Many companies are looking at the possibilities of cloud IT systems but are not ready to take the big step of committing their whole business to cloud providers. Hybrid cloud architectures, in which the existing in-house systems remain but are extended using add-ons in the cloud, can be a useful way to try out cloud services. However, hybrid cloud is increasingly being seen as the ideal cloud architecture for the long term, rather than just as a step along the way to using only public cloud services.
Cloud services bring benefits of flexibility and scalability as servers, data storage and other facilities are shared between a number of users. Your businesses can benefit from the service provider's IT skills in managing a virtualized infrastructure that reduces costs and carbon footprint. However, some users have concerns about privacy and security. Hybrid clouds offer the best of both worlds—critical data and applications are kept on your premises while low-cost public cloud services are used for more run-of-the-mill applications such as data storage and archiving.
New management tools allow the service provider and your IT manager to collaborate and to manage pooled resources so that you can extend the same applications, networking, management, operations and tools across both on-premises and off-premises environments with no modifications.
In addition to achieving the ideal balance of data security and cost reduction, hybrid clouds allow IT infrastructure to be scaled dynamically to match the workload. This makes it easy to cope with short term peaks in demand such as during special events or promotions. It also becomes possible to add new features, such as mobile access, without disrupting the on-premise systems.