Hybrid IT: How Internal and External Cloud Services are Transforming IT

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Hybrid IT is the result of combining internal and external services, usually from a combination of internal and public clouds, in support of a business outcome. Adoption risks of public clouds have led to architectures that connect internal core services and critical data to external, commoditized services.

Hybrid IT relies on new technologies to connect clouds, sophisticated approaches to data classification and identity, and service oriented architecture. In addition, the role of IT and its practitioners is undergoing significant change.

Gartner Technical Professional Research Analysts discuss business and technology trends for 2014.

Gartner for Technical Professionals: Hybrid IT Research

  • Architecture & Strategy
  • Infrastructure
  • Applications, Data & Providers
  • Security & Identity

Architecture & Strategy

2015 Planning Guide for Cloud Computing

2 October 2014

Cloud services are the foundation for the digital business. In 2015, organizations must prioritize the advancement of their cloud adoption maturity plans so that the foundation is in place to handle the proliferation of large-scale data, applications and services in the cloud.

Devising a Public Cloud Adoption Strategy: Success by Design

27 March 2014

To date, many IT organizations have adopted cloud computing in an ad hoc manner, often starting as 'pilot projects' deep within the IT organization. For cloud computing to be successful, IT organizations need a solid, well-thought-out cloud adoption strategy that considers both risks and rewards.

Solution Path for Public Cloud Adoption Maturity Plan

8 November 2012

IT organizations must commit to a maturity transformation of their organizations, governance, technology, applications and management processes in order to better adopt public cloud services. This Solution Path presents a multiyear maturity plan for public cloud computing adoption.

Blueprint for Architecting Application Availability at Microsoft Azure

7 August 2014

Customers can achieve high levels of application availability by using cloud services. This Blueprint demonstrates an application availability architecture to meet near-continuous availability requirements with Microsoft Azure infrastructure offerings.

Blueprint for Architecting Application Availability at Amazon Web Services

7 August 2014

Customers can achieve high levels of Web application availability by using cloud services. This Blueprint demonstrates a Web application availability architecture to meet near-continuous availability requirements with Amazon Web Services (AWS).

Exploit Cloud, Mobile, Data and Social Convergence for Disruptive Innovation

19 February 2014

Nexus projects expand the definition of user experience; exponentially increase user responsiveness and change organizations into data companies. This report explains the key insights, analyzes how the nexus facilitates disruptive innovation and describes the lessons learned from field research.

Defining Cloud Computing

9 January 2012

Cloud computing's on-demand, pay-as-you-go service model is transforming IT from massive, cumbersome, internal cost centers into agile, reactive, external services that are used not merely as business tools, but as the medium by which business is conducted. Unfortunately, marketing hype, unclear return on investment, and difficult risk/benefit analysis continue to hinder cloud adoption. Organizations that best understand cloud computing can take advantage of its strengths and mitigate its risks. In this management initiative, Gartner clarifies the discussion by defining cloud computing and its characteristics, architectural model, benefits, and shortcomings.

Cloud Computing Tiered Architecture

6 January 2012

Clients continue to request help with understanding cloud computing architecture and information. Unfortunately, the volume of hype and conflicting information slows down the adoption of cloud computing, but IT organizations are aware that implementing cloud services is complex. If cloud computing is to mature, IT organizations must develop a cloud adoption strategy -- a strategy that is built on a simple, easy-to-understand architecture. This Gartner cloud computing root template depicts the root diagram for cloud computing by breaking it into three separate tiers. Using this template, IT organizations can level-set cloud comprehension, understand its value, and devise an adoption strategy.

Devising a Cloud Exit Strategy: Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance

28 March 2013

Savvy organizations that leverage cloud computing realize risk management is part of the game. They expect the unexpected. Hence, they have a comprehensive cloud strategy, including purposefully devised exit plans, before the first application or byte of data is hosted in the public cloud.

Cloud Characteristics, Principles and Design Patterns

15 July 2012

How do you maximize the cloudiness of an IT solution? IT architects need a framework for evaluating cloud platforms and custom-developed applications intended to run on them. The benefits of cloud computing are realized by implementing an architecture with desirable characteristics, such as elastic scalability, metered consumption and self-service. This template defines the architectural principles and design patterns that maximize cloud characteristics and determines the cloud tier in which each pattern can be implemented (infrastructure, platform or application code). This template also guides architects around the anti-patterns that counteract potential benefits of cloud computing.

