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The 5-R Modernization Strategies: The Road to REHOST

In this post, KiZAN will discuss the strategy and benefit for rehosting workloads to Microsoft Azure using a real-world ...

Eric Rhoads
Posted by Eric Rhoads
The 5-R Modernization Strategies: The Road to REHOST

In today's fast-paced business landscape, staying ahead of the competition requires efficient and effective solutions. According to Microsoft’s Work Trend Index, nearly 70% of employee report that they don’t have sufficient time in the day to focus on “work”, with more time being spent Communicating than Creating.

Microsoft 365 Copilot is designed, with Microsoft’s cloud trust platform at its core, to allow for employees to both be more productive, reduce the time spent searching for information, performing mundane tasks, and other low-value activities.


In this post, KiZAN will discuss the strategy and benefit for rehosting workloads to Microsoft Azure using a real-world scenario.


Scenario Details

  • A public school district is looking to modernize its approach to education with modern data solutions. They’ve chosen a cloud-first model with Microsoft Azure to help them reach their goal of transforming the way they educate students. But the path to getting there is not clear.
  • The school district has several legacy systems they use to run their day-to-day operations which require frequent attention from the current IT staff. To complicate matters further, some of their hardware has just reached the end of support and the new hardware is already running out of space.
  • Their long-term vision includes the use of cloud-based services like machine learning and serverless data processing. How will they achieve their long-term vision while keeping in mind their current operating state?

To address these concerns and meet the long-term vision, KiZAN recommends the public school district start with the REHOST option from the 5-R's rationalization methodology.

The concept of the 5-R's rationalization methodology is reviewed in more detail in a previous blog post. REHOST is focused on migrating servers to the cloud to reduce the hardware footprint and free up capacity.


REHOST Explored

Before diving into the REHOST approach, let's first take a step back to understand why this path was chosen and what it really means in a real-world scenario.

To help the customer reach the evolutionary cloud-based data solutions this customer wishes to deploy, there are immediate concerns to address. Let’s break them down:

1. The IT team’s time is currently taken up with operating the current state of the environment (which includes significant fire fighting with outdated hardware).

2. Some virtualization hosts that reside in the customer datacenter currently hosting important databases have reached the end of support. For compliance and security reasons, this must be addressed as soon as possible.

3. Newer virtualization hosts in the customer datacenter have reached their capacity threshold and the purchasing of new hardware is not only counterproductive to the organization’s goal to be cloud-first but also time-consuming.


In short, the current environment is a barrier to the desired state. The REHOST method will address each of these concerns.

  • First, by rehosting workloads in Azure, the IT team will spend less time fighting fires and deal with less hardware management overhead.
  • Second, the process of rehosting workloads in the cloud will address security and compliance concerns by moving workloads off unsupported hardware.
  • Third, by rehosting some workloads that are on the newer virtualization hosts the customer can reclaim capacity on-premises and use it to host workloads that must remain on-premises.

The last point is worth expounding on further. REHOST for this customer (and many customers that KiZAN has worked with through datacenter modernization) does not mean there will be no on-premises footprint.

Most of KiZAN’s customers live in a “hybrid” state where their IT staff maintains a small footprint of on-premises hardware and cloud-based resources. The value of REHOST in this case is security and capacity-centric. The customer hosts what must be on-premises while freeing up space with the rapid on-demand nature of cloud computing.

In the next post, KiZAN will review the tools and approach used to help this customer perform the REHOST to Azure.

Datacenter Modernization

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KiZAN is a Microsoft National Solutions Provider with numerous gold and silver Microsoft competencies, including gold data analytics. Our primary offices are located in Louisville, KY, and Cincinnati, OH, with additional sales offices located in Tennessee, Indiana, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Texas.