#SDAS #cloud

The market has embraced cloud.

Or has it?

A superficial reading of will tell you that the majority (a very big majority) of those surveyed have, in fact, adopted cloud.


But dig just beneath the surface and you'll likely find a very different story. Sure, 80% (I made that number up but it's reasonable given all the survey data) of customers have adopted cloud, but a much smaller percentage of their apps have moved to the cloud.

For example, when we (as in the corporate We) asked organizations this summer what percentage of apps have been moved to the cloud, Most (58%) indicated fewer than 50% of their apps will be moved to the cloud. How many will move all their apps? Fewer than 6%. Tata consulting, too, in its 2014 survey on the adoption of cloud applications found that on average organizations have about 24% of their apps in the cloud. Your mileage may vary, of course. But suffice to say that organizations are not "fully" cloudified, nor are they likely to be anytime soon.

That means two things:

1. There's still more apps to move to the cloud.

2. Hybrid wins.

That's no surprise to Rightscale, whose 2014 State of the Cloud Survey found 74% of enterprises have a hybrid strategy, with 50% of those already using a mix of private and public clouds.

What that means, however, is that IT and CIOs have to change. They have to adjust to operating hybrid data centers.

Which means that we (well, actually you because you're in the trenches and I'm not) have to start looking at cloud migration patterns instead of just adoption and how that impacts things like security perimeters and access control and application performance management as organizations continue to move some apps to the cloud, keep some at home, and go SaaS for still others.

And we're starting to mix more "things" in, too. Which is only going to continue to complexify deployments.

the hybrid problem

The impact is that it's really difficult to apply access controls to something in the cloud using traditional models that force users and consumers to come to the enterprise data center where that service is hosted first. That has a very negative impact on performance, at a minimum. Similarly, applying acceleration or other performance enhancing services at the enterprise edge when the app is out there, in the cloud, might negate with additional travel time across the Internet any gains that might be had. Some services should be closer to the user - SSO, secure web gateway, GSLB - and others should be closer to the app - SSL, load balancing, web application firewall. But when apps are way over there and users are, well, anywhere, that's much easier said than done.

Much in the same way CDNs emerged to move content closer to the users and thus improve the all critical application response time, there will also need to be new service delivery models that embrace the notion of "hybrid" cloud and take advantage of it to move services closer to the apps and the users that consume them.

Hybrid will be the norm, not just for cloud and data centers, but everything.