Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Fallacies of Hybrid Cloud Migrations and Monitoring

In the early part of the year, we at Uila conducted a survey for vExperts asking them for their opinions on Hybrid Cloud Migrations. With this survey, we realized some very common misconceptions with regards to migration procedures. 

I also had the opportunity to talk about these fallacies at the vBrownbag tech talks held at VMworld LV last month.

In this article, I will highlight the top 6 fallacies - 



1)    Let’s migrate with a “Big Bang”

There is a perception of Lower cost and faster return on investment if they go for a Big Bang Migration, however, it comes with a “High Risk”.




Reality
a)    Even small and mid-tier companies these days have huge amounts of data to migrate.
b)    Moreover, the systems administrators are untrained and need to learn the setup IMMEADIATELY which may lead to expensive disruptions.

Recommended Solution
a)     The best solution in this case is to go with an iterative migration with a rollback option. This is a slower process but mitigates the risk.
b)    The system administrators must be included in the migration efforts early on, that way they are well trained and acquainted with the new setup.

2)    Let’s just “Lift and Shift”

Lift and shift migration is the process of moving all the on-premise VM’s/servers into the cloud. This migration effort in lift and shift is minimal and doesn’t require detailed planning.



Reality
a)     Cannot take advantage of native cloud features
b)    Works out to be more expensive in the long run

Recommended Solution – Rearchitecting for the cloud is the way to go because –
a)    Provides higher performance
b)    Lowers costs in the ling run

3)    Why do I need to know my Application and Infrastructure Dependencies?

A pre-migration assessment which includes Application Dependency mapping is crucial for migrating to the cloud. A lot of organizations continue to use “Pen and Paper” style methods to identify their dependencies.





Reality
a)     Applications are complex. Without understanding the correct dependencies, migrations can affect the organization as a whole organization.
b)    Documentations exist, but it becomes obsolete from the moment its created. Documenting every single change is hard and cumbersome for employees and the people who originally deployed the applications may no longer be around .

Solution
a)    Map discovered applications based on network flow connectivity data.
b)    A weighting system must be used based on the complexity and criticality of the application. More the connections, more complex and higher the weight.





4)    Private Cloud is Dead





Reality
a)     Private cloud is secure, Air-Tight and Resiliant
b)    Certain business critical application require to be on-premise

Solution
a)     Hybrid-Cloud is a very common approach for organizations who need the elasticity and scalability of the public cloud, but also require the security of a Private DC.
b)    Services likes VMC on AWS/AliCloud can help leverage AWS native services while utilizing a Private cloud architecture.


5)    Once you go cloud, you never go back

Reality – Rollbacks happen and the main reason are –
a)     Higher costs after migration
b)    Application does not work after migration





Solution
a)    Proper pre-migration assessment which recognizes all the assests involved in workload and their current compute and storage usage.
b)    Pre and Post Migration validation for discovering and troubleshooting is critical

6)    “Cloud Deployments do not require to be monitored sicne the cloud provider guarantees 99.9% uptime”

Reality.
a)     Cloud providers only guarantee uptime for their infrastructure, not you’re workload.
b)    Pubic cloud is susceptible to outages as well. A great example is the Amazon outage during prime day a few months ago.

Solution
a)     Regularly make sure the resources are “Right-sized”
b)    Use a monitoring solution to identify and proactively prevent application degradation in the cloud.


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