Pioneer Technology is a full-service cloud provider, and we have created options for customers when managing infrastructure, networks, storage, and more using the cloud. One method we believe is one of the more well-rounded, beneficial technologies in IT today is hybrid cloud environments.
What is Hybrid Cloud?
According to Wikipedia, hybrid cloud is “a composition of two or more clouds (private, community, or public) that remain distinct entities but are bound together, offerings the benefits of multiple deployment models.” Essentially, a hybrid cloud model provides the benefits of, for example, an on-premises data center with the computing power and scalability of a powerful public cloud like Azure or AWS. Hybrid cloud can be complex, so in this post we are focused on a 35,000 foot view when describing the various strengths and weaknesses of using hybrid cloud environments versus going all-in on one cloud technology or the other.
A public cloud is considered ‘public’ “when the services are rendered over a network that is open for public use.” (Wikipedia) This does not mean that the information is public, but that the “highway” where the data is parked or driven on is open to the public (shared resources and computing). The most known public clouds are owned by Microsoft, Amazon, Google, Oracle, and more – and their access is most often purchased or leased via a private connection to a peering point offered by a cloud provider.
Benefits of Public Cloud
Highly scale-able – on-demand cloud means almost unlimited scalability up or down
Lower capital investment – you will not need to purchase hardware
Reliable – Services are backed by large funding and multiple data centers
Private cloud is “cloud infrastructure operated solely for a single organization, whether managed internally or by a third-party, and hosted either internally or externally.”(Wikipedia) These are generally owned and operated by a company for themselves or for their customers. At Pioneer Technology, we partner with DC BLOX, a modular data center provider, which allows us to use a small section of their data center and reduce our footprint and power consumption, and overall costs. We have created a private cloud for the benefit of our customers who do not want to manage their own infrastructure and hardware, but still want the ability to operate in the cloud and receive the benefits associated with it.
Benefits of Private Cloud
Security – data is controlled behind a firewall and accessible with strict permissions, especially useful for sensitive data
Lower total cost of ownership (TCO) – OpEx lowers over time
More control and customization – Servers can be changed or updated at will, based on customer requirements and demand; not at the mercy of the large data center providers
Flexibility – Allows ability to create hybrid environment more easily when dealing with non-sensitive data
If you consider the benefits of Public and Private Clouds independently, then the benefits of hybrid cloud become apparent – you can, in many ways, have the best of both cloud worlds. Creating hybrid cloud environments allows you to manage costs effectively, increase speed and productivity of computing and access to data, while still offering ample security services and customization that would otherwise be lost. A hybrid approach generally means your on-premises and public or private cloud workloads are connected but remain independent, as needed. When done well, hybrid cloud should be considered the new standard for all businesses big and small who are serious about operating strategically in the cloud.
To be fair, and as with most technology, there are always challenges or trade-offs. Hybrid infrastructure requires a high level of skill and specific tools to manage. Also, you must thoughtfully and aggressively manage costs and security because of the connection to public clouds and their billing mechanisms (think cloud as a utility). And finally, you may run into data and application issues, compatibility, and network connectivity problems if the environment is not set up correctly or becomes too complex over time.
This is where Pioneer Technology comes in to assist you! We would love to have the opportunity to discuss your goals for data centers, cloud environments, and whether hybrid is the right approach for your business! Please consider contacting us today for a consultation! -EB