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While most organizations prefer to move their systems and data to a private, public, or hybrid IT solution there is a growing trend of migrating off the cloud and back to on-premises solutions due to cost, performance, and security considerations. Migration can be complicated by technical and workflow issues like compatibility and business continuity, so you need to have an effective strategy in place.
Migration is the process of redeploying an application or data storage to a new infrastructure, usually for performance, security, or pricing considerations. You can migrate with a lift-and-shift approach, without altering your application, or you can use a refactoring approach to restructure or rewrite the code of your application to fit the new environment.
Challenges to migration include ensuring data security and integrity, the compatibility of applications with new environments, and maintaining business continuity.
Many organizations opt for a cloud migration strategy, moving their systems and data to a private, public, or hybrid cloud solution. In cloud-to-cloud migration, organizations transfer applications or data from one cloud environment to another. Large cloud providers offer tools to help manage cloud migration.
Reverse cloud migration, also known as cloud repatriation, involves moving your applications back to an on- infrastructure or to a private cloud. Typically, organizations transfer part or all of their business components from a public cloud to a local data center, which is more secure and offers greater control over the computing environment.
According to an IDC survey, repatriation from public clouds is a growing trend, although public cloud services remain popular. The survey found that:
One solution for evolving demands is the emergence of hybrid storage solutions that combine both on-prem (or private cloud storage) and public cloud storage. Together they combine the performance and scalability of public cloud offerings with the security and customizability of private or on-premises deployments. But for hybrid solutions to be viable, the two solutions (on-prem and public cloud) need to be interoperable.
On-premises computing environments differ from cloud environments in that the user owns and manages the technology. In theory, an on- solution could utilize the same technology as a cloud solution, but the consumption model is different. In practice, cloud providers are unlikely to offer specialist computing equipment, and cloud users have to rely on generic tools.
Furthermore, some government regulations require the use of on- data storage and operations to protect sensitive information. Organizations in the government, health, and financial sectors cannot rely solely on a cloud provider to ensure compliance with security regulations.
On the other hand, the large, dispersed networks of public cloud infrastructures provide greater redundancy and allow many organizations to access more computing resources than they otherwise could. On-premises environments typically require a larger up-front investment and are more complex to maintain.
Why do companies migrate back from the cloud to on-premises?
Companies migrate back to on-premises storage for a number of reasons. Some of the considerations for repatriation include:
Planning is key to ensuring a successful cloud exit. An adequate plan ensures business continuity and secures your applications when transferring them. You should prepare in advance in case you need to make a quick exit.
To build an exit strategy:
It is important to use cloud compatible storage devices when implementing reverse cloud migration. This allows you to integrate seamlessly between cloud and on-premises systems in a hybrid solution. You can use a solution like Cloudian that lets you move your data on-premises and continue working as you did in the cloud. It is compatible with cloud-based storage services, so applications can continue accessing cloud data. Cloudian recreates the scalability of the public cloud in your own private data center.
Learn more about Cloudian’s private cloud storage solutions