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How do enterprises connect to the cloud?

Cloud integration is an important network consideration for businesses today, so let's explore the various approaches and their benefits. In this guide, we delve deeper into the process of establishing cloud connections and the important factors to bear in mind when choosing the best solution.

Cloud Connect: what are the options?

Cloud Connect solutions fall into two main groups: public (connectivity via the public Internet) and private connections. These are also sometimes combined for multiple cloud connections and hybrid cloud solutions.

Public cloud connections

Cloud resources are accessed via the Internet. This is a fast and simple way of connecting instantly to the cloud using existing Internet infrastructure. This flexible approach can be easily provided by an Internet Service Provider, without the need to commit CAPEX. Public connections are suitable for basic communication purposes, applications and sometimes even for testing.

Private or dedicated cloud connections

When a higher level of security and low latency is required, private connectivity can be provided directly by a Cloud Service Provider (CSP) or a Network Service Provider (NSP):

  • Connections to the cloud via NSP interconnects (as provided by Arelion)
    Here, an NSP establishes dedicated physical connections from its backbone to a CSP's infrastructure, ensuring direct connectivity that extends to an organization's on-premises infrastructure through the NSP network. Connectivity options like Ethernet can be used for this purpose.
  • Connections to the cloud via dedicated CSP ports
    Here organizations establish a direct connection to a Cloud Service Provider through a dedicated port at a carrier-neutral data center where the CSP offers cloud access. An organization's infrastructure is connected directly to the CSP port via a cross connect (if an enterprise happens to have presence in the same DC as the CSP) or via NSP infrastructure. Connectivity options like Wavelengths or Ethernet can be used for this purpose.


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Cloud Exchange – multiple clouds

Cloud Exchange, in the context of cloud connectivity, refers to a service or platform that facilitates the seamless connection to and interaction between multiple CSPs. This enables organizations to efficiently manage their cloud resources, data, and applications across multiple cloud platforms and providers. Data and workloads can then move freely between different clouds, improving flexibility and reducing latency.

Cloud Exchange solutions are typically vendor-neutral, meaning they don't favor one specific cloud provider. This neutrality gives organizations the flexibility to choose the best cloud services for their specific needs.

How do you choose the best connection to public clouds?

Planning cloud connectivity involves several important steps to ensure secure, efficient, and cost-effective integration of your IT infrastructure with cloud services. This step-by-step guide will help you find the best cloud connect solution for your needs:


Solution requirements

Clearly define your organization's goals for moving to the cloud: cost savings, scalability, data redundancy, or disaster recovery. Identify the specific workloads or applications that you intend to migrate to the cloud. Determine your data storage and processing requirements, as well as any compliance or security needs.

Cloud deployment

Decide whether your requirements favor Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) or Software as a Service (SaaS). Evaluate different public cloud providers (e.g., AWS, Azure, Google Cloud) and your existing private cloud options to determine what works best for you. Work with your Network Service Provider to find the best the best cloud connectivity alternatives.
When considering factors like data sensitivity, control, and cost you can decide whether public cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud, or a multi-cloud strategy is best for your business needs.

Assess network connectivity

Evaluate your existing network infrastructure to determine its capacity, security, and performance. Determine whether you need to upgrade your network or invest in dedicated connectivity options like Direct Connect (AWS), ExpressRoute (Azure) with private links (Arelion).

Security and compliance

Establish security policies and access controls for your cloud resources. Ensure that your chosen cloud provider complies with relevant industry-specific regulations and standards For example, Cloud Service Providers such as Oracle are now offering cloud services supporting stringent data compliance legislation in strictly regulated territories like EU Sovereign.

Migration strategy

Plan how you will migrate your data to the public cloud. This will involve assessing data readiness, selecting migration tools, and scheduling data transfers. It will also require a reliable connectivity partner so don’t forget to talk to your Network Service Provider to see how they can support you.

Cost management

Create a budget for your public cloud migration, with scope for ongoing cloud expenses. Implement cost management tools and practices to monitor and optimize your cloud spend.

Backup and disaster recovery

Develop a backup and disaster recovery strategy to ensure data resilience and business continuity before, during, and after migration.

Periodically review your cloud strategy and make adjustments based on changing business needs and technology advancements.

Arelion offers Cloud Connect, a dedicated, scalable and secure solution providing direct cloud connection to the top 5 cloud service providers like AWS, Google, Azure, Oracle and IBM.

We have presence in over 350+ Points of Presence (PoPs) around the world and as such our network overlaps with the on-ramp locations of the leading CSPs, allowing us to provide direct and secure connectivity to your cloud resources. By connecting to us, you can be assured of secure access to your public cloud resources, whether it be a single cloud, hybrid cloud or multi-cloud solution.

Remember that planning cloud migration is an ongoing process, and it is crucial to stay informed about the latest cloud technologies and best practices to ensure your cloud environment remains secure, efficient, and aligned with your organizational goals.

How can Arelion help?

For some, digital transformation might have only just begun, but Arelion has been connecting businesses around the world for 30 years. We own our network and we built it ourselves - giving us a deeper understanding and full control of every network element.

Our story started in 1993, when our Autonomous System - AS1299 - was allocated. We have grown organically ever since (without acquisitions). Today, Arelion is a leading global network providers and our network stretches 75,000 km on our own fiber - using state-of-the-art DWDM and IP technology across Europe, North America, and Asia. We directly connect more than 2,500 wholesale and enterprise customers in 125 countries worldwide.

Our suite of enterprise, networking and mobile data solutions connect business-critical content and applications to people and businesses everywhere.

Most importantly, we invest in the people that make connectivity great, we pride ourselves on our effortless network experience and we can quickly help you with:

  • Resilient network connectivity between corporate offices and hubs
  • High-speed connectivity with privacy and low latency
  • Direct cloud connectivity to the top cloud providers - a single port to all your cloud providers
  • Enterprise-grade data center connectivity