Almost every company uses cloud computing or other cloud services in one way or the other these days. Using the cloud provides numerous advantages and benefits. It allows businesses to easily scale, increase productivity, and save a lot of time and money. The cloud also offers flexibility and the virtual infrastructure needed to give a business a competitive edge. But migrating to the cloud doesn’t mean you are no longer responsible for a lot of the nuts-and-bolts of daily IT. Your network plays a crucial role in cloud computing. It can very well mean the difference between a successful cloud migration or one that causes constant headaches. While cloud providers can ensure adequate resources and services, they are not accountable for the rest of the service-delivery path. Any network issue in cloud computing can result in impacts ranging from minor latency and performance-related issues to catastrophic service blackouts. If you understand the common cloud network issues that are most likely to rear their heads, you can prevent them from happening. While most network issues are relatively harmless and easily fixed, others can leave a devastating impact. Here are the most common network-related issues in cloud computing — and what you can do about them.
Cloud network issues: Network misconfigurations
One of the most common issues, not just in terms of cloud networking but in the entire IT world, is the misconfigurations. Often, humans misconfigure the system due to lack of knowledge or too much caution. This is also one of the common network-related issues in cloud computing. The way the network behaves depends on the way it is configured. Misconfigurations or errors in these settings can lead to network performance issues or can even result in network failure.
DNS mapping is yet another common area where many network misconfigurations are made. DNS lookups need to be used to find the nearest available server for traffic routing. If a wrong DNS server is mapped with the clients that are not the closest available, it might result in latency and performance degradation.
If you notice a sudden outage of a cloud service or significant performance issues, the most recent configurational change you made is most likely to be the cause. Often in companies, when network or security teams upgrade firewalls or modify the corporate LAN, NAT, or VLAN, this can lead to network-related issues. In such cases, it is essential to monitor, trace, and isolate the misconfiguration to prevent further losses or downtime.
Lack of cloud monitoring tools
Having a proper network monitoring and tracking system can prevent several issues both small and disastrous. However, regular network monitoring tools often do not work well to monitor the connections to the cloud and its status. Traditional network monitoring tools cannot provide detailed information about what is happening outside the company’s firewall. Therefore, having a powerful and well-configured cloud monitoring or surveillance system helps companies detect all forms of network issues related to the cloud from the cloud provider end to your end.
These monitoring tools can be configured to send alerts in times of network congestion, outage, delay, and more. And with proper integrations, these tools can also provide reports based on the issues faced. Simple the lack of using a monitoring tool or improper configuration results in network-related issues that will affect your cloud services.
Network intermediaries’ failure
In a corporate environment, there are several intermediaries involved between the cloud service provider and the consumer. This means that a service request passes through firewalls, proxies, different networking devices, and more before it reaches the cloud service provider. Even a minute misconfiguration or failure in any of these intermediaries can take down the network.
Having a cloud network monitoring solution can help prevent these issues. These tools can help spot failures in the network and can help organizations and companies to regain the network ensuring smoother operations and services.
Although rare, hardware failures are yet another common issue affecting cloud services. Sometimes catastrophic issues such as power failures, natural calamities, or natural or man-made disruptions can result in hardware failure, affecting the entire cloud network. While both the cloud service provider, as well as the consumers, strive to get 100 percent uptime (or at least the “five-nines”), things like these might still happen. Although there is no strict prevention mechanism for hardware failure, timely upgrading of your devices and software, regular servicing, and proper monitoring can reduce the chances to a great extent.
Lack of integration
Organizations or businesses must make sure that all the cloud-based services and applications are well-integrated with each other as well as the company’s other tools and services. Applications running in isolation can consume more than the required number of resources and can result in network overloading or starvation of services. They also lead to silos, which might result in further issues. All the applications and services need to be well-integrated with respect to the company’s tools, APIs, and other mediums. Lack of integration can lead to several other problems on top of affecting the cloud services. Use of built-in application diagnostic tools and services and integration models can be used to overcome and fix the issues related to integration.
Don’t let cloud network issues bring you down to earth
If you recall how cloud computing works, network issues do seem to be the Achilles’ heel for the entire cloud architecture. However, with the right measures and proper maintenance, these as well as several other network issues can be mitigated.