In-field discussions with F5 clients and annual surveys highlight the continued trend that hybrid multi-cloud models are becoming the basis for everyday cloud infrastructure. Organizations will continue to operate their business using multiple application architectures as a means to achieve their desired business outcomes and expected user experiences.
For example, in the 2023 edition of the F5 State of Application Strategy Report, respondents indicated that around 40% of their application portfolios, excluding SaaS, are categorized as modern. This encompasses mobile apps and the incorporation of microservices. This proportion is projected to surpass 50%, potentially reaching 60%, by 2025.
To help infrastructure, operations, and security teams collaborate to overcome some of the multi-cloud and multi-team complexities that accompany this reality, experts from Google Cloud and the F5 Distributed Cloud product team came together for a special webinar event. In Keys to Making Distributed, Multi-Cloud App Environments Easier to Manage and More Secure, the experts explore how multi-cloud flexibility can come at a high price:
If you couldn’t attend the live session, don’t worry; you can catch a few of the highlights in this blog post. And you can watch the on-demand recording..
The event, which ActualTech Media’s Jess Steinbach moderated, included distinguished presenters: Joshua Haslett, Strategic Technology Partner Manager from Google Cloud; Ian Dinno, Senior Manager, Product Marketing from F5, and Rahul Phadke, Product Management from F5. They discussed how organizations can make their distributed cloud environments easier to connect, manage, and secure.
F5 Distributed Cloud Network Connect, among multi-cloud networking solutions from F5, delivers high-performance networking and security across hybrid environments. It allows you to rapidly connect your distributed applications across public and private clouds, edge sites, and on-premises data centers while maintaining common policies and operational procedures using a single SaaS-based management platform. It provides automated provisioning to connect your cloud instances in minutes, reducing complexity, and increasing efficiency.
Distributed Cloud Network Connect enables full multi-tenancy and self-service capabilities for collaboration across your DevOps, NetOps, and SecOps teams and supports commonly used tools such as Opsgenie and Slack for alerting and Splunk and Datadog for security information and event management (SIEM). This can simplify life for DevOps and SecOps so they can integrate and utilize the tools they love in your AWS cloud, public cloud, and on-premises environments.
As Josh noted during the session, the traditional customer journey to the cloud typically encompasses three core phases, from the initial tactical efforts of moving apps to the cloud to the more strategic activities that leverage advanced technologies, mass amounts of data, and multiple platforms to achieve the most demanding business and user requirements.
The initial phase is cloud adoption. Typically approached as a lift-and-shift strategy, this phase focuses on leveraging the flexibility and high-availability attributes of at least one scalable cloud platform. This stage is fundamental as it is the first stepping stone as organizations embark on their cloud journey. It’s not always evident at this point that multiple cloud platforms will be required.
Next, the journey progresses to application transformation, where application refactoring helps organizations embrace more advanced capabilities of the selected cloud platform, including the elasticity of applications and containerization—such as Kubernetes—which further enhances application scalability, operating resiliency, and the overall user experience. A second cloud environment (or more) may come into play at this point.
The final phase impacts the organization’s more modern applications and is marked by the adoption of public cloud services and advanced technologies such as machine learning and large language models. In this stage, teams often turn to artificial intelligence and analytics aimed at unlocking new capabilities, deeper insights, and even greater efficiencies. Enterprises strategically deploy applications and data, balancing costs, scalability, performance capabilities, and access to innovative cloud technologies from multiple providers.
It's evident that hybrid and multi-cloud strategies are, and will remain, both prevalent and crucial, as a recent survey from Flexera indicates that 87% of organizations already employ a multi-cloud strategy, and 72% are also utilizing a hybrid approach.
As enterprises seek agility without compromising their security posture, a secure multi-cloud network is quintessential. Organizations are looking for a framework that offers a network environment where any apps and APIs can be delivered and protected consistently, regardless of the underlying multi-cloud operational model.
As Rahul noted during the session, a secure multi-cloud networking framework answers these challenges. Enterprise operations struggle to keep up with the business demand, threat landscape, and functional requirements across all their apps and APIs. That means that having a secure multi-cloud networking framework as an operational collaborative platform will help the enterprise operations and security teams connect to any environment. The goal: To seamlessly deliver and secure applications and APIs on that connected environment.
F5 and Google Cloud are committed to ensuring that organizations can safely embrace the infrastructures that make the most sense for their business by adopting the solutions most aligned with their business objectives. Whether you want to deliver your apps publicly to the Internet privately to your edge branch, the mechanisms to seamlessly deliver and secure those applications become possible with Google Cloud and F5.
Again, we appreciate your interest in this vital topic and invite you to experience the discussion first-hand by accessing the full on-demand recording of the webinar, Keys to Making Distributed, Multi-Cloud App Environments Easier to Manage and More Secure.
If you have any questions, we welcome a follow-up conversation by contacting one of our hybrid multi-cloud experts in our F5 Distributed Cloud team.