iSeries Cloud Migration: Why and What to Migrate?

May 20, 2022 Prateek Shetty

iSeries systems have been the backbone of performance for many processes in many industries for three decades now. In addition to being a IBM product, these machines are stable. They have been used for heavy application processing for data heavy industries like Banking, Insurance, Retail and Manufacturing, etc. However, these on-prem servers require constant maintenance, and with the as400 talent dwindling, IT leaders must opt for the AS400 migration approach. Migration makes it easier for CTOs to manage their IT applications and focus on other core IT objectives and achieve the IT roadmap that has been planned.

Why Move Your AS400/iSeries Applications to Cloud?

  • Disaster Recovery: Disaster recovery should be done by every organization’s IT, team. IT disasters are unpredictable and on-prem servers are the ones that take the full brunt of it. Applications, data, user logs, and permissions that are in the IBM i machine. Cloud platforms have robust security compared to the on-prem servers and even when targeted by hackers, the core system is safe as your applications are mirrored from the core system onto the cloud for access of the application. Hence other crucial data on on-prem servers are safe from hackers.
  • DevOps: Introducing DevOps alongside cloud migration will help with operational maturity. DevOps can help reduce cloud ownership costs by automating key parts of provisioning and application deployment.
  • Lack of AS400 Expertise: AS400/IBM i systems are legacy and therefore require tenured iSeries developers to understand its function, optimize it and maintain it. But almost all AS400/iSeries OG talent is on the verge of retirement and CTOs need to hire talent by outsourcing or moving to the cloud. Now cloud migration can eliminate the hardware conundrum for CTOs as the lift and shift approach will migrate the entire IBM i/AS400 on the cloud platform of your choice. Cloud can help companies with better and faster application performance, security, and overall, scalability.
  • System Maintenance: The biggest advantage of moving to the cloud is ditching the hardware. The lift and shift where the application and data are moved to the cloud platform. Cloud servers don’t require maintenance on the level of on-prem. Moving certain applications to cloud can free up the AS400 system and help with better system maintenance and performance.
  • AS400 Modernization: Modernization is another perk of moving your applications to the cloud. Application re-engineering is something organizations would consider if they are looking for application performance enhancements.

What iSeries/AS400 Applications Need Migration to Cloud?

  1. Low Regulatory Restrictive Applications: Applications that are tied to minimal regulations are suitable for cloud migration. Applications with sensitive data shouldn’t be chosen for migration.

    What not to Migrate to Cloud:

    • Data Localization: Data created within a particular geography must not be transmitted or sent to other parts of the world.
    • Data Sovereignty: Data sovereignty refers to applications that have data not only stored in one geo but are also subjected to that country’s laws. It would be in the best interest of the organizations to not migrate this to the cloud to avoid penalties.
    • Data Residency: The organization/business states that they store their data in one geographical location of their choice due to regulatory and policy reasons… these applications harboring this kind of data aren’t recommended for cloud.
  2. Applications that are accessed globally: If your application is accessed globally, then on-prem servers may not be a good choice as cloud servers are located globally and can help users for better accessibility.
  3. Unknown applications: Applications that you can’t predict the workload for can be migrated to cloud as it has better flexibility and scalability.
  4. Enterprise Reporting: The legacy data on cloud maintains the same file and record names. Reporting can be done via queries or other reporting tools. Data analytics software like Tableau will help with producing actionable data for organizations to leverage.
  5. Vendor and Customer Portals: Vendor and customer portals often require access to the company’s application for entering or retrieving data. With cloud migration, the applications are mirrored in the cloud from the core system so customers can access the cloud point without entering the gates of the core system, in case of a cyberattack, the data in the core system is safe.

The AS400 Migration Verdict

AS400 migration to cloud is more than just a choice, it is the need of the hour. Above are the reasons why cloud migration should be considered and the priority applications that need to migrate to the cloud.

Nalashaa has been helping multiple organizations leveraging AS400/iSeries systems with migration, modernization, and support needs. If you are looking for a cloud migration partner, drop us a note at, our iSeries experts will get in touch with you to assess your current as400 setup and plan for a successful migration.

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Prateek Shetty

Prateek is a B2B tech marketer with a keen interest in content marketing. B2B writer by day, Netflix junkie & gamer by night.