Cloud Migration – The Process

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Cloud migration can be a relatively painless exercise if planned, executed and implemented properly.

Initial planning involves identifying the organizations goals and objectives.  Properly defining them is crucial to selecting the most appropriate cloud environment and type to migrate to.  It also helps determine the nature and extent of services that will be required.  At this initial stage a decision whether to do a full cloud migration or a partial (hybrid) migration needs to be taken.  The nature of the infrastructure of the origin and destination need to be examined for compatibility issues.  The migration strategy will then be developed based on the business entities’ goals, the hardware and software that need to work together.  Members of the Cloud Computing Association are familiar with the routine.

The time required for the business organization to get business activities to normal after an incident called the recovery time objective (RTO) needs to be defined, as well as how many hours or days of data the business can tolerate losing called the recovery point objective (RPO).

After the organization’s requirements are defined, a schedule needs to be prepared containing the full range of migration tasks.  The schedule needs to be coordinated so as to reduce impact on the business organization’s activities.  Then tools, equipment, and infrastructure on the origin and destination sides need to be prepared.  Data, applications, and businesses should be prepared for migrating to the cloud.  Networks and storage need to be tested for any issues with connectivity and compatibility.

The people providing the cloud migration services should do a dry run of the migration process to ensure that everything will work as planned. Only then can the process of actual migration begin.  Tests are conducted while in process as a further safeguard against failure.  As a final check, servers are validated after the migration of data, applications, and business processes, are complete.

The final act required of the people providing cloud migration services is the hand-over of the complete project.  Should any further bugs be discovered by the client at this point, those are dealt with and the acceptance papers signed.

Planning takes out a lot of the kinks before they happen.  You should always invest in detailed planning, especially with projects involving IT.

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