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Microsoft Pumps Up The Cloud Momentum | Enables Faster Migration Into Azure

In our last blog we had discussed about how the era of “cloud wars” have begun and how fiercely Microsoft is taking a direct competitive angle with all the leading players in the cloud race. In continuation with that aspect, this blog talks about how Microsoft is taking it all together to a Next Level with a truly disruptive technology “Migration Accelerator (MA)” which enables you to convert to Azure from any physical environment, VMware or AWS for FREE.

This blog will talk about the all the cool features that MA will be offering in the cloud world.

A Recap To InMage Acqusition
Migration Accelerator is based on the technology from Microsoft’s acquisition of cloud storage vendor InMage. This acquisition also brought with it “Disaster Recovery” technology. Microsoft is presently integrating InMage’s Scout backup and replication software with its Azure Site Recovery service.

WHY Do I Say This Is Disruptive?
Well this technology lets you migrate your systems in real-time, with nearly zero downtime. This means that you can migrate your infrastructure to Azure for free and then cutover during a very short change window. INCREDIBLE – This is indeed LIVE MIGRATION!!

Interesting Highlights:
Heterogeneity: Lets you migrate workloads running on a broad diverse range of platforms such as AWS, VMware, Microsoft Hyper-V, Physical servers, Windows Server 2008 R2 sp1, Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2 operating systems.

Single pane of glass view – Microsoft Azure portal shows the discovery and migration of workloads in one window

Multi-tier application support: this is a unique feature in MA that will allow you to migrate multi-tier production system with application level consistency.

Continuous Replication from source servers to target ensuring zero downtime during migrations ; minimizing impact to product workloads

• In-memory change tracking significantly reduce cutover time

• Better bandwidth management, encryption and compression

• Automatic provision of Target VMs during synchronization saves compute cost; within few clicks you can you can configure end-to-end migration scenarios, test your workload in the cloud without tampering with your current on premise production workload. This gives you the COMPLETE ability to automatically discover workloads REMOTELY from cloud.

Key Components:
Mobility Service is a software agent that captures “real time data” and ensures synchronization of the selected volumes of source to target servers

Process Server: handles communication between Mobility Service and Azure

Master Target : functions as the Azure-based target for disk replication operations

Configuration Server : handles communications between Master Target and sources

MA Portal which is the solution’s “management toolset”

To Conclude..
Microsoft has done a commendable job in Migration Accelerator (MA ) by doing some heavy lifting on business continuity, replication, migration and synchronization operations in the cloud world by discovering on-premise workloads, remotely installing agent software , configuring networks and endpoints. It has phenomenally automated the process of migrating Windows Server workloads from VMware and AWS environments into Azure. It will certainly help enterprises to save cost and ofcourse see faster ROI which is usually involved in migration/IT projects as complex projects with multiple servers require huge budgets for consulting services.

For a preview, pls visit http://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/features/migration-accelerator/

Anita Raj

Technology Evangelist

Team @MSExchangeguru

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