Ep#100 Key Steps to a Successful Data Center to Cloud Migration

October 31, 2022

Episode Summary

Should all workloads be migrated to "The Cloud"? That is the big question being asked by every company that still has workloads on-premise. There isn't a simple "easy" button. Each application or workload should be evaluated, measured, and identified if it should be moved or stay on-premise.

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Christian Headshot

About the Guest

Christian Chavez

Over 20 years in Tech where I have worked my way through engineering in post-sales to working in pre-sales as a Data Center Architect focused on Cloud and Automation.

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Episode Show Notes & Transcript

Zoom Recording

This meeting is being recorded.

Host: Jon

Oh, man. She admitted it was being recorded. Darn it. I'm just kidding.

Guest: Christian

<laugh>.

Host: Jon

Now, should all workloads go to the cloud? And what I mean about all workloads, I'm talking about those still in the data center and possibly a hybrid type approach. Now I don't believe all workloads will ever make it to the cloud. Some will be either refactored, retired, or even retained in their current environment. But those that should go to the cloud should do a huge analysis and do a deep dive into their application and how it's communicating. Today we're talking about not only a cloud-first approach or strategy but from a data center expert at Aspire Technologies. Joining me today for my 100, Yes, my 100. Sorry Christian, I didn't tell you ahead of time, but I didn't wanna spoil it. The episode is for the Jon Myer podcast. Please join me in welcoming Christian Chavez data center Cloud Solutions architect at Aspire Technology Partners. Christian, thank you so much for joining me.

Guest: Christian

Jon, I don't know what to say. Seriously, this is a big surprise for me, and I think you did this on purpose because I had no idea. But thanks for thinking of me on these hundredth episodes. Seriously, this is awesome.

Host: Jon

So when I was going through my list, I was like, Man, I need to celebrate my hundredth with somebody whom I haven't done and that I can surprise him. So I thought of several folks and I was like, I wanna make this about a topic and not about my hundred episodes, but I wanted to kind of roll it all in together. So I appreciate you joining me for it.

Guest: Christian

<laugh>. So <laugh> still trying to process that. Dude, this is amazing. I mean, yeah, we worked in the past. I've been watching your videos, I've been following you and what you've done lately, man, it's amazing. You're killing it, man. It's awesome.

Host: Jon

I appreciate it. I'm glad I have subscribed and you're one of my followers, so I appreciate all the support when it does get a little tough sometimes. It's nice to hear from my fans. Let's jump into it a little bit. Today we're talking about cloud strategy and should all workloads go to the cloud Now, Christian, real quick, let's give everybody a little backstory on what you came from the data center background and our story together.

Guest: Christian

Oh yeah. So managed to toast, if you remember back in the day, managed hosting was huge. Dealing with mom-and-pop websites that were paying you six, 12 bucks a month. So managed to host was essentially that back in the day before virtualization. And you and I, right? We lived through that world. We were back in support of those systems. So the 3:00 AM calls, because somebody couldn't get their email out in California were brutal. And that was an account that was paying like $12 a month. So we were providing, I guess you know, would say some top-notch class support for somebody who's paying $12 a month. So yeah, I mean we cut our teeth in those days before virtualization. And I remember the data centers, which you and I, we've done a lot of work inside the data centers running cable racking and stacking. Again, it was just about leveraging a single server for multiple clients that were paying those, at the low end per month.

Guest: Christian

But still, there were valuable clients. I think you and I knew that back in the day because we saw some growth come out of there. But yeah, so it was awesome to cut our teeth through there. And then moving up to virtualization was kind of the no-brainer. Not only just for the management of servers but the footprint that was growing inside of the data servers. I remember we were stamping out data centers like crazy, but yeah, that's how you and I got started. So it's amazing where we've come from and where we are today with the cloud, the way it is.

Host: Jon

Christian, I remember when I first got hired I was building servers, so I was unboxed in the actual case, installing everything, setting up, installing the os, and racking stacking. You would run the cable and be like, Yo, Christian, my network's not working. Well, I didn't turn on the port. Oh. Oh, okay. Hey, did you ping the internal IP? Oh, okay. And man, I was learning things from the start and we're talking about 20 years ago.

