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The many faces of cloud – understanding your different workload deployment options

AndyDeBernardis

You have been tasked with making an important decision for your organization about workload placement. Will you move forward with a private cloud deployment strategy, transition certain workloads to the public cloud, or will you continue to use your traditional IT infrastructure? Throughout the decision making process, you will face several complex questions. No matter what the choice, it’s important to take the time to understand the different deployment options that will best meet your unique scenario.

 Let’s look at some of the different deployment options:

  • Traditional IT: Traditional IT infrastructure, which resides within your datacenter and includes the computing resources (e.g., hardware, software, storage) that are designed to meet the needs of each individual customer.
  • On-premises Private cloud: Like traditional IT, private cloud is specific to each customer deployment and exists within your datacenter. The difference is that through automation and orchestration software integrated with hardware, line of business and developers are able to access the services they need through a self-service catalog. Once a service is selected, resources are automatically and rapidly provisioned to meet their workload and application development needs.
  • Public cloud: Customers can consume shared and scalable off-premises cloud services, gaining access to the IT resources to support their workload and application needs. 
  • Managed Cloud Services: This offers a hosted model that provides the benefits of the cloud with access to services and tools to support the unique needs of each business, managed by a third party resource.
  • Software-as-a-Service (SaaS). Designed to support the needs of multiple customers, this is set up to be a shared software services model delivered over the web (e.g., Salesforce and Office360).

Now that you have the general categories of deployment options to consider, remember to keep the different options in mind as you narrow down the field. On-premises options including private cloud, composable and hyperconverged infrastructure can serve all your workloads needs, including data management, collaboration, DevOps and hybrid cloud. They can also help provide the security, performance, and control your business demands – all at the right economics. 

When looking for the benefits of a private cloud which could be delivered without the staff demands, managed private cloud may be an appealing option to you. However, keep in mind that an off-premises environment is outside of your complete control, and you need to factor in the cost of services delivery.

As part of a hybrid IT approach, there is a time and a place for public cloud, but only if it meets security, compliance and control requirements that you have within your business. Read the fine print to ensure the cloud service you are engaging with can meet the needs of your SLAs. Also, make sure that you understand all the hidden costs that may arise over time. And, if you choose public cloud, at some point you may need the workload to come back on-premises. Factor this into your plan.

Lastly, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) alternatives may exist. But pay close attention to how your sensitive data is protected and determine if that level of protection meets your unique business scenario or whether it’s best to keep that data on-premises.

By understanding different models and then matching them to your own unique requirements, you’ll be able to narrow down your initial options for each of the workloads you need to run. Remember that your choices may vary depending on the specific phase in the lifecycle and complexity of the workload, or governance models affecting it.

Here’s an example: A workload that processes confidential data may require a level of security that makes on-premises private cloud the ideal deployment platform. While that makes sense for a production environment, do you need the same level of security required for the development and test platform, especially if the data used for testing is in the early stages or fictitious? And at what point will you need to move the workload from off-premises to on-premises to meet your business requirements?

Alternatively, could a different approach such as composable infrastructure be used to optimize costs and speed provisioning? And there are other factors to consider like security, compliance requirements, control needs, cost comparisons and application performance. Taking the time to understand the different deployment options available can help you as you determine your overall hybrid IT strategy and plan. This is where you might want to consider employing a consulting service from HPE PointNext that can help you match your workload with the right end deployment venue. HPE PointNext can help you build a hybrid IT strategy that defines the best workload placements for your business and optimizes your outputs and reduces your risk.

Stay tuned for my next blog, where I’ll drill down into the factors you can use to determine which model is the best for your needs. In the meantime, check out 451 Research’s white paper, Best Practices for Workload Placement in a Hybrid IT Environment, to find additional insights into the different hybrid IT models available and how they impact workload placement.

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About the Author

AndyDeBernardis

Andy DeBernardis is part of the worldwide Cloud solutions marketing team at Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Andy has been with HPE for 10+ years in WW roles including managing HP WW Cloud sales enablement, HP Software Cloud sales enablement, HP Software partner marketing, and HP Software vertical solutions marketing.

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