A multi-cloud architecture provides flexibility and access to resources that would be limited with a single cloud vendor. Multi-cloud computing caters to organisations that upgrade their workloads, scale up, are flexible and require better redundancy and disaster recovery. Here are some multi-cloud trends projected to grow in 2022 and beyond,
1. Serverless computing
The biggest advantage to multi-cloud computing is the option to 'pick and choose' your hardware, software or platforms from the vendors of your choice. This is almost similar to creating a bouquet of the functions you need for your organisation, by picking the best qualities from different vendors.
Serverless computing multi-cloud providers can provide your organisation with the physical hardware, the operating systems or the web server management based on your requirements. A benefit to this is the upscaling or downscaling of the features, which is also handled by the provider.
2. Multi-cloud security
An increase in the number of cloud vendors brings out the need for additional security due to vulnerability. However, it also brings about an advantage, where if a cloud provider suffers a security attack, the organisation would not have to completely halt operations. Cyber risks are an inevitable part of any cloud environment, and with multi-cloud environments, each provider has its own approach to securing its infrastructure.
Hence, organisations should practice multi-cloud governance with consistent actions such as restricting access and control, and constant monitoring. With companies such as Microsoft, AWS, Google Cloud and so on making strategic acquisitions to improve their security features, organisations can expect a consistent security strategy across cloud platforms in the years to come.
3. Reliability for AI and ML
Embracing a multi-cloud strategy for your Artificial intelligence and machine learning projects has an undeniable advantage. Beyond solving the problem of vendor lock-in, organisations can use different elements from various cloud service providers to fulfil their project needs and requirements. Scaling up and down the storage capacity is also easier, along with the pro of faster response time.
AI and ML often require fast responses for business success. Any form of latency can affect the product quality. In such cases, using cloud providers to decrease the proximity and reduce latency is possible. Further, the risk of downtime is reduced with multi-clouds. For instance, if the AI application were to be down on one multi-cloud server, running it on a different cloud provider leads to zero downtime issues faced by customers.
4. Using containers for faster deployment
As a part of the digital transformation from traditional IT to more automated platforms, organisations have increasingly started adopting the concept of containerization. According to Research and Markets, over 3.5 billion applications are currently running within Docker containers and about 48% of organisations are managing containers at a larger scale with Kubernetes. Containers act as isolated units of software that run on any operating system, as long as the container unit supports the underlying OS.
In multi-cloud settings, containers provide flexibility and portability for microservice architectures. Each container consists of a process that is isolated from the rest of the system, making it easier to 'pick and shift' them from one cloud environment to another. Containers also help in the division of work, as different teams can work on different containers at the same time.
The portability of containers in the multi-cloud is feasible in times of checking for bugs, crashes or while running in a specific OS. Issues are targeted easier and containers of a specific application can be grouped into logical units for better management, discovery and maintenance.
Workloads are fragmented and distributed in a multi-cloud environment, which can pose a challenge in terms of monitoring and security. Currently, organisations turn to multi-cloud brokers to integrate all cloud management into one place, regardless of the cloud infrastructure. Hence, for organisations jumping onto multi-cloud, it is crucial to find vendors who provide better coverage across multiple cloud environments.
Some of the elements to focus on while moving to a centralised format in multi-cloud architecture include,
Using infrastructure as a code as tools by the security and operations team
Implementing cloud-native access control and multilayered network segmentation strategy
Centralised monitoring and reporting
Security tools that work across multiple cloud environments
Possibility to centralise encryption, and access management