Glossary Definition: Hybrid Infrastructure

What Is Hybrid Infrastructure?

Hybrid infrastructure is defined as an infrastructure that is made of on-premise data centers, private clouds, and/or public clouds.

Hybrid IT infrastructure can help companies to manage, monitor, and maintain multiple types of data environments. This helps to stakeholders connected across sites, departments, and locations.

Many organizations rely on a hybrid infrastructure for hosting purposes, and to conduct their business, as it’s often viewed as the best of both worlds. This is because companies feel comfortable putting some information into the cloud, but tend to be more apprehensive about where sensitive data lives. With this setup, a company can decide which systems and applications to run in-house versus on a public or private cloud.

What Are Other Names for Hybrid Infrastructure?

There are a few other terms used to describe hybrid infrastructure. These include:

It’s important to note that although there is overlap between hybrid infrastructure and cloud infrastructure, these terms are not synonymous. In the next section, we’ll outline the key differences.

Hybrid Infrastructure vs Cloud Infrastructure: What’s the Difference?

A hybrid infrastructure blends cloud-based solutions and services with on-premise data centers. This allows organizations to work with data locally, as well as remote. However, it’s up to the organization to determine what data will be available where, and who will have access to it. As such, how an organization sets up its hybrid infrastructure is unique to that particular company.

In contrast, cloud infrastructure specifically refers to the components needed to run a hybrid or fully cloud-based system. This includes the software, hardware, and storage capabilities. Depending on which system type a company selects — full or hybrid cloud — the actual setup will vary.

How Is Hybrid Infrastructure Used in Pharma?

Pharma companies collect, store, and manage highly sensitive information. This includes company trade secrets, knowhow, patient records, and beyond. As such, the hybrid infrastructure is used to maintain confidential information in a safe, secure manner.

For example, many pharma companies have their manufacturing network isolated from cloud networks. This is known as a DMZ or “dead man zone.” In a DMZ, typically an edge device is set up which offers an extremely secure gateway between public and private networks.

With a hybrid infrastructure in place, pharma companies can choose what to make available on the cloud, and what to keep on-prem or in-house. This way, they’re able to more quickly access and manage some of their data by storing it locally.

Why Is Hybrid Infrastructure Important in Pharma?

Hybrid infrastructure is important in pharma because it allows for multiple levels of data access and permissions. With hybrid infrastructure in place, companies can keep confidential information privately stored, while still being able to access the public cloud environment.

This allows pharma companies to make use of the high availability and efficiency offered by the public cloud, while still being able to privately store their sensitive and proprietary information.

Last, hybrid infrastructure serves as an alternative, or stepping stone, to a full cloud migration. Due to its flexibility, its i is often a company’s first step on their journey to a fully cloud-based environment.