When to Choose VMware on Cloud vs. Cloud-Native Development

Hybrid Cloud

VMware on cloud vs. cloud-native development for hybrid cloud applications

Considerations for optimizing legacy, traditional, and cloud-native applications for hybrid cloud environments.

More than 80% of global IT professionals say their operations are hybrid cloud, with the cloud providing agility and cost efficiencies that help them focus more resources on innovation.1 Now that VMware is offering multiple options for customers to run and operate VMware stacks in the cloud, many are wondering about the benefits of VMware on cloud vs. cloud-native development for their hybrid cloud applications.

With the rollout of VMware on cloud offerings for all the major hyperscalers and several major hosted private cloud providers, it’s now possible to rapidly shift VMware workloads onto the cloud. Nearly two thirds (64%) of cloud decision-makers now report moving their VMware estate to the public cloud in this “lift and shift” model, keeping VMware as their API standard.2

However, VMware on cloud is not the right decision for every workload and use case. Read on to learn the pros and cons of VMware on cloud vs. cloud-native development.

Key Scenarios for Hybrid Cloud Applications

Customers weighing their options between VMware on cloud and cloud-native services for legacy, traditional, and next-generation applications should take a case-by-case approach to determining the right solution. The following four scenarios outline the most common use cases for running applications in a hybrid cloud environment and outline the pros and cons of VMware on cloud vs. cloud-native approaches for each.

1. Lift and Shift

Many organizations are running legacy applications they don’t plan to replace with cloud-native alternatives soon, if at all. The term “lift and shift” refers to moving on-premises applications to the cloud without making significant changes to the code.

Lifting and shifting allows you to take advantage of many cloud benefits without costly, time-consuming, and risky refactoring. However, legacy applications aren’t optimized for the cloud, so the benefits won’t be as robust.

VMware on cloud is ideal for lifting and shifting, enabling hybrid operations with consistent and familiar VMware technology. VMware vMotion can live-migrate applications to the cloud with no downtime. And because the major cloud providers use VMware stacks with vSphere at the core, applications behave consistently across environments, so you can continue benefiting from existing skills and processes.

2. Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery

Business continuity and disaster recovery (BCDR) spending is an imperative for your organization. However, VMware on cloud offers a cost-saving solution, as it reduces your need for a secondary data center and the associated capital expenditure. VMware on cloud also simplifies migration of applications, with low risk of disruption to your active applications, making it even more attractive as a BCDR solution.

By leveraging cloud-native technologies that facilitate the failover of workloads between environments, such as global load balancers, web application firewalls, and application publishing, VMware on cloud protects your data and applications, and accelerates recovery.

3. Refactoring

An alternative approach to modernizing legacy applications, “refactoring” involves breaking the application into microservices and/or further abstracting its components from the underlying platform to allow it to run more easily and effectively in the cloud.

While lifting and shifting workloads tends to be the least complicated path to cloud adoption, refactoring is the better choice in many situations, including mission-critical applications, as it enables cloud-native benefits such as scalability.

VMware on cloud can help you get started on a path to modernization while reducing the risks of refactoring by taking a step-by-step approach. You can shift applications to VMware on cloud right away, and then modernize components as time and budget allow.

4. Cloud-Native Development

For building the next generation of applications from scratch, most organizations take a cloud-native approach. This means developing, deploying, and running applications using cloud computing methods and tools from the start.

Cloud-native applications can run on-premises or on any cloud without any change in code or behavior. Organizations that build and operate cloud-native applications are more agile, able to bring new ideas to market faster, and respond faster to customer demands.

If your developers prefer the tooling of a certain cloud platform, it makes sense to go with the native public cloud infrastructure of that platform, because it will reduce complexity and ensure compatibility of services. If applications require on-demand access to resources with granular billing, or benefit from microservices architectures, native public cloud services may be the best option.

However, if developers are using multiple cloud platform providers for building next-generation applications, VMware on cloud can provide a simple, consistent way for applications to access native public cloud services with high-bandwidth, low-latency connectivity, while enabling rapid, on-demand capacity provisioning to support development efforts.

Optimize and Accelerate Application Modernization in a Hybrid Cloud World

The balance of cloud-native and VMware on cloud workloads will be unique to each organization. EchoStor’s hybrid cloud experts can help you optimize your modernization journey so you can achieve the benefits of hybrid cloud faster. The process includes:

  • Current-state infrastructure assessments to fully understand your existing IT environment and portfolio of applications and assets.
  • Application rationalization to select which applications are ideal for cloud environments, which should remain on-premises, and which should be retired.
  • Learning the driving factors of your organization and the compliance requirements for your industry.
  • Establishing a good-better-best modernization strategy and beginning the journey.
  • Setting a modernization timeline to ensure you meet your goals.

Ready to modernize your applications and optimize your hybrid cloud operations?

1 Cisco, “2022 Global Hybrid Cloud Trends Report,” May 2022.
2 Forrester, “Best Practice Report: Forrester’s Guide To VMware Services In The Cloud,” November 2022.

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Brian Peets

Principal Cloud Architect

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