In order to truly reap the rewards of cloud computing, you need to understand which risks could jeopardize your system and how to prevent them. Providing your team more knowledge on how to manage the cloud can prevent human error, one of the major deficiencies in cloud computing. Application incompatibility is also a common culprit behind cloud failure rather than the actual infrastructure of the cloud. Learning how to preemptively troubleshoot applications, security, storage, and disaster recovery for your cloud means you’ll be able to move forward confidently, whether you’re still transitioning or facing difficulties in your current cloud operations.
Recent research by AppDynamics finds that unplanned application downtime costs Fortune 1000 businesses between $1.25 billion to $2.5 billion every year. So, how do you prevent losses in the billions? You invest in software quality assurance testing. Every application launched in your cloud infrastructure must be tested before, during, and after deployment. It’s possible your IT department might not realize the importance of this step, or that communication about testing becomes chaotic as multiple people on the same DevOps team may test different cases or in different environments simultaneously. But the reality is, if you want comfort and security, you have to test using a consistent and well-documented strategy.
In the same way you must test applications to prevent a cloud collapse, you need to regularly test cloud security to ensure there are no vulnerabilities in your cloud infrastructure. This means testing all pieces of your software for script manipulation and multiple sites of entry, as well as ensuring that any software engaged in cross-site scripting is secure from all sides. Increased cloud agility can mean some companies choose to reduce their IT staff. However, that can leave critical gaps in testing for cloud security or increase the burden on existing staff. In cases like these, partnering with an agnostic quality assurance company is beneficial because you can be certain threats will be assessed completely. Ultimately, this third party’s ability to be agnostic and simply perform the testing without oversight means you can rest assured your cloud is secure.
Cloud infrastructure seems like a big mystery, but it is still based in physical hardware somewhere on the planet. This means you need to understand your provider’s ability to scale. As they grow and add more clients using that physical hardware, you run the risk of a cloud failure, so preparing for high demand is important. Larger service providers have more measures in place to prevent outages, but poor processes and protocol around disaster recovery on your end can cause more problems should a cloud outage happen.
No one likes the thought that unexpected failures and complications will arise, but failing to plan for something just because the thought is unpleasant is a sure road to disaster. A solid disaster recovery (DR) plan is centered on a recovery time objective (RTO), which is the maximum acceptable length of time that your application can be offline. There’s also the recovery point objective (RPO), which is the maximum acceptable length of time during which data might be lost from your application due to a major incident. Knowing these two stepping stones is only the beginning of a functional DR plan. If you’ve yet to transition to the cloud, begin by fully understanding your service provider’s capacity and discussing with your IT team an appropriate DR plan.
These cloud computing failures can strike any business, whether you use the cloud for internal operations or client-facing apps and portals. Your IT team can work the magic, but once they’re pulled it off, do they have the perspective and diligence to make sure the trick works right ten million times in a row? Even if they do, that still might not be the best use of their time, which is where iLAB comes in. Let us help you optimize your time and purchases through automated software testing and other quality assurance practices to ensure you aren’t migrating into a stormy cloud scenario.