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Hybrid Cloud: The gateway to growth for businesses

Hybrid cloud market has been growing significantly over the last five years because of flexible offering across private and public clouds.

With businesses (from small to large scale, across all industries) moving more towards cloud deployments, security, protection of intellectual property, compliance and reliance on legacy infrastructure have become impedance to enterprises moving towards public clouds.

Organisations are looking out for a solution which offers the essence of public clouds and incorporates the security and compliance elements. Hybrid cloud offers the indispensable solution which meets all these requirements.

Expansion of the hybrid cloud market

According to Orbis research, the value of the hybrid cloud market was USD 45.70 billion in 2019. It is expected to reach USD 128.01 billion by 2025 at an annual growth rate of 18.73% during 2020-2025. 

It has been noted that the hybrid cloud market has been growing significantly over the last five years, primarily because of flexible offering across private and public clouds. Business adoption of hybrid cloud grew by 7% in 2019 amounting to 58% as per the RightScale survey. Forbes anticipates that around 22% (total of 83% including public, private, and hybrid cloud) of enterprise workload will be served by the hybrid cloud by 2020. 

This is likely to grow further in the coming years. 

Hybrid cloud security

In a Vanson Bourne research, it was concluded that nearly 73% companies (sample size of 2650 IT companies) are moving some of their application back to the on-premise cloud due to flexibility and security requirements.

State of Cloud usage report
                                                                  Enterprise Cloud Strategy


What is a hybrid cloud?

Hybrid cloud is a concoction of both private and public cloud with orchestration between the two solutions. A private cloud is an on-premise solution which is physically located on the company’s onsite data centre. It can be either managed by the company itself, or with the help of private cloud providers. Whereas, public cloud is fully controlled by the third-party cloud providers which offer infrastructure, platform and software as a service over the public internet. 

Hybrid cloud computing

According to some facts, hybrid cloud computing became a buzzword in 2006 when tech giants like Amazon and Google started using it as a part of their technology innovation. According to the MIT technology review, cloud computing was in use since 1996 but with limited development. Today, cloud computing has become a de-facto data deployment standard for most of the enterprises as it offers cost-effective, scalable, performance rich, quick to deploy, versatile, and fault-tolerant solutions.

Enterprises were heavily dependent on physical data centres for running most of their businesses and were considering to move their IT infrastructure to clouds over a period of time. 

For this situation, a hybrid cloud offers a plausible solution. The applications can move to a public cloud for large data processing, storage during heavy load. It can also be run on a private cloud during normal load thus not throwing away the legacy private network running for years.

A paradigm shift – Public cloud vs. Private cloud

It is effortless to host large applications with cloud computing. Enterprises no longer need to worry about expanding physical servers, adding more storage, complex networking, increased downtime, complex maintenance and cost.

However, data integrity and security remain a matter of significant concern with the public cloud as the servers and storage are in physical possession of the cloud providers.

Private cloud, on the other hand, gives comprehensive control of data to organisations, limiting the data exposure within its internal network.  It creates a secure environment to protect their intellectual property. However, it lacks flexible maintenance and scalability.

What is cloud security

Cloud security is the need of the hour. Enterprises are investing in data security to prevent data breaches. Hybrid cloud overcomes the shortcoming of the public cloud by keeping business-critical applications limited to the private cloud while moving development and test applications to the public cloud.

Nevertheless, it is a go-to-market strategy for organisations which need big data capabilities as their sensitive data is retained on local physical storage through a private cloud.

It incorporates technologies which allow organisations to extend their private networks to the cloud provider’s public network through internet protocol security (IPSEC) VPN tunnel.  IPSEC VPN tunnel has a provision for multi-bit unbreakable strong data encryption for data security.

Organisations can use the public cloud’s big data platform like AWS’s EMR, for large data processing. Such platforms construct highly available clusters to meet the increasing scale through inbuilt support for numerous tools such as Hive, Spark, HBase, Flink, Hudi and Presto.

