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Understanding Hybrid Data Centers

When it comes to choosing between the cloud, colocation, and on-premises infrastructure to host your businesses data, the best answer might be all three.

When it comes to choosing between the cloud, colocation, and on-premises infrastructure to host your businesses data, the best answer might be all three. This best-of-all-worlds solution is the “hybrid data center” and is currently used by one in five companies. That number, according to Gartner, will rapidly rise in the next five years as businesses embrace the hybrid data center approach.

“By 2025, 85 percent of infrastructure strategies will integrate on-premises, colocation, cloud, and edge delivery options, compared to 20 percent in 2020,” said David Cappuccio and Henrique Cecci, authors of the Gartner Research Report released in September 2020, “Your Data Center May Not Be Dead, but It’s Morphing”.

The hybrid data center takes advantage of solutions near and far to protect, store and manage your data:

  • Centralized cloud solution with its massive compute and storage power. Major players include Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, IBM Cloud and Oracle Cloud Infrastructure.
  • Regional and local data centers with large compute and storage power. Your company shares physical space with others in these colocation ventures.
  • On-premises data centers with smaller compute and storage ability.
  • Hybrid data center structure can offer a centralized cloud experience, ideal for applications such as email hosting, CRM, and data archival, along with regional and local data centers for closer proximity of data needed for daily operations, and some level of on-premises infrastructure to host critical applications in-house.

Advantage of Hybrid Data Centers

One of the biggest advantages of hybrid data centers is that your business can keep certain data in-house and under complete control, while still taking advantage of cloud services and regional data center hosting options.

The hybrid data center approach is favored for the following reasons:

  • Helps with government regulations, such as EU’s GDPR, and privacy concerns over where certain data is housed
  • Improved performance of certain applications, which can rely on data closer at hand, improving customer interactions
  • Lower costs by not investing as much in on-premises IT infrastructure and lower staffing costs required to maintain the in-house equipment
  • Continued use of legacy systems already installed and relied upon
  • Heightened security by the option to choose which data is housed in the cloud, at regional and local edge data centers and on-premises
  • Avoiding of cloud service provider lock-in
  • The hybrid data center, while a complex solution because of the blending of the various services, is also very scalable and agile

IT departments have the flexibility to mix and match how and where to manage everyday workloads, focusing on efficiency and cost-savings. In this model the focus is on “centers of data” instead of “data centers”.

Living on the Edge: Micro Data Centers

Even with its role in the hybrid data center approach, the days seem numbered for traditional data centers on-premises with Gartner predicting that by 2025, 80 percent of enterprises will pull the plug on their in-house, traditional data centers. There is, however, a shift away from the cloud and back towards computing power closer to where data is being created with an eye on the coming wave of 5G technology and the IoT devices.

The unstructured data of IoT devices is projected to grow at a phenomenal rate, comprising 80 percent of the world’s 175 zettabytes of data generated in 2025. Gartner estimates there will be 64 billion IoT devices by 2025 and moving all the data to the cloud poses latency issues and could be cost-prohibitive.

Edge data centers or micro data centers are smaller self-contained units that can be deployed as close as possible to where the network is operating, and data is being created. These edge data center devices, with more computing power than early mainframes that weighed up to 30 tons, do not require their own space but can be stuck to poles and mounted on buildings and rooftops.

The future of hybrid data centers then focuses on a four-prong approach of cloud, colocation, on-premises, and edge data centers. 

PS LIGHTWAVE provides high-speed, fiber Internet for public and private commercial entities in the Greater Houston and surrounding areas.

Through our high-quality infrastructure, innovative technology and expert, locally based support, we deliver not only the best in connectivity and reliability but in scalability and redundancy. We invite you to learn more about our services, our history and our dedicated team.

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PS LIGHTWAVE, a leading telecommunications service provider headquartered in Houston, Texas, provides managed Ethernet Data Circuits, Internet, private network solutions and Voice over IP (VoIP) over one of the nation’s largest facilities-based private Metropolitan Area Networks (MANs). The switched Layer 2 network, backed by 24/7/365 Network Operations Center (NOC) support, encompasses approximately 5,500 route miles and 1,400 on-net locations and connects 100+ fault-tolerant multi-gigabit Ethernet rings for built-in redundancy, security, low latency, and high-availability. At PS LIGHTWAVE Great Connections Happen Here™.

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