Tech in 3 minutes: Multicloud vs Single Provider Cloud Environment

February 3, 2022
Paavo Pauklin

Should you go for multicloud or stick to single provider with your cloud environment? When is the multicloud best option? What are the downsides?

In this video, Paavo Pauklin interviews Maciej Rostanski, a top cloud expert, on Multicloud vs single cloud provider and what executives need to know.

You’ll learn:

•    What is multicloud?

•    Why use multiple cloud providers at the same time?

•    Is multicloud a good or bad idea?

•    What are the downsides of using multiple cloud providers?

•    What about migration? Is good migration planning an insurance against vendor risks when using a single provider?

•    Conclusion? So what is the expert’s opinion? Multicloud or single provider?


Watch the episode on YouTube and remember to like & subscribe.

Video subtitles

Paavo: "Welcome everybody to Netcorp short series about technology and software development. My name is Paavo Pauklin, I'm your host today. And today we're going to talk about multi cloud versus single vendor cloud provider. And we have today an excellent guest to talk about it, Maciej Rostanski, who is a Ph.D. in computer science, certified AWS and Google Cloud architect and expert level and one of the most talented cloud expert that I have had pleasure to work with in Netcorp."

Maciej: "Wow, that's an introduction. Hello."

Paavo: "Hey. Yeah, first of all, can you explain a bit the terminology? What is multi cloud and what is single vendor cloud provider and what does it mean?"

Maciej: "Okay, so first of all, when you think about cloud and you see all those terms about some cloud strategies and some cloud deployments, you may have come upon something called multicloud, we may have come upon something called hybrid cloud. And these are the terms that are totally different in nature. And we say hybrid cloud. We are talking about an infrastructure that is deployed on the cloud and on some on premise deployments. And when we are talking about multicloud, we are talking about a strategy when we deploy the deployment or parts of it on a different cloud provider platforms. So we use different vendors from a huge variety of those available."

Paavo: "So you might have like Azure, AWS, Google all mixed in there."

Maciej: "Exactly."

Paavo: "But what might be the business reasons why somebody would want to move to the multicloud environment?"

Maciej: "Okay, so first of all, there is a huge tendency that you may feel more safe when you are going multicloud. There are different drivers for going multicloud, but mostly it's that you don't have to be locked in to a single particular cloud provider. You are not dependent of this cloud provider's services or costs. For example, if you are using some cloud provider, you can have some issues that maybe some remarks that something is costly and this cost is only going to be bigger and you may have be paying too much. Maybe on some other clouds is less costly, or maybe you expect that somebody will raise prices in some time and I think it's the most relevant problem. You may fear that this particular cloud provider may be gone in some time and you will be left with a platform that is no longer operational. Yeah. So those are the most important drivers for such practice. And somebody that will praise multicloud will tell you that this is becoming new, normal and those it services should be ready for it. And in fact they may be correct, but for different reasons that I told you about, some deployments and some cloud providers tend to be a little bit oriented much more towards, for example, global networking or some cloud providers may be oriented towards a small, costly, smaller costs in infrastructure. And there is a reason to deploy some parts of your infrastructure in a different cloud provider environments."

Paavo: "Yeah, it's basically diversifying your risk."

Maciej: "Yes, that's one of the most important reasons."

Paavo: "Well, from business perspective it makes sense. But is it all good? Is it all a wonderful story that, hey, it makes sense, but is there a downside, especially if you focus on the big ones?"

Maciej: "Yeah, and there is. To be honest, I'm not much of an advocate of a multicloud in most situations. I wouldn't say that multicloud is just bad and you shouldn't think about it. I'm just saying that those solutions and this strategy is only beneficial to a very specific case. And most of the time you will just create some kind of a shadow it for yourself when you will go multicloud and you will not gain those benefits that you think you will gain because there is a trade off. When you prepare your deployment, when you prepare your architecture to be deployed on a different cloud providers, you are basically giving away all those functionalities of a particular cloud provider. You need to, for example, prepare your software to use typical open source platforms for queuing system, for example, while the cloud providers, one of the most crucial benefits is to provide you with a prepared service for it. For example, pub sub in Google Cloud or like kinesis in AWS. This is a very important thing of the cloud providers, very important value of cloud providers, that you have those services that basically enable you to just build from those parts and do not worry about functions and operational stuff about those services. You don't need to have huge ops when you will go multicloud. You are giving away all of that. And on top of it all, you need to build a team that understands both, or more than both or maybe a couple of cloud providers platforms in a huge extent, because they need to be able to operate on every cloud with your deployment. So these are the most important drawbacks to think about and wonder what are the benefits that you really need. If you are wondering if AWS or Google Cloud provider or Asia for instance, will just disappear and will just stop functioning, well, I think that the risk of doing so is far lower than you can imagine." "And it's also possible to migrate from one cloud to another."

Paavo: "Well, migration is something that you will need to be prepared to do, not to prepare to already just perform. You can have, for example, some kind of interfaces in your software to be ready to be replaced to be able to operate on a different cloud platform. So it's basically a business decision to compare if the risk is higher or the potential cost of additional team capacity and lost capabilities. Which is more kind of important for you."

Maciej: "Yeah. I would like to express this one thing, that this is a business strategy, of course, but this business strategy needs to have a solid ground to be deployed, to be evaluated, because it's not like that. The multicloud is a next step of evolution of a typical cloud environment. No, it's not. It's just a functionality or capability that you may need, but most cases. Will you?"

Paavo: "Yeah. All right. Thank you, Maciej, for your input into this section. If anybody has any more questions to me or Maciej about this topic, right to the address listed below here. And stay tuned and listen. See you soon in the next episode. Bye."

If you have any further questions or need help, contact Paavo.Pauklin@netcorp.ee.

Meet the authors

Paavo Pauklin
Executive Board Member
+372 6 555 022
Joseph Carson
Ethical Hacker, Cybersecurity Advisor
+372 6 555 022

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