VMware Cloud on AWS | FAQs

What is VMware Cloud on AWS?

Amazon Web Services (AWS) is VMware’s preferred public cloud partner for all vSphere-based workloads. VMware Cloud on AWS brings VMware’s enterprise-class SDDC software to the AWS Cloud with optimized access to native AWS services. Powered by VMware Cloud Foundation, VMware Cloud on AWS integrates VMware's compute, storage, and network virtualization products (VMware vSphere, VMware vSAN, and VMware NSX) along with VMware vCenter Server management, optimized to run on dedicated, elastic, bare-metal AWS infrastructure.

Why should I use VMware Cloud on AWS?

AWS is VMware's preferred public cloud partner for all vSphere-based workloads. VMware Cloud on AWS provides you consistent and interoperable infrastructure and services between VMware-based datacenters and the AWS cloud, which minimizes the complexity and associated risks of managing diverse environments. VMware Cloud on AWS offers native access to AWS services and innovation that extends the value of enterprise applications over their lifecycle.

Where is VMware Cloud on AWS available today?

The service is available in 26 regions: AWS US East (N. Virginia), AWS US East (Ohio), AWS US West (N. California), AWS US West (Oregon), AWS Canada (Central), AWS Europe (Frankfurt), AWS Europe (Ireland), AWS Europe (London), AWS Europe (Paris), AWS Asia Pacific (Singapore), AWS Asia Pacific (Sydney), AWS Asia Pacific (Tokyo), AWS Asia Pacific (Mumbai) Region, AWS South America (Sao Paulo), AWS Asia Pacific (Seoul), AWS Europe (Stockholm), AWS Europe (Milan), AWS Asia Pacific (Osaka), AWS GovCloud (US West), AWS GovCloud (US East), AWS Asia Pacific (Hong Kong), AWS Africa (Cape Town), and AWS Middle East (Bahrain), AWS Asia Pacific (Melbourne), AWS Europe (Zurich), and AWS Asia Pacific (Hyderabad).

Can workloads running in a VMware Cloud on AWS instance integrate with AWS services?

Yes. VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC is directly connected to customer’s VPC using Elastic Network Interface (ENI) and therefore has access to AWS services. Virtual machine workloads can access public API endpoints for AWS services such as AWS Lambda, Amazon Simple Queue Service (SQS), Amazon S3 and Elastic Load Balancing, as well as private resources in the customer's Amazon VPC such as Amazon EC2, and data and analytics services such as Amazon RDS, Amazon DynamoDB, Amazon Kinesis and Amazon Redshift. Customers can also now enjoy Amazon Elastic File System (EFS) for fully managed file service to scale the file-based storage automatically to petabyte scale with high availability and durability across multiple Availability Zones (AZs) and the newest generation of VPC Endpoints designed to access AWS services while keeping all the traffic within the AWS network. Additionally, the integration of Amazon FSx for NetApp ONTAP with VMware Cloud on AWS provides an easy and cost-effective solution to add additional petabytes of storage capacity and use NetApp ONTAP features to manage your datastore.

How do I get started with VMware Cloud on AWS?

With a new purchase agreement in place, customers can now buy VMware Cloud on AWS directly through AWS and AWS Partner Network (APN) Partners in the AWS Solution Provider Program. This allows customers the flexibility to purchase VMware Cloud on AWS either through AWS or VMware, or the AWS Solution Provider or VMware VPN Solution Provider of their choice. Through our partnership, customers can use additional services like Amazon RDS for VMware.

Can I use my existing Windows Server licenses in VMware Cloud on AWS?

Yes. Please consult your Microsoft Product Terms for more details and any restrictions.

What is single host SDDC starter configuration?

Single host SDDC starter configuration is a time-bound offering for customers to kickstart their VMware Cloud on AWS on-demand hybrid experience at a low, predictable price. Service life for the single host SDDC is limited to 30-day intervals only. This new consumption option is designed for customers who want to prove the value of VMware Cloud on AWS in their environment before scaling to 3+ host configurations for production environments.

What compliance certifications has VMware Cloud on AWS achieved?

VMware Cloud on AWS has been independently verified to comply with many leading compliance programs, including but not limited to ISO 27001, ISO 27017, ISO 27018, SOC 2, HIPAA, PCI-DSS, OSPAR, IRAP.  Check VMware Cloud Trust Center  for more information.

How is VMware Cloud on AWS deployed?

VMware Cloud on AWS infrastructure runs on dedicated, single-tenant, bare-metal hosts provided by AWS in a single account. Each host is either equivalent to an Amazon EC2 I3.metal instance (2 sockets with 18 cores per socket, 512 GiB RAM, and 15.2 TB Raw SSD storage), an EC2 I3en.metal instance (48 cores, 768 GiB RAM and 60 TB Raw SSD Storage) or an EC2 I4i.metal instance (64 cores, 1024 GiB RAM and 30 TiB Raw SSD Storage). Each host is capable of running many VMware Virtual Machines (tens to hundreds depending on their compute, memory and storage requirements). Clusters can range from a minimum of 2 hosts up to a maximum of 16 hosts per cluster. A single VMware vCenter server is deployed per SDDC environment.

