Since its inception, cloud computing has changed our idea of digital agility by continuing to evolve and deliver a variety of services from full virtualized infrastructure as a service (IaaS), cloud-based software as a service (SaaS), a platform as a service (PaaS) to run applications, and cloud storage with nearly unlimited scaling.
Organizations augmented or replaced traditional data centers with cloud environments. In turn, they enjoyed better access to the right amount of compute resources when needed while saving time and money. Enormous benefits meant that a cloud-fixes-all mentality quickly emerged. There were predictions that all workloads would eventually run in the cloud. But the cloud and data center have never been able to satisfy all the digital demands of a business.
In reality, most organizations are moving to a hybrid cloud solution. On-premises local computing has always been necessary to fill the gap.
What is Hybrid Cloud?
A hybrid cloud combines on-premises infrastructure and cloud infrastructure or services. Many might define a hybrid cloud more restrictively as a fully realized private cloud connected to a cloud IaaS. However, with so many varied cloud options and the rise of hyperconverged infrastructure and edge computing solutions, hybrid cloud can be accomplished in many different ways.
Other Types of Cloud Solutions
While many people use the term "cloud" to describe any non-on-premises system, there are a variety of cloud deployment models that companies use:
- Private Cloud: Computing services either over the internet or on a private internal network that is available only to select users, as opposed to the public. Pros: This provides higher security due to company firewalls and internal hosting. Cons: A company's IT department is generally responsible for the cost and accountability of managing a private cloud system. Synonyms include internal cloud and corporate cloud.
- Public Cloud: Computing services offered by third-party providers over the public internet instead of an internal network. Pros: Organizations experience faster deployment and lower costs since they do not have to purchase, manage, and maintain their own on-premises hardware. Cons: While security has been an issue for public cloud solutions, when implemented correctly, public cloud environments can be as safe and secure as any private cloud.
- Community Cloud: Computing services in which the infrastructure is shared between several groups or organizations from a specific community with common interests (like security or compliance). A community cloud can be seen as a middle ground between a private and public cloud. Pros: Generally cheaper than private cloud and considered more secure than public cloud. Cons: More expensive than public cloud systems but potentially less secure than private cloud systems.
Why Organizations Leverage Hybrid Cloud Solutions
The pandemic forced organizations to quickly transition from traditional work settings to allow employees and customers to interact from remote locations. This transition was, in some ways, a showcase for using some cloud technologies, particularly SaaS, that allowed remote employees to continue using applications remotely seamlessly. Cloud-based web services also allowed organizations to quickly ramp up and expand their eCommerce as customers began doing business online rather than in person. Businesses still relying on legacy infrastructure, without the ability to scale up and out or the ease of accessing workloads remotely, found the global transition to working from home a little more challenging than their counterparts.
Even without the dramatic shifts caused by the pandemic, organizations have been transitioning to hybrid cloud models for various benefits. Some have used cloud infrastructure and storage to focus on backup and disaster recovery (DR). Using the elasticity and reliability of cloud platforms for backup and DR is an attractive solution for organizations with only a single data center, as they can quickly achieve a secondary DR site in the cloud without having to invest in building out a second site on their own. Downtime can be extremely costly to organizations, and as business becomes 24/7/365, it can be critical to avoid.
Nearly all organizations have adopted cloud applications into their IT offerings, from common office applications found in Office365 or G Suite to cloud-based applications like Salesforce and databases like Oracle and SQL. These applications can run seamlessly alongside and integrate with on-premises infrastructure and applications. That is probably the most prevalent way organizations create their own hybrid cloud strategies.
Why a Hybrid Cloud Solution Might Make Sense For You
Since the inception of cloud computing, the challenge of adopting the cloud has seemed daunting for many organizations, but it makes options easier. Early on, the transition to the cloud was a major investment of time and energy, with many questions on the outcomes. Now, it makes experimenting with and adopting cloud services far less challenging, and organizations can adopt various cloud services piece by piece.
One customer, a large food manufacturer, struggled to maintain a patchwork of aging IT systems to ensure business operations continued with minimal disruption. They needed to squeeze efficiency from every corner of their infrastructure. And because profit margins were thin, management constantly asked their IT team to do more with less. When they came to learn about Scale Computing’s solution, they quickly realized it would serve as a practical bridge with a hybrid cloud model.
The maturity of public cloud services has been a game changer to resource-strapped industries, enabling them to offload the burden of IT management and focus on their core business. But for all the public cloud’s advantages, numerous practical concerns remain, such as network and application latency issues, which can introduce a variety of risk factors to everyday operations.
As organizations grow organically into the cloud by adding services that make sense for them to their existing on-premises infrastructure, the path to the cloud is through a hybrid cloud. It is far easier to think about the cloud as an add-on of applications, storage, and infrastructure than to think through a rip and replace all existing infrastructure with the cloud.
Leveraging a Hybrid Cloud Solution with Scale Computing
We know that cloud computing has many benefits for our customers. We also recognize that completely moving to cloud computing is not what most organizations want. That is why we have developed innovative technologies and partnered with other technology companies to offer a combination of on-premises hyperconverged infrastructure, edge computing, and storage to let organizations adopt the type of hybrid cloud strategies that work best for them.
Scale Computing Platform combines everything you need: virtualization, servers, storage, and backup/disaster recovery with powerful fleet management to deliver a single manageable solution at scale. SC//Platform provides more options to implement local, offsite, and cloud-based backup and integrates with third-party cybersecurity solutions. Customers know their VMs and data are protected, and IT departments can choose the right fit for their organization’s immediate needs.
Many organizations choose cloud-based disaster recovery over creating their own secondary DR site. SC//Platform Cloud Unity allows an organization to replicate workloads in the cloud so that in the event of a failure, the workloads can be failed over to the cloud and remain online until the primary site is restored. It also features a gateway that seamlessly connects users to workloads running in the cloud. The Scale Computing systems running in the cloud are the same as those running on-premises. Users manage both on-premises infrastructure and SC//Platform Cloud Unity from the same management interface.
Our existing partnership with Acronis offers further benefits from a hybrid cloud solution to provide backup, disaster recovery protection, and cyber threat mitigation. This end-to-end storage and cloud backup solution can protect entire virtual machines (VMs), provide bare-metal restore capabilities, and restore to dissimilar hardware or platforms if required.
With more options now than ever, organizations are well-placed to choose a hybrid cloud solution that works best for them. SC//Platform Cloud Unity provides an affordable, scalable, flexible, and readily available solution. Our experts can offer more information on how your organization can benefit from a hybrid cloud. Simply call us at 877-722-5359 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.