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Multi-cloud vs. hybrid cloud and how to know the difference

Organizations sometimes struggle to understand the difference between hybrid cloud and multi-cloud. Check out this video and some related tips to get familiar with these architectures.

With so many varying definitions out there, it's not always clear what it means for an architecture to be multi-cloud vs. hybrid cloud.

In fact, the terms have become so muddled that many enterprises struggle to know where one term begins and the other ends. Many people think these terms are interchangeable, but they're actually two completely different cloud architectures and should be treated as such.

So, what is the difference between these two cloud architectures? Check out the video by Steve Bigelow, senior technology editor at TechTarget, as well as the following tips to familiarize yourself with the similarities and differences between hybrid cloud and multi-cloud.

Learn the benefits of hybrid cloud

IT teams have a weight lifted off their shoulders when they don't have to choose between a public and private cloud. Hybrid cloud strategies combine the advantages of both cloud models to give enterprises a competitive edge. When evaluating multi-cloud vs. hybrid cloud, IT teams should consider the benefits and drawbacks of these architectures so they make the right decisions for their workload requirements.

A hybrid cloud creates a single environment to offer consistency and mobility. This type of cloud can help combat spikes in demand by drawing upon public cloud resources. A hybrid cloud also helps clarify where a company's money goes, enabling IT teams to better optimize usage and keep unexpected charges at bay.

Explore the other benefits of a hybrid cloud so you can address business demands, while keeping cost in mind.

Get to know multi-cloud management tools

The need for comprehensive management tools has increased as hybrid cloud and multi-cloud architectures become more popular. Enterprises are attracted to multi-cloud strategies because it enables them to select the cloud services that best fit their workloads and data requirements. However, the number of cloud services available can add more complexity to an already complicated management strategy. Multi-cloud management tools can help.

For successful multi-cloud management, IT teams need tools that emphasize abstraction, orchestration and automation. The right tool to fit your enterprise's needs is out there, it's just a matter of finding it. IT teams also need to consider market consolidation when selecting multi-cloud management tools, since changes in ownership can affect the research and development required to improve third-party tools that span multiple clouds.

Get acquainted with the different types of multi-cloud management tools so you're better equipped to know which one your workload needs.

Break down multi-cloud compliance strategies

The relationship between compliance and cloud computing is complicated by nature. Enterprises in highly regulated industries are often reticent to move any applications, processes or data onto someone else's infrastructure. The most common cloud compliance risks they face fall within these three categories:

  • regulatory compliance
  • network security
  • information security

When companies implement a multi-cloud strategy, cloud compliance is even more of a challenge. Addressing those risks becomes a top priority, which is why it's so important for enterprises to be familiar with the strategies and tools that can simplify the situation.

Learn how to address monitoring, networking and hosting concerns while working with your cloud providers. 

Understand the two types of hybrid cloud infrastructure

Traditionally, a hybrid cloud is made up of an on-premises software stack that's integrated with a public cloud. However, a new hybrid infrastructure has emerged now that public cloud providers have released physical appliances that enable users to operate the same software stack in the cloud and on premises. 

Hybrid cloud architectures today are broken down into two different models -- heterogeneous and homogeneous. A heterogenous hybrid infrastructure includes a public cloud and private technologies supplied by different providers. A homogenous model relies on the same software both on premises and in the public cloud. It is up to each enterprise to weigh its cost, performance and management requirements to find the best fit.

Dig Deeper on Multi-cloud strategies