Guest: Christian

Yeah, yeah, it was amazing. As I said, you come in, you were doing the racking and stacking, and at that time I was networking. So moving up doing SIS admin so coming up to the rank sis admin, being on a backend post-installation, and then ultimately moving into presales is really where I'm at now, but still, the explosion that happened inside of just that organization itself that you and I work with inside of. And then to see your progress on top of it. Because again, I was CIS admin, you were building servers to where you are now, which is one of the reasons why I was like, wow, this is incredible for what you're doing in the tax space and putting out some of the content that you're putting out. It's amazing to watch you excel in that area.

Host: Jon

Well, Christian, you've seen my growth and you've seen me progress over the years from early on hardware to being in a lot of the IT services to the cloud. Let's talk about cloud and strategy. You're in the data center I like your title data center cloud solutions architect, which it's like, should I be on-premises in a data center or should I be in the cloud? Let's understand what you're doing and talk about our topic of really should all workloads go to the cloud.

Guest: Christian

And that's key. So yes, data center, and cloud solutions architect for Aspire technology partners, but in this case it's, IT, right? They both still exist and I think there's a necessity for both. So whether you're OnPrem, or whether you have a strategy to move to the cloud, I think both worlds still exist and you kind of need to work together. We hear the multi-cloud conversations that are happening, hybrid cloud, and they still kind of carry an on-prem notion to 'em because honestly, I don't think all workloads belong in the cloud. Some do, and some don't. And in the same way that you and I, were talking earlier about how we cut our teeth and we moved into virtualization, it was about decreasing the footprint of the data center. Essentially that's what virtualization was trying to or did for the data center before we got into the whole application stack of it.

Guest: Christian

Right now, at that point, we were just looking at reducing the footprint. So that's kind of like some key strategies that are still happening today. People are moving to the cloud for a reduction of data centers or they want to get out of the data center business, they want to get out of the hardware business. And I think a good portion of our clients that we work with are looking to do that. They just want to power cooling square feet which do not work in their business model today. And we're seeing that all over the place. So you know, and I had a conversation earlier podcast where it was looking at workloads, right? And essentially that's what we were dealing with back in the day reducing the size of your footprint inside of the data center. Today we look at workloads. How do my applications live inside the cloud? Can they be cloud-native? Do I move 'em to cloud-native? Are they monolithic today? So my apps essentially, are my workloads, and it's technically the blood of the business. So what do we do with those workloads and how do we move them around and what's the best fit? That's the question today. And going back to what you'd said earlier not all workloads belong in the cloud, but understanding what they do and how do you move them should be part of your strategy.

Host: Jon

Christian, you have touched on several topics that I've had an entire podcast around from being cloud or cloud-native to multi-cloud, and does it exist? I'm gonna tell you right now, I don't believe all workloads belong in the cloud. And there are several reasons for that. I believe a majority of workloads will, but most companies will have a hybrid-type model. If a traditional enterprise or just an enterprise company in general, there are those cloud-first companies or are born in the cloud, which is another topic we can jump on and talk about. But I believe if you look at the current companies, do you know that it has, there are statistics around it that there's only 3% of workloads have been migrated to the cloud.

Guest: Christian

No. Wow. Okay. <laugh>

Host: Jon

3%. So just think about that. I mean it, it's huge because there are so many of the workloads that are still on-premise. That's where the hybrid comes in there and then that's where you have to analyze every aspect of it and does it go to the cloud Now just talking about in AWS terms, they've created new types of services and models, AWS landing zone edge computing to kind of tackle some of these that can't migrate fully to the cloud or they've come up with their storage gateways that allowed you to enable the hybrid type methodology. Let's talk about an application just trying to get to the cloud. You get contacted by a customer and there's like, Hey Christian, we wanna move to the cloud. Do you like it, All right, let's do it? Or how do you approach that? Easy

Guest: Christian

Easy Peasy, we gotta button for it, right? I think everyone, he fixed that, right? We got a button for that, we can just move it. Let

Host: Jon

I get the easy button. Now I think I got one of those done.

Guest: Christian

<laugh>, it could be done, right? No, so there are a lot of moving pieces when it comes to an application, and that becomes that. You have to look at its development of it. How is it built? How is it designed? In other words, to work with services like AWS provides, right? So you're either taking an application and just lifting that same workload and moving it into a VM like you run today inside of your own data center, or you consume some of the services that AWS provides. So you can leverage a lot of either automation or cost optimizations by using those services. And then how does that change your development cycle or how does that change your application? So we talk about things like cloud-native today, and those are services that integrate with your applications where you can leverage some custom optimization as well as automation.

