Part one of the blog post can be read HERE.
In Part One, it was established that a cloud native architecture brings many benefits to your application platform and infrastructure, including scaling, reduced technology lock-in, fault tolerance, and making use of vendor-built services. There were too many to cover in one blog post, so in this post, we will look at even more benefits that cloud native architectures offer.
No more late-night maintenance windows
Your team will love not having to wait until 3 am on a Saturday morning before they can do updates and changes. Changes can be made in the production environment, with a sample set of user traffic redirected to the new version to test. Now new features can be tested during working hours, even in peak traffic times. If something breaks late at night, you can just start a new instance.
Decoupled by nature
Cloud native applications are broken up into microservices. Each component microservice can be updated or changed independently of one another without it affecting the overall performance of the application. You’re also able to run different versions of the same microservice so that you can test the new version before discarding the old one. For example, if you need to roll out a newer version of the database service, you can run both versions in parallel to test compatibility with your application.
Everything about your application infrastructure deployment is capable of being automated. From commissioning new instances of testing environments to rolling out the latest network configuration estate-wide, automation will save you time and money and will minimise the number of mistakes your deployment team can make.
Simpler testing and faster time to market for features
Your team will be able to test and release new features and configurations much faster. When a new version of the application is ready for testing, it can be deployed alongside the current version. A subset of user traffic can then be diverted from the live version so that users can test the new features in real-time, gradually increasing the traffic until completely phasing out the old version. All of this is done without any interruption of service to your customers. This also controls the size of the blast radius, should the new version cause any issues. You will be able to immediately take action and remove the problematic version.
For development and testing teams, this rapid way of testing means that they can move on to other tasks faster. With the much shorter testing window, they no longer need to wait weeks and therefore can fix whatever needs fixing while they still have all the context. No more moving on to other features or projects and then needing to come back after a couple of weeks to fix an older feature that just completed testing.
Security and visibility are closer together
It’s important to understand that cloud native won’t be the last security solution that you’ll ever need. Instead, cloud native security is a tool for you to use in creating a secure environment for your users. Your application and application infrastructure will now be architected with security in mind, instead of application security being an afterthought that has to be fixed with additional components. Improved visibility into the application and infrastructure also gives your security teams more power to identify and take action on issues.
The abovementioned benefits will go a long way to ensure that you are not just delivering the best possible application experience to your users, but also providing the best possible platform and infrastructure for your application. Even if a large portion of your application is housed in your on-premise data centre, by architecting it cloud natively, it could fully benefit from the power of the cloud.