Infrastructure

Answering 7 common cloud architecture questions

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Cloud architecture questionsThis excerpt from Get started with architectures by Kim Gajda was originally published on the IBM Bluemix blog.

Once upon a time, a developer’s job was simple: Write code to connect to your company database, and voilà, you have a new app and happy users.

That might have been your manager’s view of your job. In any case, today’s users are more sophisticated and expect more than access to data. They want insights. Enter App Delivery Act II, brought to you by the cloud, where your app can access cognitive services from Watson, scale workload on demand, and handle resiliency.

The good news is that you don’t need to start with a blank sheet of paper.

Based on years of consulting engagements between the IBM team of cloud experts and client IT shops, the IBM Cloud Garage Method distills a portfolio of practices and provides blueprints that address business challenges. The blueprints, or reference architectures, are based on proven solutions that combine compute infrastructure and cloud-based services. Each reference architecture documents the business scenario, functional requirements, and resources that deliver the solution.

Common architecture questions answered

Architectures and their implementations are meant to answer common questions:

  • Where do I start?
  • I have all of these services, but how do they fit together?
  • Do I want to use infrastructure, such as virtual machines (VMs), or services, such as a data store?
  • Now that I’ve proven an approach, how do I scale up and move into production?
  • How does my service talk to that other service?
  • How is security handled?
  • How can I build, deploy, and manage an application?

Each architecture provides a business challenge, a reference architecture description and diagram, implementations, links to related practices and learning, and more resources to answer your questions.

Architecture questions

Reference architectures fall into two categories: application architectures and cross-cutting architectures.

  • Application architectures focus on building function into an application. Application architectures include web, mobile, data and analytics, cognitive, and Internet of Things (IoT).
  • Cross-cutting architectures emphasize how to address non-functional capabilities to scale applications into enterprise-grade production systems. The cross-cutting aspects often relate to the “-ilities” in a system, such as availability, resiliency, security, and scalability. All applications require one or more of the cross-cutting architectures, no matter what function the application provides.

The IBM Cloud Garage Method features over a dozen architectures in its Architecture Center.

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