April 14, 2023 10:30 AM

How to Plan a Successful Microsoft Azure Migration Strategy

Microsoft Azure is a public cloud platform. The cloud platform provides the technology and processes to access, manage, and store your data transferred over the "cloud" instead of residing on your computer's hard drive. Microsoft Azure platform is a collective representation of the network of data centers that store and compute information available through the Internet. We can describe a complex system of software, computers, network, and security all combined into one word, Cloud.

Deploying Applications to Azure requires extensive planning across the organization, with a well-defined strategy and getting participation from key business, technical, and leadership stakeholders. To migrate various integrated apps and services, you must be highly cautious in carefully planning how to move the entire system to Azure. The most common approach is to move the apps and services with minor dependencies first and then review the integration requirements for the remaining components.

Azure Database Migration Service

Azure Database Migration Service (DMS) is a fully managed service offered by Microsoft as part of Azure that simplifies and accelerates migrating on-premises databases to Azure. The service supports a variety of databases, including SQL Server, Oracle, MySQL, and PostgreSQL.

In general, we have three scenarios here.

One-time migration:

Move a database to Azure once and leave it running in Azure.

Lift and shift:

Migrate an on-premises database to Azure and keep the same database engine running in Azure.

Change the engine:

Migrate an on-premises database to Azure but change the database engine running in Azure to a different one.

Azure cloud migration steps

Create a master plan.

The first step is to create a preliminary plan to migrate your applications to Azure Cloud. Choose Azure services such as compute, storage, analytics, continuous integration, delivery, and deployment, then create an application migration schedule. Identify pilot migration deliverables, which are optional. Ensure you have a migration project communication plan, including reporting and escalation procedures. You can use the Microsoft-provided Azure Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) Calculator to help assess individual applications.

Consult with Stakeholders

The next step is to get buy-in from stakeholders from both the technology and business owners. Having full support throughout the organization will ensure that the migration goes smoothly.

Evaluate the apps to be migrated.

Moving applications and infrastructure to Azure requires qualified and trained staffing and team organization. Many organizations need cloud engineers who specialize in leveraging cloud services like Azure as a development platform for technology teams.

Assess the Total Cost of Ownership

If your business has an On-Premises solution, you have the costs of Physical Security, Hardware, Information Technology staff, and Maintenance. It would be best to consider this in the Total Cost of Ownership. When these assets are removed, your business may accomplish savings of between 50 to 75%. This is a significant saving and is a big reason several business organizations are adopting Cloud Bases solutions.

Migrating Applications to Azure: Challenges and Solutions

Upgrading skills

Migrating applications to Azure needs upgrading skills for the existing teams, specifically when the business is still running on a legacy system. Lack of skills is a critical challenge, and many organizations spend significant money on training their team.

You can hire domain experts to help with the migration process and upskill your existing team. You must help them understand the impact of cloud design and architecting, like provisioning, cloud deployments, and auto-scaling.

DevOps migration

You may have disruption that could create room for failure and several pushbacks due to too many changes.

The data migration tool helps you bring your data from Azure DevOps Server to Azure DevOps in the Cloud. Keep the same work item numbers, Team Foundation Version Control check-in numbers, and Git commit IDs. You have an advantage of the cloud infrastructure. Everything has an API and becomes configurable. Microsoft provides step by step guide. Microsoft provides tools and resources to move your mission-critical workload to Azure.

Data Security Risk

When migrating to Azure, there are data security risks. Data that sits securely in local silos will be exposed to new security risks if stored or processed on remote Azure servers.

Microsoft's new security systems developed recently have enabled the Cloud to be as secure as a local server. Specialized security services from third parties can harden Cloud applications even further than Cloud platforms provide natively.

Microsoft provides several tools and resources to migrate your applications and workload to Azure. You have Azure Migrate, Windows Server Migration, SQL Server Migration, .NET App Migration, Main Frame Migration, Linux Migration, Azure App Service, and Azure SQL database. Following Azure cloud migration best practices, you can minimize disruption to your operations and cloud security risks.

As a trusted Microsoft partner and consultant, Web Synergies analyzes your business operating environment and implements the right Microsoft solution to boost your business value. We use Analytical frameworks to evaluate the impact of the factors affecting your company's-company's systems, technology, business process, and environment. With our deep domain expertise, Microsoft consultants engage effectively with our customers to share all the Microsoft offers in designing a winning Microsoft Azure migration strategy for your business organization.

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