These days, the cloud is everywhere. However, the optimal cloud approach differs depending on a business’s unique needs. While some advocate for an all-in approach to cloud computing, others prefer a more conservative approach, such as moving backup data offsite or replicating servers for DR purposes.

Determining the right move for your organization takes time and a clear understanding of the menu of options. To clarify your options (and liven up the cloud conversation a bit), let’s look at the cloud in terms of pizza.

Pizza as a Service

Pizza as a Service

Pizza comes close to being the perfect food. It’s easy, tasty and represents all the major food groups (more or less). You have several options when it comes to getting pizza:

  • Make it at home. You are responsible for getting the ingredients, putting them together, baking it and serving it.
  • Take and bake. Someone else deals with the ingredients and assembly. You still provide the oven, the beverages, and plates.
  • The pizza comes to you. All you need to provide are the beverages and a place to eat.
  • Dining out. All you need to bring is your appetite.

Cloud service options are similar. It’s all a matter of who is providing the hardware, infrastructure, platform and software. Your options include:

  • On-premises. You manage everything, including servers, storage, networking and applications. Your cloud use is minimal.
  • Infrastructure as a service (IaaS): Your vendor manages the servers and the backend. You manage your data and applications.
  • Platform as a service (PaaS): Your vendor manages the servers, backend and your operating system. You handle your applications and your data.
  • Software as a service (SaaS): Your vendor handles (almost) everything. You still need to configure things, but it takes a significant load off your plate and moves it to the datacenter.

The Most Popular Pies

Pizza as a Service

Now that you know your pizza options, let’s take a look at what this means in the real world. Microsoft Azure cloud offers top-of-the-line security and support, and you may have already taken the first step toward the cloud with Office365.

Why move to the Azure cloud? Here are a few common scenarios:

Build or buy: You’re reaching the end of your hardware’s lifecycle. You know you’re going to need to invest in a new server solution. You can buy the hardware and manage it yourself, which can be a significant investment. Or you can build out with Azure, which is an operational expense that you can build over time, saving you on capital expenses.

Recovery and protection: Your current environment is on-premises, and you are backing it up locally or to a branch office. You can also back up to the cloud, which is off-site and secure. An Azure-based cloud is a cost-effective way to protect your data and retain it for as long as you need.

Branch office and remote workers: Remote workers are becoming increasingly common. Branch offices need secure access to files. Azure keeps access secure by authenticating users, which helps you and your organization stay connected without having to worry (as much) about data breaches.

Getting Started

Microsoft Azure offers a full menu of services, including infrastructure, networking solutions and robust features for management and security. Which approach is right for you?

It all starts with a conversation about your cloud strategy. We can work with you on a cloud assessment to find the right pie for you. Our Cloud & Security experts are ready to help you review your options. Reach out to us at info@peters.com with your questions. We’re ready to help!