During the planning phase of a legacy modernization project, you typically select and size your target deployment platform. If you have chosen a standard operating system, your target type may not be in question, but this is a good time to consider whether you want to run your modernized applications on physical servers or in the cloud.
When you think of cloud applications, mobile and web workloads usually come to mind. But cloud deployment models can also benefit core, run-the-business processes often addressed by legacy systems.
Historically, legacy applications have been monolithic in nature — meaning they run on a single platform and are written in a single language that addresses all application functionality. When you modernize, you can choose to keep your legacy business processes largely intact by rapidly re-hosting to a low-cost, updated environment. Or you can break your application up into separate components, such as online and batch, and decouple your user interfaces with application re-architecture. With either approach, your post-migrated applications can be moved to the cloud, but the benefits will vary depending on the method you choose.
Legacy systems also tend to feed siloed data pools. During the application re-hosting or the application re-architecture process, you can integrate your legacy data sources into a modern, big-data framework. Deploying these capabilities to the cloud removes the limitations of fixed storage caps and helps you make faster and more accurate business decisions.
Applications that are re-hosted or re-architected to virtualized environments can also immediately take advantage of the greater economies of scale that cloud provides and give your business greater agility and resilience. For instance, running decoupled services in the cloud will allow multiple users to access the application during peak periods of increased workload volumes.
Unless your specific regulatory and security requirements will not allow it, consider using a modernized cloud-based application strategy. Implemented correctly, application modernization and the cloud can help you succeed in a competitive marketplace.