Guest: Christian

Or are you still running a single monolithic application that you run on a single VM today that maybe has access to a backend database? And then do you move that to us, right? So now you think, well how do I get my cost optimization in aws or do I look at other cloud strategies? Am I just moving my VM or is it the whole application? So these are the questions that I kind of has with our clients where, okay, you got an app, it's your driver for the business, at least one of them, right? Because typically there are multiple applications that you're working with and is it something that's off the shelf? Do you have a development team? What are you doing in terms of development? How's it performing today? What are your expectations by moving to the cloud and what are you looking to gain from moving to the cloud?

Guest: Christian

Is it because you want to consume those services or just again, you know, and I had, again gonna go back to this conversation that you and I had just to kind of bring it back a little bit is what's driving you to the cloud? Forget the application, forget the workload. Your initiative starts by either I wanna get out of the data center or I have an application that I want to do X with. And that's kind of how I see the two drivers of companies today building a cloud strategy around those two. And there may be some other where it's just a blanket, Hey, we gotta move to the cloud because we saw Gartner saying this right? And there is no strategy. But ultimately if we go back to the application that you presented again, you have to take a look at your application, How is it performing today and what's the outcome that you're expecting? Because ultimately that'll drive where, and which cloud model is best for you because not one cloud fits all, right? You could be running some backend Microsoft applications inside of Azure and you may have an application that's consuming some of us and then you might have some on pre-storage or workloads because you need to have that within your data, send data center for some type of compliance. So now you, you're kind of spread out all over the place.

Host: Jon

Gretchen, I see analyzing the application as a key component moving forward because you have to understand, and I like that you jump in there and ask specific questions, Hey, I wanna move to the cloud. Well, I'm gonna tell you no right now do I understand the way that you wanna do it and why you want to do it? Because you might have an actual physical application, you have a dedicated server on-premises running this and everything might be monolithic. Just how's it in that one box? It might be beneficial just to go to a virtual on center to your vSphere, whatever cluster you wanna do, or you might wanna then take that and move it to the cloud. But you have to also understand if you take that monolith application and it's got the database, it's got the messaging, everything is done, do you even wanna break this up?

Host: Jon

Is it worthwhile to break this up into just key microservices and then those microservices, Can you get some benefit from using AWS's services, those managed services already for that there might be no benefit. It might be just worthwhile to do a lift and shift to move over there. Or you might be saying, listen, just go virtual and stay in the house because the communication and the latency to all the other applications are not worthwhile and that poses another kind of concern. Does that application talk to other applications and work together? And if you move that one now you've got a latency issue between all of it. So I don't think it's a quick, yeah, let's just do this. I think you have to analyze all the applications, even if it's just one application trying to move.

Guest: Christian

And that's true with anything that you're doing towards the cloud. You have to look word first, you have to look at the foundation of what you're running today for every workload. It could be an application that you're building or it could just be off-the-shelf applications that you've consumed that you've paid for licensing and are running as part of the business. If you're part of your strategy to move everything, then you need to look internally now because like you had mentioned, your applications could be tied to a lot of things and you need to understand whether that application moves and then how connectivity, whether it's something or somewhere else out in the cloud or maybe it's a SAS based service that you're pulling information from, how are they gonna talk? And then so looking at that inwardly, meaning my performance, my connectivity, all these have to, you have to clean everything up.

Guest: Christian

You don't wanna build some on a foundation that's already broken. So if you have termites in your foundation, you don't want to build a second edition to it. So you need to understand your total foundation as a whole and then make decisions in smaller steps if you do have a cloud strategy, whether that's just, let's take this one application, understand how it's connected, understand how it's performing, fix it OnPrem first, and then move it out to the cloud. Because then you'll have a metric that you can base your success on when you're moving to the cloud. Because again, your strategy's about understanding what you have, how do I get there? And then ultimately, am I successful in moving this out to the cloud? So how do you line up against success if you are running an underperforming application, you're not gonna be able to gauge that out, in whatever cloud service that you're looking at? So definitely there's a lot of internal work that has to happen. It's not just an easy button I'd mentioned earlier, <laugh>, right? There's a lot of work that needs to happen internally and that's kind of like a transformation internally in your on-prem infrastructure and how you manage things and how things are performing. So definitely you have to look at those things before making a decision not only on what cloud but how you're gonna get there. And then ultimately, how do I measure success?

