Hybrid cloud is a cloud computing environment which uses a mix of on-premises, private cloud and third-party, public cloud services with orchestration between the two platforms. By allowing workloads to move between private and public clouds as computing needs and costs change, hybrid cloud gives businesses greater flexibility and more data deployment options.

For example, an enterprise can deploy an on-premises private cloud to host sensitive or critical workloads, but use a third-party public cloud provider, such as Google Compute Engine, to host less-critical resources, such as test and development workloads. To hold customer-facing archival and backup data, a hybrid cloud could also use Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). A software layer, such as Eucalyptus, can facilitate private cloud connections to public clouds, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS).

Hybrid cloud is particularly valuable for dynamic or highly changeable workloads. For example, a transactional order entry system that experiences significant demand spikes around the holiday season is a good hybrid cloud candidate. The application could run in private cloud, but use cloud bursting to access additional computing resources from a public cloud when computing demands spike. To connect private and public cloud resources, this model requires a hybrid cloud environment.
 
A cloud is hybrid when a company:
  • Uses a public development platform that sends data to a private cloud or a data center–based application;
  • Leverages a number of SaaS applications and moves data between private or data center resources; and
  • Designs a business process as a service so it can connect with environments as though they were a single environment.

ADVANTEGES OF HYBRID CLOUD

  • On-premises, private infrastructure that’s directly accessible.
  • Not being pushed through the public internet. This greatly reduces access time and latency in comparison to public cloud services.
  • Ability to have on-premises computational infrastructure that can support the average workload for the business, while retaining the ability to leverage the public cloud for failover circumstances in which the workload exceeds the computational power of the private cloud component.
  • Building out the private end of a hybrid cloud also allows for flexibility in server designs.

DISADVANTAGES OF HYBRID CLOUD

Cost: While the public cloud can offer an attractive option for its flexibility and relatively low cost to operate, building a private enterprise cloud requires significant expenditure and can become expensive very quickly with all the physical hardware necessary.
 
Security: Cloud computing is not inherently any less secure than traditional computing, and in fact faces fewer attacks, but there are still considerations to take into account when building out a hybrid cloud. The proper precautions must be taken to ensure data is properly protected and that control is maintained by the right people. Additionally, depending on the industry, there may be certain regulatory requirements that prohibit data from being stored off-site, which would prevent the use of a public cloud entirely.
 
Data and application integration: Applications and data exist in a symbiotic relationship, with each one being useless without the other. Oftentimes they’re chained together. So when considering where to store each of them, it’s essential to ask whether the infrastructure they’re placed on matters. For example, if an application lives in a private cloud and its data lives in an on-premise data center, is the application built in order to access the data remotely? Technologies like copy data virtualization can decouple data from infrastructure and make this problem less of a headache.
 
Compatibility: Compatibility across infrastructure can prove itself to be a major issue when building a hybrid cloud. With dual levels of infrastructure, a private cloud the company controls and a public one that it doesn’t, the chances are that they will be running different stacks.
 
Networking: Will very active applications be living in the cloud? It’s necessary to consider the bandwidth usage they could take up on the network and whether or not it could cause problems in bottlenecking other applications.
 

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