This post will cover the benefits of this transformative solution and how it can help CIOs deliver on their strategic objectives. You'll discover how this next-generation infrastructure can enhance system performance, ensure cost-effectiveness, fortify cybersecurity, simplify IT management, and ensure business continuity. Whether you're planning a major infrastructure overhaul or looking for incremental improvements, this insight into secure hybrid data centers could provide the strategic edge you need in today's digital business landscape.
Data Center Performance
When it comes to enterprise companies, there is no faster option than having a local data center. A public cloud will continue to struggle because of the increasing number of users, resources, operational technology, applications, vendors, and so on that are present on-premises. However, this may not hold true for small businesses. Small businesses often excel when operating in a fully cloud-based environment.
Hybrid Data Center Cost Savings
When evaluating the cost-effectiveness of implementing cloud-based technologies, it is important to consider various factors, such as running them on your own private or hybrid cloud versus only utilizing public cloud services. Cost-effectiveness will differ depending on your organization's unique needs and constraints.
While marketing may always promote cloud services, running cloud-based technologies locally, on your own private or hybrid cloud, is always more cost-effective.
Isolation, Security, and Backup Strategies
Maintaining your own security boundaries within a hybrid data center often provides greater control and customization over your security protocols versus relying entirely on a public cloud provider. This is not to say that public cloud providers are inherently less secure, but rather to emphasize that they operate under a shared responsibility model. This means that while the cloud provider is responsible for the security of the cloud infrastructure, the customer is responsible for securing the data they store in the cloud and using cloud resources.
Isolating your fabric layer (the underlying network and server infrastructure) from your workload (the applications and services running on that network) is a crucial step in strengthening your organization's cybersecurity stance for several reasons:
- Minimizing Attack Surface
- Containment of Threats
- Principle of Least Privilege
We take it a step further and separate the backup layer from the fabric and workload layers. This separation ensures additional layers of security and data protection, particularly against the growing threat of ransomware. Additional management overhead is involved, but your CISO and insurance provider won't mind.
Your stance should always be that threat actors will breach your defenses. Consider a successful phishing campaign. Regardless of the threat actor’s success, they will swiftly become frustrated in the face of your secure hybrid data center’s robust protection.
Integrating High Availability (HA) for your workload ensures that applications are always accessible, even if a component fails. HA systems minimize downtime and ensure that there's no single point of failure, leading to more reliable operations.
Focusing on backing up only replicated VMs eliminates the impact on production that can be caused by traditional VM snap-based backups going sideways. For example, a runaway snap bloating your VM’s storage location is not possible.
By segregating the management layer from the workload using separate hypervisor hardware, you're ensuring that management tasks don't consume expensive, highly available resources.
CIOs are often confronted with the daunting task of cohesively integrating a multitude of tools. We recommend integrating with Azure ARC as it can be a consolidated solution to many of these challenges. The scope of Azure ARC is specific to Windows server operating systems and Linux:
Holistic Visibility and Control: As CIOs grapple with managing diverse platforms, whether it's SCVMM, vCenter, Azure VMs, AWS, or Google Cloud, a centralized control plane becomes indispensable. Azure ARC responds to this need, presenting an integrated dashboard that simplifies oversight across the varied IT landscape.
Empowering Autonomy with Self-Service Capabilities: Azure ARC’s self-service capabilities stand out beyond the integration prowess. This platform-agnostic feature empowers teams, granting them the autonomy to oversee and deploy resources with minimal oversight. This naturally enhances organizational agility and lightens the burden on centralized IT teams.
As organizations embark on charting their hybrid data center course, it's essential to appraise the capabilities of Azure ARC in the light of existing tools and infrastructure. Its integration proficiencies and its tailored support for server operating systems, especially Linux, accentuate its utility.
The practices mentioned are essential components of a comprehensive business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) plan, ensuring an organization's resilience against unforeseen challenges:
BCDR Framework: Every enterprise must have a BCDR strategy in place. This ensures that essential resources remain available during both scheduled and unexpected disruptions, safeguarding the continuity of operations.
Online VM Replication: In the event of a disaster or significant system failure, having replicated VMs that can be "flipped" online can significantly reduce downtime. This rapid switch ensures that vital business services continue to run, mitigating the disaster's impact on your operations.
Frequent Data Replication: While maintaining up to 30-second deltas in VM replication is achievable, it requires a robust and advanced infrastructure to realize. Typically, best practices recommend a 15-minute replication interval, which balances data integrity and system demands. You guard against potential VM corruption or misconfiguration by enabling recovery points at these intervals. In a disaster scenario, your systems will be, at most, 15 minutes behind their state before the event, ensuring data accuracy and integrity. Adopting this replication frequency minimizes potential data loss, positioning your business for a swift recovery after any disruptive event.
Incorporating these BCDR strategies into your hybrid data center bolsters your organization's resilience and readiness to tackle unexpected events, ensuring uninterrupted business operations despite potential disruptions.
Wrapping Up Why You Need a Hybrid Data Center Architecture With Secure Fabric
A secure hybrid data center is the next generation for your digital landscape. It provides cost-effective and high-performance solutions that combine on-premises and cloud features. Its hardened security layer is resilient against threats like ransomware, while Azure ARC integration simplifies management. Built for reliability, a hybrid data center protects business continuity with High Availability and smart replication strategies. In short, it's not just an upgrade; it's a strategic move towards a secure, efficient, and future-ready business.