How Software-defined Solutions Make Multicloud Financially Feasible
- April 14, 2023
Is cloud repatriation becoming a new trend? According to a recent TechCrunch article, many organizations are starting to migrate their workloads and data out of the public cloud and back on-premises to “escape out-of-control costs, deepening complexity and restrictive vendor lock-in.”
While there have been some stories in the press and on social media about a great cloud exodus, it may be a bit overblown. Both the Dell 2022 GDPI Index and ESG’s IT Spending Intentions Survey report most organizations have been running about a 50/50 mix of workloads between their on-premises infrastructure and the public cloud for several years, and this shows no signs of abating. Still, the issues of rising public cloud costs, increased cloud complexity and cloud vendor lock-in are all valid concerns.
Let’s first look at costs. As I wrote about in a past blog, an Andreesen Horowitz report points to the fiscal wizardry involved with trying to accurately predict multi-year cloud spending when negotiating contracts with cloud service providers. In short, most organizations either underestimate or overestimate their cloud resource consumption requirements, resulting in higher cloud spending or a forfeiture of unused cloud credits.
Another challenge is prudent fiscal management. FinOps or “financial operations” refers to a process whereby the finance department works collectively with IT operations and engineering teams to optimize cloud costs. It entails deploying tools to monitor and manage cloud costs, establishing cloud cost governance policies and communicating with stakeholders to reduce waste and reallocate resources.
According to ESG, those organizations that have implemented a “FinOps” model for managing cloud resource consumption have either met or exceeded their expectations with saving money in the cloud. On the other hand, those that have not adopted FinOps tend to spend more in the cloud than they anticipated.
While no silver bullet, FinOps at least provides a methodology for enabling organizations to maintain an active line of sight into their cloud spending patterns so they can fine tune as needed. Without such fiscal controls in place, it is more likely for cloud spending to go off the rails.
As cited in the TechCrunch article, increased cloud complexity is another big hurdle that organizations often face. Deploying workloads in the cloud creates additional data silos that need to be managed, protected and secured. Organizations need to determine what solutions they are going to use to manage cloud storage, as well as tools for protecting data and enabling cyber resilience for multiple workload types (e.g., VMs, Kubernetes containers, SaaS). And given the persistent concerns around cloud costs, it’s especially important these solutions help optimize cloud resource consumption.
IT automation is yet another key element for any modern infrastructure solution. With IT administrative resources stretched thin, it’s critically important to adopt solutions that make multicloud management easier for IT teams. This requires a consistent set of tools that help drive more automation into storage management, data protection and cyber resiliency for workloads wherever they reside across on-premises data centers, edge locations and public cloud environments.
Dell has partnered with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to deliver a comprehensive set of storage, data protection and cyber recovery solutions through the AWS marketplace which address many of the issues around growing cloud costs and IT complexity. Available in the AWS marketplace, they deliver the consistent operations, efficiencies and automation needed to ensure the performance, protection and security of workloads and data wherever they reside across multicloud environments.
Dell PowerFlex is a software-defined storage solution that provides highly scalable and flexible storage options that can easily accommodate the changing demands of modern enterprise workloads. With support for block and file services, PowerFlex optimizes cloud resource costs since compute and storage resources can be scaled independently to match the unique requirements of the underlying workload (VMs, Kubernetes containers and Amazon EKS). PowerFlex simplifies management through a unified control plane, enabling IT teams to easily configure, monitor and optimize their storage environment from a single interface, whether workloads are in edge locations, in the data center or in AWS.
Dell PowerProtect Cyber Recovery and PowerProtect Data Protection Solutions are also available in the AWS marketplace environment. From virtual machines and Kubernetes containers to SaaS, organizations can simplify the protection and cyber resiliency of workloads wherever they reside and do so with a common set of tools that deliver increased automation, operational consistency and IT simplicity. Dell data protection solution offerings also deliver up to 77% less cloud data protection resource costs in AWS, helping organizations optimize cloud storage resource consumption and lower costs.
Combined, Dell PowerFlex and PowerProtect data protection offerings for AWS give organizations the software-defined capabilities they need to address many of the challenges associated with increasing cloud and data center costs and complexity. By providing a more automated way to ensure application workload performance, protection and resiliency, while optimizing resource consumption, these solutions enable organizations to simplify IT, lower costs and better align cloud infrastructure spending with actual business needs.