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A brief intro to Cloud infrastructure management

Rob Tribe, Vice President System Engineering Nutanix EMEA, explores the benefits and drawbacks of public clouds, private clouds, hybrid clouds and multiclouds.

Businesses considering moving applications to the cloud face a bewildering array of options, each with its pros and cons. Particularly when it comes to public clouds, where instant availability and on-demand scalability are the big plusses along with the ability to ditch on-premise infrastructure and all its overheads. On the flipside, perceived security and availability concerns plus a lack of transparency when it comes to cost can be issues. As is the need for specialist skills and tools to manage public cloud platforms, a requirement made even more complex when multiple clouds, from different vendors, are involved.

It can be a real balancing act with few companies prepared to put all their eggs in one public cloud basket and opting instead to keep some apps on-premise hosted either in private clouds or using more traditional setups. Indeed this kind of hybrid infrastructure is widely seen as the preferred approach to business IT, offering the same benefits of on-demand scalability as pure public clouds, but greater control plus the ability to fit the infrastructure to the needs of the application, rather than the other way round.

That, however, doesn’t mean that there aren’t challenges with a hybrid approach too. Cost and management issues, again, predominate here, along with the risk of creating application silos rather than the ability to seamlessly move apps between clouds to, for example, scale capacity or address new opportunities

Businesses looking to build a hybrid infrastructure need to be aware of these drawbacks and seek out component products and services able to both span and integrate different cloud platforms. Unified management is a key requirement towards achieving that aim, along with tools to facilitate app mobility as well as keep on top of operational costs and maintain security and availability across all the parts of the hybrid and multicloud whole.

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