Our clients often ask us questions like:
- How does the cloud enhance database management?
- What are the benefits of transitioning databases away from commercial providers?
- What are the steps to ensure a successful database migration?
In today’s data-driven world, we are generating more data than ever. Unfortunately, legacy IT systems often fall short of managing this data influx. Commercial databases, in particular, grapple with satisfying the evolving needs of organizations keen on leveraging emerging technologies like machine learning and predictive analytics.
However, the prospect of migrating databases to the cloud may seem daunting to many people. Indeed, moving and modernizing mission-critical IT assets can be intimidating if you don’t have the right tools, expertise, resources – or vision.
It’s understandable that organizations may harbor reservations about migrating their databases to the cloud. They have legitimate concerns such as potential disruption to operations or loss of sensitive data during the modernization process. Despite this, businesses can’t afford to remain complacent, given the escalating need for advanced data management capabilities. Sticking to the status quo could limit their ability to stay competitive and innovative in today’s fast-paced digital landscape.
Limitations of Legacy Databases
Legacy databases are simply too limited in what they can accomplish for modern businesses. Some, though not all, of the challenges of commercial databases, are:
- Monolithic architecture – in monolithic designs, services are tightly coupled together. This goes against the agile nature of the cloud.
- Proprietary features – customers become locked into arrangements that may not be in their best interests.
- Inefficient pricing – commercial databases are usually more expensive than open-source platforms.
- Punitive licensing – commercial databases sometimes have hidden fees for unintentionally using unlicensed features.
These challenges can make it difficult for database managers to optimize cost structures, try different technologies, and design agile data management architecture.
The Cloud-Based Database Benefit
However, all of these challenges of legacy databases can be overcome with cloud-based databases. Here are just a handful of the benefits that can be achieved by migrating databases to the cloud:
- Increased performance – cloud-based databases are fast, offering microsecond to sub-millisecond latency at any scale.
- Cost-effective – only pay for resources used. That means costs scale directly with processing power.
- Unlimited scalability – cloud-based databases scale up and down much more easily than commercial databases.
- High availability – distribute databases via multi-master replication across many regions to guard against catastrophic downtime events.
- Secure data – cloud providers invest in the best technologies to offer multiple layers of protection and centralized security policies to protect data.
With the benefits of cloud-based databases compared to commercial databases so clear, the next issue to resolve is which cloud provider should you use for your database.
Choosing the Best Cloud Provider
Selecting the right public cloud provider is crucial when migrating databases away from commercial vendors. ClearScale believes there is one cloud provider that stands out from the rest – Amazon Web Services (AWS).
AWS shines when it comes to fully managed database services, which take on much of the burden of database management. AWS’s two primary database services include Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) and Amazon Aurora.
- Amazon RDS enables users to quickly set up and manage relational databases in the AWS cloud in just a few steps. It’s highly scalable and cost-efficient, allowing organizations to expand compute and storage according to their needs.
- Amazon Aurora is a MySQL and PostgreSQL-compatible relational database managed by Amazon RDS. That means organizations can easily migrate from commercial engines to Aurora using standard MySQL or PostgreSQL import and expert tools.
Even though Amazon RDS and Amazon Aurora are the premier cloud database services, it can still be difficult to migrate all workloads and data successfully without disrupting existing services. That’s when a proven cloud consulting expert can be invaluable.
Help for Migrating and Modernizing Legacy Databases on AWS
As an AWS Premier Tier Services Partner, ClearScale has a proven track record of facilitating the migration, modernization, and optimization of IT infrastructures on the cloud for hundreds of organizations. Our achievements include earning the AWS Migration Competency, a testament to our expertise in navigating our clients through large-scale migrations with finesse and precision.
We have many customer success stories, but we’ll highlight one here in particular. Spark Networks, a global dating site company, needed to integrate a newly acquired dating platform, Zoosk, into its existing AWS environment without causing any user disruptions. While Spark was already utilizing AWS, Zoosk had various systems and applications running in on-premises infrastructure, including a Microsoft SQL Server data warehouse.
By adopting an Infrastructure as Code (IaC) strategy, we managed to migrate Zoosk’s databases to AWS successfully. We further implemented several AWS services, including Amazon RDS for Microsoft SQL, Amazon EC2, Amazon S3, and Amazon CloudWatch. This enabled us to transfer databases from multiple servers to AWS seamlessly and without causing service interruptions. For more in-depth information, you can read the detailed case study.
If you’re looking for similar results, contact ClearScale about our database migration services.