Blog: Cloud

The Top AWS Cloud Migration Strategies to Try

June 28, 2022 - by Synoptek

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As the pressure to undergo digital transformation intensifies, cloud adoption is topping the list of priorities for global C-suites. With worldwide cloud revenue expected to touch $474 billion in 2022, embracing a cloud-first approach has become imperative. Although most organizations are excited and pumped about moving to the cloud, not all of them have a fair understanding of the different cloud migration strategies they can choose from – which leads to several challenges along the way. Read on as we shed light on the different AWS cloud migration strategies you can try when migrating to the cloud with AWS.

Finding Your AWS Cloud Migration Strategy

Migrating to the cloud with AWS is a great way to leverage cutting-edge solutions and capabilities while enjoying faster business results. But moving to the AWS cloud isn’t just about embracing a handful of tools and systems or ticking boxes off a cloud migration checklist. The process requires a detailed evaluation of your current environment, an understanding of the different interdependencies, and knowing what tools and applications to migrate, how, and when.

Since the complexity of migrating different applications depends on different factors, thorough knowledge of all these elements can help in outlining a plan and choosing a cloud migration strategy that fits your unique business requirements. Since every migration approach considers different people, processes, technology, and financial aspects, to ensure your cloud migration project achieves the desired outcomes, it is important to understand each in detail. 

AWS Cloud Migration Strategies to Choose From

Choosing the right strategy can help streamline existing architecture, simplify licensing arrangements, and ensure proper data migration. At the same time, it can ensure migration complexity stays at the low end of the spectrum – regardless of how modern or legacy an application is. That being said, there are 6 AWS cloud migration strategies to choose from:

1. Rehosting

Rehosting or lift-and-shift is probably the most common cloud migration strategy organizations adopt while moving to the AWS cloud. It allows for applications, workflows, and data to be moved to the cloud as-is – with minimal disruption. Since the underlying infrastructure remains the same, there is no pressure for a redesign. At the same time, it allows organizations to leverage the many benefits of consumption-based elastic resources in the cloud. Legacy applications are most commonly moved to the AWS cloud via rehosting, as it offers the ability to migrate quickly to meet a business case without much effort.

2. Replatforming

A level beyond cloud rehosting, replatforming requires organizations to make some changes to the application before it is moved to the AWS cloud. This approach is ideal for applications that no longer meet the organization’s existing or future needs. However, for successful replatforming, organizations need to train staff on the latest cloud-based tools, so they can drive efforts in the right direction for tangible results.

3. Refactoring

Another AWS cloud migration strategy that organizations can embrace to successfully move to the cloud is refactoring. In this approach, applications are altered to better suit the cloud environment, and changes are made to include new features, scale, or performance – which is otherwise difficult to achieve using the existing environment. To refactor effectively and improve agility and business continuity, organizations need to have a good understanding of how the application can be revamped – typically using cloud-native features.

4. Repurchasing

Applications that have been designed in a different era can no longer run effectively on advanced AWS infrastructure. Transferring existing licensing of such applications from on-premises to AWS cloud or completely replacing the application with a cloud-friendly platform or service is a great way to continue leveraging the benefits of a proprietary data-based platform or a legacy system that continues to add value to business performance.

5. Retiring

Although moving to the cloud opens doors to several benefits, not all applications need to (and should) be migrated to the cloud. Organizations that have been operating for decades often have an enterprise IT portfolio that is no longer useful and can simply be turned off. Identifying such applications and retiring them in time can lead to substantial savings while also directing your team’s attention to more value-adding tasks.

6. Retaining

While it makes sense to retire apps that no longer contribute to the accomplishment of organizational goals, it might also make sense to retain apps in existing on-premise servers. Applications that have been recently upgraded or are otherwise not suited for the AWS cloud environment are best left operating as-is while only migrating those apps and workflows that make sense for the business.

Ensuring a Successful AWS Cloud Migration Journey

Moving to the AWS cloud can allow organizations to accelerate their digital transformation efforts while keeping up with the latest changes and disruptions in the marketplace. But successful migration requires a careful and detailed understanding of the different AWS cloud migration strategies. The strategy you choose depends on the specifics of your current applications, so make sure to evaluate each application and workload in detail and opt for a migration strategy that makes the most sense.

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