When your company is considering migrating its applications to cloud computing services (Cloud Computing), it is important to think about how this migration will be executed. In general, decision makers must consider things such as the demands of the organization’s needs, the skills of internal IT staff, and the architecture of the application to be migrated. This will determine the strategy to be implemented.
Gartner mentions that in general, there are five application migration strategies that can be taken: rehosting, refactoring, revise, rebuild and replace. Rehosting utilizes IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) services, while the refactor, revise and rebuild strategy basically relies on PaaS (Platform as a Service) services. Companies that decide on a replace strategy (replacing old applications) will use SaaS (Software as a Service) services.
Of course, this strategy is not rigid: the company may initially choose a rehosting strategy, but then decide that a refactor or replace will be more profitable in the long run. What are the considerations for each of these strategies? Check out the following.
Rehosting or often also referred to as lift-and-shift is the placement of business applications on new infrastructure, in this case Cloud IaaS services. Migrating in this way is not much different from moving business applications to new hardware. The system maintainer may need to make configuration changes to adapt to the Cloud Computing environment, but there is no need to overhaul the application architecture.
Because it is the easiest and least demanding of changes, rehosting is chosen as a migration strategy by many companies. However, because old applications are not necessarily designed with Cloud Computing, there is a possibility that the benefits obtained are also not optimal.
With the refactoring strategy, companies no longer just move old applications from on-premise infrastructure and reconfigure, but also rely on software platforms from Cloud Computing service providers. Since in this scheme legacy applications will use PaaS services, system maintainers no longer need to think about administering the underlying infrastructure.
The selected PaaS service is still backward compatible, meaning that application developers still use the programming languages, frameworks and container technologies that have been used previously. However, this time all the platforms are managed by the Cloud Computing provider, no longer by the company’s IT personnel.
When choosing this strategy, the company invested not only in the Cloud Computing service but also the platform. Therefore the choice of platform also needs to be considered properly.
In some cases, a business application moved to a Cloud service may not be able to simply be moved to the selected PaaS service without a fundamental change, such as a Refactor migration. This option is selected if you still want to take advantage of existing application code, but these old applications must be rearchitected in order to take full advantage of Cloud Computing services.
The Revise option may take longer than the other options. Another option, building from scratch (Rebuild) might be easier and faster.
As you go through the migration process, your app developer may decide that it’s easier and cheaper to build your app from scratch than to revise it. This rebuilt application will fully use the facilities and features of the PaaS provider.
In this scenario, the developer has the opportunity to build more optimized applications for the Cloud. But on the other hand, there is a risk of dependence on the selected PaaS service. You may find it difficult to migrate if the company wants to move to another Cloud service.
In this strategy, your company decides to abandon old applications completely and move to SaaS services. The advantage is, you no longer need to incur development and maintenance costs. On the other hand, SaaS solutions are also at risk of vendor lock-in, and your company must prepare a data migration strategy when necessary.
Whatever strategy you take later, migrating to Cloud Computing requires careful preparation. It is also very important to choose a service provider partner who can meet your business needs.
Cloudeka can help you to migrate to Cloud technology. Cloudeka provides various types of services ranging from IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS. For further information and consultation, please contact us.