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Migrating your business' computing needs to a high-performing cloud platform is indeed an exciting move, which if done right, can revolutionize all the organization's process. Secure data access, reliable backup storage, high availability, scalability, disaster recovery, and redundancy are some of the factors that organizations fail to experience with the current on-premises infrastructure environment.
Dealing with such challenges demands the need for integrating or extending the applications towards the cloud to achieve better, game-changing solutions. However, moving the on-premise applications to the cloud is a major organizational change, which of course, comes with its own challenges and setbacks.
Here are the top challenges and prevention methods an organization should be prepared for before it sets out to migrate to Microsoft Azure.
One of the major challenges of Azure migration is when an organization fails to understand the difference between cloud-hosted applications and traditional local deployments. On a cloud platform, both resource management and capacity planning are conceptualized differently.
The team responsible for managing the cloud migration should be trained to understand the unique attributes associated with the Azure cloud platform. This enables the entire organization to prepare itself for the shift required when the transition is taking place.
An IaaS platform, like Azure, also requires a detailed provisioning for local bandwidth. This is of particular importance in case an organization is using a hybrid cloud solution. There's a need to identify the amount of traffic running between remote elements of cloud and locally-hosted systems.
Therefore, it is important to take note of and incorporate traffic, which was previously taken care of by low-latency, high-speed LAN. The shift towards WAN may create a bottleneck situation for the local bandwidth. An azure trained professional will understand these architectural needs of cloud migration and calculate the overall cost-benefit results in case the bandwidth is altered.
These days, applications rarely run in a vacuum. When the transition to the cloud is taking place, it is crucial to identify the dependencies. The migration may cause various connection configurations later. So, if these factors are taken into account beforehand, many serious interruptions can be taken care of.
Downtime is an inevitable part of the planning when a major migration is in process. Assuming that the process will smoothly complete without any downtime sounds too good to be true. Thus, it is wiser to always keep a margin for it and plan things accordingly.
Take your time to carefully estimate the amount of downtime required for each transition step. A team of trained individuals will keep Azure-related aspects into account to estimate more accurately. The next step is to spread out the calculated downtime and schedule it to get its minimal impact.
Information security is another major concern of CIOs when migrating software and infrastructure outside to a cloud platform. This challenge is not related to Azure alone but all cloud platforms in general. Thus, it's essential to use security protocols at the application end.
However, that's not the only solution. In fact, the best solution for security issues is to implement a private network during the migration process with end-to-end encryption to completely secure the data, applications, and infrastructure.
Most enterprises have a current system where it majorly relies on an external database. Doing so helps them complete all functions accurately. While moving the applications to the Azure platform while hosting an in-house database is possible, moving the external database onto the cloud can also offer great benefits.
But before any such step can be taken, it is crucial to identify if the existing application storage and Azure storage are perfectly compatible. Identifying incompatibilities before the process begins is important. An organization may choose to convert the database without compromising on its function or fidelity to adjust to the changes required by the application before it can be moved to Azure.
Other than ensuring the compatibility of database operating on Azure, it is also important to ensure that all the migrated applications are also compatible.
The best way to find out is to put it on testing before taking a leap to the cloud. Use the Azure test environment to put the application to test. Let the professionals and trained individuals take care of this process to thoroughly go through each detail and find out if there are any compatibility issues.
Although it is highly unlikely for applications errors or data loss to occur on an Azure platform, it is still prudent to keep a disaster recovery plan in mind. Azure is a reliable cloud environment, which can help in restoring lost data and even offer backup solutions for local storage.
Make sure you are aware of all the disaster scenarios related to Azure to create a recovery plan accordingly.
Various factors lead to cloud migration failures. These include unrealistic expectations, poor project management, bad planning, and more. However, it is important to learn about the trends and identify the common theme emerging within the industry. For instance, if you do not choose the right tools for migration, it could be the ultimate factor for the failure of your migration to the cloud.
If you have chosen Microsoft Azure as your cloud platform, it is important to offer Azure training to your team members to enable them to handle the process more smoothly. Unlike local servers, the Azure platform requires proper knowledge of the system and expertise to ensure all the parts work efficiently. A simple mistake by the business administrators or project managers can translate into how poor the servers are operating.
Moreover, Azure training and certification also ensures that your team is capable of migrating the core business to the application without compromising on the maximum efficiency Azure has to offer. To make the migration appear more smooth and seamless, training your team is crucial.
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