Cross-cloud is a concept in cloud computing that describes the ability to seamlessly operate applications and workloads across multiple cloud service providers (CSPs).
The term “cross-cloud” emerged after the introduction of multi-cloud strategy (the use of multiple public, private and edge clouds along with on-premises infrastructure) to express the need for solutions that enable operational standardization between cloud providers. Cross-cloud allows organizations to create a unified multi-cloud operating model where applications, infrastructure, management, security, and access are standardized across CSPs and on-premises locations.
Cross-cloud solutions play a critical role in helping organizations optimize multi-cloud. To unlock the full value of using multiple clouds, it’s important to have consistency and control across providers. With cross-cloud services, organizations can achieve seamless integration. Cross-cloud management, analytics and visibility capabilities help maximize performance, adjust capacity, control costs, sustain compliance and address security issues.
With cross-cloud you can:
- Go faster in your cloud journey and accelerate business innovation.
- Spend less with big gains in cost efficiency and time saved.
- Be free with maximum flexibility and choice across any cloud.
Some examples of successful cross-cloud implementation include the ability to:
- Develop and launch new apps into production in days instead of months.
- Ensure website availability during a surge in e-commerce orders.
- Provide customers consistently outstanding performance by moving critical production apps to the best-performing cloud.
- Quickly transition hundreds or thousands of employees to remote work.
- Empower employees to stay productive with simple, high-performance access to vital apps .
Multi-cloud describes an IT environment that uses any combination of on-premises, private cloud, public cloud, and edge cloud for specific use cases based on each cloud’s strengths. Cross-cloud goes beyond multi-cloud and involves layers of abstraction that span all cloud infrastructure and unifying specific functions across clouds.
In a multi-cloud strategy, it can be difficult to share or access data across clouds as each provider may handle their data in a different way. Successful cross-cloud implementation frees data from these silos.
Cross-cloud solutions involve elements of architecture and design, but cross-cloud is not a standalone architecture in the traditional sense like multi-cloud. Instead, cross-cloud is an operating model that enables consistency between clouds.
When managing a cloud landscape with cross-cloud solutions, it’s important to consider these challenges:
- Compatibility issues: Organizations that don’t adopt a multi-cloud mindset may not design their applications with interoperability in mind, resulting in incompatibility between different clouds or platforms.
- Complexity: Cross-cloud environments are inherently complex. Organizations will likely not need cross-cloud services if they have a small workload footprint with minimal resource demands. In these cases, a single-cloud or on-premises solution may be a better option.
- Overwhelming amount of choice: The freedom of cross-cloud also means there are potentially many choices available in terms of which provider, type of cloud, and location to use to host and manage an increasing number of apps and workloads. This is where cross-cloud services can help.
Cross-cloud services come in many forms for specific use cases. The following solutions help businesses realize benefits quickly and efficiently.
- App platform: Modern applications are critical for keeping customers engaged, boosting employee productivity, and enhancing operational efficiency. Adopting cloud services for your application platform helps speed the development and delivery of innovative modern apps, ensuring developers have the flexibility to use the right cloud for each app.
- Cloud infrastructure: Just as developing modern applications often requires multiple clouds, so does running those applications in production. An organization may need to run some software on-premises, deliver other applications through a public cloud, and provide additional software through edge environments. And as needs can change over time, it’s important to have flexibility to select the best infrastructure for each application without costly, time-consuming rewriting or refactoring.
- Cloud management: Implementing consistent infrastructure across clouds can dramatically simplify management by eliminating the need to juggle several toolsets. Automation can further streamline multi-cloud strategy and enable businesses to continuously optimize their multi-cloud environment.
- Anywhere workspace: The cloud opens new opportunities for giving the fast-growing distributed workforce frictionless access to vital apps. With the right cloud-based digital workspace solution, businesses can empower employees to be productive from anywhere while using their preferred devices.
- Security and networking: As you build and run more applications across clouds, you need ways to connect them and keep them secure. Cross-cloud security services give developers, operations teams and remote workers autonomy without creating silos or exposing vulnerabilities for cybercriminals to exploit.
Cloud chaos, the challenge of constantly increasing complexity in cloud infrastructure, is slowing innovation, driving up costs and weakening enterprise security. 57 percent of IT leaders find cloud operations to be more complex than on-prem, and 89 percent are looking for a better way to manage unpredictable cloud costs. This demands a new approach—one where you can use the best services from each cloud without adding extra complexity.
VMware Cross-Cloud Services is an integrated portfolio to build, deploy, run, manage, connect, and secure applications in a multi-cloud environment on any provider. VMware Cross-Cloud services enable your organization to advance toward your digital business goals while streamlining operations and maintaining enterprise control.
Related Solutions and Products
Empower today's distributed workforce with secure, frictionless experiences that build trust using the Anywhere Workspace solution of the VMware Cross-Cloud services portfolio.