Forrester Research estimates that about 20 percent of enterprise workloads now run in the public cloud. A survey by Goldman Sachs aligns with that estimate, finding that 23 percent of workloads run in the cloud with 43 percent of organizations expecting to migrate additional workloads by the end of 2022.
Many cloud initiatives have focused on the so-called low-hanging fruit — email, collaboration, file-sharing and similar applications that don’t require much customization. Now organizations are starting to migrate more mission-critical workloads, such as HR systems and other back-office applications.
The fact remains, however, that organizations will need to keep some workloads on-premises. Organizations simply aren’t in a position to refactor highly customized monolithic applications for the cloud environment. Even if that were possible, many would be hesitant to put sensitive enterprise data in the cloud due to security and compliance concerns. The downside is that organizations must manage two separate infrastructures in a hybrid environment.
This hard reality is driving an emerging trend called “distributed cloud.” Gartner defines it as “the distribution of public cloud services to different physical locations, while operation, governance, updates and the evolution of those services are the responsibility of the originating public cloud provider.” In other words, the distributed cloud enables customers to put public cloud resources in the on-premises data center.
The major cloud providers are leading the way with solutions such as AWS Outposts, Google Anthos and Microsoft Azure Stack. The key feature of these services is a single pane of control that can be used to operate both public cloud and on-premises environments. IT infrastructure management is simplified while enabling the customer to retain control over certain applications and data.
The big push now is around containerization. For example, Google allows you to initiate and manage your containers from the Cloud Console but run them on validated on-premises equipment as well as within the Google cloud. You can even use Anthos to build, deploy and manage your environment across Amazon and Azure. With containers your applications and data are more portable, so you can consume cloud services securely and efficiently.
Rahi is uniquely positioned to help customers take advantage of the distributed cloud model. We have deep roots in the design, architecture, implementation and support of enterprise-class on-premises infrastructure and extensive knowledge of public cloud platforms. We understand the reference architectures and platforms that have been certified for distributed cloud technology.
The technology is also evolving rapidly, as the hyperscale cloud providers seek to gain traction in a wide range of enterprise data centers. Rahi is in a position to work with our hardware and cloud partners to validate the server and storage architectures our customers have on-premises.
Gartner has identified distributed cloud as one of the Top 10 trends impacting infrastructure and operations in 2020. At the same time, the research firm advises a cautious approach when adopting this new model. Ross Winser, senior research director at Gartner said, “Enthusiasm for new services like AWS Outposts, Microsoft Azure Stack or Google Anthos must be matched early on with diligence in ensuring the delivery model for these solutions is fully understood by I&O teams who will be involved in supporting them.”
Rahi is one of a handful of solution providers with the expertise to deliver distributed cloud today. If you’re looking to explore this exciting new model, we invite you to contact us for a consultation and whiteboarding session.