Turn your legacy systems into an asset. Business value delivered.
Also known as refactoring and re-platforming of your application, this can involve many things including breaking down an application’s many components to run as stand-alone services (microservices), moving from infrastructure as a service (IaaS) to platform as a service (PaaS), deploying apps within their own containers and leveraging serverless computing.
Modernizing your applications can evolve a large monolithic app to take advantage of some cloud benefits such as horizontal scalability where you might need to scale only certain components of an application and help to reduce operating costs by leveraging PaaS instead of having to manage discrete VMs with IaaS. Refactoring an application in this fashion achieves many of the benefits of the cloud without having to re-write the entire application from scratch.
Cloud Application Architecture
Create a solid foundation for developing applications optimized for the cloud.
Leverage cloud native PaaS capabilities for maximum flexibility and lower total cost of ownership.
Develop and manage container based applications on Azure.
Build cloud applications that are resilient, scalable, independently deployable, and able to evolve quickly.
Build and run your applications without servers or virtual machines.
Merge your development and operations teams to drive business agility and efficiency.
Cloud Application Architecture
The foundation for building any cloud application is ensuring it has a solid application architecture. BlueSilverShift works with many clients to construct this foundation based on Cloud best practices and Azure platform capabilities. We will work with your development team to focus on:
- Selecting the best cloud application architecture style for your application
- Selecting optimal compute, storage and database technologies
- Incorporating key principles to build a scalable, reliable, and manageable application
- Software quality best practices
- Design patterns optimized to your application needs and development team
- Leverage the appropriate combination of IaaS, PaaS and SaaS to deliver the optimal solution
In addition to building a solid Cloud Application Architecture foundation, technologies like Azure Application Insights and Operations Management Suite (OMS) and integrating them into your PaaS/IaaS cloud objects will provide a central logging capability that has traditionally been difficult to implement. Using App Insights and OMS will provide analytical insights to your application and underlying virtual infrastructure such as base-lining how long queries take and where and when peak user demand will manifest. These insights assist you in refactoring queries, components and methods to provide the ideal state of continuous improvement.
Platform as a Service (PaaS) in the cloud is one level of abstraction above Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). You no longer manage the compute infrastructure (e.g. virtual machine, operating system, and applications like IIS and SQL) but instead use platform components to enable your applications. By leveraging PaaS, you are freeing up IT resources to focus on higher value tasks that add value to your organization while reducing the overall operating costs for your applications. With PaaS, your development or DevOps team simply deploys its code onto the platform service itself that is managed by Microsoft. You no longer have to patch the operating system and applications that your app relies on to run.
Examples of PaaS solutions that BlueSilverShift has helped other clients just like you to implement and manage are:
- Azure App Services (Web Apps)
- Azure SQL DB
- SQL Data Warehouse
- Data Lake
- Cosmos DB
- Data Factory
- API Management
- Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS)
- Azure Container Services (ACS)
- Azure Container Instances (ACI)
- Azure Container Registry (ACR)
- Logic Apps
- Azure Functions
- Azure WebJobs
- Event Grid
- Azure Storage
- Azure Cognitive Services
- Content Distribution Network (CDN)
- Redis Cache
- Automation and Runbooks
The use of containers has brought in a new era to what is possible in the cloud. Containers allow you the flexibility of working with existing or new workloads and porting them where needed without having to reformat to a specific public cloud platform. Containers allow the integration of network, VM, datastore, and all required components to be grouped and deployed in a self contained platform that is self sufficient and has all the resources needed to run its processes. You also get the added benefit of widening your development team by bringing in specialized knowledge workers that have expertise in specific areas that they can focus on in your container architecture.
BlueSilverShift has extensive experience in architecting, building deploying and managing applications that leverage Azure’s Kubernetes Service (AKS), Azure Container Instances (ACI) and Azure Container Registry to build, deploy and manage applications. Integral to our services is the ability to manage, monitor and secure your contain based applications.
The rise of Microservices architecture is a natural evolution of Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) and has become a popular architectural style for building cloud applications that are resilient, highly scalable, independently deployable, and able to evolve quickly. Microservices require a different approach to designing and building applications. When using Microservices you also get more agility in the form of how you update/manage the code behind the microservice. Application updates can be done quicker with less testing if Microservices are deployed because if you are not touching the other microservices, then the one you are updating is the only one that needs to be tested along with its related interfaces and integrations with other services.
Blue Silver Shift and our Microservices Development Team have extensive experience in architecting, building deploying and managing applications that leverage Azure’s capabilities and are born in the cloud or re-built from existing monolithic applications.
The rise of serverless cloud capabilities is ideal for solutions that will scale and be cost effective. Easily build the apps you need using simple, serverless functions that scale to meet any demand. Use the programming language of your choice without worrying about managing servers or infrastructure.
As examples, Blue Silver Shift has leveraged Azure Functions and Logic Apps, to build many serverless application capabilities including:
- web application back ends
- real-time stream and file processing
- task automation and scheduling
- integration between IaaS/PaaS/SaaS
- IoT applications
The merging of development and operations into a single team that is responsible for the development, care and feeding of applications throughout its lifecycle is a powerful way to enable greater agility in your teams. They can be more responsive to customer demands and implement changes that have an immediate effect rather than the typical length of time waiting for the next major release.
One of the key strengths that Blue Silver Shift can bring to the table is the ability to implement Continuous Integration and Continuous Delivery (CI/CD). We work with our clients to tie together Azure, policies and procedures, naming conventions, Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS) and security to allow your developers and operations teams to work in a single unified manner with a set of common systems that is optimized to produce, test, deploy and manage code and applications. We have VSTS experts who teach best practices with VSTS, that can assist clients in driving out development requirements like environments, parameters and other build/deployment settings to enable VSTS deployment pipelines to perform CI/CD. Blue Silver Shift can assist with defining common performance and functional tests that can be bound to development and production environments that will ensure that quality coding practices are being followed and that code or infrastructure are being properly configured. We also offer comprehensive training on VSTS including face to face classroom sessions and hands on labs.
Blue Silver Shift can also create automated solutions for creating and destroying environments using the latest technologies in Azure Resource Manager for Infrastructure as Code, such as ARM Templates, PowerShell and other automation techniques. This ensures all aspects of the environments are accounted for, consistent across environments and optimized. Everything from web application creation, through to certificates, custom domains and other platform settings can be automated to guarantee standards and quality. We can also leverage Azure Resource Manager to integrate with a variety of third-party infrastructure automation and configuration management tools including Chef, Puppet, Ansible and Terraform.