Migrating applications to cloud isn’t so simple


Bird Migration at SunsetCloud is a technology that is already part of most IT environments today, which means that migrating a distributed environment or application to a cloud environment isn’t like turning it off and moving it to cloud. We need to consider some issues from an application point of view. Let me go over some of these key points that you need to think about when migrating to cloud.

When we speak about cloud, we usually reference the application as a workload. Depending on the type of workload, the migration effort will be lower or higher than others.

Workloads for development and testing, collaboration and web services will require less work since cloud technologies are in a more mature status. On the other hand, workloads that are highly customized or require extensive manual intervention may be more difficult to move. So the key is to identify which of the workloads it is most beneficial (lower pain and higher gain) to migrate to cloud.

Luis Aguilar Mateo in his blog post gives a good explanation about workload migration to cloud.

What should we consider when analyzing a workload? I would say the following:

  • Standardization—the application must be deployed in a standard way using standard images since this reduces the effort for development.
  • Hardcoded dependencies—the application must avoid having hardcoded configurations, since this may inhibit or complicate cloud adoption as it will require specific reconfigurations or prerequisites.
  • Maintainability—the application must be deployed in a way that is easy to maintain. Fixes or patches at the OS and application levels must be deployed without requiring manual intervention.
  • Manageability—the application must be easy to manage from an operation and administrative point of view.

Another good point when you’re deciding about the benefits of migrating an application to cloud is to consider developing a brand new application instead. Greg Sherman in this video gives a good explanation about the two options.

Finally, keep in mind that this isn’t simply migrating an application to cloud but also leveraging the application’s capabilities such as elasticity, multitenancy and broad network access. Being able to get the most out of cloud capabilities can increase the application’s benefits.

Do you have any experience migrating applications to cloud? Leave a comment below.

Comments: 4
Sergio Varga

About Sergio Varga

Sergio Varga is a Senior Certified IT Architect and has been working with Cloud technology since 2009. He has worked in developing various SaaS, PaaS and IaaS IBM Cloud offering solutions. He is currently the leader architect of Managed Infrastructure for Private Cloud, an IBM offering that provides managed services for clouds deployed at SoftLayer and customer's premises. He is an IBM Certified Solution Architect - Cloud Computing Infrastructure V1 and IBM Certified Solution Advisor - Cloud Computing Architecture V4. He is active on social media and you can follow Sergio on Linkedin and Twitter@varga_sergio.
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4 Responses to Migrating applications to cloud isn’t so simple

  1. Pingback: Migrating applications to cloud isn’t so simple - Thoughts On Cloud Blog - Blogs - Tivoli User Community

  2. Pingback: Migrating applications to cloud isn’t so simple | Thoughts on Cloud Blog | Patrick Bouillaud Blog

  3. Ricky says:

    Nice Explanation Sergio!!!
    Please throw some light on modular movement to cloud, trying to keep some part on existing traditional in house infrastructure and migrating some to cloud so as to not to add capex in terms of more infrastructure. A good example of that scenario would be ERP implementations.
    Ricky Sachdeva

  4. Joe says:

    Good post Sergio. I would like to see more on how IBM's PaaS via Patterns might address workloads that require development prior to SaaS delivery. More OSS and BSS is needed to address maintainability and manageability of cloud delivered applications and legacy workloads, not to mention scalability and tenant management for service providers.

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