Clouds - Sep 6, 2021

Moving to the cloud done right.

Most companies have come to realise that they can no longer avoid the cloud as it enables IT departments to efficiently run their own applications. But the question remains as to which steps need to be taken to ensure a migration is a success. One practical approach is to leverage the specific capabilities of the Google Cloud and get a strong partner on board.

written by

Team Lead Infrastructure & Cloud Solutions

E-Mail: peter.fisch@bechtle.com

The fastest way of moving systems from your own data centre into the cloud is according to the lift and shift principle—aka rehosting. In this approach, applications are transferred as virtual machines (VM) to a hyperscaler such as Google, AWS or Azure, and then continue running in this environment with little need to adjust configurations. Neither changes to the respective application’s source code are needed, nor are adjustments to previous tools and processes.

The migration is particularly easy for all those who already use virtual machines based in VMware in their data centres as, for about a year, Google has been offering its Google Cloud VMware Engine (GCVE) as a fully compatible cloud version. This means that it doesn’t only come with well-known elements such as vSphere and vCenter, but virtual machines also run in exactly the same way as they did in the data centre. It’s not even a huge issue if workloads run on bare metal servers, as the transformation into virtual machines doesn’t require too much effort.

The immediate benefit of this kind of workload migration into the cloud is that businesses can hand over a crucial part of operation responsibility to the hyperscalers.


Operations, network, cooling, power—every thing that you need in the data centre—are handled by Google. It’s important to know that the environment is VMware certified, which means VMware takes on support for the environment. If I have a problem, I don’t just have Google support to turn to. VMware also helps us with troubleshooting and the smooth operation of the environment.

 

(Peter Fisch in the video Google Cloud VMware Engine & beyond)


Google and VMware also guarantee that the runtime environment is kept up-to-date and secure. Should an issue arise, there’s an expert on hand 24×7.

Those who choose Bechtle as their partner for the migration into the cloud not only receive support for the migration itself, but also for the entire operational phase. The principle of shared responsibility applies to those areas that go beyond the basic services of the hyperscalers, i.e. computing power, storage, networking and the VM platform. If the necessary additional services cannot be provided by the company itself, Bechtle can help and it can be decided on an individual basis who takes on which role. It’s also possible to combine in-house and external services, enabling businesses, which need their IT departments for the implementation of innovative ideas, for example, to hand over responsibility for monitoring, reporting and hardening applications to Bechtle.

The shared responsibility model also applies when businesses want to further optimise their successfully migrated applications by making them cloud native by refactoring or replatforming and, for example, splitting them into microservices and running them under Kubernetes. Bechtle can also help here with implementation and takes on responsibility for operations so the business can concentrate on agile and innovative application development.

Leveraging native cloud services from the start.

Even before the extensive changes are made within the software, the migrated application can benefit in multiple ways from the new cloud environment.

Scalability – The run-time performance of Google’s platform can be automatically increased to keep response times low as the load grows.

Native services – Many classic services, which were previously used within the framework of an application, can be replaced by high-performance and powerful services, which are native to the hyperscaler’s environment without too much effort. This includes databases, backup and monitoring. 

Cost benefits – When it comes to self-run on-premise workloads, businesses are forced to set aside generous capacities for computing power and storage in order to be equipped to deal with peak loads and ensure that all resources are available around-the-clock. In the cloud, however, only services actually used such as computing time and storage, are paid for. And, when native cloud services are used consistently, this negates the need for many software licences and support contracts.

Clear project distribution – Virtual private clouds (VPCs) enable workloads to be split into separate areas of the network, which in turn allows clear structuring of the own applications within the Google Cloud VMware Engine.

Video of specific projects and technical details.

Find out more about the benefits of migrating workloads from your data centre to Google Cloud and running them within a vSphere VM in the video Google Cloud VMware Engine & beyond. Peter Fisch, Head of Infrastructure & Cloud at Bechtle Regensburg also goes into technical detail about the various aspects of the GCVE related to migrating and operating workloads.

The video also presents a range of customer projects showing the challenges posed by cloud migrations when it comes to more complex tasks and which methods you can use to successfully overcome them.

 

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Published on Sep 6, 2021.