The industry skill base is shifting towards a new idea of enterprise IT, but are we still thinking “Old IT”? Organizations are moving to the cloud with a traditional IT mindset, and its costing more than it should. Moving to the cloud, in general, has lots of immediate benefits including scalability, availability, and automating tasks to save time. Not everything belongs in the cloud in the traditional virtual environment configuration. If VM’s are moved to the cloud without considering how the service can be provided in an “as-needed configuration”, cloud migration will cost more than needed.
As companies move services into cloud environments, they commonly fail to incorporate the new perspective needed to get the most out of migrating to the the cloud.
New ways to think about cloud migration.
1.What highly available services am I providing?
2. Do these services need an OS, or could they be containerized and scripted?
3. Will this service need to be available 24/7?
4. How do I maintain instances in a cloud environment?
What highly available services am I providing?
Many critical services will need an up-time of “always up, never down”. Cloud shifts the hardware responsibilities to a third-party allowing the service provider to focus on building a redundant and scalable service. Building a service with fault tolerance, auto scaling, and load – balancing is quick and easy using a cloud service provider.
Do these services need an OS, or could they be containerized and scripted?
A great deal of services can be scripted to a server-less implementation, and instead of being charged for a server powered up 24/7, you would only be charged per usage for the service.
If the service needs an underlying OS, could the server provide the service for 6 hours per day, and meet the needs required? One great example that comes to mind is vulnerability scanning an environment. This service typically only needs to be running during scans, then is dormant until called on specifically or scheduled to perform a scan.
How do I maintain instances in a cloud environment?
Maintaining cloud services drops the old “Remove malware or rebuild the machine”. With a correctly configured cloud infrastructure, you can drop the instance and have it re-build automatically while the loadbalancer maintains connection to the redundant service. This is not only quicker and automated, it also doesn’t affect the availability of the service.
As stated earlier, not all services will be optimized in a cloud environment. That decision heavily depends on the service provided.
In closing, I believe cloud computing is here to stay. Therefore, new ways of thinking about providing services in the cloud is an essential skill for any information technology professional.
Look for ways to secure your cloud infrastructure in future articles, and until then……..Stay safe in the Trenches of IT!