Hyperscale or Enterprise Cloud? Let Your Applications Decide – Part 2

Author:
Doug Theis

This is the second installment of a two-part blog post on the difference between “smart” and “dumb” applications. Part 2 covers the characteristics of “dumb applications” that are best suited to run on “smart hardware.” To learn more about “smart applications” (aka cloud native applications) running on “dumb hardware,” read Part 1.

Dumb Applications on Smart Hardware

Dumb applications are traditional applications that typically run on Windows, Linux, and VMware infrastructure. There is little to no redundancy built in to the application code, hence “dumb applications.”  If the application needs to be highly reliable, the underlying computer hardware and operating system must be smart and resilient enough to handle hardware failures, network connection problems, and malware attacks, hence the term smart hardware.

Most line of business applications like manufacturing ERPs, Electronic Medical Records, and industry-specific software still fall in to the category of dumb applications.  These applications were often developed before the advent of cloud computing and are still most applications running in on-premises, colocated data centers, and hosted Windows and Linux environments. The best fit for dumb applications on smart hardware is usually a hardware-redundant enterprise cloud such as Expedient’s Enterprise Cloud platform.

Enterprise Cloud Considerations

When evaluating if an enterprise cloud is a good fit for a “dumb” application, make sure to consider the service by:

  • Familiarity – Does the enterprise cloud your considering use hypervisors, operating systems and tooling that are industry standard and familiar to your IT staff or your IT service providers?
  • Performance – Is the underlying hardware/software architecture fast enough to match or exceed the existing software implementation, or to meet your users’ needs?
  • Economics – Is the cost of using the enterprise cloud predictable? Does it show appropriate return on investment when the hardware, software licensing, data protection and reduction in IT staff labor is evaluated?
  • Automation Capability – Does the enterprise cloud have an API that allows your IT team to automate and control the compute environment programmatically?
  • Service level agreements – Does the enterprise cloud’s SLA match up with your organization’s expected recovery times and recovery points?
  • Network – How flexible will your network be with an enterprise cloud provider? Can you connect to an existing wide area network?  Can the enterprise cloud provider include connectivity in to the offering?  Does the enterprise cloud provider offer faster, more cost-conscious connections to multiple clouds if you need them?
  • Financial stability – How long has the enterprise cloud provider delivered services? Does the provider innovate and improve their cloud regularly?  What is the debt load of the provider?  Who is the enterprise cloud provider’s first consideration:  stockholders, private equity, leadership or clients?

Did you know? In a recent independent cloud analysis performed by Cloud Spectator LLC, the Expedient Enterprise Cloud platform largely outperformed comparable instances from AWS, Azure and Rackspace. Download your free copy of the benchmark report to see the results.

Doug Theis is the Director of Market Strategy in Expedient’s Indianapolis market focused on engaging with and improving the regional IT community through planning, sponsoring and attending community events, facilitating IT-focused continuing education opportunities, and sharing strategies, tactics, and research to help IT professionals stay abreast of best practices and industry trends. Connect with Doug at doug.theis@expedient.com and follow him on Twitter.

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