How to Manage Hybrid and Multicloud Environments (No, They Aren’t the Same)
by April 10, 2017

Filed under: Networking Technology, Performance Monitoring

Even for the most seasoned IT pros, the cloud is complicated. It can be difficult just to wrap your head around the many terms and acronyms that make up the cloud dictionary—not to mention actually mastering the technology.

Unfortunately, complicated cloud terms are often combined to the point that their meanings are lost in a sea of conflicting opinions.

Two terms that are used interchangeably (but shouldn’t be) are hybrid cloud and multicloud. If you want to be the cloud expert your company needs, you have to lock down the differences between these terms—and understand how to manage a mix of these environments.

Hybrid Cloud vs. Multicloud Explained

It’s time to set the record straight when it comes to hybrid cloud and multicloud environments. Keep these distinctions in mind when trying to gain the trust of business leaders to be included in cloud purchases:

What Is Hybrid Cloud?

This approach takes advantage of both public and private clouds to drive business innovation and increase agility without sacrificing the security and reliability of on-premises workloads. We may use this term to describe many companies, but the reality is that most companies haven’t achieved a true hybrid cloud just yet.

A critical component of this approach is the seamless integration of public cloud and private cloud workloads—not just their presence in the organization. We’re moving toward a hybrid cloud world, but it’s not nearly as common as you might think when reading about cloud computing.

What Is Multicloud?

When people say they use a hybrid cloud approach, they may mean multicloud. Multicloud environments are those that run multiple cloud services in multiple public cloud vendors. If you subscribe to the idea that vendor lock-in should be avoided at all costs, a multi-cloud environment would be your ideal choice.

Investing in multicloud means you can get the most appropriate infrastructure, platform, and software services for your situation rather than forcing yourself to use one vendor. But just because multicloud has a simpler definition than we might expect doesn’t mean it’s without challenges.

The reality for most organizations moving forward will be a mix of hybrid cloud and multicloud environments. To become a modern IT department and a cloud broker for your organization, you have to manage this mix properly.

The Need for Cloud-to-Cloud Monitoring

Without continuous monitoring, we know that end-user experience can suffer throughout your organization. However, not all continuous monitoring solutions and strategies are created equal.

Monitoring for cloud environments often isn’t truly possible. Old-school monitoring tools are device-based and can’t see into the variety of networks used by businesses today. They definitely can’t see into cloud or SaaS providers’ environments. It’s great to have continuous monitoring—but what happens when you depend on a mix of hybrid and multicloud?

When assessing continuous monitoring solutions, cloud-to-cloud monitoring capabilities should be top of mind. Rather than implementing multiple or incomplete solutions, a cloud-to-cloud monitoring solution can give you centralized control over your entire cloud landscape.

If you want to learn about navigating the increasingly complicated mix of hybrid and multicloud environments, download our free guide: Multicloud Deployment: An IT Survival Guide.