Hybrid cloud and multi-cloud – is there a difference, and does it matter? – TechCentral

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Andrew Cruise

Vendor-neutral cloud infrastructure provider Routed says the archetypal hybrid or multi-cloud concept has become needlessly complicated. MD Andrew Cruise explains: “Ultimately, no-one ever takes a pure route and even pure public cloud does not exist. So, let’s just call it cloud and understand that it covers a variety of scenarios.”

Cruise adds that while hybrid cloud is defined as a combination of public cloud and private cloud, and multi-cloud is an extension of hybrid cloud into multiple public clouds, no enterprise deploys its infrastructure in such a linear or elegant fashion: Corners are cut, and easy options are taken.

One clear trend emerging in the current environment is the difficulty of clear collaboration among cloud providers. “Providers of cloud platforms prefer to offer unique services specific to their platform where the end user experience is typically very different across said platforms. Where collaboration is possible, it’s through open APIs (application programming interfaces), but this lowest common denominator outcome means only the most basic and standard functions and services are easy to port between platforms,” says Cruise.

In contrast, the VMWare Cloud approach combines the benefits of hyperscalers, plus local VMware Cloud-verified operators, plus private cloud foundation deployments to give the enterprise a consistent experience. “As much as developers try to standardise on one set of tools such as Kubernetes, each of the global powerhouses will attempt to offer extensions or integrations of their own to make their offering more attractive and ultimately more sticky,” says Cruise.

Local requirements

He adds that there is a need and a place for more niche cloud platforms outside the major hyperscalers because there will never be a one-size-fits-all solution from any global mega cloud provider. “Local operators will always be able to offer specific solutions to local requirements. Local cloud operators can often offer a more tailored experience to smaller and medium-sized enterprises than is possible when dealing with a faceless global public cloud corporation.”

Rather than erroneously imagining that multi-cloud is achieved simply by using Office 365 and running your website on Amazon Web Services, Cruise says it should be seen as connecting privately between owned infrastructure (which might be on VMware), hyperscalers like AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform and and/or other local cloud operators. “Initially, the strategy may be to share data, but the goal is to facilitate the seamless migration of applications, either virtual machine or container based, to the platform which is most suitable for the application at the time.”

About Routed

Routed is a true cloud provider. Secure, robust and reliable, the Routed cloud platform is vendor neutral and offers scalable, full or hybrid cloud hosting. Engaging directly or within a channel, Routed delivers cloud and infrastructure solutions to enterprise customers, wholesale partners, resellers and affiliates.

Founded in 2016 in response to a growing demand for data centre hosting solutions following the rapid growth and penetration of fast, reliable connectivity services in South Africa, Routed is led by industry veterans with over 35 years of experience in delivering and managing secure cloud and infrastructure solutions both locally and internationally. For more, visit routed.co.za.

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