Is Your Cloud Really Resilient?
The cloud is regularly marketed as a technology that is less susceptible to downtime and catastrophic failures, which might take more traditional systems out of action and leave businesses struggling to cope.
However, the cloud is not without the occasional major outage. In fact, it was Amazon that suffered the most recent cloud issues as a result of adverse weather conditions that impacted one of its main server set-ups in the US.
Amazon Web Services was taken down by electrical storms in Northern Virginia and this managed to impact a large number of services that relied upon it, including movie-streaming service Netflix and photo-sharing app Instagram.
This was obviously an embarrassment not only for Amazon but also for the companies that required its cloud platform in order to offer their products to consumers.
Part of the problem in this instance is that the resilience of Amazon’s cloud set-up has really come into question. While a more disastrous set of weather conditions might have caused such outages, it seems that a little thunder and lightning was enough to knock out the servers, leaving millions of people wondering what exactly was going wrong.
In a recent report carried out by Computing, it was found that there is still a general scepticism amongst business users about the resilience and security of public cloud platforms, with just eight per cent of IT managers found to be looking to public cloud services in order to run business-critical apps and store private data.
Most businesses that have adopted the cloud have done so incrementally, choosing a hybrid set-up that allows for a combination of private and public cloud solutions as necessary.
It is also worth pointing out that Amazon is not the only cloud provider available on the market; on the contrary, there are plenty of alternative cloud services out there that will be more than capable of seeing to the needs of a business while being able to promise improved resilience when compared to the major public services.
Businesses seem to be concerned about the growing reliance on connectivity, because without access to cloud services those companies that have placed data and apps on them will be unable to function at full capacity. This definitely makes the hybrid approach to the cloud more appealing, since keeping direct control over some elements of the infrastructure will give businesses peace of mind and the sense of improved resilience.
This does not make such a set-up completely disaster-proof, however, as it is impossible to conceive of an arrangement that would be worthy of such a title. Nevertheless, you can look for certain features when choosing a cloud provider in order to find one that will be sturdier and more reliable than its rivals.
One particularly useful facet that any cloud provider can offer is a fail-over facility, which allows for the seamless switching to a secondary server system in the event that the main set-up suffers an outage.
Weather is not the only thing that can cause an outage, so you want to make sure that your prospective provider is geared up and ready to tackle a variety of tough scenarios and still give you the uptime that is so vital to your business.
It is preferable to have these contingencies as automatic functions that do not require human intervention, as it is of course in the interests of the cloud provider to make sure that it is as well prepared as possible in order to preserve its reputation. Researching providers thoroughly will allow businesses to choose as resilient a cloud set-up as possible.
Daisy Group PLC have 5 Tier 3 data centre based in different regions in the UK. CloudSelect has been engineered from scratch by our product specialists. Using our partnerships with the best-of-breed suppliers we can offer our customers a highly flexible cloud computing solution.
Is Your Cloud Really Resilient?