Escaping the Cloud Trap: How Some Companies are Winning by Going Old School

Discover the benefits of "leaving the cloud" and returning to bare-metal servers

In this special Easter edition of the Bug Driven Development newsletter, we'll delve into the trend of leaving the cloud. Weighing the pros and cons, and help you decide whether it's time to pack your bags and leave the cloud or stick around for a little longer.

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Here’s what we got for you today:

  • Leaving the cloud or staying in the sky

  • Resources to learn more about making the move back to bare-metal

  • Indie Hackers is indie again!

  • “You are online 24/7. No exceptions, no excuses.”

⛅️ Let's start off this week by talking about the trend of leaving the cloud

The cloud has been the go-to solution for most companies in recent years, with its scalability, easy deployment, and cost-saving potential. However, some businesses are now choosing to "leave the cloud" and return to more traditional, on-premises infrastructures. This trend has been fueled by the increasing cost of cloud services and the desire for more control over hardware and software. Let’s dive in to the case for leaving the cloud, the case for staying, and some recommendations we have for teams considering making the move.

⛈️ The Case for Leaving the Cloud

There are several reasons why some companies are opting to leave the cloud, and one of the most compelling is cost. As David Heinemeier Hansson, co-founder of 37signals, recently shared in his blog post, their cloud bills had grown to an eye-watering $38,000 per week. They chose to develop MRSK, a new deployment tool that combines the simplicity of Capistrano with modern containerization techniques, to facilitate their move away from the cloud. By doing so, they expect to save a significant amount on their infrastructure costs.

Another reason to consider leaving the cloud is the increased control over hardware and software. Companies can tailor their infrastructure to their specific needs, potentially leading to better performance, security, and flexibility. Plus, as Hansson points out, modern server hardware has made significant strides in recent years, making on-premises solutions more attractive than ever.

🌤️ The Case for Staying in the Cloud

However, leaving the cloud isn't for everyone. There are still plenty of reasons to stick with cloud solutions. One of the most significant benefits is scalability. Cloud services allow businesses to scale up or down easily, depending on their needs, without investing in expensive hardware. This can be particularly valuable for smaller companies or those with fluctuating resource requirements.

Additionally, cloud providers offer a wealth of tools and services that can streamline deployment, monitoring, and management, making life easier for developers and sysadmins alike. In some cases, optimizing cloud usage and choosing the right services can lead to cost savings without needing to move away from the cloud entirely.

🚦Our Recommendations

So, should you leave the cloud or stay put? Here are some recommendations to help you make the right decision for your infrastructure:

  • Analyze your current cloud costs 

    • Take a close look at your cloud bills and identify areas where you might be overspending. In some cases, optimizing your cloud usage or finding alternative cloud providers could lead to significant savings without the need to leave the cloud.

  • Consider your scalability needs:

    • If your business requires rapid scaling, the cloud might still be the best option for you. However, if your resource requirements are stable or predictable, an on-premises solution could be more cost-effective.

  • Assess your team’s expertise

    • Moving away from the cloud requires a certain level of expertise in managing hardware and software. Ensure you have the right people on your team to handle the transition and ongoing management of your infrastructure.

  • Test the waters

    • Before committing to leaving the cloud entirely, you could experiment with a hybrid approach. Some of your applications could be moved to on-premises infrastructure, while others remain in the cloud. This allows you to evaluate the benefits and challenges of both approaches and make a more informed decision.


The decision to leave the cloud isn't one to be taken lightly, but for some businesses, it can lead to significant cost savings and greater control over their infrastructure. By carefully evaluating your needs, costs, and expertise, you can determine whether it's time to wave goodbye to the cloud or continue to ride the waves in the sky.

📖 Learn more here

Here are some guides we like that can be helpful to dive deeper into the trend of leaving cloud computing:

🔗Links in Tech

Some additional reads we liked this week

😂 Meme of the Week

Thanks for tuning in to this week’s newsletter! If you have any questions, feel free to let us know on Twitter (Justin's Twitter) (Kevin's Twitter)


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