Understanding Hybrid Cloud Computing: The Benefits and Risks

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In 2013, Gartner predicted that close to half of all large-scale businesses would employ hybrid Cloud solutions by the end of 2017. Three years later, it turns out that hybrid Cloud computing has been just as successful as anticipated. According to a recent Forrester report, 65% of managers at infrastructure and operations organizations already combine more than one public and/or private Cloud platform.

Before you sit down with your IT team to discuss what hybrid Cloud deployment can do for your business, you’ll want to make sure you understand the basics of hybrid Cloud technology, as well as some of the benefits and risks involved. Keep reading to learn more.

The Basics of Hybrid Cloud Computing

Despite all the buzz around hybrid Cloud computing, there’s still some confusion about what hybrid Cloud solutions do. Put simply, organizations using hybrid Cloud technology make use of both public and privately owned Cloud infrastructure.

In practice, this means running at least one private Cloud server—often hosted on-site—and at least one public Cloud solution. A secure network connects the two Clouds, allowing data to move between them quickly and efficiently on demand.

Potential Hybrid Cloud Benefits

If you’ve considered Cloud hosting in the past but have been put off by the existing options, a hybrid Cloud solution could be the answer to your hosting needs. Here’s a look at some of the biggest benefits of hybrid Cloud technology.

  1. You Can Reap the Benefits of Both Public and Private Computing

Adopting hybrid technology allows you to take advantage of both Cloud types’ strengths. The private portion of the Cloud offers secure, on-site storage, while the public portion makes stored information easily accessible when you’re not in the office.

You may use the off-premises, public Cloud for a huge chunk of your data storage, for example, and take advantage of its low costs and scalability. At the same time, you can also maintain a smaller, more secure private Cloud for sensitive data.

If you leverage both elements properly, you can mitigate the costs involved with data loss or breaches—your truly secure data will be safe in your private Cloud.

  1. You Can Scale Resources on the Fly Without Breaking the Bank

Hybrid Cloud computing plays a crucial role in enterprises with highly evolving workloads. After completely public Cloud computing, it’s one of the most scalable Cloud solutions out there.

For instance, your business may rely on a private Cloud to run applications for your transactional order system. However, opting for a hybrid Cloud solution also allows you to capitalize on externally hosted servers during significant data spikes and unexpected surges through Cloud bursting—when resource use and storage “burst” into the public Cloud for short, high-volume periods.

Such flexibility is extremely beneficial for enterprises requiring more servers to process data during the holidays or times of recurrent peak usage. During Cloud bursts, workloads and applications can be easily shared between the two different Cloud solutions, allowing you to pay for only the Cloud services you need.

  1. You Can Better Manage Your Internal IT Resources

If your business is like many others, your IT team is in high demand. From internal networking maintenance to security initiatives, IT staff members usually have overfull plates. Hybrid Cloud computing can help change that.

By segmenting your data into public and private storage, you remove some of the load from your internal IT team. They’ll still need to manage and secure the sensitive data stored in your on-site private Cloud server, but they’ll have to worry a lot less about the data stored in the public Cloud—your public hosting service will handle that portion.

Possible Hybrid Cloud Computing Challenges

While hybrid cloud might seem like the holy grail of storage solutions, it’s important to remember that it can also present challenges for some organizations.

  • If data isn’t allocated properly, there could be an increased risk of data breach.
  • The initial costs of developing a private, on-site Cloud solution may be too expensive for some businesses that have historically relied exclusively on the public Cloud.
  • Increased demand for solid network connectivity—which is needed for both Cloud solutions to communicate with each other—could possibly result in network bottlenecks.

For Many, Hybrid Cloud Benefits Outweigh the Risks

As with most technological advances, risks are to be expected. With a little foresight and extra planning, however, your team can mitigate those risks down to a manageable level. As wider adoption of hybrid Cloud solutions increases, it’s clear that many enterprises find that the benefits far outweigh the potential issues.

To overcome the challenges of developing a hybrid Cloud system, it pays to learn everything you can about hybrid Cloud adoption so you can make informed decisions. If hybrid Cloud computing sounds like the right solution for your business, make sure you’re prepared to answer these three key questions to ask before making the move to the Cloud.

Frontier Business

Frontier Communications Corporation (NASDAQ: FTR) is a leader in providing communications services to urban, suburban, and rural communities in 29 states. Frontier offers a variety of services to residential customers over its fiber-optic and copper networks, including video, high-speed internet, advanced voice, and Frontier Secure® digital protection solutions. Frontier’s video offerings include FiOS® and Vantage TV by Frontier™ with 100 percent HD picture quality, Whole Home DVR, instant channel change, enhanced search, Video on Demand, and much more. Frontier Business offers communications solutions to small, medium, and enterprise businesses. More information about Frontier is available at www.frontier.com.

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