Unfortunately, the development of a functional and secure cloud entails numerous considerations and challenges, including security, portability and feasibility issues. The following guide aims to shed some light on the questions your chief information officer (CIO) should ask himself when establishing the guidelines for the hybrid cloud integration.

Data security concerns

‘Hybrid cloud security’ constitutes an umbrella term, often utilized to cover a broad scope of concerns with a direct impact on the overall network integration process. Among the list of considerations, we count the level of permissions awarded to public users, the unique login credentials required by the hybrid cloud’s environment, the authority of the data safety protocols in between the local network and the cloud, etc. The security-centric list of measures should represent the foundation upon which the hybrid cloud develops.

Network topography

Cloud hosting service providers offer a wide array of data transfer options, but extending the native specs of your on-site VPN to the cloud environment presents numerous challenges. For example, you would have to check the hybrid platform’s ability to operate with the predefined IP blocks, whether or not the bandwidth is suitable for the transfer of larger quantities of data, and the latency resulted in the process of transferring information to and from the cloud and the VPN. Determining whether the security measures enforced in the private sector of the cloud are operational in the public component is another notable challenge.

The integration of the databanks and applications

Will the public component of the cloud be capable of every throttling inbound query? Can you employ similar protocols and applications to gracefully manage data transfers and events irrespective of the location where they are stored? Is it possible to have specific component downtime from various sections of the cloud without impacting the overall functionality of the software apps? Keep in mind that being provided the ability to elect the location from which a workload is operating constitutes a decisive factor in the selection process of a competent cloud host service.

Monitoring and management of the cloud system

Monitoring and managing lifecycles in a hybrid cloud environment is often a daunting task for the CIO when the planning phase did not take into account all the platform specific factors. In the event when the pool of resources of the cloud infrastructure is handled on a self-servicing protocol, effectively configuring the management of the said resources is virtually unachievable. While it is entirely true that cloud platforms provide users access to a more flexible type of computing resources, one should also remember that they are not unlimited.

The planning of the integration has to account for the unique inherent limitations of all environments in the cloud, be they public, private or on-site. Furthermore, monitoring each subset of environments is performed on distinct set of guidelines. For example, in the public section of the clouds, tracking may rely on a restricted number of monitors, which would automatically imply the requirement for additional tools in assessing the overall health of the cloud platform.

A tight network integration may have a direct impact on the administrator’s abilities to perform configuration and monitoring tasks utilizing a single set of apps and processes for both the public and the private sections of the hybrid cloud.

Cross-cloud compatibility issues

A realistic chance for the private and public cloud to operate on distinct infrastructures and software exists. In the event when Virtual Machine Monitors (VMMs) you depend on for the private sector is different from the category utilized on its public counterpart, compatibility issues are quick to arise. It’s important to point out that public cloud environments are designed in a fundamentally different way from the private clouds. Therefore, you should expect at least some challenges in the attempt to integrate software apps pertaining to both sides.

Workload portability

Transferring workloads rapidly and with the least amount of hassle represents one of the main reasons why companies and organizations opt for the cloud system in the first place. The transfer of various apps and virtual machines to and from various components of the cloud has become considerably simpler, thanks to the advances of the past few years.

On the other hand, importing configurations and transferring metadata still constitutes a challenge, particularly when the two ends of the cloud are not operating on the same type of platform; mismatches between these two sections however will undoubtedly constitute a source of frustration for the IT staff of the company.

Expertise and tools required in maintenance

Experts in cloud and particularly hybrid cloud deployment are currently in extremely high demand in the corporate world. Many organizations and companies find it incredibly difficult to locate IT specialists with extensive knowhow and experience regarding the architecture of these communication platforms. Why?

Because the sum of knowledge necessary to elaborate a comprehensive plan for hybrid clouds comprises of process automation techniques, app design, networking architecture, so on and so forth. In addition, the cloud is still a technology in its infancy, as it has only been around for a few years now and only a small number of people are capable of fully comprehending its entire scope or the ways in which it’s expected to evolve across the years. Yes, clouds systems represent the future of information management, but there is still a long way to go before its full potential can be harnessed effectively.

In retrospect

Large scale corporations and organizations have numerous advantages to reap from the integration of hybrid cloud platform. However, it is also necessary to remember the fact that implementing, operating and maintaining such systems requires substantial efforts, careful planning and expert personnel, in addition to a collaborating with a hosting service that can adapt to the unique specifications of your working environment. The expertise of IT consulting services could prove invaluable for this purpose.