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Tools and strategies for hybrid cloud management

The basic problem with migration to the cloud is the cloud management. If a company is planning to adapt either a private or a public cloud it has to answer a set questions, and with the implementation of a hybrid cloud the questions multiply even more.  



The hybrid cloud management strategy should define what needs to be managed and how best to do it, namely:    


- what share of dedicated infrastructure management processes and virtual servers will apply in the cloud?

- what is necessary to manage hybrid environment consisting of multiple public cloud services and the existing private cloud?      


For business organizations particularly important issues are security especially if their sensitive data is to be stored in the public cloud; the costs in projects without specified required bandwidth and storage capacity, and increase in the number of inappropriately managed images. Creating effective strategies for managing hybrid clouds may help to dispelling those fears.  



Defining cloud management domains      


Hybrid cloud management strategy should define what needs to be managed and how best to do it. Hybrid clouds are composed of private clouds and interact with one or multiple public clouds. Administrators of hybrid clouds are responsible for the management of computing, network and storage in several domains. With time, the set of these domains will have changed, but the management strategy and tools should remain the same.  


Cloud management policy should refer to the key issues, such as:  


• Installation and configuration policy should define rules for creating, deploying, patching, and expansion of images;

• There has to be applied access control policy to apply in cases where sensitive data and proprietary applications, such as programs that include high-value intellectual property, are used in the private or public clouds;

• Budget management and reporting policy should identify how cloud users will receive information regarding costs and use. Budgeting policy should provide for additional control measures that must be taken into account, such as denial of new images if the budget was used in 98%.  



Multi-platform tools for hybrid clouds management      


It is essentially important to know not only what aspects of the hybrids have to be managed but also to understand how to manage them. And again, as it is usually with hybrid clouds, the most important challenge is to aggregate these tasks in multiple domains.      


The necessary thing is to use multi-platform tools for the implementation of management strategies for hybrid cloud services from different providers. For example, Amazon Beanstalk supports the implementation, capacity and workload management but is limited to the Amazon cloud.      


Another thing is to determine which combination of cloud tools will be best - management can be realized on a single computer (consolidated tool service for image management, billing and monitoring) or rather through a set of specialized tools, each of which is intended for different operation in managing the cloud (e.g. Chef or Puppet).  


Hybrid cloud management poses challenges, but using the right tools can be productive. Sometimes the key issue is a combination of specialized programs and coding. In other cases, a better solution would be the cloud software platform or commercial management service. In any case, the first step is to understand what aspects of business processes has to be managed.