How to decide between cloud, on-premise and As-a-Service

Although vendor-written, this contributed piece does not advocate a position that is particular to the author’s employer and has been edited and approved by Network World editors.

Deciding whether and how to use cloud computing is a complex, and made all the more complicated by the overwhelming number of vendors and products. What’s more, hybrid and multicloud approaches blur the lines between the cloud and on-premise deployment options.

With an operations team that counsels organizations on which type of architecture is best for them – on premise, cloud, hybrid or multicloud – and then evaluates what went well and didn’t in all four kinds of deployments, here’s our view of what situations tip the scale toward one approach or another.  While the context is data storage, this analysis applies to most enterprise IT scenarios.

Choose on-premises architectures when:

Security is an emotional subject.    Security considerations are always paramount, but some sectors have a gut level reaction to the cloud, and the decision stops there, period.  For example, if the sheriff deploying a body worn camera application fears the team could not demonstrate a chain of custody over digital evidence in a cloud-based architecture — meaning evidence becomes inadmissible in court — it’s difficult to beat the peace-of-mind of an on-premise deployment where blinking lights on the hardware holding the team’s photos, documents, and videos

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