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1 Moving To Hybrid 5 Reasons To Make The Move 1 Moving To Hybrid Sponsored by Zynstra

2 Executive summary More and more companies are switching to cloud, with most of them adopting a hybrid approach. But what are the practical considerations for such a move? What key areas should businesses be thinking about? Within the next year, many small businesses are going to be faced with a hard choice, something they haven t had to face for many years. The crunch will come when Microsoft withdraws support for its business workhorse Microsoft Windows Server 2003 and those SMBs still using the software about eight million globally, according to Gartner will be faced with the difficult choice of what to replace it with. That something else in many cases is a hybrid cloud system, a way of making the best use of resources. It s an approach taken by many companies and in a variety of ways. For example, Zynstra s Cloud Managed Server Appliances offer a way for companies to deploy the best of cloud and keep their LAN systems running. This unique Hybrid IT approach allows organisations to work out where best to place their software, apps and data to ensure they stay in control. It s an attractive prospect, but it can also be a daunting one. In many cases, there s an issue about getting started and how to approach a radical move one that is potentially very different from anything that has come before and/or been handled by the person in charge of the IT selection process. They will have plenty of questions about the transformation, in particular: where does my data reside? something they may not have had to consider previously. When everything is onpremise this is not an issue, but when cloud is brought into the equation, everything changes. They ll need to consider if there are any commercial, security or performance reasons to maintain on-site control for some or all of their resources. This is especially true if the company is in a highly regulated industry, one that places restrictions on where data can be stored. Regulations are not the only factors to consider, however. In other cases, the question of where data is located is primarily about performance or convenience ensuring users can get at the data when they need it. For example, having a local copy is the most convenient option for staff who are normally in an office (or several offices) as it allows fast access times over the LAN. However, a mobile workforce may prefer data in the cloud so that they can access that data from anywhere, across multiple devices. 1 Choice This is the beauty of Hybrid IT it offers customers an element of choice and a best of both worlds approach. Remote users can use VPNs for secure access to data but those employees prefer to work in the cloud, for example, those who are using systems such as Office 365, this can be backed up to an onpremise system. Software specialist Concorde shows how this demarcation can work in practice. The company wanted to keep control of its user credentials and retain local file and print management 2 Moving To Hybrid Sponsored by Zynstra

3 capabilities. It also wanted to run local development and test services and retain full control over security. At the same time, the company needed to ensure that its customers were not left high and dry; Concorde had to ensure that the infrastructure was capable of supporting peak-loads that were difficult to run on a fixed infrastructure. As test and development set-ups tend to be performance intensive, it made sense to keep that on the LAN putting that in the cloud would have been prohibitively expensive. 2 Security Data security is another important issue. Either the business attitude to the risk of data in the cloud or regulatory/compliance guidelines may dictate that certain data and applications continue to remain in a location controlled by the business. In some cases, there may be technical barriers, such as the service not yet being offered (as SaaS) or incompatibility with cloud resources (deploying the application on to IaaS). Many SMBs have line-of-business applications that would be costly to move to the cloud or may be dependent on on-premise performance characteristics like low latency and high bandwidth LAN connectivity. It can t be denied, however, that some companies like to keep everything in-house. This could just be due to a desire to stay in control, or it could be that the firm has previously had a bad experience with managed IT service companies. 3 Performance Performance is a consideration for some applications. Being on-premise, on the LAN, provides high-speed access for users and may be required if data volumes are very high. While it s certainly possible to deploy high-performance processing on large amounts of data in the cloud, it may not be economically feasible for SMBs both in terms of renting cloud resources and the outlay for high-speed internet connectivity. Indeed, some organisations may be sited in areas of poor connectivity. According to a recent survey from the Federation of Small Businesses, more than 45,000 companies are still operating using dial-up services and a whopping 90 per cent are unhappy with the speeds offered by their providers. In such circumstances, talk of which applications to move to the cloud can become academic. 4 Cost In some cases, there s no technical reason not to move to the cloud, but the company s finance director may find economic barriers. The danger here is that calculations are too rudimentary and the FD weighs up the cost of SaaS-based application subscriptions purely against on-premise licensing costs, with no regard for the considerable man-hours involved in keeping the IT resources running. In fact, a hybrid approach could offer extreme financial benefits, with companies paying for what was used rather than having to over-commit and over-provision. But if you do circumnavigate all these constraints, there s still the question of which applications to move if at all. It s plain that the first to be moved are the ones where timing is of the essence, for example, Windows Server With support due to end in July 2015, it s a perfect opportunity for those companies with this on board to look elsewhere. 3 Moving To Hybrid Sponsored by Zynstra

