Hybrid Data Center

A hybrid data center includes physical, virtual, and cloud infrastructure. Traditionally, data centers stored physical servers and computers in a warehouse where IT staff managed the processes and data. In a software-defined data center, software controls hardware, running data management processes physically, virtually, or in the cloud. Many organizations now have physical and cloud environments – these hybrid infrastructures are essential for most enterprises. Hybrid cloud is similar in meaning. 

Hybrid data centers combine data management needs; as businesses require the flexibility and capacity of the cloud, they need both physical servers in their office or region and expansive cloud resources. Hybrid data centers deploy workloads across multiple environments, helping to transfer data, applications, and containers from cloud to cloud or from cloud to on-premise server. They’re extremely flexible.

Hybrid data center security

Unfortunately, with the flexibility and scalability also come challenges. Because hybrid data centers contain different and distant environments, they’re very difficult to secure. Data is deployed across many servers, making its transfer and safety harder to manage. Also, much security software and hardware are designed only for physical servers or only for the cloud. They can’t comply with security requirements for data protection if they only secure one aspect of a business’s data infrastructure.

Appropriate security has struggled to keep up with software-defined networking and software-defined data centers, and that challenge is compounded for hybrid cloud solutions. Some software solutions do exist, however. McAfee, for example, provides an extensive set of security features for hybrid data environments, including quick threat response and a platform for security between virtual machines and virtual networks. Trend Micro’s Cloud One secures servers, containers, private clouds, and on-premises computing systems.

Webopedia Staff
Webopedia Staff
Since 1995, more than 100 tech experts and researchers have kept Webopedia’s definitions, articles, and study guides up to date. For more information on current editorial staff, please visit our About page.

Top Articles

The Complete List of 1500+ Common Text Abbreviations & Acronyms

Text Abbreviations reviewed by Web Webster   From A3 to ZZZ we list 1,559 SMS, online chat, and text abbreviations to help you translate and understand...

How to Create a Website Shortcut on Your Desktop

Website Shortcut on Your Desktop reviewed by Web Webster   This Webopedia guide will show you how to create a website shortcut on your desktop using...

Windows Operating System History & Versions

The Windows operating system (Windows OS) refers to a family of operating systems developed by Microsoft Corporation. We look at the history of Windows...

Generations of Computers (1st to 5th)

Reviewed by Web Webster Learn about each of the 5 generations of computers and major technology developments that have led to the computing devices that...

Gap Analysis

Gap analysis is the process of assessing and comparing the differences between actual...

Copyright Infringement

Copyright infringement is the illegal use, production, or sale of materials copyrighted by...


What is a passphrase? A passphrase is a string of words used to help...