Migrating Applications to Azure – A Checklist for Moving Your Enterprise Apps to Azure
Gone are the days when a business had a room filled with bulky desktops and equally cumbersome enterprise applications. The on-premise app development structure is experiencing a downfall as businesses have adopted cloud technology to develop and deploy their applications at low costs. Microsoft Azure, a leading cloud computing platform, attracts a mass exodus of businesses who want to leverage the numerous benefits it offers.
Azure provides Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) to execute and store application data in Microsoft datacenters, create VMs for custom enterprise software development and test highly scalable apps. In addition, you can save valuable capital by adopting the cloud and scaling the app according to the change in your development strategy. These are some of the benefits that can induce a business to migrate to Microsoft Azure.
However, prior to doing this, you need to examine and strategize the current application architecture and deployment setup in a way that ensures it is ready to move to Azure cloud. Let us consider the following methods that can help your app get cloud-ready.
Approaches for Application Migration to Azure
- User Interface Analysis: Analyze the user interface of your application to check if it can be migrated to Azure PaaS model directly. The existing app might need modifications to use Azure SDK and run on Azure as a hosted cloud service. In case of the IaaS model, the entire server image can be migrated to the Azure Virtual Machine, without making changes to the codes.
- Session State Management: All the web role instances in Azure, run on separate VM servers that are configured behind a load balancer. The session state cannot be shared across instances automatically in a load balanced environment. There are various approaches to address the session state management such as Inproc, table storage provider, Azure SQL database provider and Azure cache. The results and benefits of these approaches are different from each other.
- Analysis of Authentication and Authorization Mechanisms: The authentication and authorization model of your app might not match to that of Azure’s. So, check if the current authentication approach (e.g. form-based) can be adopted or not. In case of disparate mechanisms, explore cloud-based solutions for authentication such as using Azure Active Directory Access Control, deploying Azure VPN to enterprise Active Directory or using Azure Active Directory with integrated on-premise Active Directory.
- Database Analysis: There are three approaches for maintaining your app data while migrating applications to Azure – data can reside on-premise, SQL server can be created in Azure virtual machine and date can be migrated to Azure SQL Database (PaaS). Analyze each approach to understand which suits your current data structure. Also, include a data migration strategy as a part of your plan since most of the apps are data centric.
So, these approaches/methodologies will assist you in identifying the required resources for Microsoft Azure migration . After the migration plan comes implementation. Here’s what you need to take care of while implementing the migration plan.
Implementing the Migration Strategy:
Microsoft handles the underlying software and hardware infrastructure automatically so developers only need to worry about the following issues:
- Setting up validation tests
- Minimizing cut-over time by synchronizing databases
- Backup and Restore
- Cut-over to Microsoft Azure
After you migrate the app to cloud, run the functional or performance tests just like you do with your newly deployed on-premise app. This enables you to smoothly migrate and manage your applications on Microsoft Azure.
Rishabh’s Azure migration services has helped many enterprise to seamlessly host their current app infrastructure on Azure cloud. Get in touch with us now if you’re planning to migrate your app to Azure.