One of the most important announcements in the infrastructure world in 2016 was the Amazon-VMware partnership. With a stunning 90 percent of workloads running on VMware products, this news affects businesses of all shapes, sizes and industries.
The partnership between the two giants should offer IT teams some serious options when it comes to their VMware installations. Here at ClearSky, we’re excited. VMware Cloud on AWS (VMC) is an on-demand service that lets customers run applications across vSphere-based cloud environments. Among other things, this means that you can now manage your cloud-based resources with those VMware tools you know, and you don’t have to convert base VMs, since vSphere is now native in AWS.
It all sounds pretty great, and for the most part, it is. With any new technology offering, though, there are always some kinks or “in-progress” items that require attention during implementation. We’ve been paying close attention to the news and customer reports, and we’ve found three major items to watch for when you’re considering implementing VMC.
One of the main reasons companies choose to migrate to the cloud is the easy, virtually unlimited scaling options. As of now, however, VMC is limited to about 15 TB of storage capacity per node. That means, once you approach that number expanding capacity means adding nodes, which users should be aware of and plan for.
Back up and disaster recovery isn’t natively addressed with VMC – outside of local fault tolerance. That means backing up your data is going to require additional hardware and software solutions. This also adds the problem of creating multiple copies of your data – in AWS, in whatever backup and disaster recovery solution you choose, and so on. Maintaining additional hardware, software and data can be expensive, so this limitation can make showing ROI a bit more difficult.
Going hand-in-hand with data protection is data mobility. It’s possible that getting data into and out of VMC can take time. This means that the recovery time objectives (RTO) and recovery point objectives (RPO) you can guarantee may not meet your particular business requirements without additional hardware or software options. In other words, for VMC to be a robust DR target requires a great answer for the replication challenge.
It’s all new, and every technology expands capabilities as it becomes more mainstream. So, stay informed as you continue to explore cost-effective solutions for all that VMware data. We’re excited about this partnership and are focused on delivering aligned, on-demand, primary storage with built-in offsite backup and DR that makes accessing VMware workloads in the cloud a seamless experience.