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Legacy System Migration Do's and Don'ts

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Haris is a cloud migration expert, with a demonstrated history of improving performances for tech-dependent businesses across Dubai.


It’s not that organizations don’t want to improve their operational efficiency by embracing the latest technologies like the cloud, just that the fear of failure thwarts them from doing so. Moving your legacy infrastructure to the cloud is anyway not as easy as it may seem from the top. But then, if you own the right cloud skills or have a competent cloud expert by your side and if you follow the right guidelines, decrypting the right process for cloud migration won’t be difficult at all. There are certain dos and don’ts for Seamless migration of your legacy system and that’s what we are going to discuss in this article. So, check out these guidelines one by one.

Legacy System Migration Do's

Do#1: Goals Setting

Discerning what you expect from your legacy system migration at the beginning itself is crucial. It could be an improvement in the performance or cost savings or both. Whatever it is, setting goals at the onset will help you with the right direction to the cloud. You would easily design the environment you are targeting or say a cloud landing zone if you understand your goals well. Cloud migration is not all about the ‘Lift and shift’ of your workloads to the cloud but that a whole lot of things need to be done for managing, optimizing, improving, and maintaining the cloud. Setting goals will help you have a smoother process for everything.

Do#2: Current Environment Assessment

Before you put to migration, you should have a clear understanding of all your resources and applications. Many cloud service providers (CSPs) offer various tools to help you do so. For instance, when you opt for application modernization with any CSP, you get access to tools that help you find out server workloads that have dependencies. Conducting an on-premise assessment will help you gain insights into feature compatibility, resource sizing, as well as the readiness of your legacy system for the migration’s lift and shift phase.

Do#3: Application Evaluation to Support Cloud-Native Features

You must evaluate your applications for cloud-native features that include serverless functions, DevOps attempt, cloud platform automation, and using microservices for legacy software modernization. Cloud-native features help you meet the demands for agility and innovation by businesses from across the world.

Do#4: Picking the CSP SKUs

There is always a set of terms and conditions, at times too complex, with every option that comes your way. Reading those for each option could be a daunting task. However, if you have already outsourced your migration to a cloud trusted partner or a Managed Services Provider (MSP), choosing the right SKUs isn’t a big deal for you. These MSP experts have kind of mugged up T&Cs while working on so many cases with so many clients. Different SKUs can have different impacts on costs, availability, features, and performance, and that the correct ones must be chosen for your application. Moreover, SKUs are region-specific, so you should confirm at the beginning itself whether or not the SKU you want is available.

Do#5: Consistent Testing

Make sure you have the right backout plan in place and so backout procedures must be tested proactively. Everything should be documented and that the application teams, as well as your end-users, must be ready for testing. In case, you face any roadblock during the migration process, there should be a deadline already set to back out as soon as possible. The key takeaway here is you should be constantly testing and refer back to your cloud migration strategy to check whether or not it is going according to the expectations you had from it.

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Do#6: Deployment Automation

Automation & Scripting should be utilized well for deployment & migration as much as possible. It not only helps you in easily managing & maintaining your cloud environment but also in rebuilding environments and increasing consistency. Some CSPs allow you to incorporate automation of its resources into the management process of your lifecycle that in turn help you with consistent improvement and delivery.

Do#7: Collaborating With a Trusted Cloud Partner

Every CSP has several partners who can help you in making the process easier and less complex to maintain. They have the deepest level of experience in cloud migration, management, and maintenance. Moreover, most of them provide 24*7 support services, so no matter whether it is day or night you can get your issues resolved by them as soon as possible.

Legacy System Migration Don’ts

Don’ts#1: Non-cloud Experts to Handle the Cloud

Make sure, you are not getting the cloud infrastructure tasks accomplished by your non-cloud experts that include developers as well. Cloud migration and maintenance should be handled only by cloud experts. Selecting the right SKUs and SLAs as well as preparing for the migration are too complex to be handled by non-cloud experts.

Don’ts#2: Overlooking the Management & Maintenance Part of the Cloud

The assumption is the mother of all messes, so don’t assume that once your legacy system has been migrated, things are managed for you. You will need to get a cloud consultant on board or outsource migration and management services from an MSP to get your cloud managed and maintained. Though most CSPs provide so many management tools but even to make use of those productively you will require a cloud expert who can comprehend those.

Don’ts#3: Testing in the Production Environments

Cloud eases deployment and offers multiple possibilities for separate environments and that you should never test in the production environments. You should deploy and isolate test environments from production to vet the testing in a non-production environment before you roll it out into production.


Apart from performance, agility, and cost-effectiveness, security and backup are anyway the high priority for businesses that are moving to the cloud. So, a business hardly overlooks these factors while a legacy modernization.

Wrap Up

Migrating workloads from a legacy system to the cloud isn’t simply export and import and that there is a lot to do once the migration is accomplished such as monitoring, management, and maintenance of the cloud. If you don’t stick to the right guidelines your cloud environment may go haywire. Hopefully, the above-mentioned dos and don’ts will help you with a seamless legacy system modernization.


Preety Singh Baghel on March 11, 2021:

A very helpful article...Thanks! Keep up the good work!

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