Host: Jon

Christian, I think some of the decision comes in into the application as you're analyzing it do I refactor this into the cloud rather than move it into the cloud? Do I retain it where it's at because it is gonna be the end of its life soon or do I retire it or is it just going to be available locally in the data center? I think some of those things are key components to it. Now, what about companies that are coming in there, like CTOs are coming in saying, we have all this stuff in the data center, but we're doing a cloud-first strategy. I mean is it going, any new applications are going to the cloud? Are we building in the cloud and not realizing what we have back on-premise? And now are we calling causing double work or are we looking for applications that we can host as a SA within our cloud?

Guest: Christian

Right? Yeah. So that goes back to our set. So as the example you presented, you have some C-level person tell you, we got a cloud-first strategy. What's great? There's nothing wrong with somebody telling you that, but at the same time there are questions that need to be asked and there's that analysis that I mentioned earlier, it's like, okay we can lead with that. We need to understand why, what's our driver? And if it's because ultimately when somebody from that level says, Hey, we need to be cloud-first, to me it's like, hey, I wanna get out of the data center business because it's not specific to an application. But that's where you start asking, okay, well we have these applications that can benefit from some cloud, but you gotta work slowly at it, you can't move it, you're not like all in now. And one of these things that I think gets left out of this conversation, I'm gonna be honest, is whenever we're talking cloud, we're always thinking of the hyperscalers.

Guest: Christian

So we're always thinking AWS at Azure, and Google. And so there are VMware-based clouds. So if I had somebody at a seed level say to me, Hey, we have a cloud-first strategy and it needs to be done by the end of the year I'm like, okay, I need to find a VMware-based cloud where I'm consuming it on a per month face or obviously through contracted, but it gives me a level of service that I'm looking for in cloud and I'm getting outta the data center. That's perfect, you know, can take your VMs and which most likely gonna be on VMware, and this is specific to VMware there are still those running on V or maybe you're running KBM or something. But still, if you're VMware based, a good portion are I would say that you can look for a VMware-based cloud service that would give you the same benefits that AWS would, right?

Guest: Christian

And some management around that needs to be tied in and some thought process on how you're gonna get there, but still, it's a valid cloud solution. And I don't wanna kind of leave that out of the mix because I've worked with clients that had that initiative where we just wanna get outta the data center, this data center's going down or we wanna get outta this or hardware is up, this is the end of life on my hardware, do I buy hardware or do I just consume it as a service from a VMware based cloud provider? So at that point, you could just take your VMs and move them and you're back up in business. You're running at the same time though you had mentioned earlier, refactoring your applications. If that's part of it, now you're saying to yourself, okay, I'm gonna take this application, refactor it now, what's the best cloud? Maybe that VMware-based cloud isn't the best solution for that. Maybe AWS is consuming some of the services. So again, that inward analysis becomes key to answer a lot of the questions that should be asked to whoever's asking you that

Host: Jon

Now for a quick interruption, a huge shout out to our friends at being for sponsoring this episode. Being a backup for AWS can easily protect all of your Amazon EC two RDS VC data. Wait for a second, they can protect my VPC data too. Yep, that's right. Simplify AWS backup and recovery while ensuring security and compliance. All right, now back to our episode. So, Christian, we were talking before about managed services and having IIS installed on these servers with 200-plus websites. And I'm talking about like IAS five, and I'll tell you what, yeah, I am that old. But going back then we have VMware, which is virtualization and everybody called it a private cloud at that time. So cloud adoption is not something new. Now we have a public cloud that isn't just going to a cloud-first strategy, but still private or public cloud and maybe a hybrid type approach.

Guest: Christian

It is, I'll call it hybrid, right? Because a lot of these either hyper scalers you're running, you don't have anything private, meaning that you don't have hardware dedicated to you, although you could if you wanted to. And I think everybody kind of provides a solution like that, including a VMware-based cloud. You can either get your private cloud, which is just resources dedicated to you or you're living in some type of multitenancy where you're consuming resources with other companies as well. So it's kind of a hybrid strategy from a hardware perspective. To me it's still a cloud-first strategy, meaning that whether you're moving your VMs to a VMware-based cloud or you're kind of forklifting all your applications, whether it's refactoring or re-platforming and putting them in a hyper-scale or you're still consuming it because at the end of the day it's not yours, it's not your hardware, you're just consuming it as a service.

