Azure Migration: The Four Key Strategies


Migration to the Cloud has become one of the most known trends in the IT industry because of the rapid digital transformation. So, there is no doubt that you would also want to migrate to a cloud computing platform for your business. The question here is, which cloud is the best option?

You are probably here because you decided to get Microsoft Azure as your company cloud. However, migrating to Microsoft Azure can seem like a daunting task for you, which is understandable. But with careful planning, you can make a move without any significant disruptions to your business.

There are four key migration strategies to choose from: Rehost, Refactor, Re-architect, and Rebuild. Depending on which model you pick will determine your entire Azure migration strategy.

Moreover, it is best to understand the four-step process when migrating. In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at each step to ease your workload and strategies to help you decide the best fit for your organization.

Azure Cloud Migration Services

Four Stages of Azure Cloud Migration

When going through the Cloud Migration in Microsoft Azure, they recommend a four-step process for migrating applications and workloads. The four stages or steps you need to follow are:

  1. Assess
  2. Migrate
  3. Optimize
  4. Secure and Manage


The first stage is to assess your applications and workloads. It would help if you got an inventory of what you have before deciding what goes where in Azure. Moreover, it would help if you considered any dependencies on-premises, such as databases or other applications.

Things you should take note of when in the assessment stage are:

  • Networking
  • Storage
  • Scalability

To do all this, use Azure tools to assess the applications for migration and get automated recommendations regarding CPU, disk size and storage requirements, resiliency recommendations, and requirements for ongoing maintenance.


The second stage is to migrate your applications and workloads to Azure. In this stage, you will need to select an Azure migration strategy from the four approaches we’ll discuss below.

Once you’ve decided on an approach, you’ll be able to identify the tools and technologies that will help you migrate each application. The tools offered by Microsoft to help with this include the Azure Site Recovery service and the Azure Database Migration Service.


The third stage is to optimize your applications and workloads in Azure. You’ll need to ensure that your applications run smoothly in their new environment by monitoring and fine-tuning them as required. This will help you avoid any potential performance issues down the line.

It would be best to remember key considerations when optimizing, such as monitoring your costs and seeing how to optimize them. When you decide to go with another cloud like AWS, you should also know how to achieve AWS cost optimisation to ensure you’re getting value for money. This applies to every cloud computing platform that you wish to use.

Secure and Manage

The fourth and final stage is to secure and manage your applications and workloads in Azure. You’ll need to set up monitoring and logging and implement security controls to protect your data. Additionally, you should automate the management of your Azure resources to save time and improve efficiency.

Now that we’ve gone through each stage let’s look at the four strategies of Azure Migration that you may use, depending on your need.

Four Strategies of Azure Cloud Migration

As we mentioned earlier, there are four strategies for migration to Microsoft Azure: Rehost, Refactor, Re-architect, and Rebuild. Let’s explore each one in more detail.


Rehost, also known as lift and shift, is the simplest and quickest way to move an application or workload to Microsoft Azure with minimal changes to the code.

This approach is best suited for applications compatible with Azure and does not need extensive changes. This method allows you to move your existing workloads to Azure without changing the application code.

This is an excellent option if you want to start with Azure quickly and with minimal effort. However, it’s important to note that this approach doesn’t take advantage of many of the features Azure offers. As a result, you may not see as much of a performance boost as you would with the other options.


The second option is Refactoring or Repackaging. With this method, you make changes to your application code to take advantage of features in Azure.

For example, you might change how your application stores data to take advantage of Azure’s managed databases. Or you might redesign your application so that it can be deployed as a set of microservices. It will depend on what you will need.

This option requires more work than the lift-and-shift approach but can lead to significant performance gains. The drawback of using this strategy is you cannot make significant architectural changes that allow substantial efficiencies in the cloud.


In this strategy, you completely redesign your application to take advantage of Azure’s unique capabilities. It involves revamping the application’s codebase and moving it to a cloud-native architecture.

This is a significant undertaking, but it can be beneficial if done correctly. For example, you might redesign your application to use Azure’s managed data services instead of traditional databases. Or you might use Azure’s serverless computing capabilities to reduce your application’s operating costs drastically.


The last but not the least strategy in moving Azure Cloud is rebuilding. With this approach, you start from scratch and build a new application for Azure.

This option allows you to take full advantage of Azure’s capabilities, but it is also the most time-consuming and expensive. This strategy is suitable for applications with relatively low complexity and few dependencies on other business processes.

Now that you have an idea of the step-by-step process of migration in Azure Cloud and the strategies for doing this, it’s time you choose what works for you. You can always take support plans when using Microsoft Azure to help you with concerns and problems. You can do this if you know how to find the perfect fit for your Microsoft Azure support plan.


Q: What is the best strategy for migrating to Azure?

A: The best strategy for migrating to Azure will depend on your specific needs and objectives. There are four available strategies: Rehost, Refactor, Re-architect, and Rebuild.

Q: How much does it cost to migrate to Azure?

A: The cost of migrating to Azure will depend on your chosen strategy. Lift-and-shift is typically the cheapest option, while a complete rebuild will be the most expensive. Microsoft also offers several discounts and pricing options that can help reduce the cost of your migration.

Q: What are the risks of migrating to Azure?

A: As with any significant IT project, there are always risks involved in migrating to a new platform. However, Microsoft has a team of experts that can help you plan and execute your migration safely and smoothly. Additionally, Azure provides built-in disaster recovery capabilities that can help protect your data during an outage or disaster.


There are many things to consider when migrating to Microsoft Azure. However, you can develop a plan that fits your specific needs and objectives by understanding the four key stages and strategies. With the help of Microsoft’s expert team, you can execute your migration safely and smoothly. With this, you are ready to sign-up for a Microsoft Azure account.

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