Understanding the Lift and Shift Meaning in Data Migration

Decision-makers at organizations frequently inquire about lift and shift meaning. The process of rehosting applications ...

Decision-makers at organizations frequently inquire about lift and shift meaning. The process of rehosting applications and data in the cloud is commonly referred to as lift and shift migration. Organizations can pursue this low-cost approach to migrating applications and data if optimization is not a priority before or during migration. Learn more about the meaning, benefits and drawbacks of lift and shift migration and best practices for this method to determine whether rehosting is preferable to refactoring or replatforming for a data migration project.

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The Basic Lift and Shift Meaning

Lift and shift migration primarily refers to rehosting in the cloud. Organizations and migration service providers work together to replicate existing systems in a new environment. This method does not involve modernizing or optimizing applications, data or workloads before or during the migration process.

A lift and shift migration project begins with choosing a cloud service provider that is compatible with current systems and can provide sufficient bandwidth and storage. The next step involves backing up systems and restoring backups in the cloud environment. After unpacking data in the cloud, performance testing can help stakeholders determine whether modernization is necessary.

The lift and shift meaning applies to applications, data and systems that organizations migrate to the cloud wholesale with minimal changes. What is lift and shift data center migration? This type of migration project involves moving storage or workloads from an on-premises data center or co-location into the cloud. The limited scope of this method can be appealing when an enterprise needs to vacate a data center by a set date. Find out more about the benefits and drawbacks of lift and shift migration.

Benefits of Lift and Shift

The most simple and straightforward migration method can have a number of benefits. Rehosting is a fast and relatively simple way to transform applications and data into the cloud. A cloud environment that is compatible with existing systems can provide the following benefits of lift and shift migration.

Reduced Downtime

With proper planning, rehosting can minimize downtime. Applications or data should become accessible in cloud environments with minimal interruption to services. Planning ahead for cloud compatibility and performance can further reduce the risk of downtime during and immediately after migration.

Minimal Impact on Existing Applications

Rehosting lifts applications from one hosting environment and shifts them into the cloud without the need for significant modifications. When an organization migrates an application to a properly configured cloud environment, the lift and shift method has minimal impact on functionality.

Lower Costs

Lift and shift migration is less prone to scope creep than refactoring or replatforming projects, which amounts to lower migration costs. The shift from capital expenditure on IT infrastructure to operating expenditure for scalable pay-as-you-go services can also lower up-front costs.

Maintaining Architecture and Dependencies

The lower complexity of a rehosting migration project can have an immediate advantage over methods that involve altering code, architecture or dependencies. Keeping existing arrangements could become a drawback in the long run, though, as legacy apps are not optimized for cloud infrastructure.

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Drawbacks of Lift and Shift

For all its advantages, rehosting has some drawbacks. As the lift and shift meaning suggests, this migration method simply replicates existing systems in the cloud, along with any existing vulnerabilities. The performance of applications that are not properly configured or are incompatible with a cloud environment can suffer, among other issues.

Limited Optimization Opportunities

Lifting and shifting applications or workloads limits opportunities to optimize systems for cloud environments. In some cases, rehosting can lead to performance issues and latency. Stakeholders should consider whether a migration project can benefit from optimization and when to take these measures to decide whether rehosting, refactoring or replatforming is the best approach.

Risk of Cost Overruns

Pay-as-you-go pricing structures seem affordable at the outset, especially in light of lower cost of ownership, but spending adds up over time. A recent survey found that one-third of businesses exceed cloud budgets by as much as 40%. Cost overruns can pose a particular problem with rehosted applications that are not modernized for the cloud. It is also worthwhile to note that putting off optimization until after migration can end up with lift and shift meaning a sunk cost.

Potential Data Loss and Security Risks

It is important to back up data and resolve known security risks in applications prior to migration. Wholesale rehosting can still lead to data loss, as it is necessary to map existing infrastructure onto cloud configurations to ensure that all data makes the move and is locatable in the new environment. Organizations that are subject to regulatory requirements need to take additional measures to ensure ongoing compliance.

Limited Ability To Leverage Cloud-Native Features

Lift and shift migration does not enable legacy applications to leverage cloud features, such as automation, distributed workloads or elastic scaling. This can be a significant drawback unless an organization only needs an application that cannot be altered or re-coded available in the cloud.

Best Practices for Lift and Shift Migration

Adhering to rehosting best practices helps an organization get more of the benefits associated with the lift and shift meaning with fewer drawbacks. In addition to having the specific requirements for lift and shift migration explained by experts, it can also be beneficial to ask for lift and shift migration examples. The experienced cloud migration specialists at Cloudficient can recommend the right approach to any project, which is likely to include these best practices.

Planning Ahead for Migration

Careful planning is critical for migration projects that involve applications, business processes, databases or storage. Organizational decision-makers should be aware that some applications will be suitable for lift and shift migration, while others may require modernization or optimization in order to perform well in the cloud.

Choosing the Right Cloud Provider

The specifications of cloud environments can vary, which makes choosing the right provider an important consideration. Some applications may be good candidates for lift and shift migration to certain cloud environments and require modernization for other environments. It is also important to check cloud security controls during and after migration.

Making the Most of Automation

Automation can support lift and shift migration projects. While rehosting is already the fastest and most straightforward migration method, automation can make migration projects even faster and easier. Automating the migration discovery process and any repetitive tasks can further expedite this process and promote consistency.

Monitoring Performance Before and After Migration

It is worthwhile to monitor the performance of applications and business processes both before and after migration. Setting and tracking key performance indicators can help organizations determine whether lift and shift migration is sufficient for successful cloud transformation or whether migrated workloads should undergo modernization to take advantage of cloud technology.

The Lift and Shift Meaning for Migration Projects

Cloudficient helps organizations weigh the benefits and drawbacks of different migration methods. Once we have fully explained the lift and shift meaning, we work with stakeholders to determine whether rehosting is the best strategy. Our unmatched next generation migration technology is changing the way businesses retire legacy systems and transform into the cloud. Our affordable services and product offerings can facilitate rehosting, refactoring or replatforming applications and data. Contact us to bring Cloudficiency to your migration project.

With unmatched next generation migration technology, Cloudficient is revolutionizing the way businesses retire legacy systems and transform their organization into the cloud. Our business constantly remains focused on client needs and creating product offerings that match them. We provide affordable services that are scalable, fast and seamless.

If you would like to learn more about how to bring Cloudficiency to your migration project, visit our website, or contact us.

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