The Facts of Cloud Migration

Copyright (c) 123RF Stock Photos
Copyright (c) 123RF Stock Photos

The cloud is all the buzz, but the hype can make it hard to tell fact from fiction. Many companies are under mistaken assumptions that make them balk at the idea of moving to the cloud. So here’s the truth: it simply isn’t as complex as it seems. Let’s take a look at some of those myths and why they are misguided.

Myth: The cloud is unreliable.

Market experts may be saying that no cloud platforms have the reliability a business needs to run its applications, but it’s simply not true. While there’s always a chance of a VM going bad, it’s not necessary to specifically design a system that treats all of its servers as disposable. If a VM does go bad, it should be detected, deleted, and replaced with a new machine.

Myth: Databases can’t perform in the cloud.

Two years ago, this might have been true, but now the cloud has evolved to the point where it’s simply a myth. Many cloud providers provide the options for high-performance databases, including ones specifically designed for transactional databases. Even if the most common solutions to having a database in the cloud won’t work for one specific database, it’s possible to integrate the cloud environment and the dedicated physical servers.

Myth: There’s no networking support for n-tier applications.

The advent of SDN provides better support for multi-tier applications that rely on interaction between the server, network resources, and storage. However, SDN is a new player in the arena, so many enterprise buyers don’t trust it yet. SaaS is another option, but, due to its security issues, many clients aren’t comfortable using it, causing lost sales.

There’s another option though: many cloud venders use Layer 3 network topology. This leads to far lower performance than traditional setups, but rewriting an application to work in a flat network can take years, unlike changing it to deal with some network latency. Some providers are also able to deliver the performance necessary, requiring no changes at all.

Dispelling cloud myths is the only way to help companies understand that migration to the cloud is a viable option. The fears that keep a client from moving to the cloud may be unfounded; by researching vendors, they may find a service that allows them to migrate without the heavy costs of re-writing the application.