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Desk with coffee and sticky notes where two hands hold an iPad that is displaying "IaaS" (Infrastructure as a Service) and seven icons surrounding the text, including a security icon and server icon

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) is a popular cloud computing solution in which a third-party provider manages and maintains a data center for you, while providing your business with cloud computing resources over the Internet.

Your IaaS provider will purchase all of the necessary data center infrastructure for you, so you can skip the huge upfront capital expenditure. Meanwhile, you only pay for what resources you need, when you need them. IaaS is quickly and easily scalable according to your changing needs.

With IaaS, your provider’s team of experts manages and maintains the data center for you, freeing up your IT team to focus on more important IT initiatives. If you’re looking to make the switch to Infrastructure as a Service in cloud computing, this blog shares essential tips and tricks to know before you move your data and what traps you’ll want to avoid.

Illustrated text bubble coming from a megaphone that reads "Tips And Tricks"

Tips and Tricks

It’s easy to get caught up in the industry hype of moving to cloud infrastructure services, but carefully planning your migration will be key to your success. These tips and tricks will help you prepare for a smooth migration:

1. Make sure IaaS is right for your business. IaaS is beneficial for many, but it may not be right for every business. In some rare cases, such as when a business already has a large investment in manpower and infrastructure, it may benefit them more in the long-run to stay on-premise or consider colocation.

2. Check your migration fears at the gate. Are you worried about security? Uptime? Customer support? These are valid concerns, but with the right provider, you can relax knowing you’re in good hands. Carefully evaluate potential providers to make sure they’ll have you covered in these areas.

3. Create a clear cloud strategy. Why are you migrating to infrastructure as a service? What are you hoping to achieve and what benefits are you looking for? Specify your hopes and goals so you and your provider can work together to create a custom IaaS solution that’s perfect for you.

4. Inventory your infrastructure and applications. Before you make the move to cloud infrastructure services, it is critical to build an accurate inventory of where your applications are located and what infrastructure you already have in place. This will help you determine what parts can stay put and which are ready to move to IaaS without letting anything slip by unaccounted for.

5. Don’t just prepare your tech; prepare your people too. No matter how ready you are tech-wise, if your people aren’t ready for change, it’s a recipe for disaster. Prepare your higher-ups with the changes they can expect and help familiarize your team with new processes and responsibilities well before the move is made.

6. Prepare for necessary security changes. You’ll need to research and consider new tools, services, and options to keep your data secure in the cloud, including next-generation firewall, monitoring tools, replication and recovery options, and more. Don’t assume that your provider will handle all of these security measures for you, as many will not. Do your research to know exactly what you can expect from your provider.

7. Vet potential providers. No two providers are the same, and some will leave you with headaches rather than solutions. Pay attention to a potential IaaS provider’s service delivery quality as well as the details of their SLAs. Be sure to ask questions including:

  • What percentage of uptime can you ensure? For many businesses, 100% uptime is non-negotiable.
  • Are you a reseller? If you are a consultant or reseller, you’ll want to make sure there is clear communication between you, the provider, and your client regarding authority for the ongoing decisions that need to be made. Otherwise, your client will have a less than desirable experience with the provider you choose.
  • Do you need to be compliant with industry standards? Providers should maintain complete compliance with industry standards set by HIPAA, PCI, SOX, and FISC.
  • How do you keep data secure? Look for a provider that offers DRaaS in addition to having the most secure technology in the industry, a secure environment, geographic diversity, and SOC 2 certification.
  • Is help available 24/7/365? Choose a provider you know you can reach easily at any time of day you need it.
  • Do you need guidance or a customized solution?  Just like no two providers are the same, neither are the needs of any two businesses. Choose a provider that can customize your solution.

8. Include your legacy systems in the plans. Don’t forget that your legacy systems will need to maintain connectivity with your new cloud infrastructure. Is your provider equipped to help you make this a smooth migration? Will they allow you to utilize hybrid cloud if keeping your legacy systems is necessary? Will they allow you to colocate some of your infrastructure in their data center?

Shark with fishing rod trying to catch a fish in a bowl as a concept for avoiding traps

Traps

Avoid three major traps when moving to Infrastructure as a Service in cloud computing:

1.) Not knowing which applications are interdependent. You may virtualize one application and not realize that the application depends on another server, accidentally leaving it out from a network standpoint. This is why it’s essential to inventory your applications and where they reside.

