The benefits that come with cloud migration are plenty and undeniable, making it hard for any modern company to resist this transition. To make the process smooth, companies usually follow a cloud migration strategy . The lift & shift cloud migration is among the most popular ones. Application migration via the lift & shift pathway is, certainly, a very effective and user-friendly approach to securely moving to the cloud.
On the lift & shift cloud migration path
The main reason why the lift & shift cloud migration is such a popular migration method is that it doesn’t require any modifications to the already existing application. It simply involves replicating your data in a different environment, without changing the existing software architecture.
In this regard, the lift & shift — or just rehosting — sounds simple and fast; and it is. Indeed, it allows for greater flexibility; at least, up to a degree. Yet, no matter how simple and fast the lift & shift is, it does require a few best practices on your part, as a CTO. That is, to ensure a safe and successful migration to the cloud.
5 Best practices for a successful lift & shift cloud migration
Migrating to the cloud — and everything it entails — may overwhelm even an experienced team. To help your team make a smooth lift & shift, you need to keep the following best practices in mind:
1. Create an effective plan for the migration
Although the lift & shift cloud migration approach is easy, it still requires thorough planning. Creating a plan — where you’ll be mapping out and documenting each step in detail — will help you, as a CTO, to avoid mistakes and save thousands of wasted hours, due to improper implementation. Also, you may want to consider automation, when planning the migration; especially if you have many applications and heavy workloads to move to the cloud.
2. Understand migration costs
As you plan and design for this transition, focusing on costs should be a priority. Despite the fact that a lift & shift cloud migration strategy is cost-effective, understanding migration costs will help you ensure your migration’s long-term success. Hence, it’s important to come up with the best possible financial model. One that will calculate how much you’ll spend for the migration of applications, services, and projects.
3. Implement a security and IAM mechanism
One would think that moving to the cloud would eliminate security concerns; but that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, security — including identity and access management (IAM) — is a major concern for CTOs, even in the cloud. As security and IAM practices are quite different from those implemented with on-premise infrastructure, you should come up with security and role-based access procedures. It’s the best way to ensure a safe transition.
4. Utilize automation, whenever possible
When following the lift & shift cloud migration method, you can either choose to go manually or utilize automation technology and platforms. In the case of manual lift & shift, you should expect to encounter various challenges, along the way. Manual migration can be a lengthy, troublesome process; especially when moving complex database applications. That’s mainly because of the numerous resource-demanding tasks and the high probability of human error.
Rather than complicating your migration effort, automation will streamline it, making the process more seamless for you. Furthermore, since automation won’t leave room for human error and inattention, it will accelerate the migration process. At the same time, it will allow you to control migration costs and timelines much more effectively.
To take things a step further with your lift & shift cloud migration, you can opt for a self-service DevOps platform, such as Cycleops, so you can deploy apps in your cloud environment with one click, using reusable stack templates.
5. Look for opportunities to standardize
Without a doubt, standardization can play a pivotal role in your journey toward cloud migration success. How can you achieve standardization? Using the automation mechanism you’ve ideally already set up, you can start designing redeployable stack templates. And you can automatically run those templates across your environments. Cycleops offers this capability via the Ansible automation machine, providing a graphical stack builder that draws built-in units from a rich service collection. With stack standardization, your Dev team will rest assured that they’re on the right track, when building new services or maintaining existing ones.
Get ready for the cloud, with Cycleops
While lift & shift cloud migration is an effective and straightforward strategy, it requires a comprehensive plan — and the right tools — to bring it to fruition. Otherwise, you won’t be able to have control over your applications and databases during (and, after) your cloud migration. Not to mention their highly complex, mission-critical components.
To that end, Cycleops can help you prepare for the cloud. That is, by offering all the automation and standardization opportunities you need, to make your transition hassle-free and sound. With its self-service DevOps approach, Cycleops will allow you to concentrate on further developing your applications. That is, of course, rather than wasting time on complicated installations and configurations.
At the end of the day, with Cycleops, and the lift & shift best practices we discussed here, you can overcome any challenge that comes your way. And you can help your company implement a successful cloud migration.