing resources (such as on-premise data centres) are very scarce. In this case, a hybrid cloud approach is a highly viable option because it allows medical institutions to keep patient data secure and private while allowing users access to the increased processing capacity of a platform.
Most organisations also prefer this cloud computing solution because of its versatility and various data deployment possibilities. The majority of SMEs have adopted hybrid IT cloud solutions since they successfully reduced their reliance on on-premise IT infrastructure and migrated the majority of their whole business architecture to the cloud environment. Hybrid cloud solutions provide various advantages to the SMEs, such as data privacy, security, control and most importantly, cost-effectiveness as it has the potential to minimise operating costs due to its scalability. For larger organisations who opt to utilise hybrid cloud solutions also revealed that a hybrid cloud is capable of adjusting to workload requirements, thus allowing it’s core service to remain uninterrupted even when workload demands surge that might result in cloudbusting. With the aid of hybrid cloud solutions, they are able to ramp up or down their IT operations workload in real time.
HOW DO I ADOPT A HYBRID CLOUD SOLUTION?
If you think that a hybrid cloud is the best-of-both-worlds solution which your company needs to adopt right now, you can start to look for a trusted network service provider to assist you with the transition; and that is exactly what the professionals at Vallous can do for you, just as we have done so for companies big and small, local and overseas over the past years!
At Vallous, our team of IT professionals will be able to assess and prescribe suitable hybrid cloud solutions that cater to your business IT operations needs. We offer enterprise-grade data services that you can rely on to transit your data-centric business from a traditional on-premise data centres model, to a hybrid cloud model, or even a full-on cloud computing model.
We are dedicated to assisting our clients in storing and protecting their data, and in keeping your enterprise network ecosystem operating at its best capacity, fueling growth and eliminating downtime, so your business can be a beneficiary, rather than a victim, of the digital ecosystem. We understood and foretold early on the importance and significance of adopting cloud computing and have expanded our cloud data services product line by working together with the world’s biggest cloud computing providers such as Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services and Huawei Cloud, as our partners to enable our clients with cloud capabilities.
To learn more about how to successfully implement hybrid cloud, contact our in-house professionals at www.vallous.com