THE EUROPEAN CONSOLIDATION BOARD


                                      European Consolidation Board for Foreign Industry (ECBFI)

CLOUD MEASUREMENT FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

 THE ECBFI HOSTED CLOUD PROJECTS

Calculating the best ROI for your Cloud Transformation Projects:

 
 
  • What is my expectancy from the cloud?
    • We will only have to focus on providing the services to the applications, what the applications do is not going to be controlled. So the questions, that whether or not the application is bloated, mobile ready, will not be covered. We how ever have to design in a way that if the application is mobile ready, does my underlying infra supports it. Similarly, the design will have to take into consideration the Elasticity of the Cloud.
  • What Platforms do we provide as a Service?
    • Essentially, “All” cannot be a good answer in the beginning, going by the 80-20 rule, we will have to pickup the platforms which are used 80% of the times. The ECBFI add other Platforms to our belt as we go, and for the platforms which are not used much, we will have very little difference.
  • Using Current Infrastructure?
    • A lot of vendors there are pushing for new infrastructure to be bought for the cloud deployment, we need to evaluate how to currently use our current infrastructure and make cloud possible, or do we have to go for the new infrastructure.
  • What is my Current approach for providing Platform?
    • This essentially provides the current way, we do platform, this should answer questions like, do I run different Virtual servers for different applications, or we run multiple instances of the application on the same Virtual Server
  • What should be my new approach?
    • Again the same questions, but what can we do to optimize that. TBD can be a good answer, if we want to do PoC on all the ones we think we should try.
  • Does my Application require PCI / Sabers Oxley Compliance?
    • In most organizations this is a Key factor, and maintaining this might be key for our customers and third parties for business reasons, this will also dictate the placement of services in the network in physical and logical sense.
  • Current and New application architecture?
    • In this we need to look at the current landscape of the Applications, e.g. which applications have what platforms and Why?
    • What coding architecture is used, including IDE’s and the development environment?
    • What do we intend to do in the future, do we continue the same way, if not, what tweaking can come in.
  • What are my ITIL standards today & tomorrow?
    • We cannot kick out ITIL in most cases, so, how do we incorporate the Change Management and Incident Management process out of the window, how do I incorporate them in my automation.
    • We also have to touch base on, since there is an abstraction, the people using our services will not be worried about the underlying pieces, but we will, how the “Cloud Operations” team will manage the cloud.
  • ECBFI SLA’s?
    • We will have to do a deep dive in this. Since this is cloud, our typical SLA’s will be based on Business Restore and not the actual problem restoration. We will have to build another internal SLA for us to fix the problem from the root.
  • Supportability
    • We will have to look at how supportable are the blocks that we choose for the implementation and how much “finger pointing” are we going to have in our environment, work around those.
  • Use Public Clouds?
    • Again, this question is one which depends on a lot of prior questions with regards to compliance and such. So what part of the application can we take to the public cloud and what cannot be taken.
    • Will I be using federation, if we go to the Public Cloud, so on and so forth.
    • Can we have the development instances in the Public Cloud.
 
Having asked ourselves this question, we can actually start choosing the options that we need to build a cloud. One thing we need to keep in mind, that there will be many moving pieces and we might have to end up writing some code ourselves to make this gel together.

Journey of The Platform to the Cloud:

The ECBFI notices rather than just posing some questions, it will be a good idea to take a Platform of a well defined industry standard and look at our choices, as this might help answer some of our questions.
 

The Platform: 

Here we will take standard “3-Tier” application architecture The Architecture is used in most of the companies that need to run with PCI/SOX compliance standards. The entity, I have not shown in the diagram is the Load balancer, as they may or may not be available in all the tiers.
image
 
Now, the Logical interconnects of the application are clear. Let us make some assumptions.
 Web Based Application
 Application Server is Java
 Database is Oracle
 The Database servers have Locally connected storage and connectivity to LUN’s

Now making these assumptions, and keeping the status quo of the application in terms of compliance, the Web-Tier is the only tier that can be moved to the cloud. In most cases, we may not have full blown 3-Tier architecture and we may collapse the Web and Application tier, in which case, we can have the Application tier moved to the Public cloud, you get the picture. If we don’t have to go ahead with the compliance, the whole data can be on a Public Cloud
 

ECBFI  Strategies:

The cloud buzz word comes with jargon like, Public, Private, Hybrid, Community, etc. We will look at a few of the strategies and the Pros and Cons of each.
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