10 reasons to divorce the cloud

10 reasons to divorce the cloud
Pixabay (CC0)

For some companies, using cloud services isn’t what they hoped or expected it to be. Reason’s like these might be enough to make them leave. 

1. Your costs went out of the control. 

This can be significant. Prices go up and go down. A new product gets introduced that might be more financially attractive—but only if you started from that point and not if you include the added cost of migration (documentation, security and other audit) not to mention re-budgeting and rate of return over the lifecycle of the data flows. 

2. Security was tougher than you thought. 

You were probably smart and already had extensive key control, but perhaps your cloud vendor wanted it done their way. Asset control, the cost of embedding security control planes and audit infrastructure that duplicates data center standards created a duopoly of security infrastructure—perhaps both equal but not the same—adding to costs of control, training, documentation, audit and more. 

3. Moving stuff among cloud vendors takes the skills of a science fiction writer. 

There are some decent methodologies for making atomic, rather than dependent, cloud constructions so that they can be moved (mostly) en masse to a new target cloud provider’s infrastructure with comparative ease. Few organizations base their relationships on the mandate that assets must be mobile rather than dependent on a cloud provider’s secret sauce. Then they weep.

4. Your APIs are not only ignored, but unsupported. 

Hooks to your management, networking and administrative control planes are mandatory. You may be on your own getting support for them because often the hooks live, in theory, somewhere, and are managed by, um, someone. It’s best to know that your control plane is supported before you start moving assets. 

5. Cloud tech support is available. Just available. 

Imagine my complete surprise when I moved my meager infrastructure into the cloud to find support is available only Monday through Friday from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Mountain time. I’m moving out shortly. My data center is hosted at Expedient, which has data centers increasingly around the country. Those nightshift people live for something to do that’s both interesting and complex. Black-belt support personnel are doing comparatively mundane graveyard shift stuff. I should’ve moved there.

6. Someone’s constantly trying to snack on your assets with new and ingenious, cloud vendor implementation-specific wedges. 

I won’t say much about this other than use a search engine and look up “$cloudprovider hacks”. Have a nice day.

7. Only DevOps uses it, and they have the housekeeping skills of a dorm resident. 

Audit your stuff. Find out exactly what’s being used, why it’s being used and what the budget was. You’re supposed to get a return on investment, somehow, on the dough you’re spending in the cloud. My best friends are developers, and they sometimes have all of the cleanliness of teenagers. 

8. Cloud apps are digesting your data, and you’re paranoid that it’s being reassembled somehow, somewhere, by your competitors.

This is something I worry a lot about, knowing the deftness of big data analysis engines and their thoroughness. Do you look at the terms and conditions thoroughly? Do you worry about conflation from your SaaS providers? I do. 

9. The complexity of managing several notions of infrastructure has created a mess and one that doesn’t meet the tests of audit, compliance or even credulity.

You thought one infrastructure was tough and the cloud ought to be a part of your “one data infrastructure,” but for many it is not—it’s a duplication. It’s more licensing cost. More training. More disaster recovery cost. More personnel. More documentation. More turf in general. The complexity factors rise. Maybe they rise to the point where a re-assertion of sanity is warranted for some organizations.

10. Your cloud vendor once again altered their business model, and now you’re left wondering what they’ll do next quarter.

Depending on contractors is always fraught. As the industry herds move here and there, new initiatives render new, if more daunting (perhaps productive) prospects. Periodic review of cloud vendor direction is needed. The problem is some cloud vendors are now so large, you can spend a week at their vanity trade show and be none the wiser.

Join the Network World communities on Facebook and LinkedIn to comment on topics that are top of mind.

Copyright © 2016 IDG Communications, Inc.

IT Salary Survey: The results are in