Data Migration Testing Uncovers Dangers of Cloud Storage Provider Lock-in

Data Migration Testing Uncovers Dangers of Cloud Storage|Data Migration Testing Uncovers Dangers of Cloud Storage

March 20, 2012

Nasuni’s Bulk Data Migration in the Cloud Report Tests Amazon S3, Microsoft Windows Azure and Rackspace; Finds Transfer of 12 TB Volume From one Cloud to Another Can Take Anywhere from Four Hours to Almost a Week, Depending on Providers

Nasuni®, an enterprise storage company delivering global data access to organizations, today released the Bulk Data Migration in the Cloud report. In the report, Nasuni provides details and results from tests in which it moved data directly from one cloud to another using cloud compute resources.

Nasuni virtualizes cloud storage and is able to deliver non-disruptive cloud-to-cloud migration in the same manner that traditional storage controllers can virtualize hard drives. During a data transfer from one cloud to another, Nasuni never uses customers’ resources and, in fact, customers experience zero impact on performance or the availability of data during the transfer.

The cloud is an essential component of Nasuni’s solution, which allows Nasuni to deliver a uniform level of protection and access across any number of sites. Just as no IT manager would ever choose to store critical data on raw hard drives, raw cloud storage is unsuitable for business use. Raw cloud storage compromises security and performance, and can hold customers hostage to the whims of a single provider. Nasuni transforms raw cloud storage into a highly reliable system available 100 percent of the time with powerful capabilities that are either not possible or far too costly to implement in a traditional storage array.

As Nasuni developed its non-disruptive cloud-to-cloud migration capabilities, the company’s engineers conducted tests on the top three cloud storage providers from its December State of Cloud Storage Providers report.

Nasuni typically uses Amazon S3 as the back-end cloud storage component for most of its customers, because Amazon S3 was, by far, the top performer in previous tests. As such, Nasuni wanted to see how long it would take to move a sizable storage volume from Amazon S3 to another Amazon S3 bucket, to Microsoft Windows Azure and to Rackspace.

The results were surprising. While transmission speeds differed significantly depending on the time of day and the number of compute machines used to transfer the data, Nasuni’s data migration testing enabled it to estimate the minimum amount of time it would take to migrate a 12 TB storage volume:

  • Amazon S3 to another Amazon S3 bucket: Four hours
  • Amazon S3 to Microsoft Azure: 40 hours
  • Amazon S3 to Rackspace: Just under one week
  • Microsoft Azure to Amazon S3: Four hours
  • Rackspace to Amazon S3: Five hours

The biggest limiting factor appears to be the cloud’s write capability, as all transfers to Amazon S3 were between four to five hours, whereas writing to Microsoft Windows Azure and Rackspace was at least an order of magnitude longer.

“Enterprise IT professionals increasingly want to know that any data they store in the cloud is not ‘stuck’ in that cloud,” said Andres Rodriguez, CEO of Nasuni. “Vendor lock-in is a real fear and no one wants to be confined to one cloud any more than they would want to be limited to one disk drive or one storage array. Enterprises must maintain flexibility and these tests demonstrate that, while data can be moved from cloud-to-cloud relatively quickly with some providers, others require an unacceptable amount of time to complete. For this reason, we strongly believe that enterprises who want to take advantage of the cloud’s unlimited capacity, global access and inherent resiliency would do best to find a trusted partner like Nasuni, who understands how to bring the cloud and its benefits safely into the data center.”

Download the Bulk Data Migration in the Cloud report

About Nasuni
Nasuni delivers enterprise storage services to global IT organizations facing the challenges of providing a uniform level of protection and access to data from all of their offices. Nasuni offers an all-in-one solution that unifies primary data storage, offsite disaster recovery, data backup and global access with a 100 percent reliability guarantee that is supported by the industry’s most stringent services level agreement. With Nasuni, organizations can simplify IT, ensure business continuity, and reduce the total cost of storage.

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