What version of VMware vSphere do I need in my on-premises environment?

With vSphere 6.0 or later running in your on-premises environment, you can move workloads to and from VMware Cloud on AWS by doing cold migration of VMs. No conversion or modification is necessary. In order to take advantage of “Hybrid Linked Mode” for single pane of glass management between your on-premises environment and VMware Cloud on AWS, you must have VMware vSphere 6.5 or later.

How do I manage resources on VMware Cloud on AWS?

You can use the same management tools you use today. A vCenter Server instance is deployed as part of every VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC. You may connect to this vCenter Server instance to manage your VMware Cloud on AWS clusters. A VMware Cloud Web Console is provided which allows for common tasks such as the add/remove hosts, configure firewalls and other basic networking settings. It is important to note that tools that require plug-ins or extensive vSphere permissions may not function properly in VMware Cloud on AWS. VMware Cloud on AWS uses a least privilege security model in which you and tools in use do not have full administrative access.

Can I manage both my existing data center VMware vSphere VMs and my VMware Cloud on AWS instances in a single view?

You will need vSphere version 6.5 and vCenter Server 6.5 or later running in your data center to use vCenter Hybrid Linked Mode for single pane of glass management of resources on-premises and in the cloud. If you do not have VMware vSphere 6.5 or later running in your on-premises environment, you will need to run multiple vCenter instances to manage your environment: one vCenter instance on-premises and one vCenter instance in VMware Cloud on AWS.

Can I migrate existing vSphere VMs to my VMware Cloud on AWS deployment?

Yes. There are multiple ways to migrate existing vSphere VMs to VMware Cloud on AWS. You can perform of a live migration of vSphere VMs via a vMotion or by leveraging VMware Hybrid Cloud Extension (HCX).

Tell us more about the partnership between AWS and VMware. What does AWS mean when it says VMware is its preferred partner?

In 2016, the strategic partnership between VMware and AWS was announced, and less than a year later, VMware Cloud on AWS was officially launched. The solution was built from the ground up by the VMware and AWS engineering teams and continues to be VMware’s only jointly engineered VMware Cloud solution with a public cloud provider. Today, the collaboration between the two companies still runs deep. Hundreds of AWS and VMware engineers, support, and sales teams work together to develop and offer joint solutions. Each company has created dedicated sales, solution architects, and customer success teams to help customers maximize the benefits of VMware Cloud on AWS. Not only that, nearly 600 channel partners have achieved a VMware Cloud on AWS service competency and over 300 certified/validated technology solutions are now available to customers.

This strong partnership not only eases the contract process for customers (they can choose to execute with VMware or AWS), it gives them first access to the latest VMware Cloud features and innovations. As a ‘managed service’, VMware Cloud on AWS combines compute, network and storage capabilities in to a fully supported, ready-to-run service. The service replaces the undifferentiated heavy lifting of manually configured, customer-managed & maintained solutions with a packaged service for vSphere workloads that includes best-of-breed support & maintenance from both VMware and AWS. With over 6 years of joint integration, innovation, and testing, VMware Cloud on AWS helps customers towards a faster and safer path to the cloud.

What is the distinction in what AWS offers as a preferred partner for VMware with the VMware Cloud on AWS service?

There are two clear areas of distinction in the AWS relationship. The first is that VMware Cloud on AWS is the only public cloud service delivered, operated and supported by VMware. Additionally, as strategic and preferred partners, there is a deeper level of engineering and joint go to market investment that we have with AWS.

A key differentiator is the maturity of the VMware Cloud on AWS service. The service is widely adopted by customers who have realized the benefits of the jointly built, deeply integrated efforts between VMware and AWS over the course of the past 6+ years. Examples include the Seamless connectivity models from on-premises to SDDC with VMware Transit Connect and Direct Connect. Cluster to cluster connectivity is also available through high bandwidth/low latency connectivity model. The service is available in 26 regions including GovCloud. It is supported by a network of over 600+ VMware Cloud on AWS competency partners and 300+ certified ISV community for each Software Defined Data center (SDDC) release. The growth and momentum continues with total VM’s growing by 3.5X, and number of hosts up 2.5x YOY. VMware Cloud on AWS also brings differentiation in the area of application modernization where the service is built to allow deep integration to the breadth and depth of native AWS services. Moreover, AWS offers Windows Rapid Migration Program and Windows ISV Modernization to enable customers to migrate and modernize windows workloads. 

How can I get more information?

Please contact us.

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