Hybrid Cloud Network Architecture

13 November 2013

A variety of hybrid cloud network architectures has emerged, and choosing the right one depends on both the use case and the cloud environment. Logically extending the corporate data center perimeter to the cloud should also be addressed and can be facilitated by SDN and network virtualization.

Infrastructure as a Service

9 July 2012

IT organizations are increasingly looking to build cloud-based infrastructures to reduce cost of ownership while improving agility and business continuity. However, designing cloud-based infrastructure as a service (IaaS) architecture brings numerous challenges, especially in regard to mobility, security, interoperability, and management. In this Reference Architecture template, Research VP Chris Wolf and Research Director Alessandro Perilli outline the core components for an IaaS cloud architectural model that leverages virtualization technologies to successfully deliver IaaS.

Architectural Elements of Software as a Service

28 June 2013

This template offers a high-level architectural model to aid an enterprise in determining its SaaS strategy.

Decision Point for Selecting an Application's Cloud Migration Strategy

3 July 2012

The CIO issues a simple directive: "Move some applications to the cloud." To do this, architects face bewildering choices. In this Decision Point, Richard Watson steers architects to a choice from among five alternatives: rehost on IaaS, refactor using IaaS and PaaS, revise for IaaS or PaaS, rebuild on PaaS, or replace with SaaS. The decision must consider an organization's requirements, evaluation criteria, and architecture principles. However, no alternative offers a silver bullet: All alternatives require architects to understand application migration from multiple perspectives and criteria, such as IT staff skills, existing investments, and application architecture.

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Virtual Automation: "Just Enough" Private Cloud

22 September 2014

Organizations seek the benefits of an internal private cloud, but CMPs are costly and complex to implement. A simple solution is virtual automation in lieu of fully featured CMPs or as a first step on the journey to implementing a fully featured internal private cloud.

Blueprint for Architecting a Hybrid Cloud Network

8 July 2014

To connect to the cloud, organizations can choose to use the Internet or to extend their existing WAN to the cloud provider. Depending on requirements, both methods may eventually be needed. This Blueprint describes an architectural approach to create a hybrid cloud network.

Blueprint for Implementing Server Backup to the Cloud

27 June 2014

Many IT organizations use backups to cloud storage for their distributed systems. However, recovery using only cloud backups can pose significant challenges. This Blueprint presents Gartner recommendations for implementing server backup using cloud storage that minimizes the recovery challenges.

Solution Comparison: x86 Server Virtualization Platforms

25 April 2014

This document summarizes Gartner's in-depth assessments of the four leading x86 server virtualization platforms — Oracle VM, Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization, VMware vSphere and Microsoft Windows Hyper-V. It compares strengths and weaknesses and notes when to deploy and not deploy each hypervisor.

Improving Data Center Agility With Network Virtualization

17 April 2014

Virtualization will not fully deliver its promise of agility as long as networks are statically provisioned and managed. To achieve the agility and scale demanded by the modern business, IT organizations must evaluate one of the first use cases for SDN: network virtualization.

Assessing the Top Use Cases and Provider Types for Cloud-based Disaster Recovery

31 March 2014

Cloud-based disaster recovery-as-a-service (DRaaS or RaaS) solutions are gaining customer adoption, predominantly from small and midsize organizations. This document divides the RaaS vendors into five groups and weighs their respective strengths and weaknesses for several DR use cases.

Connecting Multiple Data Centers and Clouds via Data Center Interconnect

6 February 2014

Cloud services, workload mobility, distributed active-active applications, network virtualization, SDN and protocols that extend VLANs across IPs are spurring organizations to revisit their DCI architectures. This DCI assessment provides Gartner recommendations for enterprise DCIs.

Cloud Storage Gateways: Enabling the Hybrid Cloud

27 January 2014

Unfamiliar public cloud storage protocols and APIs can complicate hybrid cloud initiatives. Cloud storage gateways can simplify these projects, but they include multiple architectures with varying applicability. This document presents Gartner recommendations for cloud storage gateway deployment.

Cloud Backup Assessment: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

13 May 2013

Cloud backup is gaining wider acceptance for distributed systems and data for good reasons. However, data recovery using only cloud backups can get ugly in some scenarios. This document cuts through the vendor hype to present Gartner cloud backup and recovery recommendations and best practices.

