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What are some basic ideas for optimizing hybrid cloud?

Q:

What are some basic ideas for optimizing hybrid cloud?

A:

With so many cloud options at their disposal, many companies are now opting to choose a hybrid cloud approach that merges public and private cloud choices for a heterogenous environment. But within the hybrid cloud model, there are many ways that decision-makers consider taking full advantage of these platforms to make them work for a company as efficiently as possible.

Some hybrid cloud strategies seek to decouple different types of services from each other. One interesting model is a public compute/private storage model, where the company can use public cloud services for computing, but store warm or cold data in private cloud systems, thereby getting some of the security benefits of private cloud. With proper encryption and data routing, this can be a very workable method. For example, companies could source storage as a service to get the private storage network component in place.

Another tip involves policy-driven change. Companies have to brainstorm and look at what types of data are going to be most conditioned to a hybrid cloud setup and when sensitive data may need private cloud solutions. Some experts talk about creating a “data fabric” to be more deliberate about data governance and moving data throughout the system.

Other tips for cloud optimization involve costs and complexity. For example, in a multi-cloud situation, companies can get more of that versatility that they desire for enterprise operations. However, costs are an issue. Companies should evaluate a multi-cloud model to look at individual vendor thresholds – they should look at individual cloud services to prevent things like vendor lock-in, and make sure that they have choice available at their fingertips when it's time to scale. They should consider cost thresholds, where one vendor may be able to offer better financial terms for an expansion of services than another.

Other types of optimization for hybrid cloud involve elements of the system that can be defined in a hybrid cloud approach. Some IT professionals talk quite a bit about modernizing wide area network access with distributed internet access points, software-defined tools or other techniques. In some cases, the hybrid cloud approach can help to provide the resources needed to innovate, for example, in storage or in networking segments.

In addition, it's important to look at cloud operations from a workload perspective. Companies can consider what workloads will stress the system the most – and where to deploy workload handling resources within a multi-cloud model.

Last but not least, modern autonomic systems can automate some of the work of hybrid cloud management. Today's cutting-edge systems can do different kinds of real-time monitoring and analysis to figure out how to move the system toward a desired state – optimal performance using fewer resources. In general, plugging hybrid cloud data into one of these autonomic systems will get companies better results as they attempt to get all of the value that they can out of these types of systems.

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Written by Justin Stoltzfus
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Justin Stoltzfus is a freelance writer for various Web and print publications. His work has appeared in online magazines including Preservation Online, a project of the National Historic Trust, and many other venues.
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