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Cloud Computing

What is the secret behind a successful cloud migration?

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What do you mean a cloud migration?
It is a multifaceted process of migrating virtual machines, apps, databases, and other business elements into a cloud environment. It usually defines moving from on-premise to cloud environment. But most of the times it’s observed that businesses prefer a hybrid cloud model.

Top 5 reason why migration to cloud is needed?

  1. Datacenter consolidation to minimize the number of locations
  2. On-premise hardware is nearing end of life and need to be asset lite
  3. Establish a hybrid cloud environment
  4. Reduce waiting time for go-to market by quickly modernizing applications
  5. Bring more controlled flexibility to user
Top 5 benefits of cloud migration:
  1. Reduced cost being asset lite
  2. Enhanced flexibility
  3. Improved end-user experiences
  4. Healthier security
  5. Effort saving and ease of operation
Top 5 cloud migration strategies:
  1. Re-hosting
    • Mostly known as lift and shift
  2. Re-platforming
    • Mostly suitable for application modernization
    • Might involves small changes in application code/configuration to optimize for cloud
  3. Re-deploying
    • Application may remain as-is, while OS & database are majorly upgraded/re-provisioned
  4. Re-factoring
    • Also known as Re-architecting
    • Completely re-writing most part of the application code and re-deploying for cloud.
    • Sometimes re-architecting of system’s integrations is also observed in real world.
  5. Re-constructing
    • It’s the most complex plan and also known as application services transformation.
    • It combines Re-platforming and Re-deploying
    • This is for upgrading, re-architecting and re-deploying of application, database and OS.
Top 5 DO’s and DONT’s for a successful cloud migration:
DO’s:
  1. Assessment of your network flow, databases, code, server infrastructure, storage, application ecosystem and current expertise level.
  2. Thoroughly examine the assessment data including all integrations, dependencies, application security and compliance needs.
  3. Analyze all the costs like - ongoing cloud activities related to migration, skillset for this migration
  4. Get a formal buy-in from all business units to align with organizational initiative for cloud migration business case and timeline.
  5. Investigate if CSP will provide right scalability to meet business demands, necessary flexibility to bring own policies and optimize application to get full advantage of your new cloud environment.
DONT’s:
  1. Never overlook business requirements.
  2. Not ever neglect application analysis before migration. Because not all applications are cloud-friendly. Some applications are well fit to work on-premise.
  3. Never undervalue cloud migration costs - including storage, migration skills, security, testing, discovery and migration tools.
  4. Not ever forget about the relevant training need to be provided for your teams (like HR, Finance, Corp, Admin etc.) for the completely new cloud environment.
  5. Never just lift and shift any applications without further optimization. The actual value of migration in cloud-native features like auto-scaling, performance management, proactive alerting, greater controls and resource optimization etc. which need to be subscribed at first.
Top 5 high-level questions before starting your cloud migration:
  1. Why this migration?
    • What does your organization have to gain by migrating to cloud?
    • What is your ideal end-state?
  2. How to go for this change?
    • What does a successful cloud migration look like? or what is the vision.
    • What are realistic timelines to accomplish this migration?
  3. How to migrate? (will it helpful to reduce cost)
    • Who will help you to make that change?
    • What does your team’s technical expertise on cloud?
  4. Where to migrate?
    • Which cloud platform to choose as destination
    • Which cloud will provide the following?
      • Better agility
      • Improved flexibility
      • Healthier security
      • Easier manageability or on-going operation
      • True hybridity
  5. Which tool to subscribe? (will it helpful to ease the migration)
    • Apart from the methodology and framework, tooling is also very essential
    • Which discovery, assessment tool to subscribe for dependency mapping and grouping?
    • Which migration tool to subscribe for the actual migration work with less downtime?
Top 10 questions which need to be comprehensive about cloud migration:
  1. What are your business objectives with this cloud migration?
    • What do you expect your organization to gain from it?
  2. Do you have all necessary skilled resources available to support this cloud migration?
    • It also needs to be checked about overall project cost and time line if it’s approved.
  3. Can you execute this cloud migration project internally or need to be outsourced?
    • Outsourcing to a skilled vendor might bring you more control over the end to end process
  4. How flexible is the Cloud Service Provider which you subscribed?
    • Will they allow you to add any controls of your own? or how flexible they are.
  5. Do you have a migration strategy? or end to end framework.
    • Mainly this is how to perform the migration. The overall plan will be the outcome.  
  6. Can you do it without affecting daily operations?
    • How to minimize the impact of this migration on your operations.
  7. How you will manage security in cloud?
    • This derived the right CSP, tools to monitor, validate, and ensure data security
  8. Did you validate on-premise technology compatibility?
    • This will derive on-premise environment’s readiness for cloud adoption
  9. What is the overall cost and timeline for this cloud migration?
    • This will ensure if you have all necessary approvals for the project cost and duration.
  10. Can the applications be further optimized and are they scalable in cloud to meet business demands?
    • This will provide a glimpse of application ecosystem and flexibility of current architecture
Seven wonders of a successful cloud migration:
  1. Assess the potential benefits, costs and risks/gaps by adopting cloud for your business.
  2. Choose proper cloud migration and discovery/assessment tools, skillset and methodologies required.
  3. Identify all involved vendor and other stakeholder dependencies, who can potentially delay the overall migration schedule.
  4. Validate on-premise legacy environment’s readiness for cloud migration.
  5. Define application performance benchmark by verifying everything works as envisioned in legacy/source environment
  6. Migration non-prod data to cloud and address if there are any outstanding issues in target environment. Which will bring definite success for production environment.
  7. Define UAT test cases and get it validated by application stakeholders. Perform approved test cases and collect formal cutoff acceptance. Help users settle with the new target environment.

Top 3 golden guidance for a successful cloud migration:

  1. As we all know it very well that cloud migration is a tough and puzzling process that must be dealt in a holistic manner. The most successful organizations are the ones who take time to make a proper and detailed plan, assess their probable options, adopt lessons learned and feedbacks.
  2. It’s being observed that on-premise legacy solutions tend to have superior speed and higher bandwidth capacity as compared to virtual machines in cloud, regardless of their limited scalability. The biggest question to ask your client while building a migration strategy is whether they really need the cloud.
  3. Because just picking up a fancy application and moving it to the cloud, might sounds pretty easy but the question is why they are planning to migrate this?

Top3 cloud migration platform recommendations:

  1. VMware Azure Solution (AVS)
  2. VMware Cloud (VMC) on AWS
  3. VMware Engine on Google Cloud

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