The Ghost Of Cloud Service Past
My last three Cloudtweaks posts have all been about food. I talked about Cloud Bouillabaisse, the “are you sure button of cloud pizza delivery and finally I’ll have what they are having (not a “When Harry met Sally” reference)”. Today I would like to slide out of food references and move over to literary references. In particular today, the reference is to the famous “A Christmas Carol” by Mr. Dickens.
In the classic story, the hero is visited by three ghosts. In our story, the hero confronts three ghosts as well. The ghosts are listed in order of appearance.
- The Ghost of What Was.
- The Ghost of what we have now.
- The Ghost of what we could have.
I spend a lot of time talking to customers about the concepts of cloud application migrations. I’ve come to realize that the three ghosts above visit everyone as they consider, actually do and finally review their cloud application migration.
The ghost of what was can be a very dangerous problem. Applications on premise always perform better than the new cloud version does. If you don’t believe me, well then just look. This screen that I am loading here used to take 20 seconds. Now it takes 2 minutes to load.
You can’t argue anecdotal with facts if you don’t have the facts. The only way you can make sure that the ghost of what was doesn’t show up is to actually measure the speed of the solution today from every perspective. When you have the facts, you can show the person that the lower cost cloud version of the application is faster. So measure page loads and user logins as well as any other function the application provides (searches, data archiving, retrieving archived data and so on). Know how the application performs before the users do.
The ghost of what we have now is a transition issue. If the application was not only migrated but also modernized, you will have a double whammy hit you both the ghost of what was (the application was so much faster before) and the new ghost of today (I hate the new layout). Avoiding this ghost can be tricky and requires a good education program during the migration. If you have the numbers to nip ghost number one before he or she gets rolling then ghost number two can be trained into quiet. Just don’t send out a survey until the users have a chance to use the new version of the application for a while.
The last ghost for me is the most interesting. It represents the blending of what you have done with what you could yet do. Cloud computing offers your application suite a lot of new options. You can create a Platform-as-a-Service option so that your developers can rapidly transition to building new versions of your solution quickly. Your operations and management team can consider implementing the newer DevOps framework. DevOps also applies to the actual development as well of the next version of your application leveraging your new PaaS environment.
In the end, the ghosts only apply to your solution once you’ve decided to migrate. Until then, you only have to worry about the gremlins.
By Scott Anderson