The cloud is not new. The virtues of the cloud have been proclaimed incessantly for years, and most businesses have embraced cloud servers and services on some level. The realities of data security and the need to leverage existing investments in IT infrastructure, however, generally result in some sort of hybrid cloud setup, with servers and applications that span both local data centers and cloud providers. Hybrid cloud deployments can be complex and volatile, which is where DevOps comes in.
I wrote a report recently for DevOps.com that takes a closer look at the pros and cons of hybrid cloud, and the symbiotic relationship with DevOps. “DevOps Enabling the Hybrid Cloud” examines how DevOps tools and practices streamline management of such an environment. It also looks at some of the security implications and how DevOps can address those concerns.
The report explains, “Speed and flexibility are imperative for organizations that want to remain competitive. Organizations that strive to lead understand that IT must be viewed as a strategic advantage—a powerful tool for driving innovation and creativity. The hybrid cloud provides a bridge from legacy hardware and assets to cutting-edge concepts such as containers and serverless computing for organizations that do it right.”
One truism addressed in the paper is that customers—whether they’re external customers of your company or the users within the company that rely on IT services and applications—don’t know or care where your applications or data are delivered from. They know that they want stuff to just work when they need it to work. It’s up to IT to determine the most efficient and effective way to achieve that goal, and to provide a seamless, frustration-free experience. Sometimes that means relying on cloud servers and services, and sometimes it means using local infrastructure.
I spoke with Justin Foster from Trend Micro about the overlap of hybrid cloud and DevOps, and specifically about unique security issues with hybrid cloud environments. He stressed that legacy tools and traditional approaches to security are not sufficient for the more dynamic hybrid cloud environment. As explained in the report, “Security has to be baked in from the beginning and throughout the development life cycle.”
A pure cloud infrastructure is unlikely for any established company. It may be achieved eventually through attrition, but there’s no getting around the fact that there already are servers and applications in place. The hybrid cloud approach is the right solution in most cases, and DevOps tools and practices are essential to help manage and secure the hybrid cloud effectively.
Click here to download the report: “DevOps Enabling the Hybrid Cloud.”