Cloud computing makes it easier for enterprises to run applications and store data without creating and maintaining on-premise IT infrastructure. The enterprises can even move their existing applications and data to the cloud through a straightforward process. But no enterprise can eliminate cloud migration issues and risk without planning the migration process in detail. It is also important for businesses to identify and cover the important phases of cloud migration to identify and address important challenges. Phases involved in cloud migration service are:
Planning and Assessment Phase
No enterprise should migrate its applications and data to the cloud without assessing the required computing resources. Also, the enterprises have the option to choose from three distinct types of cloud platforms – private, public, and hybrid. They also have an option to assess the required computing resources through three cloud computing models – Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Software as a Service (SaaS) . At the same time, they can even choose from several variations of the same cloud computing model.
For instance, an enterprise can choose from two distinct variations of IaaS – enterprise-class IaaS and commodity IaaS. The enterprise-class IaaS meets conventional workload and designed for enterprise applications, whereas commodity IaaS is distributed applications across zones and meets distributed workload. The enterprises must assess the computing resources required by conducting a series of workshops. They can even use automated tools to check if the applications and data center can be moved to the cloud seamlessly.
Designing and Build Phase
After assessing the workload, the enterprise can easily pick the right < cloud platform and cloud computing model. But it is also important for the decision makers to assess the existing data centers, development environment, and network by generating elaborate design documentation. The design documentation will help cloud engineers to virtualize the data center and application environment in the cloud infrastructure. Also, the documentation will outline the migration and implementation process clearly.
The decision-makers also need to prepare an elaborate cloud migration plan based on the destination workload profiles. The migration plan will also define the sequence of migration activities and required human and financial resources. However, an enterprise can choose from a number of approaches while migrating their applications and data to the cloud. For instance, they can move the enterprise resources incrementally to the cloud to avoid interrupting business operations.
At the same time, the enterprises also have the option to move all their applications and data to the cloud at once. Likewise, they need to redesign the resource-intensive applications to implement them in the cloud efficiently. The enterprises have to deploy skilled engineers to re-architect the resource-intensive applications without impacting their functionality and performance. Hence, the decisions were taken during this phase shape the process of migrating varied workloads to the cloud. However, the decision-makers also need to share the cloud migration plan with various stakeholders after this phase.
Pilot Testing Phase
Despite preparing an elaborate cloud migration plan, the decision makers cannot eliminate cloud migration issues and risks completely. Hence, they need to ensure that the applications function smoothly in the cloud environment to meet business needs and deliver the richer user experience. Before moving applications and data to the cloud, the enterprises must perform comprehensive pilot testing. The pilot testing will help businesses to check if the services can be migrated to the cloud seamlessly and the mission-critical applications function flawlessly in the cloud environment. At the same time, the pilot testing results also help developers to identify the migration issues and risks by verifying the cloud migration process thoroughly.
Full Scale Commissioning Phase
If pilot testing is successful, the enterprises can start full-scale commissioning of the cloud program. The final phase of cloud migration involves using the tools required to automate the application migration process and configure the network and workload. The applications and databases also need to be tested elaborately in the cloud environment to ensure that the business processes remain unaffected. The enterprises must deploy skilled testing professionals to verify data, assess database functions and stored procedures, and monitor the interaction between the application and new database systems.
However, the decision makers must remember that the phases of cloud migration may differ according to the type of cloud computing. Likewise, the phases in cloud migration also differ from one cloud platform to another. Hence, the cloud migration strategy must identify and cover the exact phases.