Should my next server be in the Cloud?

Posted by Ross Stern on Feb 10, 2017 4:43:26 PM
Two women looking at a desktop screen

What is the Cloud? This is a question asked by many people, on many different occasions, always with varying answers.

Allow me to elaborate and tell you in my eyes exactly what the Cloud is.

To start with, it’s worth mentioning that your data is as exposed as the hardware that it lives on. Basically, the Cloud means that both your data and services live “virtually”, resulting in increased data integrity, compliance and in my opinion, better mobility!

Many businesses will have a server sitting in the corner of their office, with no air conditioning, no locked cabinet, and quite frankly, an unprotected and unsafe environment. Typically, these servers will be running key business services such as emails – which if broken, can cause a huge ripple effect!

Microsoft have been at the very top of the game for a long time now, and have created resilient services such as Office 365 or Azure  which are being adopted by millions* of businesses worldwide.

I’m sure that some of you reading this will be wondering what the benefits are of moving your services into the Cloud and what the specific advantages are of having your next server in the cloud, so let me tell you just a few:

  • Flexibility – increase or decrease the compute power of a server as the requirements dictate. This means as a business you only pay for what you need.
  • Pay as you go service – pay predictive monthly costs, no need to worry about replacing your servers ever again!
  • Hybrid Capability – on premise and Cloud environments work together
  • Always available – Microsoft has a 99.95% SLA
  • Enterprise grade security - you will be using the same technology that the big banks and Blue chip companies are using!

So “Should my next server be in the Cloud?”. Once again it is worth reiterating that there are many different views and opinions on this question. Some may argue that the initial outlay and costs make it cost ineffective. Others claim that the cloud still remains a huge security risk and this is the biggest prohibitive factor. It is probably worth mentioning at this point that Microsoft spends $1 billion a year on Security alone!

On the plus side when most companies do a comprehensive ROI (Return on Investment) on any server investment over 5+ years we often see that the results are hugely in favour of a Cloud server environment and we can usually show significant savings. Not to mention the fact that Microsoft have a lot of key certifications! It’s great to think about the money side of things, but let’s not forget about the technical aspects too – Microsoft spends over $10 billion a year on R&D!

Some applications/software vendors have yet to develop a cloud roadmap for their products or services and frankly are in danger of getting left behind. For this reason, these applications are (mostly) better to remain on physical servers, although a simple PoC would show that these can often run just as well if not better in the Cloud. Chalkline have the ability in house to redesign applications that aren’t readily available in the Cloud, and migrate them to it!

Really the only decision that you should be asking yourself is, “why shouldn’t my next server be in the Cloud?!”

If you would like to speak to the professionals, please call us on 020 3819 3300 and we would be more than happy to help.

*Stats from IT Pro Windows

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