All You Need to Know Before Moving Applications to the Cloud

Organizations lift and shift their workloads on the cloud because it is cheaper and quicker than other migration techniques, but that doesn’t mean it is always the best fit.

IT teams often face budget issues and time constraints, so they believe they have very little choices. Additionally, they’ll feel hurried to get the applications up and running by cloud providers eager to bill these new workloads. But there are significant disadvantages to a lift and shift approach when compared to application refactoring, also known as rearchitecting.

It may be cheaper up front to simply rehost your application and its data as is on the public cloud, but this approach could ultimately cost more than it would run a cloud-native app instead. There may also be performance issues caused by changes in the software architecture, missed software bugs and an inability to properly utilize cloud vendors’ native services for monitoring, security, and governance.

It is always best to refactor the workload as part of the migration, because the lift and shift approach may not always deliver the results and tuning doesn’t solve the problem. A migrated application may also benefit from refactoring when bills are unexpectedly high due to application or database inefficiencies or when security vulnerabilities arise because the application can’t integrate with native security systems, such as identity and access management tools.  

 

What is app-refactoring

App refactoring is the restructuring of existing computer code to improve its performance, readability, portability or code adherence without changing the code’s intended functions.

Refactoring is done to extend the apps’ usability and life cycle, improve support for multiple mobile platforms and extend their market reach through multiple app stores.

 

When and how do you refactor apps?

Organizations must consider several factors before they decide to refactor their apps — the most important of which is cost. If you can’t make your money back from refactoring applications, then it should not be attempted. There’s also a great variety of refactoring tools to choose from, and an application’s needs will vary depending on what programming languages and databases that app relies on. Generally speaking, however, the categories of tools include anything that assists in designing and developing microservices that utilize cloud-native APIs. Moreover, container development and Kubernetes deployment and operations are also a common way to refactor.

 

Organizations also have several ways to refactor their applications for the cloud.

A complete refactor is when more than 50% of the code is changed and the database is updated to utilize as many cloud-native features as required by the application. This strategy can improve performance, operations costs and IT teams’ ability to meet the needs of the business. However, the process could be too costly or complex, and it can introduce bugs.

Minimum viable refactoring prioritizes speed and efficiency, as it requires only slight changes to the application. Users who take this approach often incorporate cloud-native security, management and perhaps a public cloud database into their migrated workload.

Containerization refactoring is done when applications are moved into containers with minimal modifications. The applications exist within the container, which enables users to incorporate cloud-native features and improve portability. Costs and refactoring times continue to go down due to the popularity of containers and their growing ecosystems.

Read More about Dockers and Containers

Serverless computing is a cloud computing execution model in which the cloud provider dynamically manages the allocation of machine resources. Serverless computing is steered by the reaction to triggers and events happening in near-real-time–in the cloud. The code written by a developer is executed and only the precise amount of computing resources are taken to complete the task, no more, no less.

Read More about Serverless computing

Enterprises should bear in mind that most applications and data sets that can move to a public cloud require at least some refactoring and users should at least do minimum viable refactoring for most of the cloud-hosted application.  

 

Get in touch with us to find out what refactoring method works the best for your workload.

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Sysfore is a Gold Microsoft Azure and AWS partner with 8+ years of cloud consulting and managed service expertise. We have the privilege of executing the largest data center migration projects in India and have engaged with over 100+ customers on their cloud journey.

Microsoft Inspire: Daily Rundown

Microsoft Inspire 2018, formerly called Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC), continues in Las Vegas. Check this ongoing blog for live Azure Cloud and Dynamics 365 partner news updates, and perspectives throughout the day.

19/07/2018: Day 3: After a full three days of action, Microsoft’s annual partner-focused Inspire conference is finally set to wrap up tomorrow. We’ve seen tons of Azure, Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365, and Microsoft Cloud news throughout the week

Yesterday Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella took the center stage at Inspire 2018 with an extended round of standing ovation, before he’d even said a word. In case if you  missed the keynote, you can always watch it here.

microsoft inspire 2018- Satya Nadella keynote

Here are few of the updates from Day 3

  • Microsoft Teams Monitoring: GSX solutions has come up with Microsoft teams monitoring and performance reporting capabilities
  • Automation capabilities on Microsoft Azure Managed service
  • Azure Cloud Security: Customers can now gain modern vulnerability management, analytics-driven incident detection for hybrid environments, and simplified agent deployment within the Azure infrastructure
  • Azure reserved instances will available across all Azure workloads
  • Azure information protection – unification of data loss prevention in the ‘search and compliance center’ labels and AIP

“Day 3 – Keynote”

 

18/07/2018: Day 2: Watch the Day 2 Keynote here 

Day 2 of Microsoft’s biggest event for Partners, Microsoft Inspire 2018,  featured Gavriella Schuster, Corporate Vice President, One Commercial Partner; Jason Zander, Executive Vice President, Microsoft Azure Team in the Cloud and AI group; Ron Markezich, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft 365; Alysa Taylor, Corporate Vice President, Cloud and Enterprise Business Applications and Global Industry; and Anand Eswaran, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Digital, Services, and Success

“Day 2 – Highlights”

 

Here are few of the updates from Day 2

  • Walmart-Microsoft Azure Partnership 
  • Azure for MSPs: Cloud distributor Pax8 unveiled a Wingman Professional Services Program. The offering allows MSPs to leverage customized IaaS solutions built by Pax8 cloud architects and engineers
  • ClearDATA has launched “healthcare compliant” cloud services for Microsoft Azure.
  • Dell EMC Cloud for Microsoft Azure Stack announced that the on-premises extension to Microsoft’s public cloud supports a variety of file formats now
  • Workspace as a Service: CloudJumper has unveiled Cloud Workspace for Azure

 

17/07/2018: Day 1Watch the Day 1 keynote here

“Day 1 – Highlights”

 

Here are few of the updates from Day 1:

  • Office 365 Accelerator: Office 365 accelerator reduces latency, packet loss and network congestion experienced by branch office and mobile users when accessing Office 365 cloud applications via the public Internet
  • GE and Microsoft: Expanded partnership will help industrial companies capture greater intelligence from IoT and asset data, boosts GE innovation across its business

 

microsoft Inspire

 

Got news to share from the conference? Email me the details (evelyn.dennis@sysfore.com).

Achieving Application Portability with PaaS

Today, Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) is increasingly gaining popularity as a Public Cloud offering compared to Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) because of its simple operations and lower costs. These days, most PaaS customers get locked-in because of the specialized OS or middleware features but for the customers looking for flexibility in working across multiple Cloud platforms and providers, a portable PaaS environment is a feasible choice.

Before we see how organizations can implement a portable PaaS model, let’s first see the primary reasons behind the adoption of PaaS services:

  • Lesser costs of licensing and supporting because of the pre-installed OS and middleware.
  • Streamlined Hybrid Cloud deployment with standardized application services.
  • Improved application performance and functionality by creating a PaaS environment within the IaaS Cloud using the available web services.

How a portable PaaS model fairs across these three areas and how it moves within the various cloud and private environments is important but a single PaaS approach might not be enough to address this. Thus, enterprises need to prioritize their PaaS goals and combine different options to create the desired PaaS environment.

 

Here are the top 4 ways to achieve a Portable PaaS model:

Adopt Container Technology for Application Hosting: The container architectures share the Operating System, but the middleware and file system elements can be copied to each container to standardize the middleware across container images. This allows the creation of specialized container images for the application and the component which can then be moved across environments to be run on any container system hosted in Cloud or the Data Center. Read more