Organisations have been thrown into a pace of rapid transformation over the past couple of years. This exponential growth in data, raises the need to effectively manage data across cloud, on-premise and edge infrastructure.
Lee Wilkinson, Technology Lead for Cloud & On-Premise Infrastructure at Insight, looks at the challenges that organisations are facing in effectively managing their hybrid cloud infrastructure.
Organisations are generating data at unprecedented levels, with technology solutions to support the management of data effectively, becoming more complex and disparate. This IT sprawl poses the question – how can infrastructure be connected, managed centrally and secure, without moving all data into to the cloud?
Infrastructure managers across the UK are challenged with the need to manage multiple hybrid cloud environments. This is requiring the need to configure, manage and operate these separate environments, within the separate platforms for each of these environments. This process has to be repeated for each environment separately.
So for example, an organisation has a cloud-infrastructure environment that holds their email data, but holds their customer data in an on-premise environment. This organisation would need to manage these environments totally separately, managing each platform independently of each other.
Clearly this is hugely time consuming, and a complex process.
In addition to the complexity of managing multiple platforms, we need to consider that many organisations are also looking to deploy consistent policies across their hybrid cloud environments.
Certainly this only adds to the challenges around the management of multiple environments. Achieving consistency in terms of policies, with very different platforms for each environment isn’t particularly easy to achieve.
New technology from Microsoft, Azure Stack HCI with Azure Arc is positioned to offer IT teams the ability to extend the benefits of Azure management and security across their hybrid infrastructure. So what could this truly offer?
Let’s take a retail organisation as an example.
Today a national retailer will likely have a head office, and multiple stores across the country. Their head office data is likely to be managed through a combination of Cloud and On-Premise environments. Edge environments may be in place for each of their stores nationwide.
This set-up would today require each environment to be separately managed, with policies deployed on each platform to ensure security and compliance.
With Azure Stack HCI deployed, the national retailer would be able to connect their environments through Azure. This means they’d be able to manage all of their environments through the Azure platform. The cloud, on-prem and edge environments, all in one place.
And the benefits don’t stop there. Azure Arc, a solution that is part of the Azure HCI technology which allows Azure-based security to be implemented from the cloud to on-premise, and the edge. In our national retailer example, this would mean that the IT team could meet the security and compliance needs they needed to, by deploying the same policies across their cloud, on-premise and edge environments.
The retailer would also be able to deploy this solution quickly, with technology providers such as Intel and Dell having a broad range of Microsoft approved HCI solutions already in place.
When it comes to licensing, the retailer could swap their current Windows server licensing for Azure HCI stack licenses. So there isn’t an extra license required to take advantage of the operational and security benefits.
Taking into account the example of the retailer, the benefits are clear. But this applies to any organisation operating across hybrid cloud environments.
Azure HCI presents an opportunity to simplify the management of hybrid cloud, a way to consolidate environments and a chance to build a foundation for data innovation. Insight’s professional services offer organisations an efficient and effective route to assess, design and deploy an Azure HCI solution.
To learn more about how to effectively simplify and secure your hybrid cloud infrastructure click here.