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Managed vs Unmanaged Cloud

Managed vs unmanaged cloud: Which solution is best for your business?

Hyve Managed Hosting

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Performance improvements, cost-efficiency, seamless scalability and enhanced security – the benefits for businesses have led to a boom in cloud adoption in the years since it entered the mainstream. A study from HashiCorp found that 66% of respondents had increased their cloud spending over the last year, demonstrating the continued growth in the market. 

Whether you are fully migrating from on-premise to cloud, or incorporating cloud platforms as part of a hybrid or multi cloud infrastructure, managing a complex cloud environment within a business can be a challenging and time consuming task. To reap the most benefits from your cloud platforms, it is essential to consider whether an unmanaged or a managed option would best suit your business.

What is managed cloud?

Managed cloud is any form of cloud infrastructure with an added services layer, enabling your business to benefit from partial or complete management of your platform by a managed service provider (MSP). With a managed cloud solution, your MSP will effectively act as an extension of your business, decreasing the day-to-day management workload on your in-house IT team. 

Benefits of managed cloud

Controlled costs

In a managed cloud hosting environment the provider takes on the responsibility for the management, maintenance and configuration of your cloud infrastructure, which would otherwise need to be handled in-house. Although third-party management comes with a cost, this is usually significantly cheaper than the recruitment and ongoing salary costs of an in-house team. 

In addition, an MSP optimises resource usage, often leading to reduced infrastructure costs. With a provider working alongside you to scale resources up and down as business needs change, you can have confidence you will not experience unexpected spikes in bills. This allows businesses to have an accurate expectation of their upcoming costs. 

System management and support 

When you work with an MSP, you will have a team of expert engineers supporting your business. They will run your servers, systems and backups and provide patching and monitoring services. This gives you the peace of mind that your platform has been configured by experts, so any potential for misconfiguration is avoided. The ongoing management services provided continuously optimise and protect your infrastructure, minimising any risk of errors, outages, or security breaches. In the case that you do experience any issues, you will have access to support to resolve your issues swiftly. The level of support will depend on the provider – at Hyve we offer 24/7/365 direct-to-engineer support, where you can speak to an expert technical engineer straight away, without waiting as you are passed around support tiers. 

Reliability and scalability 

With a low consumer tolerance to downtime, ensuring you have a reliable platform is vital to your business reputation, and can save you from significant financial losses. With a managed cloud platform, your MSP can guarantee high availability and reliable website performance. Sudden traffic spikes without the correct technical requirements can cause a system to fail, resulting in downtime. With a managed cloud you can rest assured that your hosting provider will be monitoring traffic, scaling out your cloud platform as and when it is required. 

Network security 

Having a secure network is vital for running an effective, reliable hosting solution that supports everyday business operations. Managed hosts have the tools to create a secure network including firewalls, VLANs, IPS, DDoS defence etc, that ensure the safety of your business-critical data. These advanced security measures are to the latest standards with measures to reduce the likelihood of cyberattacks.

Managed storage

When it comes to your storage, working with an MSP provides three main advantages: backups, SLAs and compliance.

Firstly, an MSP can back-up your data across redundant arrays. These arrays can be used to improve performance and reduce downtime if your drive were to fail. Depending on the importance of your data, and your tolerance to data loss in a disaster situation, backups can be run anywhere from weekly, to real-time, where data is instantly replicated. 

Secondly, in the situation where there is a critical failure in a piece of hardware an MSP can replace it with minimal downtime. Generally providers will operate a service level agreement (SLA) guaranteeing a response and replacement time. Hyve provides an industry-leading 20 minute hardware replacement SLA for customers using our blade server technology.

Lastly, with regards to compliance, an MSP will abide by international regulations, such as GDPR. Many MSPs will also hold accreditations and certifications, which are regularly assessed through audits. This means you won’t have to worry about making sure your data and storage is up to date with the latest regulation. You can speak to your provider to ensure they meet your compliance needs – find out about our accreditations and certifications here.

What is unmanaged cloud? 

An unmanaged cloud provides the core cloud services with a ‘do-it-yourself’ model. As the customer, you rent access to the infrastructure, but are entirely responsible for running the cloud, security, and all tools and applications.

Benefits of unmanaged cloud

Complete control of cloud infrastructure

When using an unmanaged cloud hosting service, the IT team within your organisation are responsible for the complete management and maintenance of the cloud environment. Unmanaged cloud hosting requires the business to take control of the configuration, management and maintenance of all cloud infrastructure, allowing flexibility to adjust the cloud environment to the desired specifications and requirements. Once the hosting and operating systems are purchased, it is your responsibility to take care of regular updates, backups, security and ensure that the hardware is up-to-date, runs effectively and is secure. For some organisations, this complete internal control will be preferred, although it is important to consider that this control also means any problems with the infrastructure will also be your responsibility. 

Affordability

The majority of unmanaged clouds use a pay-as-you-go pricing model, which can be appealing as a way to avoid wasting resources and money. Taking responsibility for the full management of your cloud environment unsurprisingly comes with a lower average subscription fee. However, it is important to be aware that these lower costs can be counteracted by higher spending on other challenges you may face as your business and customer demands grow. The main additional expense with an unmanaged cloud is the staff costs of an expert in-house IT team in order to manage the infrastructure, which can be expensive.
Infographic explaining the difference between managed cloud and unmanaged cloud, with differences split into five sections: management, support, costs, reliability and security.

What service is best for your business?

Managed cloud hosting can free up your time and resources, allowing you and your employees to invest into driving business growth and performance. The technical experts working to configure, maintain and manage your infrastructure will support you to achieve maximum uptime and complete security. 

Unmanaged cloud hosting could be a more cost-effective option if you have the in-house knowledge to be able to fully control your servers, and can keep your data safe from cyberattacks. 

Why choose Hyve for your managed cloud solution?

We offer fully managed cloud platforms, including private cloud, enterprise cloud, and dedicated servers, as well as providing third-party management services for public cloud platforms such as Azure. 

We take a consultative approach, working with you to understand your needs and build the best solution for you. For an initial conversation, fill out our contact form and one of our experts will be in touch. 

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