Enterprises vs. Hybrid clouds

Many organisations are upgrading their IT infrastructure to support large data processing and analytics for ever-growing data volumes. This opens the doors to hybrid clouds. Organisations which need to sustain a dynamic load are pushing the hybrid cloud usage. Most cloud providers have a provision for auto-scaling of the resources. This enables organisations to sustain the increased load and be cost-effective. They only pay for the resources they use.

Enterprises which have already invested in an on-premise cloud solution are taking advantage of hybrid cloud to address the increasing resource requirement through the public cloud’s on-demand features.

Hybrid Cloud and DevOps

DevOps is yet another paradigm shift in software development life cycle. It supports agile project execution techniques and brings development, test, and operation teams together to deliver products with quick-to-market principles. 

While organisations want to keep intellectual process data to their private cloud, they can also leverage the public cloud’s profound catchment of DevOps resources for faster execution of projects. This includes tools for continuous integration and continuous development (CI/CD) (AWS’s CodePipeline, CodeBuild, CodeDeploy and CodeStar) along with microservices architecture using containers and serverless computing. 

Hybrid cloud becomes a pre-eminent solution to address DevOps needs for organisations. It allows business managers to have greater control over critical resources through the private cloud while the developers can use DevOps tools provided by public cloud for faster project execution.

Which companies offer hybrid cloud?

Amazon Web Service:

Amazon provides ‘AWS Outposts’ which is a hybrid cloud solution offering. Outposts makes use of AWS infrastructure, services, APIs, management, tools, support and operating model. In this model, one can run Amazon EC2 (Elastic Compute Cloud), Amazon EBS (Elastic Block Store), Amazon EKS (Elastic Kubernetes Service) on AWS Outposts. It also offers big data analytics services such as Amazon EMR (Elastic MapReduce) to be run on-premise cloud.

Microsoft Azure: 

Microsoft offers Hybrid Cloud solution as ‘Azure Stack’. Azure stack HCI solutions help run virtualised applications on-premise. It enables organisations to use Azure edge technologies to have consistent experiences in the cloud and at the edge even when the organisations are not connected to the internet. Azure stack helps reduce network latency through its ExpressRoute and provides ease of connectivity across multiple locations through its virtual WAN capability.    

IBM Cloud: 

IBM provides hybrid cloud platform which has an integrated environment for both public and private clouds and improves the experience with better flexibility and balance. IBM hybrid cloud offers a platform where organisations can manage speed and security, decrease network latency, and build high-performance applications. It provides a single open platform to build single Kubernetes container for both private and public cloud. It also provides integration solutions and seamless DevOps hybrid cloud experience across the private and public cloud. 

Google Cloud Platform: 

Google has recently launched a new multi-cloud platform ‘Anthos’ which allows organisations to run applications from anywhere. Anthos can run apps, unmodified, on existing on-prem hardware investments or in the public cloud. Anthos hybrid functionality is available on both Google Cloud Platform (GCP) with Google Kubernetes Engine(GKE), and in physical datacentres with GKE On-prem. Google has also partnered with Cisco to provide Cisco Hybrid Cloud Platform which uses Cisco’s private cloud infrastructure along with Google’s public cloud Platform(GCP). Cisco Hybrid Cloud Platform incorporates new container ‘Istio’ which allows you to use policy-driven controls.  


VMware’s Hybrid Cloud Platform’ provides hybrid cloud solution in partner with AWS, ‘VMware Cloud on AWS’. A large number of organisations are using VMware offering in the private cloud. This hybrid solution helps them move VMware vSphere based environment to AWS cloud seamlessly which takes advantage of Amazon Elastic Compute cloud’s(EC2) bare-metal infrastructure. VMware has also partnered with Dell EMC for the hybrid cloud solution, ‘VMware Cloud on Dell EMC’ empowering on-premises Dell EMC infrastructure and hybrid cloud-ready VMware offering.


Rackspace’s hybrid cloud solution combines public cloud, private cloud and single-tenant dedicated environments. Unlike other hybrid solutions, Rackspace offers multi-cloud flexibility which allows organizations to connect the bare metal environment to the private and public cloud of their choice, such as AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform, OpenStack and VMware.

Written by Ashish Kumar, Contributor, fastnforward.blog


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