6 steps to smart migration of data to the cloud

Data migration to the cloud can be expensive, lengthy and frustrating if not properly prepared. APARAVI explains the most important measures.

Cloud migration raises questions that companies rarely have to ask themselves in ongoing on-premises operations. What and how much data do they have in the first place, where is it, what types of data are they dealing with, how consistent and secure is the data, which data should be migrated to the cloud - and which should not? Even before the data migration to the cloud, a number of fundamental homework tasks must therefore be completed if it is not to become a cost trap, a project disaster or a security risk. In fact, the budget requirements of the majority of all cloud migrations exceed the planned costs; moreover, such projects are often delayed by several months.

APARAVI, provider of unstructured data management solutions, provides practical advice:

1. inventory

Before migrating data to the cloud, the entire data inventory must be recorded. It often turns out that up to 80 percent of the data is unstructured, for example texts, tables and lists, images, presentations, audio or video files. They are a particular challenge because they have to be analyzed and consolidated before migration. This is especially important because certain data, such as personal or business-critical data, must be handled in a particularly restrictive manner.

2 Analysis and cleanup

During the inventory, a lot of unstructured data turns out to be redundant, obsolete or trivial (RED). Appropriate tools filter out these redundant files and duplicates. The data volume and the associated costs are reduced, and data migration is accelerated.

3. consolidation and classification

The remaining unstructured data is consolidated and categorized before migration, for example, by customer segment, region, solution, or for special security and protection relevance. This facilitates data management and simplifies access.

4. data compression

Before migration, the data to be migrated can be additionally compressed to further reduce data volumes and thus cloud costs. The best tools achieve compression rates of up to 40 percent.

5. security

The data intended for cloud migration has emerged in the steps described as particularly critical for the company. For migration to the cloud, they should therefore be encrypted to ensure their security and integrity.

6. Ongoing maintenance and control

Although this completes the migration phase, the data set must be constantly maintained during ongoing cloud operations. Automated functions help eliminate new duplicates or control access to protected data, for example.

"Cloud migration can blow any cost and time frame if unstructured data is simply copied over unpurified," explains Gregor Bieler, CEO EMEA at APARAVI. "But only with the right methods and tools does the effort required to cleanse the data beforehand not become disproportionately high."