The chatter around the public cloud is that it’s finally transformed into a real, viable solutions for enterprise compute resources. So, what does that mean for the investment you’ve already made in your data center? Thankfully, it means good things, as the IT world zeros in on the hybrid cloud as a happy medium between the “Put it all in the cloud, yesterday!” movement and the “Keep it secure and keep it in house!” holdouts.
A “hybrid cloud” is an environment in which on-prem infrastructure and public cloud compute resources are blended into a best-of-both-worlds cloud environment. It is the ideal stepping stone for organizations who want to make the most of the flexibility, and potential cost-savings, of the public cloud, but aren’t ready to scrap all their existing infrastructure and put everything up in AWS, Azure, or Google Cloud just yet.
However, once you’ve established why a hybrid cloud approach is right for you, the real challenge is in the “how”. With the right tools, your public cloud, your in-house datacenter, and everything in-between need to be deployed, managed, and monitored separately. If this is a panic-inducing thought, you are not alone. Here’s what you need to know before you embark on your hybrid cloud initiative –
You can host more in the public cloud than you think you can
Public cloud compute has come a long way this decade, and now more than ever the IT world is discovering the advantage of hosting desktops, applications, and databases in the public cloud. For task workers, desktops and hosted applications in the cloud are a no-brainer. Instant access, from any device, anywhere in the world that can be built up and torn down in minutes. What’s not to love?
For your power users, Azure’s n-series instances are an ideal choice for graphics-rich applications such as the Adobe Suite, Avid, and CAD. These costly and compute-intense applications are easily shared across an organization by hosting them on GPU-enabled cloud instances. With the right protocol, you can host with the peace of mind that your users will still have the “at-desk” experience these applications require.
The key to public cloud security is using the right tools.
One of the primary barriers to public cloud adoption has been security. Just the word “public” is enough to strike fear in the hearts of CIOs everywhere. The ransomware attacks of 2017 have not improved this sentiment. When deploying a hybrid cloud solution, locking down your environment is surprisingly less complicated than you might expect – provided you have the right tools. Containing compute resources within a VPC, then locking them behind a security gateway such as the Leostream Gateway, is one such option for locking down a public or hybrid cloud environment. Learn more about securing a hybrid cloud environment here.
You’re going to need a good protocol
We sound like a broken record, but we have to emphasizes how important a good protocol is to any hosted environment, hybrid cloud or otherwise. All the vGPUs in the world won’t matter if you don’t have a pixel-perfect protocol to deliver the “at-desk” experience required by AutoCAD, Adobe Suite, and other graphics-intense applications. Explore options such as Tereadici PCoIP, HP RGS, and Mechdyne TGX for your power users. However, not every user will need an expensive, high powered, protocol. For these users, take a look at this list we’ve put together on free and open source protocols.
You’ll need an orchestration and management solution to tie all the pieces together
The final and most critical step for building your hybrid cloud environment will be in the orchestration and day-to-day management. Luckily, this is where the Leostream Connection Broker, aka: the swiss army knife of connection brokers, comes in handy! Attach the Leostream Connection Broker to your public cloud environment (Azure, AWS, Google Cloud, or a mix of all three!), your on-prem environment (VMware, Citrix) and everything in between (physical resources). The Connection Broker orchestrates and manages all your environments, acting as a single-pane-of -glass portal for managing instances and user connections.
As the hybrid cloud builds momentum, now is the time to start diving deeper into how the public cloud can add value to your organization, and what steps you’ll need to take internally to launch a hybrid cloud initiative.
Want advice from the experts on building a hybrid cloud that is just right for you? Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org for information on Leostream Professional Services.