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Words to go: AWS cloud migration services

Whether you transfer large applications, servers or databases, AWS offers a range of migration tools. Familiarize yourself with its native services to map out a move to the cloud.

There are countless factors that go into the transfer of on-premises workloads to the cloud, which is why organizations need a good migration plan in place ahead of time.

When potential AWS users have their sights on migration, AWS has many tools and services to facilitate the move. As the platform's suite of migration methods continues to expand, it's important that users are familiar with the features and uses of each option.

Follow this breakdown of AWS cloud migration tools to consider for your next -- or first -- move.

AWS Migration Hub: With this service, users can monitor the progress of their application migrations. The Migration Hub console displays the status of each resource involved across all AWS cloud migrations in a user's portfolio and centralizes migration metrics and status updates. Migration Hub supports native migration tools, as well as a number of partner services, to accurately monitor applications throughout the process.

AWS Application Discovery Service: AWS Application Discovery Service (ADS) helps map out the planning stages of an application migration. The service collects information on data centers, servers and other on-premises infrastructure. It then uses this to data to present insights on configuration, utilization, dependencies, memory and resource usage. This information helps users understand and group interdependent workloads before an AWS cloud migration. AWS ADS encrypts all data for protection in the ADS data store and can integrate with Migration Hub for tracking. Enterprises often use ADS to determine the total cost of ownership to migrate and run desired workloads on AWS.

AWS Server Migration Service: AWS Server Migration Service (SMS) is an agentless service that migrates on-premises servers to the cloud. AWS SMS automates, schedules and tracks incremental replications of live server volumes, which decreases downtime and bandwidth use.

AWS Database Migration Service: AWS Database Migration Service (DMS) handles both homogenous and heterogeneous database migrations and performs continuous replication to keep the source database operational during the move. AWS DMS is compatible with a wide range of cloud and on-premises databases, such as Oracle, SQL Server, MySQL and PostgreSQL.

VMware Cloud on AWS: A jointly developed hybrid cloud service, VMware Cloud on AWS enables users to migrate a VMware environment to AWS. AWS provides a bare-metal, elastic infrastructure layer, and VMware positions its software-designed data center stack on top of it. This partnership extends on-premises data centers to AWS scale with VMware tools. The service performs tasks such as workload migration, testing, disaster recovery and data center consolidation.

Amazon S3 Transfer Acceleration: This AWS cloud migration service is designed to optimize transfers into S3 buckets over long geographical distances. Users can enable Transfer Acceleration on an S3 bucket with the Amazon S3 console or an S3 API. Once the S3 bucket is enabled, you can point PUT and GET requests to the s3-accelerate endpoint to begin the transfer. The degree of acceleration depends on how far the source is from the destination and how much bandwidth is available. A longer distance, such as a cross-continent migration, often means more acceleration.

AWS Snowball: This appliance physically transports large data sets to and from the AWS public cloud. Once Amazon ships the Snowball appliance to a customer's data center, an administrator uses a software client to select which file directories to load onto the device. An electric ink display will alert the administrator when the transfer is complete. The device is then shipped back to the AWS data center, where the data is transported into the S3 bucket chosen by an administrator. You can use AWS Simple Notification Service to get an estimated transfer time and a log of all imports and exports during your Snowball migration.

AWS Snowmobile: This physical data migration service moves large volumes of data to AWS by truck. Snowmobile is a 45-foot shipping container outfitted with enough hard drives to store over 100 petabytes of data. Once Snowmobile reaches a customer's site, AWS personnel configure a high-speed connection between the enterprise's data center and the Snowmobile. After they've loaded the data, they drive Snowmobile back to an AWS data center, where the data is imported into Amazon S3 or Amazon Glacier. This physical transportation is a faster alternative to the internet for exabyte-scale migrations.

AWS Direct Connect: This network service establishes a dedicated connection between AWS users' on-premises environments and an AWS Direct Connect location. Once the dedicated connection is set up, customers can migrate data from their colocation facility or data center without the public internet. Direct Connect is a private way to transfer data offline, which is particularly helpful for customers with sensitive data that are prohibited from public internet transfers for compliance reasons.

Amazon Kinesis Firehose: This managed AWS cloud migration service loads data streams with near-real-time analytics into storage and business intelligence tools. To get started with the tool, developers set up a delivery stream through the management console or an API, which then delivers data from the source to the destination. Kinesis Firehose migrates data to Amazon S3 buckets, Redshift and Amazon Elasticsearch. The tool prepares, batches and encrypts data before it loads to the destination in order to preserve storage and strengthen security.

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