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How to Migrate Applications From AWS to Azure?

Enterprises rely on cloud solutions to host and deliver business-critical applications to their customers. Amazon Web Services (AWS), being the pioneer in cloud services, is one of the most preferred platforms for hosting enterprise applications. However, Microsoft’s expertise in enterprise software has helped it develop Azure into a formidable business cloud platform. Consequently, businesses are increasingly moving applications from their on-premises infrastructure as well as from other cloud platforms to Azure. In this article, let us understand how to migrate applications from AWS to Azure.

What Are the Advantages of Migrating Applications from AWS to Azure?

Migrating applications from AWS to Azure is an attractive proposition for enterprises, especially the ones already in the Microsoft ecosystem, for the following reasons.

  • Pricing Advantage

    Azure offers better transparency in terms of pricing. Additionally, for businesses using Microsoft solutions, such as Windows Server, not only does Microsoft waive off the license cost, but it also offers free extended support for older versions.

  • Better Identity Management

    While AWS offers a robust web service for authentication and identity management, Azure Active Directory is arguably the leader in the space. Azure Active Directory, organizations manage access to applications, the internal network, and also external resources.

  • Simplified Hybrid Cloud Deployments

    With services such as Azure Stack and Azure Active Directory, the Microsoft cloud platform is more suitable for running applications that need hybrid solutions. While similar capabilities are available with AWS, it could be relatively complex and more expensive to deploy as compared to Azure.

What Are the Steps for Migrating Applications from AWS to Azure?

The process of migrating applications from AWS to Azure depends on the workloads and the existing infrastructure deployments. Below are the steps involved in migrating applications from AWS to Azure.

  • Inventorying Resources

    The first step for migrating applications from AWS to Azure is to take inventory of applications, identify the resources required to operate them, and the interdependencies between workloads. This is best done using discovery tools for gathering specific information on servers, software, network, and storage.

  • Application Evaluation

    It might not be feasible to migrate all applications and workloads deployed on AWS to Azure directly. Consequently, it is important to define clear goals for the business’ cloud strategy and identify risks before migrating applications from AWS to Azure. There are different models for migrating AWS applications to Azure.

  • Cost Analysis

    Migrating applications from AWS to Azure requires detailed financial and technical evaluation. The implementation of the applications on AWS not only affects the migration to Azure but could also have a significant impact on the cost of operations after migrating to the new platform. In some cases, enterprises are unclear about the costs associated with their resource consumption, even if the lower cost was the primary reason for migrating to the Azure cloud.

What Are the Different Methods of Migrating Applications from AWS to Azure?

There are broadly two methods of migrating applications from AWS to Azure.

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) Application Migration

When enterprises need to migrate their applications from AWS to Azure, they can opt for managed Azure infrastructure. With this method, they purchase, install, configure, and manage operating systems and middleware along with the applications. There are two models of application migration using this method.

  • Rehosting Applications on Azure

    Rehosting applications deployed on AWS to Azure involves lift-and-shift operations in which their codes are not modified. These migrations are relatively easy to perform, and the applications can be quickly scaled subsequently for meeting business requirements. Although there are no code changes, it is recommended to simulate such rehosting migrations to avoid cost escalations.

  • Revising Application Code on Azure

    In most cases, IaaS application migrations from AWS to Azure involve revising the application code by modifying or extending it. This is done to ensure that the existing code can fit into the Azure cloud environment.

Platform as a Service (PaaS) Application Migration

When enterprises need middleware, development tools, database management systems, business intelligence services, and other features in addition to servers, storage, and networking, the PaaS model of application migration from AWS to Azure is more suitable.

Organizations will not have to worry about software licensing, middleware for their applications, and the underlying infrastructure when they use PaaS models of application migration. There are two methods of PaaS application migration as well.

  • Code Refactoring for AWS to Azure Migration

    In this method, changes have to be made in the application framework, or the runtime environment without significantly changing the core architecture of the applications to be migrated. This might involve additional changes such as optimizing the database server for Azure.

  • Rebuild/ Replace Application for AWS to Azure Migration

    In some cases, code refactoring may not be effective, and redesigning or rebuilding the application on Azure might be the best option. While this might the most complex method to migrate applications, it is often the most effective in reducing costs and increasing efficiency.

Apps4Rent Can Help Migrating Applications from AWS to Azure

While some application migrations might be as simple as transferring virtual machines from AWS to Azure, others might involve moving several interdependent web apps along their database. Such application migrations often involve the complex process of identifying the right resources on Azure after analyzing workloads and applications on AWS. As a Tier 1 Microsoft CSP, Apps4Rent can help you migrate applications from AWS to Azure by recommending the right resources and simplifying the deployment of applications on Azure. We have deep expertise in migrating Microsoft applications such as SharePoint, Exchange, Project Server, Dynamics CRM and accounting applications such as Ultratax CS, QuickBooks, and Drake to Azure. Contact our Azure experts, available 24/7 via phone, chat, and email for Azure plans and migration assistance.

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