Public/private/hybrid Cloud – choosing horses for courses

November 29, 2013

DavidYou know when we look at Cloud computing we’ve heard about this a lot right, and we know that organisations are really struggling right now and it’s what is my Cloud strategy, how do I get into public Cloud, how do I get into private Cloud. And we really see that this move to public Cloud it’s not just something that’s [hyped], it’s not just something that we hear about in the industry we start to see real growth rates and specialty software as a service, but even higher growth rates on a much smaller base in infrastructure as a service and also platform as a service.
And within Gartner we do a very extensive CIO survey every single year, we go out and reach out to about 2,000 CIOs. And one of the questions we asked this year is what are you doing as far as Cloud computing is concerned. And 55% of CIOs today believe that all apps and operations will be sourced via the Cloud by 2020. That’s a pretty bold statement. All things will be sourced by the Cloud by 2020.
Now you can see by looking at this particular graph that 3% of organisations feel they are already there. By 2016 another 25% will say they get there, and then by 2020 up to 55% of CIOs feel like everything will be in the Cloud. That’s a pretty huge statement. Now whether that’s actually going to happen by 2020 or not remains to be seen, but the stepping stones are there.
So we are moving to the private — the public Cloud, so what about the private Cloud where are we with the private Cloud today? Most organisations we speak to within Gartner, especially large organisations, are trying to move to this understanding of running their own data centre more like the private Cloud. And we know that moving to a private Cloud is a very big undertaking for organisations. Just going out and buying new servers and buying new storage does not get you to the private Cloud, but there is this understanding that if I can modernise my data centre, if I can take advantage of automation tools and virtualisation tools I can get to the point where I can start to have these characteristics of a private Cloud being elastic, being agile etc.
And what we see is that most organisations then really have what we consider to be four different infrastructures or four different ways that you’re to source your computing needs. So most of us still have this idea of a traditional data centre, maybe it’s your data centre closet, it’s doing things the old fashioned way servers that are very much in silo environments. There are certain things that really just don’t run very well and Cloud — made for Cloud or quite frankly are so small maybe we are never going to run them in a Cloud.
But then we also have this idea of hey let’s move to a private Cloud with our organisation as well, again let’s modernise our data centre to the point where we can do that. And of course let’s take advantage of public Cloud whether it’s just sales force automation like Salesforce or whether I’m going to go ahead and start to use Cloud storage like Dropbox, let me do something in the public Cloud as well.
So we have this kind of three pronged approach, but what we are really finding is those organisations are saying I can have all those and siloed but really what I’m trying to get to is this idea of a hybrid Cloud where I do some things in my traditional data centre that really belong there, some things in my private Cloud, some things in my public Cloud, but it’s a strategy and they work together so that when I am at a compute space in my private Cloud I can automatically go the public Cloud, but when I’m done with that project I’m not going to be there any longer. When I want to go ahead and use a private Cloud or a private Cloud provider I then can go to another one very quickly. I can pick and choose as I want to depending on my computing needs and the projects I’m working on so that I can have all these work in concert together.
That’s the real idea of having a hybrid Cloud and that’s what most organisations would say they are working towards, though that’s not easy. And it’s not easy for a couple of reasons; number one is there is such a [lack of] standards around how all these are going to talk together. We also lack the ability to have real elastic pricing right, so you’re going to want to be able to do this, you’re going to want to pick and choose, you’re going to want to have very elastic pricing. And finally we don’t really have the people skills either to really pull that off, and we are going to be talking about a lot of that in the panel today.
So these are some of the benefits of hybrid Cloud. I’m not going to go ahead and read them all off, but you can kind of get to the point where you start to be able to see that if I can take the best of a private Cloud, the best of a public Cloud and I can meld them together that’s where the real future is going to be. I’m going want to have some things in my private Cloud, some things in my public Cloud but it’s when I can get these both to worth together seamlessly very translucid that’s where we are really going to have the benefit.

David Coyle
Managing Vice President, Gartner

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