Guest: Christian

And ultimately everything we're doing now is moving to as a service. And so to answer your question, yeah, I think it's still part of the cloud-first strategy. At the end of the day, you get all month free pay. I pay for Hulu every month and I really neat story, I just cut TV cable last month because there are so many services that I can consume every month, and then when they don't have anything good, I could drop it, and then I could re-sign up again if some good is happening within that platform. And that's kind of how we consume the cloud today. Or we should be consuming it because at the end of the day it's about to cost optimization. I cut cable because of cost optimization. But you run your workloads like that as well, they shouldn't be running all the time. And if they do need to be running all the time, that's where I say then you should just move your VM as opposed to just if you're gonna move your applications to AWS, a lot of those cost optimizations about how long this thing's running.

Guest: Christian

So if you have an application that you're re-platforming or whatever you're doing with it, should it be up all the time? Should I be consuming these resources all the time? And the answer is no, you shouldn't be. Because if you want cost optimization it'll keep you from having to say, Hey, we tried moving to the cloud and it was a lot more money than what we thought it was, right? And I get a lot of that and I'm sure you've heard a lot of that, right? People are trying to run back and buy hardware again and you're like, hey, wait a minute, how did you do? How'd it the first time? What happened? And how did you base that metric? Because again, going back to what I said earlier, analyzing your current infrastructure, making sure that you have a metric to be able to a standard, so to say, right, everything's running performant, our resource utilization is great, this is what we should be getting from our cloud provider. And then ultimately that would be your metric.

Host: Jon

Real quick, Hulu is not an official sponsor, but if you'd like to comment down below, feel free to have you on there. <laugh>.

Guest: Christian

I didn't think of that.

Host: Jon

That's all right. You don't have to think of that. I'll get on there. Thanks for the shadow, because I do the same thing actually with my Hulu subscription football season is life after everywhere else. I don't mind watching things a day later if I ever get to it. Okay, Christian, your role at Aspire is very unique because it says data center cloud solutions, architect. After all, usually, there's one or the other which helps you understand both aspects of the data center and going to the cloud. The reason I mention that is specifically around skill sets is that understanding what is required not only in your data center and going to the cloud to move to it will drive some of the changes in the application migration or cloud-first strategy. Now here's my question for you because the cost is huge and we're talking about that right now. The reason that cost is huge is that people don't have the proper skills to do it and to move it over. They're not understanding their metrics and moving them over. They're not understanding what it entails to move this application over to it. But your role at Aspire helps you understand both not your background of on-premise data center because I know your expertise in that and I know your expertise in the cloud and having this role at Aspire drives you to help these customers a lot more and be more efficient.

Guest: Christian

Yeah, it does. It's crazy because I remember being post-sales, or at least in the CIS admin role I've always had a view from one side. We were the engineers in the back and back then and things were coming in and you would look at a design because back in those days, pre-sales was kind of just starting. We just had sales guys that were sale selling monthly subscriptions to organizations that were looking to run websites but ultimately we had to support them as well as do the server configuration and all that went with that. So I got to see one side of it. So when things would come in and I would say, Wow, why did they do it this way? You know, could have done it better, X, Y, and Z. Why are you doing it this way? And at that point were already, it was already purchased, so it's not like something you could go back to.

Guest: Christian

So I had this understanding that the front of the house was like these guys, what are they doing up there? How are they architecting? How are figuring this stuff out? Not enough resources. Did you get this? Did you do that and the other thing? And then the cool thing happened where they're like, Hey, do you want to go into presales? Now, fast forward we're in the cloud we had our cloud nodes that were running VMware-based clouds. And so I'm like, Yeah, let me give it a shot. And it was an eye opener to be able to straddle now what was on the back end and what was being complained about on the back end, which now I felt like, hey, I have access to. Correct. So that was an eye-opener for me to be able to straddle both, I guess worlds in this case.

Guest: Christian

Many people said to me that I went to the dark side because I went to a sales-type role, even though it was an engineering-type role up front, I was moved to the dark side, but it was given me that point of a site where I could see what happens on the front end, how sales need to happen but ultimately being able to bridge the front of the house to the back of the house. And that kind of holds in my role today as a data center cloud because they're kind of competing. If you think about it, the on-prem is looking to move to the cloud and then you have server vendors. The big guys want to keep selling servers, whether it's to an organization like a client of ours or whether it's to the larger cloud providers who are consuming servers like crazy to build their cloud nodes out.

