Building architecture around cloud provider solutions fosters open-minded attitude in network world
Not all major cloud providers are the same, and this simple realization can impact how network architects implement multicloud solutions.
For a business such as Ellie Mae Inc., which processes 35% of mortgage applications in the United States, the nuances of network architecture can become especially important. Ellie Mae started out focused on one cloud, but acquisitions and new mortgage processing technologies moved the firm to embrace a multicloud model very quickly, according to one of its information-technology executives.
“They all have very specific design philosophies that allow them to be successful in different ways, and you have to keep that in mind as you architect your own solution,” said Justin Brodley (pictured, third from left), vice president of cloud operations at Ellie Mae, in a discussion of the different cloud providers. “For example, Amazon has a very regional affinity; they don’t like to go cross-region in their architecture. Whereas Google has a global network and thinks in terms of a global solution.”
Brodley spoke with John Furrier (pictured, far right), host of theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s mobile livestreaming studio, and Steve Mullaney (pictured, far left), president and chief executive officer of Aviatrix Systems Inc., during the Altitude 2020 event in Santa Clara, California. He was joined by Justin Smith (pictured, second from left), principal network architect at Zuora Inc., and Amit Utreja (pictured, second from right), senior principal engineer at Coupa Software Inc. They discussed a new approach on the part of the network industry, the importance of building the right architecture to manage workload demand, and the challenges faced by firms that must balance between cloud and on-premises solutions. (* Disclosure below.)
An infrastructure ‘lull’
Beyond deciding which cloud provider is best suited for an organization’s needs, network administrators must also build the appropriate internal infrastructure to facilitate business demands. The choice of different clouds to drive critical workloads has prompted a change in the network industry’s mindset, according to Smith.
“It’s being open minded,” Smith said. “The network industry as a whole has been very much: ‘I’m smarter than everybody else, and we’re going to tell everybody how it’s going to be done.’ We fell into a lull when it came to producing infrastructure.”
Playing catch-up on the infrastructure side has led a number of firms to craft architecture based on a cloud-first strategy. This was one of the lessons learned early in the inception of Coupa Software Inc., which was 100% cloud from day one, according to Utreja.
“Put your architecture first; don’t wait,” Utreja advised. “You’re going to have workloads running in different clouds, and the workloads will have an affinity to one cloud or another. They’re going to be calling each other, and it’s very important to have visibility.”
While companies such as Coupa were born in the cloud, many businesses today remain hybrid, with a combination of on-prem infrastructure and cloud-based services. This is the market opportunity for firms like Aviatrix that provide a single common platform for multicloud networking.
“The key painpoint for most companies is how to take your traditional on-premises network and then blow it out to the cloud in a way that makes sense,” Brodley explained. “You have internet protocol conflicts, you have IP space, you have public IPs on-premises, as well as in the cloud, and you need to make sense of all of that. That’s where tools like Aviatrix make a lot of sense.”
Watch the complete video interview below, and be sure to check out more of SiliconANGLE’s and theCUBE’s coverage of the Altitude event. (* Disclosure: TheCUBE is a paid media partner and co-producer for Altitude 2020. Neither Aviatrix Systems Inc. nor other sponsors have editorial control over content on theCUBE or SiliconANGLE.)
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