Guest Post by Paul Vian of Internap
Organizations are increasingly choosing to outsource business-critical applications and content to third-party providers. But, with it comes a long list of questions in order to determine the right mix of IT infrastructure services to meet specific scalability, control, performance and cost requirements. Although a shared public cloud can offer the convenience of easily scaling infrastructure up and down on-demand, many organizations are still hesitant due to concerns around privacy and security within a shared tenancy arrangement. Another complication is that the virtualization layer typically takes around 10 per cent of the resources. Accordingly, dedicated, physical infrastructure is often ideal just for performance purposes.
Which cloud environments are businesses considering?
If a business has a fluctuating workload that has ever-changing demands and requires more resources in the short term, a cloud environment is often still the preferred choice, but this does tend to become more expensive for applications that are always on, such as databases or other highly resource-intensive applications. The reality is that organizations often require something in between, which is driving demand for flexible, hybrid cloud infrastructure solutions that can easily adapt and scale to meet a wide range of use cases and application needs.
What are the benefits of a hybrid cloud infrastructure?
Taking a tailored approach can enable businesses to scale their infrastructures ‘on demand’. It is also now possible for companies utilising physical servers to gain the flexibility and benefits they have been enjoying within a highly virtualized cloud environment in recent years. We are in an age where physical servers can be instantly spun up or down as global demand dictates, so there is no reason why organizations can’t gain the convenience and agility of the cloud with the reliability and performance of physical servers.
How can companies achieve a hybrid cloud infrastructure tailored to their specific needs?
Ideally, companies should look to work with a third-party provider that can provide access to a broader mix of services to meet these emerging demands around scalability in particular. Through working with a provider that takes a consultative sales approach, businesses can benefit from a tailored service that allows them to seamlessly mix, provision and manage both their virtual cloud and physical IT infrastructure – whether this is legacy hardware or back-up equipment. With this approach, businesses can not only meet their diverse application requirements, but also easily address changing global business needs.
We are now seeing things coming full circle; from physical networks, through to virtualization and the cloud, to today’s move towards a hybrid approach. This is in response to the ever-growing sophistication of automation and self-service capabilities, and is the way forward for any forward-thinking organization with a complex list of requirements.
Paul Vian is Internap’s director of business development for Europe, Middle East, and Africa