AWS Database Blog

Classify OLTP and OLAP workloads using AWS SCT with Workload Qualification Framework (WQF)

Migration is a multiphase process, and different steps are involved based on the type of migration you’re doing. With the help of AWS Schema Conversion Tool (AWS SCT) reports and involvement of partners, you can automate more than 50 percent of the work. However, another large percentage of work still is required. This is where Workload Qualification Framework (WQF) can help.

So we’re happy to introduce the WQF module for AWS SCT, which helps analyze the entire process of migrating customer enterprise infrastructures. WQF can recommend a migration strategy, if any, and point to the proper migration tools. It also clearly communicates these pieces of information.

WQF is designed for solutions architects, partners, and consultants who help assess and classify OLTP and OLAP workloads. WQF can help you determine the ease of migration, the staff-hour consumption, and the appropriate target among AWS services.

The following diagram shows an overview of the process when you use AWS SCT with WQF.

You can use WQF during planning phase of your migration process to determine what it is going to take to migrate your data and the applications using it. The WQF report can help you by doing the following:

  • Assessing workloads and scoring each of them:
    • By evaluating proprietary features
    • By complexity
    • By size
    • By technology used
  • Recommending a migration strategy
  • Recommending migration tools
  • Giving migration engineers clear feedback to work with

In addition, AWS Data Migration Service (AWS DMS) is also integrated with WQF.

WQF classifies OLTP and data warehouse workloads into five categories, as listed following. To understood more about each category, see this AWS SCT documentation.

Category 1 ODBC/JBDC workloads
Category 2 Light proprietary feature workloads
Category 3 Heavy proprietary feature workloads
Category 4 Engine-specific workloads
Category 5 Nonportable, high-risk, or lift-and-shift workloads

You can use WQF for the following migration scenarios:

  • Oracle to Amazon RDS for PostgreSQL or Amazon Aurora with PostgreSQL compatibility
  • Oracle to Amazon RDS for MySQL or Amazon Aurora with MySQL compatibility
  • Microsoft SQL Server to RDS for PostgreSQL or Aurora PostgreSQL)
  • SQL Server to RDS for MySQL or Aurora MySQL

Steps to use WQF

To use WQF with AWS SCT, take the following steps:

  1. Launch the WQF Amazon Machine Image (AMI) available on AWS Marketplace. For this launch, make sure to do the following:
    • Use the appropriate AWS Region. Retrieve the password using the .pem file that you set up the SCT instance with and log in.
    • Download the SCT drivers onto your working machine and configure them in SCT. For instructions, see the documentation.
    • If you plan to qualify large workloads, make sure that you have enough CPU and memory resources on the SCT instance. WQF uses the underlying SCT installation to get information. A special build of SCT is already installed in the instance for use with WQF.
  2. After the AMI is set up, double-click the WQF Start icon on your desktop.
  3. After WQF has successfully started, using Google Chrome on the working machine, navigate to http://localhost:4200/ for the WQF web console.

Note: Using the AWS Marketplace AMI is the current best approach. After WQF is integrated in the cloud with AWS DMS, the best approach will likely be different.

Steps to generate WQF reports

To generate WQF reports, take the following steps:

  1. Create a WQF project.
  2. Add one or more applications to the project.
  3. Add one or more physical components for each application in the project.
    WQF has physical and logical components. Physical components allow WQF to collect details about your source database server. Logical components allow WQF to collect details about database objects and applications. To add physical or logical components to feed information into WQF, you can use either the SCT project on the working machine or a zipped file of an SCT project from another machine.
  4. Add logical components for each application in the project.
  5. Generate the inventory and WQF analysis reports to plan the project. To get details about the migration project, you can download the report files and then open them in Microsoft Excel.

You can choose from the following types of report:

  1. Inventory report: This report gives you important feature-based and hardware information about the database server that you’re trying to migrate from. The data required for this report is collected by using physical components, where users can input details of a database server to collect information from. Information from this report can help you plan the migration of a database server.
  2. Cost calculator report: This report categorizes the workload that you’re trying to migrate and reports details items for all the logical and physical components that were selected as part of the application. The report includes a cost model for the migration, based on the findings from SCT and recommendations. The report also describes how to migrate your applications, step by step.

To learn about the steps in detail, see the AWS SCT documentation. At the end, you should reach the following screen to save your report. This screen enables you to download reports in OpenXML format.

Later, you can move these reports to a computer where Excel is installed and open them and view the categorization, analysis, and strategies to migrate as shown following. To download previously generated reports, choose the All reports tab.

The following example WQF Assessment Report shows a complete analysis of a database server to be migrated.

The following WQF Assessment Report shows the compatibility and the effort required to migrate to MySQL.

The following WQF Assessment Report shows the compatibility and the effort required to migrate to PostgreSQL.

The following WQF Inventory Report shows important feature-based and hardware information about the database server to migrate.

Based on the summary and details similar to the preceding, you can configure a different team structure and associate a different cost with each role mentioned in the WQF report later. You can also get more details to look at different effort scenarios on the Migration Efforts to PostgreSQL or MySQL tab in the report.


As a summary, the WQF SCT module analyzes the process of how to migrate a customer enterprise infrastructure in its entirety. The module recommends a migration strategy, if any, and points to the proper migration tools. It also clearly communicates these pieces of information during migration planning.

About the Author

Mahesh Kansara is a database engineer at Amazon Web Services. He works with our customers to provide guidance and technical assistance on various database and analytical projects, helping them improving the value of their solutions when using AWS.