Responding to Multi-Cloud Management Challenges with Cloud Managed Services

December 6, 2022

Organizations that use multi-cloud architectures must decide how to change in the areas of IT service brokering, governance, architecture, and operations. Choosing an approach for each part of multi-cloud management means making trade-offs between risk, flexibility, freedom of choice, complexity, cost, functionality, and scalability needs.

Multi-cloud or hybrid cloud is a new architecture topology that is becoming more popular. This is an architectural design that lets companies use both private and public cloud service providers at the same time. Multiple cloud, or Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), is a popular way to run a business.

A multiple cloud environment lets companies use the technology that each cloud provider has to offer while potentially building a strong and stable infrastructure. A multiple cloud approach is usually set up in a way that makes it easy for data to move back and forth between clouds. data back and forth without a hitch.

Most Common Multi-Cloud Management Challenges

When done right, a hybrid cloud approach can give you a huge return on your investment. But putting together such a setting comes with its own set of challenges that must be solved.

Disaster Recovery

Reliability and recovery should be the most important things to look for in a cloud provider. From what we’ve seen, companies that put money into cloud technology often think that it will solve all of their problems. They want a solution that they can set up and then forget about but this is unlikely to be achieved.

Disaster recovery is an issue that people often forget about. Even cloud providers can be hit by disasters, so organizations need to plan for how to get back on their feet when (not if) this happens. To build reliable applications, you need to know how each cloud provider could fail and how that could affect your application stack. Because adding more cloud providers makes things more complicated, this problem should have been at the top of the list from the start.

When you have more than one cloud provider, it can be hard to recover from a disaster. Most of the time, each cloud provider has its own way to do a recovery process. This increased complexity could further inhibit your predefined recovery point objective and recovery time objective. If the metrics are not met, service level agreements could be broken down the road.

It’s important for any deployment, no matter what medium you’re using, to be reliable and consistent. A multi-cloud architecture can be beneficial to organizations by offering multiple layers of redundancy. This setup makes it easier for organizations to manage the risk of failure across multiple silos. For instance, if one cloud provider has a problem like a DNS failure, the other providers won’t.

Failure scenarios also bring up questions about how to handle multi-cloud failover, such as which cloud to “home” DNS records in and how to handle the change that happens as a result. Large web companies do this by hosting those solutions outside of the networks that host their applications. If you need extremely high levels of availability, you may need to consider this extra layer of redundancy. This also holds true for physical redundancy, like data centers. Each cloud service provider takes care of its own physical needs, like electricity, water, cooling, etc., adding another layer of redundancy. Even in a multi-cloud infrastructure, you should plan for disaster recovery, but you should also take advantage of the built-in redundancy.

The Steep Learning Curve

The learning curve might be steep if your operations crew is unfamiliar with all the tools and services available on a cloud platform. There will be a lot of new skills for team members to learn in a short amount of time to stay up with the rapid rate of innovation at your company, which could lead to an important skill gap for migration within your teams. The security team will have the most trouble because they must use many cloud platforms’ terminals and dashboards to monitor and protect your apps on cloud. It is definitely an uphill journey.

Cloud Sprawl

Sprawl can happen in any part of an organization, from the way resources are used to the way tools are used. Sprawl is manifested as an abundance of things, in this case cloud resources, that have become unwieldy and even potentially unmanageable without intervention.

In the past, a common problem was server sprawl, which meant that too many servers were being made, put into use, and then forgotten. The process would repeat itself, and before long an organization would have ownership in a large server farm that it didn’t even know existed. Cloud ecosystems can also become unwieldy and cumbersome.

Thanks to the sheer ease of quickly creating cloud resources like virtual machines, organizations are more susceptible to sprawl. This self-service model of provisioning cloud resources within minutes leaves a shorter retention time for organizations to do something with it. This kind of overuse can also be manifested in a common horror story about a cloud resource being created and forgotten, causing a substantial bill for the organization and can potentially reduce the bottom line of any organization. Proper cloud cost management is crucial.

Optimizing Expenditures

A multi-cloud approach leads to an explosion of resources, which leads to important multi-cloud management challenges. If you don’t keep tabs on your assets, you can find yourself paying for resources that aren’t being used. As cost optimization is a cornerstone of every well-architected cloud framework, all cloud platforms come equipped with built-in tools for doing just that.

However, in a multi-cloud setup, it is increasingly important to centralize your cloud inventory to enable enterprise-wide insight into cloud usage. In many cases, you won’t be able to get the necessary insight without using specialist, third-party technologies. Take note that optimizing costs on the fly isn’t the best strategy. Rather, you should take a preventative approach to monitoring behaviors across contexts that could result in significant costs.

Managing Security Policies

Managing cloud security policies is also a very important part of this architectural design and one of the most significant multi-cloud management challenges. As cyberattacks become more common, a multi-cloud ecosystem can make it easier for bad actors to get into more places.

Organizations must do more to protect all of their boundaries, which are now spread across different cloud platforms. In a multi-cloud environment, this can be hard to do because each cloud has a different kind of endpoint.

Synthesizing Information from Multiple Sources

Using multi cloud management frees up engineers from worrying about whether or not a single system can handle a massive data migration. It is crucial to get things right the first time around when dealing with disaster recovery, balancing global traffic, or even just transferring data from one cloud provider to another. How often do you have problems when sending a huge file? Issues like these frequently arise, especially in huge databases. Further, depending on the data, there may be privacy issues and data governance concerns to think about.

Resolving Multi-Cloud Management Challenges

In this era of widespread multi-cloud adoption, many businesses are focusing on perfecting the process by which they guarantee the safety of their workloads when they are hosted on a variety of cloud providers. However, the deployment strategy, architecture, tools, and processes may vary from platform to platform, even if the security controls themselves are universal.

A multi-cloud approach allows you to take use of the strengths of several cloud services. However, this presents its own set of multi-cloud management challenges to think about. That’s why it’s crucial to assess your needs and locate the best management software, particularly in the areas of safety and regulation. The safety of your production workloads is crucial regardless of the hosting platform.

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) offers a full set of services to make multi-cloud deployment easier. These services include the network, database, data mesh, integration, security, observability, and management.

Recently, organizations’ resilience has been tested like never before, which has led many of them to move their systems and apps to the cloud. As addressed by Oracle, soon, over 90% of organizations will choose these multi-cloud architectures so they don’t have to rely too much on a single public cloud provider. Using a managed services engagement model is a game-changer.

At ITC, we help OCI customers using multi-cloud architectures and a wide range of hybrid cloud strategies to save money, improve performance, modernize their infrastructure, and get insights faster thanks to our Cloud Managed Services offering that allows them to leverage the transformational benefits of the cloud to optimize their SaaS portfolio.

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