2.) Networking troubles. If your servers can’t communicate, your IaaS solution simply won’t work. Having a network expert review the networking to the servers can help you, your employees, and customers avoid significant frustration with all the new changes.

3.) Not testing storage speed. Test to make sure that the storage in your virtual environment is just as fast, if not faster, than what you have now, rather than assuming it will be. Performance is essential to success, but not all providers can offer excellent performance, which is yet again another reason to vet potential providers carefully.

Infrastructure as a Service: the Key to a Successful Migration

At the end of the day, choosing a trusted IaaS provider like LightBound is the key piece of the puzzle to enjoying a smooth and easy cloud migration. A provider like LightBound will keep you informed and in-the-know about every tip, trick, and trap you’ll want to know, supporting you throughout your migration and beyond.

Have questions about Infrastructure as a Service or want to learn more about how you can prepare for a successful migration? Contact LightBound today and our experts will answer any questions you might have about IaaS in cloud computing.


Businessman escaping the disaster of his hot air balloon catching fire by clinging to a red balloon and flying up into air as a disaster recovery concept

From increased uptime and data security to peace of mind, the reasons to seek out a Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) provider are numerous. But unfortunately, there’s a catch: in order for your DRaaS services to be a success, you’ll want to make sure you choose the right provider. By carefully vetting potential providers for cloud data recovery, you can save yourself from headaches and know you have a solution you can count on.

Every provider is different, so how do you choose the right one? In this blog, we share eight attributes to look for in a DRaaS provider.

What is Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)?

Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) is a service provided by a third-party provider that hosts and continually replicates your servers to a different location geographically in order to enable failover in the event of a natural or man-made catastrophe.

DRaaS ensures excellent business continuity and disaster recovery (BC/DR) for your business. No matter if you are facing a hurricane, cyber attack, or human error as a threat to your business, DRaaS enables you to get back up and running with lightning speed and minimal downtime.

Hand of a businessman chooses a wood block cube with a smiley face on it instead of a block with a neutral face and one with a frowning face

How Do You Choose the Right DRaaS Provider?

To help you find an excellent provider, we’ve created a checklist of eight attributes to look for in each potential provider.

1. Their DRaaS solution allows you to recover with lightning speed. Check your provider’s Service Level Agreement (SLA) to make sure their Recovery Point Objective (RPO) is measured in seconds and Recovery Time Objective (RTO)  in minutes to minimize downtime.

2. Their solution is customizable. Your provider should be experienced and work with many different recovery environments, able to customize a plan for you and your company.

3. They keep your DR plan up-to-date so it’s perfectly executable when disaster strikes. Ideally, your provider will auto-incorporate all the latest changes to your environment so you don’t have to worry about a thing, ensuring your plan includes all the latest changes so it can go off without a hitch.

4. They have top-notch security. Your provider should be protecting your data in four primary ways: with the most secure technology in the industry, a secure environment, geographic diversity, and SOC 2 certification.

5. They are trustworthy and invested. Your feelings about your provider matter, as well as that they maintain complete compliance with industry standards set by HIPAA, PCI, SOX, and FISC. Their team should be made up of experts in disaster recovery with no shortage of experience carrying it out.

6. They’re always-on and always-available to assist you. A provider you can count on will handle monitoring your data and environment 24/7 by skilled NOC (Network Operations Center) support staff so problems do not go unnoticed and can be resolved quickly. This high visibility is essential.

7. Their DR plan is comprehensive and tested regularly. A provider that tests DR plans at least twice a year is key to preventing DRaaS failure.

8. Their customer support is excellent and ready to help. No one wants to be in a situation where you can’t get in touch with your provider. Choose a provider you know you can reach easily and communicate with stress-free.

The words "Disaster Recovery" next to a cloud-shaped icon for Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) with a server room as the background

Picking Your Provider

Don’t settle for a provider that isn’t characterized by these key traits or you might end up with a frustrating customer experience—or worse, failed disaster recovery at a time when it matters most. By choosing the right provider, it will make your DR strategy easy to manage, maintain, and achieve success.

All eight of these attributes to look for in a DRaaS provider describe LightBound. Our speedy recovery time, exemplary customer service, and top-notch security ensure you will enjoy excellent uptime and a stress-free experience. We seek to be a true partner to your business, providing a Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) solution you can count on.

Want to learn more about choosing LightBound as your DRaaS provider? Contact us today and we’ll answer any questions you might have about disaster recovery solutions.

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