Guest: Christian

So I kind of straddle that data center cloud conversation where I can now gauge, it's like, Hey, I've done a lot of data center before and a lot of this makes sense to keep on-prem, or Hey, to me this cloud option is a much better option for you because you can consume it as a service and you may save some dollars there. Or everyone's talking about this, it's hard to get hardware nowadays because of supply chain issues. So a lot of people have strategies like, hey, we can't get servers, but I guess what I can consume some cloud. They have a ton of that. So being able to visualize both sides of the house is kind of why I wanted to make that not dual role, but be able to have in my title that, Hey, I can talk to on-prem and I can talk to the cloud. And maybe there's a mixture of both and maybe that's part of your strategy. But ultimately my job is to make sure that what you're doing or your strategy lines up with what the business wants and the outcomes they're expecting, and ultimately help you analyze what stays goes to the cloud. And that's just through assessments, having conversations, and making sure what makes sense for the business. Is it cloud or is it OnPrem? And then how do we get there?

Host: Jon

Christian, I believe you indicated that companies are going to the cloud and then they start to move back. Sometimes not all companies, and they're like, Oh my God, it's not what we expected. I think there are two reasons, and these two reasons sit side by side, there's no number one and number two, they are number one and number one, the number one reason is skills. They migrate to the cloud thinking they know and understand all the things and the aspects of it. And when they start getting there that one person leaves and they're not educating those on-premise and investing in their workers' training and to make sure that their skills are there for all these cloud services. Because AWS alone has 210 plus services and events right around the corner. So I'm assuming that's gonna get to 2 25 <laugh>

Guest: Christian

More announcements.

Host: Jon

<laugh>. Yeah. Yeah. So that's coming outta the way. Stay tuned. Everybody got a huge event happening at reinventing, podcasting, live streaming, the whole works. You're gonna catch a lot of Myer Media and go to Market Delta. Stay tuned for more information on that. The other number one reason is cost. They moved to the cloud because it gets too expensive. After all, they don't have the training and understanding of what it takes to shut down servers. They're spinning up things like crazy. And just in your data center, you have your CapEx cost and it's spread over a five-year turn, but in the cloud, you are paying for what you use and you can't predict it as well as you can within the data center. My servers, my server is gonna run the entire time. So Christian, what are your feelings on my two number ones, not only the skills and then the cost associated with going to a cloud-first strategy? Now I'm not saying everybody's moving back, but what I'm saying is that they move to the cloud thinking, Oh, it's the next thing. We gotta go there, we gotta jump there. But not understanding the whole idea behind it. Christian, how are you helping companies with not only the skills and the cost? Is Aspire doing something like that?

Guest: Christian

Well, yeah, definitely the skill set is pretty huge. I think you're right. The skill sets need to be there to be able to understand a lot of these services that are being provided. Specifically, you mentioned like aws, which has a plethora of services that you can consume at the same time, and so do the other hyperscalers. So yeah, a skill set to me is something that we help out with in understanding what is necessary for you to be successful on a hyper-scale. At the same time, cost optimization is huge. Cost optimization is probably one of the key things to me that would want a company to stay in the cloud. I'd mentioned where we could, there are cloud companies that are still consuming their AWS bills and they're just chewing on it. The dinner that you ordered at the diner, but don't wanna send back and you're just gonna consume it. Come I, I've been there, man. It's like, you know, order something at a diner and you just like, Hey, I'm gonna muster through this and I'm gonna eat it. It's not the greatest thing I've

Host: Jon

Ever, I'm gonna stop somewhere else on the way home and grab some, No, I'm just kidding. Kidding,

Guest: Christian

Exactly right. Or whatever it is. But some organizations are chewing on their billing every month feeling it, but they don't wanna do anything about it. They're just like, Hey, this is the cost of doing cloud. Hey, we're here <laugh>, so check

Host: Jon

That off. Okay, I checked that off. How do we look

Guest: Christian

<laugh>? Exactly. So they're consuming that but at the same time, some are trying to come back and we're kind of in between the, Hey, we want to come back, or Hey, we have an on print and we want to go. So we're kind of met in the middle. It's like, Hey, you're coming back. Why? Or Hey, you want to go to the cloud? Why? And so that is why is the driver. And most of the time it's like, Hey, we're coming back because of cost. We didn't know it was gonna be this much. So I'm like, okay, well why it was gonna be that much? And you start peeling at that and it's like, well, they said we had to be in the cloud, so we kind of just moved everything. It's like, so you just picked everything up and just picked the T-shirt size VM and dropped it on top of it and you're like, Yeah, I a client's like, Hey, my database was 36 gigs of ram, it's on my VM.

