When businesses are planning to move their enterprise apps to the clouds, they need to make sure they also move their application delivery services. This shift is welcome because it allows businesses to get rid of fixed expenses that have to be made to run large IT infrastructures. These servers tend to consume a whole lot of power and generate heat; so, managing and maintaining the IT infrastructure requires high budgets, time and skills. To eliminate this financial drainage and operational headaches, you can move the enterprise apps to the cloud. However, to do this, you will have to find the best possible means of making this move.

Migration to the cloud will entail some important choices. It is indeed possible to restructure the applications to make them suitable for a cloud setting. This will guarantee a seamless user experience but needs a lot of time and labor. Alternately, it is possible to select some apps which run in the data center and shift these to the public cloud. Here, no major design changes are made. The “lift and shift” way is cost-effective and faster.

There are however some important rules to follow to make this possible:

When servers are not functioning properly there is no sense in repairing them; they have to be eliminated and re-deployed. You should not upgrade the existing software or operating system; rather, you should deploy new instances. However, this strategy may not pay off when you are trying to shift apps which have been launched and raised in data centers. These have not been specifically designed for cloud architectures and when there are shutdowns, data may become inconsistent. So, enterprise apps which have to be moved must be pampered well; they will need the same care and management which they received in their data centers. So, you should ideally shift the supporting infrastructure when you want the apps to thrive in a cloud setting.

You need to focus on moving the application and not the mess associated with it. Most enterprise apps start off beautifully but soon enough they need to be reconfigured. So, your shift to the cloud is your best chance to eliminate this patch panel and to regain your control of the access and security. You must move some of the infrastructure services together with the apps but you should visualize and reorganize the application strategy.

It is important to hold onto user identity in the cloud environment. While you will shift some applications here, you will rewrite some apps completely. You have to take important decisions on managing user identity. This is because running many identity services can turn out to be risky and it will reintroduce the complexities you had tried so hard to eliminate. Like apps, users to have become dispersed and you can add controls to identify user locations together with two-factor authentication systems and one-time passwords to protect your organization’s security.

With clouds you are not required to support physical infrastructures. But this outsourcing means you do give up some amount of control. So, to counteract this, you need to closely monitor the application performance. When you have better monitoring, troubleshooting becomes simpler. The questions on performance and cloud security arise from the multi-tenant architecture of the public clouds. They have also been attributed to the loss of control. So, when you introduce better monitoring, it will help to remove the barriers that are still there regarding cloud adoption.

For quality data center infrastructure, you will need to focus on business continuity and disaster recovery measures. Even if you use the public cloud, you are still responsible for securing the applications. Prior to the public cloud, you would need to spend a fortune to establish a physical disaster recovery system. But now it is possible to access the infrastructure in some other continent from a different vendor simply by using technologies. Although the infrastructure becomes readily available, applications need good planning as well as configuration.

Most of the medium and larger sized organizations trying to migrate enterprise apps to the cloud will be keen to build secure private access to their infrastructure. Most businesses will use direct and dedicated connections to cloud vendors provided by service providers which can guarantee higher privacy and guaranteed bandwidth. However, none of this is cheap. When you want resilient connectivity to multiple clouds, you will need multiple links.

More and more businesses are opting for colocation these days. This is referred to as cloud exchanges which can guarantee very high-speed connectivity to different vendors. Using this, you can host some of the IT assets near your cloud infrastructure to enjoy low-latency connectivity.  When you co-locate in the cloud exchange, you can place controls, create security policies which are needed for your business and get more control over the application data flow.

So, to sum up, shifting enterprise apps will allow you to enjoy huge cost savings but you need to understand that these will continue to need their surrounding infrastructure.

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