4 The option to go for a similar SMB-focused Microsoft product is no longer on the cards as Microsoft, in its new cloud-centric manifestation, is only looking to the cloud. While it may be difficult for some managers to move away from the tried-and-tested software that they know, adopting Hybrid IT would be an efficient departure for them. There will be far less management required, freeing up IT staff to spend more time with their users. 5 Flexibility One of the major benefits of a hybrid approach is that there s no requirement to move everything to the cloud right from the outset or at all. The move from Windows Server 2003 or Small Business Server 2003 to Office 365 is a radical disruption in its own right without the need to move other legacy apps as well. Contrast this with the traditional on-premise approach: the introduction of new server software would entail a good deal of integration with existing applications. It s certainly not a simple task. With Hybrid IT, you can migrate some services to the cloud while maintaining legacy apps in a private cloud, ready for migration at some point in the future if required. It shouldn t be assumed that a cloud migration is something simple. Too often, companies underestimate the amount of effort required. Indeed, there can be the assumption that it requires less skill and upfront investment. Crucially, companies also get the financial equation wrong: there s no guarantee that migrating to the cloud will result in cloud-like savings. Within any hybrid system even one where a significant proportion is in the cloud on-premise IT must be looked at and integrated with the cloud services. The problem is that the solution is often a bespoke one, with layers of complexity that require a lot of specialist integration and management. These systems place tremendous demands on IT personnel who have to become familiar with the software and servers they expect to manage as well as the performance of an array of networking, WAN, and internet components. For example, moving from managing security on a Windows-based LAN, to delivering SSO to multiple cloud-services over the internet or via IPsec/VPN can be daunting. And the cost of getting it wrong is severe. Zynstra s Hybrid IT solution does all that work, meaning maintaining user security permissions continues to be achieved using familiar tools like Active Directory. The Zynstra approach is different. It offers a robust, consistent solution, giving enormous economies of scale in terms of design, integration and maintenance of a Hybrid IT solution. By doing this at scale, and enabling cloud management of the customer s appliance, the company offers cloud-economics for a zero-capex, monthly subscription fee. Hybrid IT offers an effective way to move from a system that has reached the end of its life to a flexible and modern approach to IT. It s one that should ensure a small business will not be hidebound by out-of-date systems and can serve its customers effectively. 4 Moving To Hybrid Sponsored by Zynstra

5 About Zynstra Zynstra is a software company, formed by experienced technology and business entrepreneurs. We have a track record in creating enterprise grade software, and delivering it into successful operation inside some of the most complex and rigorous IT organisations in the world. Our experience has shown us how to delight our customers with a single-minded focus on how software can help them grow and save them money. We are proud to have been awarded Most Innovative SMB Cloud Solution at the 2014 UK Cloud Awards Zynstra s Cloud Managed Server Appliances deliver enterprise class IT on an SMB budget. Our Hybrid IT as a Service offers a fully managed central platform that runs your entire IT real estate no matter where your applications and data reside, on-premise or in the cloud. You choose where your data is located, who accesses what, where and how. We can take care of the rest. With Zynstra s Cloud Managed Server Appliances you get: Best of both worlds: You choose where your applications and data reside and who accesses what, where and how. Keep Current IT: A solution that scales with your organisation. No more IT refresh, no upfront capital investment and we will replace hardware when it goes end of life. Maintenance free IT: No manual patching of the operating system or managed applications, no server security updates or backup management required. A self-healing solution provides a high software SLA whilst Hardware break fix service is also included and managed for you, reducing your server admin by 90%+. Enhanced security: Complete on-premise control of user access privileges and data protection. Secure integration & migration options from your existing system to Zynstra s Cloud Managed Server Appliance. Automated backup & disaster recovery options provide cost effective data assurance and business continuity capability. Excellent service level commitments: Our self-healing solution reduces software/application downtime whilst our appliance design and clustering capability offer high availability on- premise hardware for a predictable and affordable fee. Monitored 24/7 and.supported by experts dedicated to helping you, including next day hardware fix if required. Pay per month: a flexible monthly OPEX model instead of large, and potentially prohibitive, CAPEX outlay. To find out more visit: 5 Moving To Hybrid Sponsored by Zynstra

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