Cloud Migration vs. Cloud Transformation: What exactly is the difference?

Cloud migration and cloud transformation may seem like almost identical processes, and they are. Both involve moving workloads to the cloud and leveraging cloud services in ways that benefit your business.

But like many seemingly interchangeable technical terms, cloud migration and cloud transformation refer to different types of operations. Understanding the differences is important to making decisions to increase your organization’s use of the cloud.

Read on to see the similarities and differences between cloud migration and cloud transformation, along with tips on what type of strategy to pursue and when.

What is cloud migration?

Migration of clouds It is the process of moving a workload from an on-premises environment to the cloud. Typically, organizations migrate to the cloud when they decide they can increase the reliability, scalability, or efficiency of their workloads by hosting them on a cloud platform instead of using their own infrastructure.

Cloud migration often involves some level of workload reconfiguration. For example, when you move primary virtual machines to the cloud, you might want to migrate to a different operating system so that you can use an operating system that your cloud provider actively supports.

However, with cloud migration, workload reconfiguration is usually limited. The goal of cloud migration is to replicate original workloads in the cloud, not rebuild workloads from scratch.

What is cloud conversion?

Cloud transformation is a process that makes your business cloud-centric by taking full advantage of modern cloud services.

So, when you do a cloud conversion, you don’t just do it Move primary workloads to the cloud. You redesign and transform (hence the term “cloud transformation”).“) those workloads to optimize them for the cloud. You may Refactor an integrated application run as microservices so that it can function more efficiently in distributed cloud environments, for example.

At the same time, from a strategic perspective, cloud transformation means making the cloud the default approach to meeting your business’s technological needs. In other words, you don’t just switch to the cloud when it’s convenient, while keeping some workloads on-premises. You move as completely into the cloud as possible.

What do cloud migration and transformation have in common?

Cloud migration and transformation are similar in that they both involve moving workloads into the cloud to take advantage of the scalability, flexibility, and efficiency of cloud environments. Both processes also result in businesses increasingly relying on third-party cloud platforms to meet their infrastructure needs.

And both of them require organizations to change their approaches to processes such as security and Visibility In order to address the unique challenges of the cloud.

Cloud Migration vs. Cloud Transformation: Key Differences

But in other ways, there are clear differences between cloud migration and cloud transformation:

  • changes rate: Cloud transformation requires more extensive changes in workloads by moving them to the cloud. For example, you might change the entire architecture of your applications. In contrast, with cloud migration, you typically “up and move” workloads to the cloud with minimal reconfiguration effort.
  • Difficulty level: Cloud migration is easier and less demanding Cloud expertise Regarding cloud migration
  • Speed ​​and schedule: You can usually do a cloud migration faster than a cloud conversion because of the lower level of change.
  • Strategy and culture: As mentioned above, cloud transformation will reorient your business towards a cloud-first approach. Cloud migration also requires more cloud usage, but it doesn’t profoundly change the way your IT organization thinks and operates.

In short, cloud migration is a simpler process than cloud conversion. But migration may also reduce your ability to fully invest in the cloud because, unlike cloud conversion, migration doesn’t require a complete change in mindset or extensive reconfiguration of workloads.

when to use

If you want to move workloads to the cloud as soon as possible to reduce the burden of managing infrastructure and initial workloads, cloud migration can help. But if you’re looking for a deeper level of change that allows your business to optimize its use of the cloud, cloud transformation is the way to go.

About the author

Christopher Tuzzi is a technology analyst with subject matter expertise in cloud computing, application development, open source software, virtualization, containers, and more. He also lectures at one of the major universities in the Albany, New York area. His book, For Fun and Profit: A History of the Free and Open Source Software Revolution, was published by MIT Press.

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