Going through all of the trouble to move an application to the Cloud, only to find it running slower or not at all, can put your business in a rough spot. While moving applications from a data center to the Cloud offers incredible potential for both performance and budgeting, it should not be treated as a magical wand that makes every problem disappear.
Cloud migration testing is an essential part of the moving process, helping your company determine not only whether an application will work correctly in the Cloud, but also if it will work better than on a local server or at a data center. In other words, migration testing eases the transition process so your business can move applications without breaking them.
The Cloud is an extremely attractive business proposition: On-demand scaling means no longer paying for hardware beyond what the applications need. If demand goes up, you can scale your Cloud hardware as needed.
Moreover, development is much more agile because developers don’t need to acquire and configure new hardware for each new app. Moving applications to Cloud-based implementations also eliminates the restraints of working with a physical or virtual network.
The Slowdown Effect
The largest drawback to migrating to the Cloud is known as “the slowdown effect.” This refers to an application performing slower in the Cloud because of technical compatibility or programming efficiency issues. According to InfoWorld, “poorly designed applications perform poorly no matter when you run them.” Apps that experience the slowdown effect can consume more resources in the Cloud than in a data center, thus eliminating the perks of moving.
Moving to the Cloud – Plan Before You Go
A smooth Cloud migration requires substantial planning. It’s not always the best solution, either: Sometimes applications should stay where they are. Keep the following points in mind when planning your company’s Cloud migration:
- Moving all your apps at once is a recipe for disaster. Instead, plan to move the applications in a specific order. You may find that it’s easiest to start with the least essential, low-risk applications and work your way up.
- 15- to 20-year-old applications may have compatibility issues with modern Cloud-based servers.
- Remember that moving to the Cloud is a business decision as much as it is a technical one.
- Moving to the Cloud means greater Infrastructure as a Service flexibility, but less Software as a Service flexibility.
Make Sure Your Software and Hardware Are Ready
When testing Cloud applications, it’s necessary to make sure both the software and hardware infrastructure are working. Making the two work better together often means reworking the applications to accommodate Cloud-based implementations. This is where Cloud migration testing comes into play, using a combination of load testing, overload control, and performance acceleration to improve performance.
According to Infoworld, there are three migration approaches for modifying apps when moving to the Cloud:
- move the apps directly to the Cloud with little to no modification,
- alter the code in minor ways to make it Cloud-aware, or
- completely rework the application to work in the Cloud.
These migration approaches typically involve reworking applications so they have minimal dependencies and work well with multiple virtualization instances for a smooth transition.
Always test the new implementation before disabling the old one to avoid costly long-term outages. If your business is looking to move applications to the Cloud, the experts at Apica are ready to help. Contact us today.