What is a Hybrid Cloud Database?

Sebastian Insausti
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With the usage increase of the Cloud, Hybrid Cloud is a common architecture design in any company. This concept combines public cloud, private cloud, and on-premise solutions allowing companies to have flexibility on where to store and how to use their data. The data to be stored is growing exponentially every day and the challenge is to find a good solution to handle it and make it usable for the business.

In this blog, we will see an overview of Hybrid Cloud, its advantages and disadvantages, and some considerations to take into account.

What is a Hybrid Cloud Database?

First of all, let’s see some useful concepts on this topic to understand what we are talking about.

Public Cloud

Resources like servers, storage, network, are owned and managed by a third-party provider and accessed over the internet via a web browser. In this case, you share the infrastructure with other companies, but your data is isolated and secured, and only you can access it.

Private Cloud

Resources like servers, storage, network, are owned (or rented) and managed by the company. It could be located on-prem or even in the cloud. Many cloud providers offer this kind of service using separate hardware for the customer, so it is not shared with anyone else.

On-premises

Resources like servers, storage, network, are on the premises of the company. On-prem infrastructure can be used to run private clouds, in which compute resources are virtualized in much the same way as those of public clouds.

Hybrid Cloud

It is a topology that uses a mix of private, and public cloud, and even on-premises services. It sounds similar to a Multi-Cloud environment, but the main difference is that this concept refers to the combinations of public and private specifically, which could include on-prem too.

There are some advantages and disadvantages using the Hybrid Cloud solution, so let’s see some of them.

Advantages of Hybrid Cloud Databases

Let’s see some advantages of this database topology.

  • Disaster Recovery (DR): Using this approach allows you to have a Disaster  Recovery environment for High Availability or redundancy, so you can failover in case of failure. Data can be distributed across multiple cloud providers for highly effective redundancy, failover, and disaster recovery.

  • Scalability: In case you need to scale your databases, using a Hybrid topology allows you to scale in different ways, depending on the solution and requirements. Also, it allows you to cope with variations in resource demand adding or removing resources/nodes in a fast way.

  • Faster Development: Hybrid cloud can help you deliver new products and services more quickly by eliminating barriers that slow your business and development teams down. 

  • Compliance and security: Confidential applications can be operated privately while less sensitive workloads can be deployed to a public cloud. Also, Hybrid Cloud infrastructure can be tailored to conform to strict, mandatory privacy, and governance rules for sensitive and confidential workloads and data.

  • No lock-in: If you adopt a cloud-only model, it could be hard to avoid getting locked into one or two cloud providers. The cost of moving data from the cloud provider could be high, so using a Hybrid environment can help with this.

  • Cost: In general, having this kind of mixed environment decreases the cost of maintaining hardware, and also, using a Hybrid Cloud Database environment in the public cloud will decrease it even more as you will be using a pay-as-you-go model.

All that glitters is not gold, so there are also some disadvantages toof this solution.

Disadvantages of Hybrid Cloud Databases

As there is no perfect solution for your database, let’s see some possible disadvantages of using it.

  • Make sure it works for the company: You need to make sure that it is a good solution for your company, otherwise, it could be a problem that could affect the systems or even the budget in a bad way.

  • Security:  You need to ensure that your data is safe, so security is a must in all companies. Using a Hybrid Environment makes this task much more complex. Some industries, such as finance and healthcare, require very high levels of security and are subject to strict privacy controls. So, in some cases, using a Public Cloud is just not possible.

  • Scalability limitations: In a Public Cloud Environment, most probably you can scale-up and scale-out as much as you can pay for it, but in a Private Cloud or On-Prem there is a hardware limitation and this could be time-consuming and costly task.

  • Cost: As we said, using a Public Cloud model could decrease the cost of your infrastructure, but a Private Cloud is not something cheap, so you need to check the numbers and take the best decision taking the budget into consideration.

  • Infrastructure complexity: For a hybrid cloud to deliver maximum benefit, its public and private components must be strongly linked and orchestrated. Management, integration, and security become increasingly complex as the number of clouds proliferates, especially when sourced from different providers.

Hybrid Cloud Databases Considerations

The move to a Hybrid Environment is different for every company as they have its own unique set of data, requirements, limitations, and processes that go with it.

Let’s see some considerations to take into account when planning this kind of topology.

  • Compliance: Make sure to select a vendor that specializes in your industry and is familiar with the unique compliance measures that must be met whether that’s HIPAA, FISMA, PCI, or whatever regulations your company subscribes to. Ultimately your database management strategy should be determined by what architecture will best meet the needs of your business and scale with you as you grow.

  • Workloads: Every database has different workloads. Some of those will fare better in a public cloud, some on-prem, and some in a private cloud. Knowing your workload is essential to finding the best mix for your databases.

  • Management and Maintenance: A new environment means a new way to manage it and maintain the data. Make sure you have the right pieces and people in place to manage those new environments need to be determined before you make the jump.

Conclusion

Moving to a new Hybrid Environment is a hard task and there are some considerations to check before doing the change. You need to make sure you choose the right combination of Public Cloud, Private Cloud, or On-prem to don’t affect the business and try to find the most effective and lowest cost option.

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