Choosing Azure – Choosing Wisely
Among the many reasons behind the growing popularity of Microsoft Azure, the top ones are that it can support everything from identity and access management to disaster recovery to serverless computing. Let’s take a look at Azure’s various advantages and why choosing Azure is the best step forward for your organization.
From 35% to 58%, that’s how much Microsoft Azure adoption grew over the past year, based on the enterprises surveyed in the “RightScale 2018 State of the Cloud Report.” This goes to show that more and more companies are migrating to Azure and many more are in the process of considering the prospect.
At Redington, one of the major questions from our customers when considering Azure is “What should our first steps be?”. The question is rather interesting because many of them are already using Microsoft Office 365, which uses Azure Active Directory for Identity and Access Management (IAM). This foundation is helpful for quickly starting up to extend Azure Active Directory to other user management process and include multi-fact authentication and conditional access support.
Azure provides another layer of protection by enabling a wide variety of ID management options. This is crucial because most of the major issues faced by organization is to identify and track every user to ensure appropriate access to necessary resources and to quickly identify inappropriate behaviour.
Make Disaster Recovery a part of your Azure strategy
It doesn’t really matter whether or not you use Office 365, it’s advisable to make sure that you include a review of current disaster recovery and business continuity (DR/BC) plans as part of your Azure strategy. This applies even if you already have a DR/BC plan. This is an ideal time to reassess it as part of your Azure strategy. The primary question to ask yourself is, whether have you tested and validated the plan? If the answer is no, please consider taking advantage of Azure’s built-in tools for site recovery and backup. Azure can easily integrate with your existing on-premises backup solutions, namely Commvault and Veeam. It’s an easy task to configure Azure to serve as your backup target.
To give a solid example, we worked with an enterprise that wasn’t sure if its disaster recovery plan would actually work. This doubt was accentuated by the fact that their system was complex and used a multisite environment, which made it doubly challenging to perform a full failover test.
At this point, the enterprise took a rather wonderful decision. They decided to move away from working purely on faith and reached out to Redington to migrate their business continuity strategy to Azure Site Recovery. This included their ability to test restore the environment to a sandbox. This move helped them prove to their auditors that its disaster recovery plan was bulletproof, by showcasing their key infrastructure elements into the Azure sandbox.
Right time to consider Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)
While your organization is busy implementing DR/BC plan using Azure, this is also the right time to consider Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). This could prove to be a beneficial move for your organization, especially when your servers, storage area networks and various other infrastructure approaching the end of its usability. We at Redington help you save yourself from falling back on to your old equipment. We can help you identify the exact feature and plan that offers you full value for your money.
Just because you now have access to IaaS doesn’t mean you have to move all your workloads. We help you identify the right workloads in the right order to move. This is because, from our experience we have the understanding that some workloads are best left on-premise and not move to cloud, as it’s easier to comply to various external regulations such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) etc.
The effort Microsoft has invested in planning and designing how Azure integrated with third parties gives it the leverage to handle any type and scale of integration. Azure is built upon common standards and protocols, such as REST APIs, direct bash scripting, use of GIT repositories etc. This allows IT staff to use what they are comfortable with. Azure is a boon to those who prefer using open source platforms as it is compatible with open-source protocols like Linux.
All this sends a clear message that Azure has a lot to offer. The benefits are so numerous that in order to get the most of it, organizations are increasingly seeking help from us to handle their migration strategies.
Start now and we guarantee you that by next year this time your organization will be another success story for Azure!