Guest: Christian

And it's like, so I had to find something similar to that in aws. I'm like, Whoa. It's like, Nah, that's not what you wanna do. Because that's going to be expensive, especially if it's running all the time. So those conversations are being had with us and we're helpful in that area around cost optimization. But at the end of the day, the cost optimization is to start the cost optimization in-house first. Understand your work workloads and resources, which then ultimately you can translate into what you're gonna be paying into a hyperscaler. Now don't get me wrong, there are a lot of other hidden fees that you can't calculate on a hyper-scale. And typically that's around bandwidth but still, there, you know, can get it close and kind of be like, Hey, depending on your utilization, we can kind of capture that what you're doing on Preem and maybe get you close to what you're doing inside of a hyperscaler.

Guest: Christian

But then this is where I say that something, what's the best fit for you in a cloud? Because you can get a VMware-based cloud that has all the bandwidth already built in and you're running, you don't, you know, just pick your VM up and move it into a VMware-based cloud. And in that type of situation, you have a fixed cost that is not going to scale like you would with the hyper-scale. So again, understanding what you want to do to get to the cloud, what's the driver? And ultimately what's the best solution? When we talk about the cloud is really where we help companies select their selection process is really what comes down to

Host: Jon

Christian. You touched on, I wanna say cost optimization and AWS cost is one of my areas of focus. Been involved in it for the last couple of years. It's been one of the things where I start to drive towards knowledge. And I'm creating a whole series on AWS called savings, Quick tips, where I created a new AWS account. I have zero installed into it and I'm walking folks through some of the things that are set up for success in this AWS account. I like how you're a detective. I think we should change your title to data center cloud, and cloud protective Solutions architect. We can make it an acronym like DD CSA or something like that. I hope it doesn't stamp for anything else, but I like how you're detective certification. That

Guest: Christian

Should be a certification <laugh>. Yeah.

Host: Jon

Should I be a data center cloud solutions architect? That should be a certification. I think having the background that you have in a data center makes you perfect for the cloud. I think the stuff that I did start has been key to my cloud success. I understand everything that comes with it. I understand the components of not only a server but in the networking aspect where I would ask you a bunch of questions, were there? And when we would try to figure it out and be like, Oh, I didn't know that. Oh, I didn't know I could do that. And learning how troubleshooting was key to success and all that. I think that makes you ideal for this role and helps customers go to the cloud, but also understand why they should go to the cloud.

Guest: Christian

Yeah, I think that's one of the things that we try to drive is not that, hey, hey, we're good at getting you to cloud. Hey, we can do that. We can get you to the cloud. But I think the deep dives inside of what you're doing today inside your organization and how things are leveraged I think is honestly the key driving factor for you to be successful in any cloud. And I think the discovery process internally we talk about digital transformation and that's just a process of how you're gonna do business and be profitable and how do we get the most out of what you have and how do you bring the resources that you have and have them, Ultimately all everything needs to work for you. Every piece of resource or every VM, every CPU needs to make money somehow or drive some type of bottom line for the business.

Guest: Christian

And that cost optimization, whether it's through resources or processes is going to be key in your digital transformation. So if you want to do digital transformation, that's on you, Start OnPrem, right? You start with in-house, get it to a place where you're performant how your application runs, have an understanding, and then build metrics from that. And then ultimately your cloud strategy is gonna be successful as you're OnPrem. Because if you understand how things work and you can mimic that in the cloud, again consuming, obviously it's gonna be different, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that it's gonna be the same, but ultimately you can now build metrics around that because again, you need to gauge what is successful in the cloud. And if you are looking for cost optimization, you better have cost optimization. Or if you're looking for automation, you wanna automate some applications or workloads or you wanna consume some of the services inside of us.

Guest: Christian

Again, you better have metrics around that because ultimately you need to gate success. Now, you had mentioned way earlier, there are organizations like startups that are building in the cloud today. Cloud-native applications are being built today. Now obviously they're building their metric of how things, and then ultimately you need to drive it lower. Meaning if I build a cloud-native application, I'm paying this much per month now and it's running at this performant level, I need to get better. So you're now your driver. You have teams that are their drivers, is to drive down cost the cost of your application because you have no metric to gauge against. But if you have an on-prem data center, you can build those metrics to gauge against. And I think that's where you're gonna see yourself be successful, Am I successful by moving my workload to the clouds? And here's how we can do that.

