Managing Cloud & Multi Cloud Challenges

As technology and the complexity around software development and deployment grows, many look for that “Single pane of glass.” Be it for visualizing a jumble of various resources across multiple cloud providers, or looking at ways to automate infrastructure and data collection. This becomes especially true when looking at a Hybrid environment. Employing proper cloud and multi cloud management is critical.

Planning for Challenges

Not all deployments happen in the cloud, and for good reason. Products like VMWare have enabled companies to use virtualization to create on-demand environments. When that same product ships to one or more cloud provider, that’s when things can get interesting.

API Differences for Management and Provisioning

The availability of multiple cloud platforms for hosting applications and services has increased steadily over the past decade. The three major competitors each have their own backend systems that aren’t necessarily designed to play nice with one another. Thankfully, managing the differences in a successful manner results in an unending combination of resources.

Engineers often must do a bit of tailoring to get all the moving parts to work together. Whether it be through scripts or some kind of custom process. While this works and allows products to ship as intended, it is still a manual process that can be prone to error. Rather than using this methodology, it is wiser to look towards a system that keeps up-to-date with changes. 

Using a multi cloud management platform ensures any changes that would have required a re-working of scripts is automatically integrated into the platform. For example, let’s say there is a change in a command used by Azure that lists the available resource groups. Using a cloud management system that’s designed to be future-ready, integrates that change automatically. Whereas a more traditional approach may require taking human resources away from other tasks so they can update the process- rather than using up human resources to chase down changes, engineers can continue to work on more fruitful tasks. The move to a multi cloud management platform provides a continual return on the initial investment. Read more about enterprise cloud management

Culminating Data Across Providers

Interacting with the platforms’ APIs in your landscape is one thing. Managing the needs for data access and migration is another. Rather than spend time making sure any one system is ready to accept a large data migration, using multi cloud management allows engineers to focus on the task at hand.

When managing disaster recovery, balancing global traffic, or simply moving information from one cloud provider to another, getting it right the first time is paramount. How many times have you had issues with transferring large pieces of data? It is common to see these kinds of problems, especially with large databases. Furthermore, there may be data privacy concerns to consider depending on the data.

Making Sense of Monitoring

Meaningful monitoring is one of the most important aspects to ensure your multi cloud environment remains online. Since each of the major cloud providers have their own metrics and methods to visualize the data, it takes us back to our need to see that information in one place. Using Cloudify, for example, allows companies to visualize their entire environment across multiple clouds with usable data presented in a standardized way.

Beyond the metric collection that is intrinsic in Cloudify, external metrics and policy engines can be leveraged. With this information and real time processing, engineers can trigger actions based on the outcome of those metrics. Look at the “Intro To Cloudify” guide and you will see how extensive the scope is as it applies to multi cloud management.

Strategic Cost Control

Even a singular cloud environment has the ability to get beyond the control of manual resource management. When you provide access to easily created resources for development, you will most likely see usage patterns that aren’t cost effective. Rather than relying on others to clean up after themselves, implementing a strategy with the right tooling is the way to ensure more control.

The end result of these quickly created and abandoned resources is called “sprawl.” Cloud sprawl can quickly eat away at budgeted cloud resources. Furthermore, another aspect of sprawl could be created from the use of apps or storage locations that aren’t approved by the company.

How does one combat cloud sprawl? By having a good strategy from the beginning that includes ways to monitor for issues related to sprawl and other cost saving measures. Rather than use a combination of tools to create the overall picture of your cloud strategy, consider Cloudify to help with every aspect. Including those you may not have considered..

Making It All Work Together

If you have the need or you are already in the position of trying to manage a multi cloud infrastructure, take into consideration all the challenges we have discussed, here. We would all like to think we can simply hire an expert (or team of experts) to cover all aspects of cloud management. However, beyond that initial human investment are the unknowns that slow development and do not give the full view needed to monitor across the environment.

Empowering the team with the right tools is critical to the success of any project. Adding Cloudify to your stack will allow for set standards where none existed before. Differences in how you interact with your cloud are less of a hindrance while the data used across those resources is seamlessly synchronized and managed according to your policies.

You need the singular view of your resources regardless of their associated cloud.. Trudging through multiple data points to monitor simply will not do! Cloudify can help surface those elements to get just the right view for your environment. Additionally, data culminated will help with the cleanup that most companies need after allowing cloud sprawl to eat at budgeted cloud costs.

Cloudify has options to implement its solution quickly and easily. You can download Cloudify Premium as a Docker container to gain full access to every aspect of its production grade features for a trial period. Alternatively, you may consider a trial of Cloudify as a Service. It offers the same premium features without the hassle of downloading and installation. Lastly, Cloudify recognizes the support from the user community. The Cloudify Community Version, while somewhat limited, requires no activation license.

Cloudify enables multi cloud orchestration via a single platform designed to empower your CI/CD pipeline. The alternative methods of inventing scripts and custom build steps are no longer necessary. Using this method of orchestration promises to help with a number of major challenges your team can face when managing your landscape.

Ready to get started? Look here for next steps on getting set up and examples to help with your first orchestration tasks.

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