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The 5 best reasons to combine private and public clouds in your IT strategy

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Public clouds like AWS, Azure, and GCP are generally reliable, easy to use, and the fastest way for most developers to get cloud resources. As more companies begin digital transformation, Gartner predicts public cloud spending will exceed 45% of all enterprise IT spending by 2026, up from less than 17% in 2021. While public clouds are fantastic starting points for building and launching applications, private cloud adoption is also accelerating. Case in point: OpenStack infrastructure-as-a-service experienced robust 60% growth in production cores between 2021 and 2022. 

According to the Flexera 2022 State of the Cloud Report, most enterprises today are adopting a hybrid cloud approach that prioritizes both public and private clouds. If your organization already uses one or more public clouds and is thinking of extending to a hybrid cloud architecture, here are the five best reasons to mix private and public clouds in your IT strategy.

  1. Proximity to end users or devices

    Gartner predicts that by 2025, 75% of enterprise data will be generated away from traditional data centers or clouds. This year, many organizations will begin scaling out their edge computing deployments, especially manufacturers bringing intelligent automation to the factory floor. For edge computing / IoT, 5G, and other latency-sensitive use cases, points of presence (PoPs) need to stay close to end users or devices to collect, store, analyze, and respond to local data in real time. Public clouds don’t allow you to choose the exact location of PoPs, making on-premises private clouds the ideal choice.

  2. Special hardware requirements

    Do your workloads need specialized hardware not available in public clouds? Telecommunications or broadcast media applications that require custom network processing, and blockchain applications with specific GPU and power requirements are examples where public clouds don’t make sense. Global supply chain issues have affected public cloud providers, who often lag behind in offering services based on the newest hardware technologies. If your company requires hardware that public cloud providers are unlikely or slow to adopt, then buying and deploying your own hardware on premises is the way to go.

  3. Security compliance

    Regulatory compliance and high security mandates compel many organizations to choose on-premises, private cloud infrastructure. Top-tier financial institutions typically rule out public clouds because of the high cost of secure operations, elasticity limitations due to compliance-related functionality restrictions, and inadequate enterprise support and SLAs, which do not incur financial penalties when commitments are breached. Should an emergency occur, many banks won’t trust a global public cloud provider to prioritize their needs. Proving the chain of services to end users is also extremely difficult with public clouds.

    Regulations that affect cloud computing, like GDPR, HIPAA or FedRAMP, require organizations to implement tight controls on various aspects of their deployments.  With private clouds, you can customize your infrastructure much more extensively and at lower cost than with public clouds to get the granular control you need to pass compliance audits.

  4. Large-scale data storage and processing with legacy systems

    Public clouds are optimized for general purpose use cases, which typically involve fewer than 100 nodes. There are many large applications deployed in manufacturing, hospitality, business services, and other industries that require massive amounts of storage and data analysis — to the tune of many TB of data ingest daily. These applications also often need to connect easily and reliably to the systems creating the data as well as to mainframes or other legacy systems. These large-scale data storage and processing applications are extremely costly to run on public clouds, where congested networks and bandwidth issues can also lead to latency, packet loss, and poor end user experience.

  5. Competition with public clouds

    If your business considers Amazon, Microsoft or Google as a competitor, then you wouldn’t want to put sensitive business data on their infrastructure or depend on their services. For this reason, many retail, Internet and technology companies prefer to use private cloud infrastructure.

Now that you’ve learned the five best reasons for combining public and private clouds in your IT strategy, you might be wondering about the operations side of things. Public clouds are convenient and easy to use, could you get a similar experience on premises? The answer is yes — if you take a ZeroOps approach. 

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Getting a public cloud experience on premises

ZeroOps combines smart automations and skilled expertise to provide the cloud your business needs to succeed. With Mirantis ZeroOps cloud on-prem, we take care of your hybrid cloud management and operations, so your development teams can focus on building applications and driving value for your business. You can benefit from the flexibility, scalability, and cost savings of private cloud infrastructure while having peace of mind that our skilled experts and smart automations are keeping your clouds up and running smoothly.

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