2014 Planning Guide for Private Cloud, Data Center Modernization and Desktop Transformation

3 October 2013

In 2014, organizations will face increasing pressure to support greater business agility, increase service availability and improve efficiency. Decisions regarding private cloud management, data center modernization and desktop transformation will dominate 2014 data center planning and operations.

Hybrid Cloud Network Architecture

13 November 2013

A variety of hybrid cloud network architectures has emerged, and choosing the right one depends on both the use case and the cloud environment. Logically extending the corporate data center perimeter to the cloud should also be addressed and can be facilitated by SDN and network virtualization.

Climbing the Cloud Orchestration Curve

13 January 2014

Gartner conducted field research on cloud orchestration with 16 IT organizations. While each organization had unique strategies and implementations, many similarities existed. This research summary provides findings and recommendations for enterprise architecture teams orchestrating clouds.

How to Prepare Your Network for Private and Hybrid Cloud Computing

30 July 2013

Data center network architecture must meet the demands imposed by private and hybrid cloud computing. This document provides a step-by-step methodology for maturing a traditional data center network to deliver dynamic provisioning and to leverage new technologies such as SDN and VXLAN.

Evaluation Criteria for Cloud Management Platforms

19 July 2012

The cloud management platform (CMP) market is so crowded, and it is evolving so rapidly, that tracking competing solutions and their capabilities represents a significant challenge. Additionally, CMP vendors differ highly in terms of platform maturity, architecture complexity and feature sets, which makes it harder to identify the best solution for cloud management. Organizations that are evaluating CMP solutions require common criteria to objectively evaluate and compare competing products.

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Applications, Data & Providers

Evaluation Criteria for Cloud Infrastructure as a Service Providers

7 May 2014

This document provides a comprehensive set of criteria for assessing infrastructure as a service cloud providers such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure Infrastructure Services, Rackspace Public Cloud, VMware vCloud Hybrid Service, Google Compute Engine or IBM SoftLayer Cloud.

Amazon Web Services (AWS): In-Depth Assessment

04 August 2014

Amazon Web Services is the market share leader in public cloud infrastructure as a service and dominates customer attention. This assessment scores AWS against Gartner's 205-point evaluation criteria for cloud IaaS.

Microsoft Azure: In-Depth Assessment

7 August 2014

Microsoft Azure is an integrated portfolio of cloud IaaS and PaaS solutions and is often evaluated against Amazon Web Services and other cloud providers. This assessment scores Azure against Gartner's 205-point evaluation criteria for cloud IaaS.

Comparing Open-Source PaaS Frameworks: Cloud Foundry and OpenShift

4 September 2014

Digital business is driving interest in PaaS, where Cloud Foundry and OpenShift are the dominant open-source frameworks. Though maturing rapidly, they have room for improvement. This comparison assessment helps solution architects manage the trade-offs.

Solution Path SaaS Email

26 May 2014

This document defines a solution path that helps enterprises determine when, where and how to leverage the SaaS delivery model for email.

What IT Needs to Know About Google Apps Business: Features and Functionality

30 April 2014

Google Apps for Business is most popular with universities, governments and SMBs. Large enterprises can use it as an email or collaboration solution, but it has limited appeal as a full-scale Office replacement.

Moving Applications to the Cloud: A Survival Strategy Data Management Professionals

18 April 2014

Moving business applications to the cloud can have a profound effect on the roles and responsibilities of the IT department. Data management technical professionals need to understand how cloud computing is affecting their roles and responsibilities and must build a strategy for staying relevant.

What IT Needs to Know About Office 365: Features and Functionality

31 March 2014

Office 365 is now in its fourth major iteration. Based on feature differences between the cloud and software versions, Microsoft-centric organizations should investigate the multitenant version of Exchange Online and SharePoint Online; consider Office 365 ProPlus and Yammer; and avoid Lync Online.

What IT Needs to Know About Office 365: In-Depth Assessment

14 January 2014

Microsoft Office 365 is attracting significant attention from customers. Does Office 365 meet production-grade enterprise requirements? This assessment evaluates Office 365 against Gartner's required, preferred and optional SaaS criteria.

Improving Application Availability With Public Cloud Infrastructure Services

29 January 2014

Organizations can achieve increased levels of availability with public cloud services — but only if architects properly design for it. This research walks cloud architects through improving application availability through possible architectures in cloud IaaS.

