Multi-Cloud, Simplified: Businesses Gain Control with Cloudflare's New Solution

By Greg Tavarez, TMCnet Editor  |  March 12, 2024

Today, most organizations leverage public cloud providers like AWS, Microsoft (News - Alert) Azure or Google Cloud Platform for various services. This reliance necessitates creating virtual private clouds, or VPCs, within these public clouds. Think of a VPC as a secure, isolated section of the cloud provider's network dedicated to your organization's resources.

The problems arise when businesses need to connect these VPCs. While each cloud provider offers tools for managing their own VPCs, manually configuring and managing connections between them across different cloud platforms can be a complex and time-consuming process.

Each cloud provider has its own proprietary networking tools and configurations. Connecting VPCs across different providers requires understanding and navigating these distinct interfaces, increasing the potential for errors. Manually configuring security rules, routing protocols, and network addresses for each connection is a tedious and error-prone process. This eats into valuable IT resources that could be better spent on core business initiatives.

As businesses grow and their cloud usage expands, managing numerous VPC connections becomes increasingly difficult. Scaling up or down manually becomes cumbersome and inefficient. And ensuring secure communication between VPCs across different cloud providers requires careful configuration of firewalls and access controls. Manual management increases the risk of misconfiguration, potentially exposing sensitive data.

While the cloud offers numerous benefits, the manual configuration of VPC connections creates a bottleneck for businesses. Multi-cloud networking offers the potential for businesses to use multiple cloud environments and easily deploy and manage connectivity and security policy across them.

Entering the multi-cloud networking market, Cloudflare, a provider of connectivity cloud services, announced Magic Cloud Networking, a new solution designed to simplify and secure connections between public cloud environments. Magic Cloud Networking enables businesses to seamlessly discover, connect, and protect private and public cloud environments. This reduces reliance on specific cloud providers and avoids vendor lock-in.

To expedite its entry into the multi-cloud networking market, Cloudflare acquired Nefeli Networks, a startup specializing in unified network management for cloud deployments. This acquisition integrates Nefeli's technology with Cloudflare's global network, offering a single platform for cloud network orchestration.

“We believe the full potential of the cloud will only truly be unlocked when customers can easily mix and match the best features of each public cloud provider,” said Matthew Prince, CEO and co-founder at Cloudflare. “Adding Nefeli’s team and capabilities to Cloudflare’s connectivity cloud fast tracks our entrance into multi-cloud networking.”

The collaboration began through Cloudflare's Workers Launchpad program, facilitating the scaling of Nefeli's technology for broader customer adoption. Cloudflare's acquisition aims to accelerate the development and launch of Magic Cloud Networking.

Integration with Cloudflare One, the company's SASE platform, provides a unified management experience across all network environments, including cloud and on-premise deployments. Magic Cloud Networking leverages Cloudflare's global network, which spans over 310 cities in 120 countries and interconnecting with over 13,000 networks worldwide.

“At Nefeli, we worked to ensure businesses could get the most out of the cloud, without being constrained by artificial boundaries within or between any particular cloud platform," said Eugenia Corrales, CEO of Nefeli. “By seamlessly integrating Nefeli’s multicloud networking capabilities into Cloudflare’s robust platform, businesses will be now able to easily connect and manage their cloud infrastructure with security and performance built in at scale."

With Magic Cloud Networking, customers can discover, visualize, connect, and secure their cloud infrastructure seamlessly. This positions Cloudflare as a one-stop shop for businesses seeking to transform their network architecture.

Edited by Alex Passett
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