Gartner Research

How to Modernize Your Application to Adopt Cloud-Native Architecture


For existing applications to gain the agility, scalability, resilience and cost benefits of cloud-native computing, application technical professionals modernizing existing applications must find and address critical hot spots in the architecture.

Published: 30 March 2020

ID: G00451153

Analyst(s): Traverse Clayton

Table Of Contents

Problem Statement

The Gartner Approach

The Guidance Framework

  • Prework
    • Ensure Clarity of Goals to Guide Downstream Architecture Choices
    • Measure the Migrateability of an Application
    • Prepare Application Scorecard
  • Domain 1: Address the Application Architecture
    • Use of Unsupported Languages and Runtimes
    • Direct Code-to-Runtime Relationship
    • Improper State Management
    • Monolithic Design and Deployment
    • Single Points of Failure
    • Bottlenecks
  • Domain 2: Address the Application Life Cycle Management Process
    • Manual Configuration Updates
    • Manual Builds and Deployments
    • Inability to Be Containerized
    • Inability to Roll Back Releases
    • Lack of Testability
  • Domain 3: Address the Application Code
    • Hardcoded Values
    • Memory Locks
    • Blocking Calls
    • Siloed Logging
    • Nonrestartable Application Components
  • Domain 4: Address the Integration Points
    • Chatty Interactions
    • Network Calls
    • Complex Call Graph
    • Third-Party Libraries and APIs
  • Domain 5: Address Data Persistence
    • Use of Multiphase Commits
    • Monolithic Database
    • Use of Select * and Wildcards in SQL Statements
    • Non-DBA-Crafted SQL Statements
  • Follow-Up
    • Determine Strategies for Cloud Migration

Risks and Pitfalls

  • Risk: Not Investing in Cloud-Native Operations
    • How to Mitigate
  • Risk: Introducing Additional Complexity Through Distribution
    • How to Mitigate
  • Pitfall: Positioning Cloud-Native Modernization as a “Project”
    • How to Avoid
  • Pitfall: Applying This Guidance to Every Application and Remediating Every Hot Spot
    • How to Avoid
  • Related Guidance

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