It seems that all organizations are analyzing what can be moved – or should be moved – to the cloud. However, the cloud is clearly not the answer for all; As with any technology, there are advantages and disadvantages. Thus, it is important that all professionals understand how and when the cloud is advantageous for their applications.
In the assessment and planning of migrating applications to the cloud process, the databases are usually the most difficult element to understand. Of course the data is the heart of every application, so it is essential to know how databases can function reliably in the cloud.
Here are some ideas and recommendations to keep in mind when thinking about moving databases to the cloud:
1. It All Starts With The Performance
If I had a penny every time you hear “the cloud is very slow for databases”, sure I would have enough to buy a double cappuccino. The uncertainty of the performance is the main concern that prevent traders to move their databases to cloud or virtualized environments. However, concern is often unjustified, since many applications have performance requirements which are easy to fit in a number of different architectures of cloud. The cloud technology evolved over the past three years and today already offers several deployment options for databases, some of them with very high performance capabilities.
2. Visibility Can Help
The easiest way to solve performance problems is putting a lot of hardware to run, but obviously this is not a good practice and it is not very profitable. A monitoring tool for database can help you understand the true requirements of the database and resources of your application. We can think about things like CPU, storage, memory, latency and throughput of storage (IOPS can deceive); planned growth requirements and backup storage; oscillation of resources based on peak usage or application in batch processes; dependency and connection data – beyond connectivity applications, there may be other requirements for data exchange between applications, backups or data stream input.
One advantage of the cloud is the ability to dynamically scale resources vertically or horizontally. So, instead of being a source of uncertainty concerns of the performance, it can really give you the peace of mind because the right amount of resources can be allocated to your applications to ensure proper performance. The key, however, is to know what those requirements are.
3. Take a Test Drive
One of the obvious benefits of the cloud is the low cost and accessibility. Even if you are not already developing a migration plan is a good idea to play with cloud databases to familiarize yourself, test and learn. In an hour of your time, you can put a database running in the cloud. Set it up, play a little and then throw away. The cost is minimal. With a little more time and a few rupees more, you can even move a copy of a production database to the cloud, testing, deployment options and learn how your application and the database will work in cloud.
4. Carefully Plan Your Deployment Model
The cloud offers several deployment options that should be considered. For example, the Database as a Service (DBaaS) offers simplicity in deployment, automation and a managed service. Leverage Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) is an alternative to running instances of the database in cloud servers, which provides more control and that looks like a traditional physical deployment. There are also multiple storage options, including storage block units SSD , IOPS guaranteed, dedicated connections and optimized instances of databases. Cloud is primarily a shared environment, it is also important to understand and test the uniformity and variability of performance, not just the theoretical peak performance.
5. Take The Step
There is not a single migration plan covering all use cases. Instead of trying to use a formula to make the move to the cloud, I recommend talking to your cloud provider, explaining your environment and getting the proper guidance. In general, it is also a good idea to create a duplicate environment in the cloud and make sure it works well before changing the production application. And, beyond the requirements of recovery and data backup, is also important to consider the replication servers or waiting in a different region from which its major servers are.
6. Monitor And Optimize
As with deployments in place, it is important to monitor and optimize your cloud environment, then it is working. Optimization tools for database provide analysis of the waiting time, and the correlation of features can speed up database operations significantly, alert you when there are problems (before they become big problems), increase application performance and monitor resources to help with planning. The database administrators, developers and IT operations can benefit from a tool for performance analysis that enables them to write good code and identify the root cause of everything that might be leaving slow the database, as queries, event storage, server resources etc.
The cloud is evolving rapidly. It’s getting better, more reliable and more flexible all the time. As occurred five years ago, when most people could not imagine the transformation that would promote the cloud today, we should expect that technology continues to evolve at the same pace over the next five years. This is one more reason to start experiencing the cloud today. It is not just a journey that requires to break some paradigms and change your way of seeing things, but also a journey that can provide meaning to the applications and benefit at work.
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