Essentially, multicloud is a new take on hybrid cloud. It consists of subscriptions to multiple public cloud services, whereas conventional hybrid refers to deploying the same set of services across multiple modes (on-premises, private cloud, public cloud) using just one public cloud service provider.
Multicloud deployments can bring notable advantages, including:
Like anything, a multicloud environment has its fair share of challenges as well. IT professionals often face increased complexity in managing the disparate cloud environments, difficulty moving workloads and data between providers, and network unpredictability.
The biggest disadvantages to multicloud include:
Using multiple cloud vendors can actually be a good way to save money; however, it does make consolidating and estimating costs more complex. Having a good understanding of each cloud’s pricing structure is critical.
You also need to watch out when you move data between different providers. Most will charge a transfer fee when moving to another company’s environment.
The increased complexity from deploying applications on multiple clouds can increase the likelihood of a breach — and make it more difficult to set up a secure network that covers all critical assets. The lack of connectivity between cloud providers contributes to this complexity as you try to leverage different vendors’ management tools.
Finding the right experts
The right talent can be hard to find when it comes to cloud professionals. Developers, engineers and security experts tend to specialize in one provider — finding someone who’s an expert in multiple environments is a tall order.
Of course, no infrastructure can be perfect. There will always be inherent difficulties in managing these complex systems.
But when it comes to multicloud, the ability to create more connectivity between different clouds would help solve a fair amount of problems. Imagine your environment uses public cloud services from two different companies. You’re dealing with all the challenges we detailed earlier: managing the disparate environments, paying extra to move workloads between the two, etc. Now imagine that your cloud providers make their environments interconnected. It would be so much easier to secure, manage and move workloads between those platforms.
This might seem like a pipe dream. Two or more competitors making their solutions work better together? Forget about it. It seems impossible that companies would potentially jeopardize profits by partnering with said competitors.
Well, it seems that increased connectivity between providers isn’t quite the unimaginable feat we thought it was. There are some companies out there that are striving to work together in unprecedented ways to make their joint customers’ multicloud environment easier to work with.
Perfect example: Oracle and Microsoft. These two tech giants have created an efficient way for organizations to take advantage of multicloud arrangements. The solution combines capabilities of Oracle Autonomous Database with Azure applications and networking, making multicloud attainable and dependable for businesses.
With the Oracle + Microsoft partnership, users can run databases on Oracle infrastructure while running applications, the network gateway and other tiers on Azure. From the user perspective, the experience resembles running an entire solution stack in one cloud, even though Oracle’s extensive hosted database capabilities are providing advantages in the background.
Oracle’s contribution to the pairing revolves around Oracle Autonomous Database, which uses machine learning to provide a “self-driving” database environment — one that automates monitoring, tuning and management. Oracle Autonomous Database creates important efficiencies, cost savings and scalability, allowing IT to pivot to innovative projects rather than expending manpower and financial resources on database management.
To create a seamless experience, Oracle and Microsoft have built in secure, fast connectivity between the two clouds. An intermediate service provider isn’t required, and the pairing includes all the network security and identity protections you would expect.
This is an exciting step forward for companies that currently use or are planning to implement multiple cloud providers. The seamless connectivity of these two solutions will help mitigate those frequent challenges in having a multicloud environment.