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Choosing the right data migration is the key to success

Calvin Gluck
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data migration strategy Cloud-first mandates from CIOs or senior leadership are pushing IT teams to migrate to the cloud faster. But how they choose to migrate their application data to a public cloud or hybrid cloud solution can have a significant impact on their business success after their data has moved. To select and to execute the right data migration strategy, your IT team must consider the 6 Rs, as outlined by AWS:

  • Repurchase
  • Rehost
  • Replatform
  • Refactor
  • Retire
  • Retain
Evaluating these six options requires expertise and an attention to detail to avoid the pitfalls that often result from overly aggressive schedules, poor migration planning, and inadequate resources.

Data migration in the real world

To learn more about cloud users’ needs, the NetApp Professional Services team, in partnership with Enterprise Strategy Group (ESG), recently surveyed 350 users. The survey revealed that most cloud users have a cloud-first approach, outnumbering users with an on-premises-first approach by 2:1.

The survey also highlighted that:
  • 93% of respondents said that cloud migration processes at their organizations could be greatly improved.
  • 79% said that they have moved workloads back from the cloud because of unforeseen issues.
  • An average of 3.6 of their application re-architecture projects in the past 12 months were overbudget and hadn’t met their timeline.
  • Refactoring a workload tends to take about 65% longer than replatforming.

Start data migration with baby steps

Taking a conservative approach is often the best way to initiate the cloud migration process. NetApp Professional Services teams have found that a rehost strategy works well if you are just starting out in the cloud. Rehosting involves moving applications from an on-premises environment into the cloud without any significant modification. Your IT team can take baby steps into the cloud and then refactor, replatform, or rebuild a more cloud-native architecture when it’s appropriate. Refactoring is much easier after applications are in the cloud, because your team can use the dynamic scalability of cloud resources to quickly spin up and down realistic development and test environments.

To enable you to replicate your current storage architecture without any significant modifications or any rewriting of code, NetApp Professional Services can help you quickly identify and implement the right NetApp® solutions:
  • NetApp Cloud Volumes Service and Azure NetApp Files help you easily migrate SMB/CIFS shares and NFS exports into AWS, Microsoft Azure, or Google Cloud.
  • NetApp Cloud Volumes ONTAP® software provides the same NetApp ONTAP data management features that are available for on-premises NetApp storage systems, but in the cloud. Cloud Volumes ONTAP uses NetApp SnapMirror® technology to replicate between cloud and on-premises environments.
  • Cloud Volumes ONTAP also supports iSCSI so that you can easily move your block storage into the cloud. If you now use the FC Protocol to access applications through block storage, you can easily change to the iSCSI Protocol in the cloud by using iSCSI initiators in your cloud instances.
If you want to keep your production workloads on premises while you move your development, test, user acceptance testing (UAT), and/or disaster recovery workloads into the cloud, NetApp Professional Services can help. We help you implement a migration strategy that enables your stakeholders to gain experience in the minor changes that are required to continue business operations in the cloud. Your team also builds the confidence to introduce business-critical workloads to the cloud.

Look to the experts

Unlike other cloud vendors, NetApp Professional Services experts have been leading large-scale data migrations, on premises and to the cloud, for more than two decades. Our cloud specialists can help you begin your cloud journey with a quick and efficient migration strategy that meets your business needs now and in the future.

Take the first step on your cloud journey. Learn more about how NetApp Data Migration Services offer the expertise, efficiency, and simplicity that you need.

Source: ESG Research Insights Report commissioned by NetApp, How Hybrid Cloud Environments Are Changing IT Architecture Priorities, April 2021

Calvin Gluck

Calvin Gluck is a Migrations Specialist with 14 years of experience leading complex consulting engagements with customers globally in his roles as a Consultant, Technical Marketing Engineer and Program Manager. He lives in Arlington, TX.

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