IT Intelligence Bulletin (HG Insights) — VMware has announced the continued expansion of VMware Cloud on AWS in Europe and the United States and has also revealed new capabilities for this hybrid cloud service that will enable customers to better protect and secure applications and virtual desktops.

 VMware Cloud on AWS brings VMware’s enterprise class software-defined data center to the AWS cloud. Based on VMware Cloud Foundation, this hybrid cloud service delivers consistent infrastructure and consistent operations from the data center to the cloud, enabling customers to seamlessly migrate to the cloud, scale on demand and deliver on next generation application strategies. Jointly engineered by VMware and Amazon Web Services, Inc. (AWS), applications deployed in this environment benefit from robust disaster protection and optimized access to AWS services. With the same architecture and operational experience on-premises and in the cloud, IT teams can now quickly derive instant business value from use of the AWS and VMware hybrid cloud experience. VMware Cloud on AWS is delivered, sold and supported by VMware and its partner community.

 “The worldwide footprint of VMware Cloud on AWS continues to grow,” said Mark Lohmeyer, senior vice president and general manager, Cloud Platform Business Unit, VMware. “For the first time we’re launching in multiple regions simultaneously while continuing to drive innovation into our global data centers. VMware Cloud on AWS is becoming the preferred environment for customers migrating VMware-based workloads to the cloud. And with more than 200 partners achieving solution competency in just six months, the industry support is stronger than ever.”

“Our VMware Cloud on AWS customers are able to uniquely migrate applications such as SAP, Oracle, and SQL Server between and across SDDCs and availability zones faster and more securely than ever before with the use of VMware HCX, VMware vMotion, and VMware NSX integration with AWS Direct Connect,” said Sandy Carter, vice president, EC2 Windows Enterprise Workloads, Amazon Web Services, Inc. “AWS is thrilled to be part of this high-performance and secure cloud solution that takes advantage of a Virtual Cloud Network to accelerate cloud and workload migration, as well as application hybridity, with no additional HW cost.”

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Protecting Business Operations with Fast, Large-Scale Disaster Recovery as a Service
Advancements to disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) for VMware Cloud on AWS deliver robust protection for large-scale and storage intensive workloads, while significantly reducing the cost and complexity previously required to enable the business continuity of mission-critical applications.

With VMware Site Recovery, customers benefit from automated orchestration, failover and failback capabilities, reducing secondary DR site costs, accelerating time-to-protection, increasing business resilience and simplifying DR operations. VMware Site Recovery enables customers to take advantage of flexible protection topologies between VMware Cloud on AWS and on-premises and between VMware Cloud on AWS environments. And, with the latest release, VMware announced that VMware Site Recovery will double in scale to 1,000 VMs per SDDC, reducing the overall cost and operational overhead for protecting large scale environments.

To minimize operational costs, customers pay only for what they use, when they need it, with granular, on-demand cloud pricing. Elastic DRS enables customers to optimize resource management by automating SDDC cluster scaling after failover happens based on user requirements, and Elastic vSAN with Amazon Elastic Block Store (EBS) will help customers further reduce costs of protecting storage intensive workloads.

VMware has teamed with Dell EMC to combine Dell EMC VxRail with VMware Site Recovery for comprehensive push button failover to VMware Cloud on AWS. This enables customers to quickly setup, test and failover from VxRail to the cloud on-demand, while benefitting from the operational consistency of VMware vSAN hyperconverged infrastructure that powers both VxRail and VMware Cloud on AWS.

The Hybrid Cloud Destination for Virtual Desktops and Applications
VMware Horizon 7 for VMware Cloud on AWS delivers a seamlessly integrated hybrid cloud for virtual desktops and applications. It combines the enterprise capabilities of VMware Cloud on AWS, with the leading capabilities of VMware Horizon – for a simple, more secure and scalable solution. VMware Cloud on AWS now supports Horizon 7 Instant Clones for just-in-time provisioning of virtual desktops. Customers can now spin up virtual desktops at an average rate of 1-2 seconds per desktop, and Instant Clones reduce storage consumed by up to 80 percent. Rolling desktop patching as users log off further simplifies maintenance. VMware also announced integration of Horizon 7 with the Horizon Cloud Service. This integration will provide unified visibility, health monitoring and helpdesk services for Horizon 7 deployments across both VMware Cloud on AWS and on-premises infrastructure.

Supporting Large-Scale, More Secure Cloud Migrations and Application Portability Globally
With continued expansion of VMware Cloud on AWS to additional AWS regions, and with new migration and portability capabilities, customers can more rapidly and reliably migrate applications and extend data centers to the cloud. Previously, a customer’s live migration of a large volume of VMs would incur data synchronization overhead, jeopardizing the reliability of the migration. VMware Cloud Motion with vSphere Replication, a capability in VMware Hybrid Cloud Extension, is now available providing predictable, live migration of thousands of virtual machines with zero downtime. Customers can also uniquely live migrate individual applications between and across SDDCs and Availability Zones using VMware vMotion.

In addition, with integration between VMware NSX, a foundational component of VMware Cloud on AWS and AWS Direct Connect, customers have a high-performance and intrinsically more secure Virtual Cloud Network to accelerate workload migration to the cloud. Networking and security are essential to successful data center extension and cloud migration projects. NSX and AWS Direct Connect integration accelerates migration to the cloud and enables multi-tier hybrid applications. Further, NSX micro-segmentation capabilities that are now available also deliver application-centric security with policies that follow workloads wherever they move within the SDDC environment.

New In-Product Support Experience for VMware Cloud on AWS 
Customers run their business-critical operations on VMware Cloud on AWS. This means high-value technical support is essential for delivering operational efficiency, risk reduction and business continuity. VMware’s new In-Product Support gives customers a truly unique and effortless support experience to meet the dynamic needs of their digital business. VMware In-Product Support provides access to support channels and resources, including Chat with Support, Manage Support Requests, Community Support and Intelligent Search, from directly within their VMware environment. This provides customers a streamlined support experience, enabling customers to resolve their issues more quickly and easily.

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