Cloud Application Development

Migrating your IT Infrastructure to Cloud using Lift and Shift approach is a great way to switch IT spending to a pay-as-you-go model and reduce CapEx costs. But in order to get a better ROI, already a variety of organisations—from tiny startups to global corporations, government agencies to non-profits—are embracing the cloud technology to build applications for improving their Product Quality and Business Productivity.

A cloud application simply refers to any software or application that is deployed in a cloud environment rather than being hosted on an On-Premise server or machine. When it comes to application development, is there any difference between On-Premise Web App Vs Cloud App? Yes there is. Cloud based apps are sort of “evolved” web apps that uses extensive array of cloud services to achieve reliability, elasticity, high availability, multi-tenancy and global replication. 

Following are some of the tips for developing Cloud Applications

Identify Cloud Provider

Once you finalize the cloud strategy that aligns with your business vision and mission, the selection of cloud provider is essential.  There are a number of cloud provider like Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform that offer developers the platform and tools in order to simplify the actual development process. What matters is choosing the one that best meets your business requirements.

Understand the Infrastructure and Services

When it comes to developing applications for cloud, you will have multiple cloud services and tools to choose from. For example,

·        do you really need a dedicated infrastructure to host your application or can you leverage serverless architecture?

·        Where to store your data?

·        How to secure your applications?

·        How to improve the performance?

·        What to use for working with the events?

Once you understand when to use each cloud services, you will be able to come up with the right architecture for your scenario.

Loosely Coupled Architecture

This Toronto Dedicated Servers says cloud native architecture should be similar to SOA. Instead of creating tightly coupled applications with a focus on user interface, the developers should exposing the underlying functionality as services that can be leveraged independently. The application architecture when developing for the cloud needs to have the in-built capabilities to interact with highly complex, widely distributed systems.

Plan for Resiliency

The cloud application developers need to be plan for unexpected resource failures and design accordingly. Instead of trying to prevent failures altogether, the goal is to minimize the effects of a single failing component. The applications should be Resilient and recover gracefully from failures, and they continue to function with minimal downtime and data loss before full recovery. Also it should be Highly available and run as designed in a healthy state with no significant downtime.

Adopt DevOps Strategy

The benefits of DevOps in developing a cloud application include fostering of a culture that focuses on frequent releases of high quality deliverables. In order to ensure that your application is running effectively over time, you need to consider implementing multiple processes to make sure that your users are getting the right experience. Some of the major processes that needs to be considered are

·        Manage infrastructure using Infrastructure as Code (IaC)

·        Implement CI/CD pipelines for all applications

·        Setup Cloud Monitoring

·        Automated Testing

·        Performance Monitoring

Consider performance and scaling

To gain the maximum performance, the applications should be designed to be horizontally scalable. Apps often don’t need more processors, just a better way to handle high workloads. If you expect a high traffic volume at specific times, you can create a scheduled autoscaling policy. It can create instances even before your demand increases. Performance monitoring tools to oversee the performance of the application can help make the necessary provisions needed to design the application to scale.

Security considerations

Security is one of the most important aspects of any architecture. Use native security capabilities built into cloud services instead of adding external security components (for data encryption, network traffic filtering, threat detection, and other functions). These services provide better security, reliability, and efficiency because cloud providers operate and secure them with dedicated teams with deep expertise in those areas. Following are some of the capabilities that should be prioritized

·        Identity

·        Data Protection

·        Key Management

·        Application Configurations

 

Summary

The cloud is changing how applications are designed. Instead of monoliths, applications are decomposed into smaller, decentralized services. These services communicate through APIs or by using asynchronous messaging or eventing. Applications scale horizontally, adding new instances as demand requires. These trends bring new challenges. Application state is distributed. Operations are done in parallel and asynchronously. Applications must be resilient when failures occur. Deployments must be automated and predictable. Monitoring and telemetry are critical for gaining insight into the system.

When designing cloud applications, focusing on the above concepts in addition to the traditional app development basics of design, development, testing and incorporation of feedback leads your application to success.