Assessing Data Integration in the Cloud

24 February 2014

The DI capabilities of iPaaS are immature and lag behind on-premises offerings. The predominant DI approach will be a hybrid of on-premises DI with iPaaS. This document analyzes key considerations for adopting iPaaS for DI.

Assessing Business Analytics in the Cloud

26 December 2013

Business analytics in the cloud is an alluring alternative for deploying flexible, cost-effective business analytics, but does it live up to the hype? Technical professionals must understand the application and benefit of cloud BA technology and its potential use as a catalyst for BA.

Comparing Cloud-Based Application Integration Architectures

17 March 2014

Organizations often cite integration as an issue that inhibits the ability to adopt cloud services. Architects must adapt their practices to address the challenge of cloud integration. This research compares three cloud-based architectures that organizations can use to build a solid integration strategy.

Solution Path for Evaluating and Selecting Public Cloud Providers

28 January 2014

IT organizations increasingly need to evaluate and select public cloud providers to meet business and organizational requirements. This Solution Path details the recommended Gartner process for choosing public cloud IaaS, PaaS or SaaS providers.

Calculating and Comparing Public IaaS Cloud Computing Costs

19 November 2013

Public IaaS offerings are defined with different virtualization parcels and pricing models, making strategic budget planning and determining correct provider or cloud strategy difficult. Gartner's guidance and tool provides direction on understanding and comparing costs for the public IaaS cloud.

Public Cloud Object Storage Comparison: Amazon, Google and Microsoft

24 June 2014

Object storage from Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform and Microsoft Azure offers improved IT agility and cost-efficiency over on-premises storage, but differentiating among providers and services is tricky. This document assesses these services and provides deployment recommendations.

Access to research documents may vary based on your subscription.

Security & Identity

Security in a DevOps World

29 April 2014

Much has been written about DevOps, but very little has been done to address the role of security and risk management within that context. This research identifies opportunities for security teams and developers to reap benefits from a DevOps movement while evolving the state of security.

Solution Path for Managing IT Risk in the Public Cloud

25 March 2014

IT organizations are attracted to the many advantages of public cloud services, but they struggle with how to identify, assess and manage the associated risks. This Solution Path presents an approach to structure these risk management efforts and to improve their value and effectiveness.

Provisioning User Accounts to Cloud Applications

2 April 2014

IAM teams must select user account management mechanisms that integrate with cloud applications and deliver appropriate automation. Most cloud services providers have not learned from the failures of on-premises application vendors and don't support a standard interface for access management.

Identity and Access Management Within Amazon Web Services' Public Cloud

5 February 2013

Amazon Web Services has amplified its capability in IAM, providing better management and security for the services it offers. However, AWS should be considered as a complex, self-contained environment when integrating with existing enterprise IAM infrastructure and governance processes.

Choosing Between On-Premises Federation and Federation IDaaS

6 March 2014

When implementing a federated SSO solution, one of the foundational architectural questions is whether to use an on-premises solution or a cloud-based IDaaS offering. Consider factors common to any on-premises vs. as-a-service decision, and the maturity of commercial identity federation offerings.

Preparing Your IAM Environment for Working With Azure AD and Office 365

6 January 2014

IT organizations wishing to adopt Microsoft Office 365 need to address a number of identity and access management issues with their existing on-premises Microsoft Active Directory and federation environments before they can make the move.

Solution Path: Providing Single Sign-On Access to Cloud Applications

6 December 2013

Single sign-on to SaaS applications is the most common use case for enterprise federation, regardless of whether the user has a mobile device. This Solution Path provides IT organizations with a road map to implement outbound SSO to cloud applications to delight users and increase security.

Designing Authorization Infrastructure to Power Applications in a Federated and Hybrid Cloud World

15 June 2013

How and where applications decided what actions users were allowed to perform was once relatively straightforward — but no longer. Advancements in externalized authorization technologies and the increase in federated and cloud applications present new challenges and opportunities for identity teams.

Determining Criteria for Cloud Security Assessment: It's More Than a Checklist

26 June 2013

Enterprises need effective and efficient cloud security assessments. This document provides guidance on developing assessment criteria that leverages existing frameworks for public cloud computing and uses risk to prioritize assessment criteria.

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