A hybrid cloud is a cloud computing model that uses a combination of at least one private cloud and at least one public cloud, which work together to provide a flexible mix of cloud computing services. Hybrid cloud computing extends infrastructure and operations consistently to provide a single operating model that manages application workloads across both environments, allowing for seamless migration of workloads from private to or from public cloud as business needs dictate.
Hybrid cloud solutions offer a single, seamless pool of resources that support modern application strategies and an organization’s digital transformation efforts. Most organizations have adopted hybrid cloud infrastructure to reduce risk, minimize overall IT and cloud costs, support cloud migration without refactoring, data center consolidation, and meet seasonal peaks in demand for compute and storage resources.
Hybrid clouds use public and private clouds as a single combined entity where data and application workloads can move seamlessly between platforms and share data between application workloads. This is achieved by virtualization of data and workloads, network function virtualization (NFV) or VPNs, and connectivity to one or more cloud providers.
There are many hybrid cloud benefits to consider, including:
Hybrid architecture is a melding of public and private cloud resources combined with tools that enable common management and orchestration. This enables workloads and data to move easily between the two environments based on the business demands of the organization and enabling functions such as cloudbursting, where workloads normally hosted on-premises or in a private cloud are augmented by public cloud infrastructure to meet spikes in demand.
Hybrid cloud platforms are centered around hybrid cloud management tools, which ensure that both public and private cloud elements are working in sync to achieve the desired business goals.
Some popular hybrid orchestration models include:
A hybrid cloud includes both public and private cloud elements, with the goal to enable consistent infrastructure and consistent operations across them. A multi-cloud is a cloud environment that includes more than one public cloud provider, regardless of whether it is hybrid or not. Thus cloud architecture can be hybrid without being multi-cloud, multi-cloud without being hybrid, or both hybrid and multi-cloud.
IT organizations may use hybrid cloud as a subset of a multi-cloud strategy that includes dissimilar environments. With multi-cloud, IT organizations may need additional management tools and processes beyond a hybrid cloud management foundation to ensure consistent multi-cloud operations. Effective multi-cloud management helps ensure visibility and control, including cost, security and compliance, across any combination of hybrid and multi-cloud environments.
The challenge for organizations pursuing hybrid cloud is to find an operating model that simplifies operations, reduces management complexity, allows interoperability to enhance flexibility, and also addresses the requirements of a wide range of application architectures and digital business objectives.
A hybrid cloud solution works best when a single set of management tools, skills and workflows can extend seamlessly across consistent infrastructure that is common to on-site, public cloud, and hosted environments.
A single operating model addresses the challenges related to: