Helping clients manage their technology for over 30 years.

8 best practices for going hybrid cloud

Best Practices Hybrid Cloud by Quest

Public cloud apps and services are great for shifting your non-differentiated business functions and infrastructure from expensive on-premise environments to low-cost off-site facilities managed by specialists you have no hope of keeping on staff.

Yet, if you’re facing shadow IT issues, demands to improve security and compliance, or the realization that you must prepare for a future in which success depends on your ability to differentiate your business, then you need something more than public cloud subscriptions.
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Hybrid Cloud: Playing offense with technology innovation

Hybrid Cloud Technology Innovation by Quest

As I’ve clarified in recent posts, cloud services generally provide the most resource-efficient way to satisfy your organization’s IT requirements — and usually are most effectively deployed via a hybrid cloud combining selected public cloud subscriptions with customized private cloud capabilities.

The arguments for hybrid clouds that you hear most often are, basically, defensive, powering the customizations that legacy environments depend on, protecting sensitive data, and boosting compliance.
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Are you lingering too long in your IT legacy?

Technology Ecosystem by Quest

For a long time, the most effective way for an organization to benefit from the power of IT required committing to a single vendor’s technology ecosystem.

You bought or leased the designated hardware on which you ran the designated software and, perhaps, a compatible service or two. But when you inevitably bumped into the limits of your chosen technology ecosystem, you faced a stark choice:

Either give up on that capability you were hoping to implement in the manner that would serve your business best — or alter the way your business operated in order to “sort of” get at least some of what you needed from the technology ecosystem in which you’d already invested plenty.

Typically, technology customization stayed out of reach and businesses were cornered into the second option, forced to adapt to the technology tools available rather than the other way around. Certainly, the ecosystem vendors didn’t mind, as customer lock-in proved extremely profitable.
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What Kind of Cloud Customer Are You?

When clients contemplating a move to the cloud ask for advice, we tell them to start by being realistic about what cloud computing actually offers.

Yes, the cloud frees budgets from constant investment in infrastructure, reducing CapEx expenditure.

But the cloud is a technology, not a solution that will automatically deliver benefits like faster time-to-market or streamlined methods or a fix for personnel or process issues within your enterprise.

Next, we advocate a know thyself approach. You’ll get the most out of a cloud implementation by understanding what you’re trying to accomplish. Be honest about your strengths and weaknesses.

If you’re certain about having access to the technical talent you’ll need to get from purchase to actual delivery of services, then go it alone.

If you’re less certain about what to do once you’ve ordered up servers and terabytes of data, you’ll want some help — which brings us to the last bit of advice: know thy cloud provider.

Cloud providers, like cloud computing itself, come in a dizzying array of options.

So don’t let a cloud provider tell you there’s only one way to get something done. Those vendors are trying to sell you their product rather than a solution that fits your business.

But you can in fact get exactly what you need without giving up the economies of scale the cloud promises. Ask a trusted technology advisor how.

Planning Your Hybrid Cloud: 6 Key Steps (part 2)

Architecture blueprint as a model for cloud planning

In my last post I focused on the first two steps in planning for a hybrid cloud: Making sure your IT infrastructure is “cloudified” and assessing your current environment and workloads. In this post, I’ll lay out the final four steps:  Continue reading

DaaS vs. VDI — Is This the Right Question?

Deciding between two doors

Which is the better solution — DaaS or VDI?

Each camp promotes its approach and dismisses the other while analysts argue about which one will “prevail.” Yet these technology debates do little more than distract you from finding the best solution for your organization.

So pull your eyes from those tech specs and focus on these six questions:
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4 reasons for the hybrid Cloud of your dreams

Cloud computing written on a chalkboard

As you spend more and more time using Cloud-delivered services, applications, and data, odds are you’ll end up interested in a hybrid Cloud environment that can be deployed in ways that quite specifically meet your organization’s needs, both business-wise and budget-wise.

If your experience has been limited to public Clouds, you’ll need to tread carefully into the realm of hybrids because, by definition, hybrid Clouds are customized. Very quickly, you’ll come to understand that the success of your hybrid Cloud greatly depends on its customizer.

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Pay Attention to the Chain of Control

These days, you can buy Cloud services from just about anyone.

Some of these providers do it all themselves, from initial needs assessment through design, integration, customization, and implementation all the way to post-deployment support. Even if they provide capabilities via reselling products and services from others, they have deep technical knowledge of what they’ve provided and can stand by it.

So as a customer, your chain of control is unbroken — when you want help or information about your service, you’ll get what you need.

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Data Center Shopping: Dig Deeper

Data center discussions inevitably come around to the issue of standards. And while I agree that standards, like the recently released SSAE 16, are good to consider when you’re data center shopping, you should never rely on a facility being “in compliance” as the exclusive determinate for your selection.

Standards should be the place where you begin your search. After you’ve checked off the boxes that ensure compliance with whatever standards your industry requires, dig a bit deeper.

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Cloud Computing best practice #1: Before all else, strategy, strategy, strategy

Importance of Developing a Cloud Strategy

The odds are overwhelming that your business will end up engaged in Cloud Computing (if it hasn’t already). Whether you’re stepping toward Cloud services for the first time, expanding your use, or revisiting what you want to achieve with Cloud services, the very first thing you should do is to develop a Cloud strategy.

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