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The public cloud captures the attention of businesses with promises of getting applications up and running fast, ease of use, and the draw of household names like Amazon and Microsoft. Yet, many technology leaders have found that business agility and brand names come at a premium. Many are rethinking their deployments and considering repatriation due to mounting costs.

Although public cloud adoption is progressing rapidly, less than 20 percent of total IT expenditure was allocated to public cloud in 2019, according to the Gartner IT Budget Benchmark. Some workloads must remain private due to regulatory compliance, physical location or other requirements. With recent financial burdens that many businesses are facing due to COVID-19, public cloud is no longer the right price for some.

Saving money has never been more of a priority than it is right now. Some IT leaders are learning that running certain applications in a public cloud can cost more than doing so through a private cloud and colocation provider or on-premises. This is leading them to rethink current strategies to bring their apps back out of the public cloud.

Ravi Naik, CIO of storage vendor Seagate, shared his experience with public cloud. Naik quickly realized the benefits of elastic computing for business apps when he migrated to Amazon Web Services (AWS), part of a global plan to consolidate from four data centers to one.

But Naik also rolled back a big data system from AWS when he realized that the troves of data it generated, coupled with the high bandwidth required to move the data, would cost a lot more than it would to run the system in his own data center or a colocation facility. “With storage, every second of every day, the costs are escalated,” said Naik.

The Price of Public Cloud

At its face, public cloud may seem like the cheaper option, but many technology leaders have been blinded by the initial low-cost estimate of public cloud. What many find out later is that a lack of cost containment can send prices skyward real fast.

Despite the growth in public cloud consumption, repatriation is becoming more common, with 85 percent of IT managers saying they were repatriating workloads from public cloud environments, according to IDC.

Initially, most organizations “lift and shift” business apps from on-premises systems to public cloud environments, says IDC analyst Sriram Subramanian. Empowered by migrations, many try to modernize apps to be cloud native. It is typically at this stage where technology leaders run into trouble.

Enterprises try and optimize a workload to be cost efficient and instead find themselves trying to roll it back, Subramanian said. He counts resource consolidation, total cost of ownership (TCO) and data security concerns as the top three reasons for cloud repatriation. “That does not mean the cloud is expensive,” Subramanian says. “It means that [some companies] haven’t leveraged the best migration path for that workload.”

The company which provides both consumer-grade storage devices and enterprise-class storage systems, generates 30 terabytes of parametric data a day in its factories. Although Seagate was only ingesting a portion of that data into its data lake, the bill to shuttle the data between seven factories across three continents could have totaled millions of dollars each year, Naik says.

Moreover, it takes days to move this volume of data over the network. Both limitations forced Seagate to filter the data, ingesting the bare minimum needed.

Eventually, the team realized that their infrastructure would run much more efficiently in an environment outside the public cloud and for a lot cheaper of a price.

“The repatriation of our big data ecosystem along with physical data movement using high-velocity data shuttles and cloud architectures allows us to ingest all our parametric data and provide a richer data analytics experience to our engineering and operations teams at a fraction of the cost of the public cloud,” says Naik.

What is Private Cloud?

According to Gartner, “private” is defined by infrastructure isolation, often referred to as “tenancy” in the cloud world. Isolation is required in specific circumstances in order to meet performance, security, cost, support, or compliance requirements for particular workloads.

When considering cloud offerings, always ask providers to specify exactly what is shared, regardless of the terminology they use. It is important to note that “private” does not equal “on-premises.” Many as-a-service requirements can be met using third-party services. Infrastructure and/or the control plane can be on- or off-premises even in a single tenant environment.

LightEdge offers both physical and virtual data hosting solutions across a number of technology platforms.

Keys to success in the private cloud are to minimize complexity by only implementing functionality that the business requires and allowing control of some functions to pass to a third-party for aspects of infrastructure that provide minimal business benefit.

From dedicated private infrastructures to flexible cloud delivery models, our compliant and secure cloud and hosting solutions are designed to meet your business needs.

Cloud Cautiousness and Cost Containment

After many organizations experience the pitfalls associated with unpredictable costs of public cloud, other enterprises are wary about migrating workloads to the cloud. Thankfully, cloud is almost always safer than CIOs believe. It is just important to properly vet your cloud provider and determine what your needs are and how much you are willing to spend.

Leaders must avoid vendor lock-in. When companies commit to a single platform, it becomes harder to withdraw the data. Look for a provider that offers more control and flexibility when it comes to where and how you run your workloads.

Operating your business in the cloud is fundamentally different than operating on-premises. When operations differ, so do strategies for cost containment. Many organizations in the public cloud are underutilizing assets, but still paying a fortune.

For example, if you do not manage your services daily, you may find yourself looking at steep charges for VMs and other services that you haven’t used at all in that billing cycle.

Instead of leveraging a multi-tenant instance, your cloud storage provider could provide a cloud environment that is used only by you and in which you have complete control and access to the data.

Virtual Private Cloud is ideal for you if:

  1. You need compute/storage resources QUICKLY or for a short amount of time
  2. You don’t have staff to maintain your own Dedicated Private Cloud (DPC)
  3. You require resources close to traditional IT but don’t have enough need to justify a large investment
  4. You need a cloud option that can be used for business continuity and disaster recovery
Defining Private Workloads

For workloads that must remain private and require automation, you can still determine what components you would need to build or what could be sourced from a third-party provider. The main reasons to require private infrastructure according to Gartner include:

  • Security requirements
  • Regulatory requirements
  • Performance and latency issues
  • Financial models matching dedicated infrastructure and capex
  • Compatibility requirements of applications, OSs or specialized hardware
  • Life cycle control and support of older applications/environments
  • Skill sets of the organization or providers

Get a Free Reduced Cost Estimate

LightEdge is working with tons of organizations like yours to deliver predictable and contained costs to alleviate this stress. We’ve actually seen such a drastic impact in pricing that we’re setting up calls to perform a free Reduced Cost Estimate showing you exactly how much we could save you right away.

Our goal is to cut your costs right away and get you on a predictable model you never have to worry about again. The reliable availability of business IT is essential to the management and livelihood of every company, large or small. All elements hinge on the dependability of your technology to deliver vital information right when you need it.

When asked about our differentiators against the competition, one of the first answers is always – our network. Our history with network goes all the way back to 1996 when we were founded as an ISP. We spent over two decades making sure our network and infrastructure were scalable, redundant, and secure enough to meet the most challenging IT needs.

LightEdge’s highly trained compliance and network security experts take the guesswork out of keeping your business protected. LightEdge’s top priorities include compliance and network security to guarantee that our customer’s data is protected. LightEdge is compliant with:

Have you heard enough? Get in touch with us today to learn how we can save you money immediately. During this global pandemic, saving money where is matters is crucial to the survival of a business.

We have empowered hundreds of organizations across the nation through cost containment, security, and reliability. We are ready to do the same for yours.


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Claire Kirk

With a background in compliance & security, cloud hosting, colocation, and business continuity, Claire uses her knowledge and experience to create educational content for end users. A creator at heart, she specializes in B2B marketing with a focus in content creation and technical literacy.

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