Comprehensive cloud migration for a Software Development Company with more than 200 on-site virtual machines
What was the project about?
Our client, a software house, decided to undertake a comprehensive migration to a new IT infrastructure; the one in place was already largely outdated and unsupported. The software house looked into many options and was open to new technologies. In preparation for the move, it asked us to draft three alternative scenarios:
1. Sticking to the on-site model and buying a brand new infrastructure from scratch (network elements, disk matrices, servers, and a new backup solution);
2. Hiring an external company and leasing all of the equipment mentioned above;
3. Executing a complete migration of its infrastructure to the Azure cloud.
We prepared a three-year cost analysis for each scenario, including future changes in electricity prices and server-room costs, as well as the cost of replacing relevant devices (and, for Azure, the costs of subscription and cloud network traffic). Our estimates also analysed how labour-intensive each migration scenario would be. Once we added up the costs (which we estimated to cover the client’s specific requirements and how they would actually work with on-site and cloud infrastructure, without forcing any of the solutions on the client), the software house decided in favour of migration and hired our team for assistance.
november 2022 – ongoing
- Cloud services
- IT consulting
Who was our client?
Our client is a medium-sized software house that had more than 200 on-site machines at the start of the project. The client approached Altkom Software directly to have their cloud migration potential analysed.
They picked us because of our expertise in Azure, which includes a wide portfolio of consulting, architecture planning, environment configuration, security and cloud cost and resource optimisation services.
What were the biggest challenges of the project?
During the initial cost analysis and, later on, the actual migration process, the following aspects had to be taken into account:
- More than 200 virtual machines owned by our client (usage analysis and optimisation);
- Changes not only in server architecture, but also in network architecture (the client’s original environment was very complex and had to stay that way, despite optimisation);
- Compliance with ISO 27001 (complete separation between production and non-production environments, as well as between different project environments).
How did we address the problem?
Before the migration, we analysed the extent to which our client was using the virtual machines already in place. These data allowed us to design a brand new architecture for the target environment from scratch and optimise more than 50 machines that were scarcely used or not used at all. The new design also incorporated all the guidelines that had to be met for the architecture to meet ISO 27001 requirements.
In addition, we developed new scenarios for operating the client’s environments, so that the software house would only need to pay for the hours they actually used. An important step in the optimisation process involved cleaning up their storage space. Even before the migration, we changed the structures used for storing data and large numbers of files, and deleted outdated or redundant elements.
All these tasks took us just three months, but the migration as such was spread out over several more so as not to disrupt the software development process. As a result, the client’s team hardly noticed the migration as it happened. Importantly, our cooperation did not stop with the end of the project; we continue to analyse the client’s costs and budget on a daily basis, and often suggest and deploy architecture improvements.
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What did we do?
We performed a comprehensive analysis of our client’s machine usage, resources and the architecture already in place.
We designed a new architecture from scratch and prepared a cost estimate for 3 different migration scenarios.
We optimised our client’s environment to avoid migrating redundant resources.
We adjusted the client’s architecture to the requirements of ISO 27001 (the client’s certification was in progress).
We planned and performed a comprehensive migration of the entire environment (spread out over time so as not to disrupt the progress of other projects).
We continue to monitor and supervise the client’s environment, keeping their costs in check. We make sure the client stays within the budget.
We suggest and deploy architecture improvements in real time, quickly responding to any and all new releases from Azure.
What did we achieve?
Even before the migration, we optimised more than 50 of the client’s machines that were scarcely used or not used at all.
Architecture changes and optimisation reduced the expected migration costs
The architecture changes reduced the client’s network traffic (post-migration data), which further lowered the costs.
What technologies did we use?
Head of Azure Business Unit
The client’s original environment was very complex, divided into many smaller projects and dedicated infrastructures that were hardly integrated between one another. This could be likened to a billion small islands, which were to remain in place as far as business was concerned. We managed to maintain this complexity and still achieve a 25% infrastructure optimisation, which allowed the initial forecasts of migration costs to be cut practically by half.
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