Public and Private Cloud Boundaries Are Colliding
Public cloud and private cloud boundaries are rapidly colliding. On-premise private cloud hosting within a data center is shifting toward a hybrid environment, where business functions are distributed across public SaaS applications, outsourced service partners, and multiple private collocation facilities.
The hosting shift creates a cloud environment where security, identity, management, business processes, and rules must communicate, coordinate, and interact across heterogeneous platform containers and cloud domain boundaries.
Every team will likely face a mixed public/private cloud deployment model going forward. James Urquhart outlines how ideally “Clouds drive heterogeneous workloads on a homogenous infrastructure” and enable more efficient resource pooling. Yet Tom Bittman warns reality drives cloud solutions toward composing “some combination of private, public and community cloud services, from different service providers."
Bittman further describes how “A hybrid cloud service crosses isolation and provider boundaries so that it can’t be simply put in one category of private, public, or community cloud service.” Solutions will aggregate, integrate, customize, or merge services across a heterogeneous cloud landscape. On-premise private clouds will not remain homogeneously private with clear separation between public and private cloud services.
Teams must adopt new middleware infrastructure that integrates private cloud and public cloud services while maintaining service level management, identity management, deployment, and privacy entitlements across multiple providers, participants, and platforms. Few enterprise middleware platforms today incorporate architectural principles and services that solve hybrid cloud use case challenges.
While many teams are experimenting solely with private cloud today, John Rymer predicts in the near future, “Few if any enterprise application scenarios will be off limits for cloud platforms—even public cloud platforms.”
Rymer believes today’s growing confidence presages enterprise clouds virtually without limits. Your IT portfolio will span your data center, outsourcing partners, and cloud service providers. Teams will intermix in-house IT assets with public, virtual private, and community cloud services.
As development models slowly shift toward a cloud-first procurement model, teams should build a strong cloud architecture foundation and select cloud-native Platform-as-a-Service offerings that address hybrid cloud use cases.