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Microsoft has announced the preview of VMware virtualization on Azure, a bare-metal solution that runs the full VMware stack on Azure hardware, co-located with other Azure services. General availability is expected in the coming year.

This new service will be delivered in partnership with premier VMware-certified partners, and not directly with VMware (like, for example, VMware Cloud on AWS).

Microsoft has not yet explained licensing, revealed price or other details of the service. But VMware has responded to Microsoft’s plan to run its stack in Azure, by saying customers who choose that option will have to forego support.

Note that this is just one of the options proposed by Microsoft in oder to simplify the VMware migration to Azure.

Hosting the VMware stack in public cloud doesn’t offer the same cost savings and agility of using cloud-native services, but this option provides you additional flexibility on your path to Azure.

The best option, like in all other public cloud service, is moving directly to native cloud service, and Microsoft has define a complete way to migrate applications with Azure Migrate.

On November 27th, Azure Migrate, a free service, will be broadly available to all Azure customers. While most cloud vendors offer single server migration capabilities, Azure Migrate helps you through the journey of migrating an entire multi-server application across the following phases:

  • Discovery and assessment. Azure Migrate can discover your on-premises VMware-based applications without requiring any changes to your VMware environment. Azure Migrate offers the unique capability to visualize group level dependencies in multi-VM applications, allowing you to logically group and prioritize the entire application for migration. Through utilization discovery of the CPU, memory, disks, and network, Azure Migrate also has built-in rightsizing to offer size and cost guidance so when you migrate, you can save money.
  • Migration. Once discovery has completed, with just a few easy clicks, you can migrate your on-premises applications to Azure. Azure Site Recovery (ASR) enables customers to migrate VMware-virtualized Windows Server and Linux workloads with minimal downtime. ASR offers application-centric migration, allowing you to sequence your application servers as they migrate. No other cloud provider offers this built-in multi-tier sequencing. Additionally, Azure Database Migration Service enables customers to migrate their SQL Server and Oracle databases directly into the fully managed Azure SQL Database. For customers who need large volume storage migration, we recently announced Azure Data Box, an appliance designed to simplify data movement to Azure.
  • Resource & Cost Optimization. Once deployed in Azure, with the free Azure Cost Management service (formerly called Cloudyn), you can easily forecast, track, and optimize your spending. Our calculations show up to 84% TCO savings for certain on-premises VMware to Azure migration scenarios. You can reference this VMware to Azure TCO guide to learn more and even run TCO calculations, yourself. As an example, Capstone Mining has gone through this journey and already saved $6M in capital and operating costs.

On late December 2017, VMware has quietly updated their blog post removing “VMware does not recommend and will not support customers running on the Azure announced partner offering” statement and instead are now saying “This offering is being developed independent of VMware, however it is being offered as a dedicated, server-hosted solution similar in approach to other VMware Cloud Provider Partners (VCPP). The deployment is on VMware certified hardware consisting of FlexPod. VMware is in the process of engaging with the partner to ensure compliance and that the appropriate support model is in place”.

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Andrea MauroAbout Andrea Mauro (2735 Posts)

Virtualization, Cloud and Storage Architect. Tech Field delegate. VMUG IT Co-Founder and board member. VMware VMTN Moderator and vExpert 2010-18. Dell TechCenter Rockstar 2014-15. Microsoft MVP 2014-16. Veeam Vanguard 2015-18. Nutanix NTC 2014-18. PernixPro 2014-16. Several certifications including: VCDX-DCV, VCP-DCV/DT/Cloud, VCAP-DCA/DCD/CIA/CID/DTA/DTD, MCSA, MCSE, MCITP, CCA, NPP.


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