Host: Jon

Christian, I'd love to have you back for another episode to talk about some of the things you're doing with specifics around a customer and how you approach everything from step by step, including cost, and how you're visualizing stuff. My last question before we wrap things up we don't want to talk about digital transformation on this show just yet. Okay. We said multi-cloud, cloud versus cloud-native digital transformation. I've had so many topics on all these subjects, but gone off of digital transformation and having, should all workloads really kind of migrate to the cloud? How important is it to have the key stakeholders in the room during these conversations about either the application or this cloud-first strategy?

Guest: Christian

Oh wow. I mean they have to be your champion. It has to be the champion. Leadership has to be the champion to be able to get this done because there are multiple teams that you need to engage and they need to get on board. Because a lot of times we have, we've run across 'em, we have teams or members of teams that are very stuck in their ways. Some of 'em are like, Nope, the cloud is not the way to go. And they're stuck. And maybe it's fear of losing out on your job. There's always that thought if we move to the cloud, what am I gonna do? Well, there's a lot for you to do. We just need to, it's just gonna be in a different area. It's going to be, it's no longer in a data center. You can't touch it anymore. Can't. And so one of those things, there are people like that, but at the end of the day, if you have leadership that's driving this, right?

Guest: Christian

And communication between the teams has to be key but ultimately leadership has to be the champion that's moving you to a cloud for strategy. And most of them are, right? It's a very, very low amount of organizations that have somebody driving it from the middle. And then it becomes pretty hard from that point because again, no leadership might be like, Hey, yeah, take a look at that, or move in that direction. But there is no real driver from their perspective. And that's where we kind of come in. It's like, Hey we're in the middle tier here. Maybe it's a manager for infrastructure, but you still have an application and there's still a development team manager that you need to get through. So the conversation is like, Hey, this is great that you're going this rock, but who are your stakeholders in the organization?

Guest: Christian

And we should bring them all into the room, right? Yeah. Because ultimately at the end of the day, the ones who are gonna either pay the bottom line or make money or lose money in this. And so we have that conversation with those and we build champions out of those leadership teams to be able to champion the fact that, hey, everything trickles down obviously. So you can get the application management in line, you can get your infrastructure in line and anybody who has a stake in whatever's being moved would then kind of say, Okay, leadership wants this done, we're gonna move forward. And you don't get that pushback then. Because sometimes it gets political, and it can get ugly. So yeah, leadership is key in moving to the cloud,

Host: Jon

Having all the stakeholders in the room at the same time, having everybody kind of a bottom-up, top-down approach. Now I'm okay with a bottom-up approach, meaning your engineers and your practitioners are driving some of the change due to the needs of the application. But if you don't have all the key stakeholders like the top really kind of saying, Yes, this is what we're doing and not one of those, Well yeah, why don't you take a look at that? That means no matter what I come up with you, your decision is we're not going. I need a solid decision and commitment that yes, we wanna go to the cloud and you are the driving factor around it. Christian, thank you so much for joining me. I appreciate it. I mean, on my 100 episodes, no less Christian, this has been awesome.

Guest: Christian

This was great. Hey, I appreciate that. It was a surprise to me. I mean, goodness gracious when you said that. I was like, What? I feel like I won the lottery <laugh> Jon Myer's hundredth episode and I got to be the guest. I appreciate that, Jon. Thanks for all you do, man. And like I said congratulations on what you're doing. It's amazing. I'd love to see your growth. I've been a fan for quite some time. I think back to when you and I started kind of reconnecting back when you were teaching some AWS or some Cisco training as well. We had some great conversations back then. So you know where you came from. Awesome, man. Congrats.

Host: Jon

Thank you so much. It means a lot to me. It means a lot that you're following and advocating for me out there. Everybody, Christian Chavez data center, cloud solutions architect. We might have to split them, or change your title, but maybe in the future. Thank you so much for joining me.

Guest: Christian

Hey, thanks a lot, Jon. Appreciate

Host: Jon

It. All right. This has been the Jon Myer podcast. Don't forget to hit that, like subscribe and notify because guess what folks, We're outta here.

 

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