INDUSTRY INSIGHT - ISSUE 1: The Lift and Shift Cloud Wars

2019 was the year of continued exploration and adoption of new technologies such as containers, serverless and platform services. But the reality is those technologies are only transforming the tip of the Iceberg in the Enterprise.

The need to find ways to lift and shift traditional and legacy workloads as part of an integrated migration strategy is still an essential requirement for Enterprise customers.

The need for each public cloud provider to provide simple on-ramps to increase adoption and drive up the utility spend on their respective clouds is creating some exciting developments and unlikely partnering arrangements.

The Enterprise Dilemma

In this article, we explore what each cloud provider is doing to simplify this journey.


AWS has a couple of options for moving legacy workloads into the Cloud:

Within the migration space, AWS has CloudEndure in its migration portfolio enabling customers to take image copies of their physical or virtual machines running on-premise and transfer that image into a new AWS landing zone. This approach offers the user the opportunity to migrate to the Cloud with minimal change to the source application and server image.

The second approach is to use AWS Outposts to extend the AWS cloud to your data centre, co-location or on-premise facility. This approach provides a hybrid cloud experience and is a potential solution for workloads that require low-latency access to existing applications that cannot move to the Cloud.

AWS has also signalled that in 2020 a VMware variant of AWS Outposts delivering a fully managed VMWare Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC).


Microsoft Azure has several options for Enterprise customers to adopt and migrate workloads to the Cloud.

Migration Services - Microsoft provides some free migration management tools that track high-level progress of the migration.

Unlike AWS and Google, the approach with Microsoft is to allow you to connect into your migration tool of choice.

In addition to migration tools integration, Microsoft has a clear portfolio of offerings from their Azure Stack portfolio:

  • Azure Stack - Use Azure cloud services on-premises, run your workloads locally while taking advantage of the Azure API.

  • Azure Stack Edge - Run applications at the Edge to support use-cases such as industrial business processes, building services retail operations.

  • Azure Stack HCI - Run virtual machines on hyper-converged systems and use Windows Admin Center to connect to Azure cloud services.

Azure Arc (in preview status at the moment) - Enables customers to manage workloads across a distributed environment, extended the Azure management services between the Edge, on-Premise, Azure Cloud and multi-cloud environments.


Google Cloud sometimes is seen as being slightly behind the Amazon Web Services, and Microsoft Azure has a couple of offerings to assist Customers in moving their applications to the Google Cloud.

Migration Compute Engine - formerly Velostrata according to the documentation offers Frictionless migration enabling customers to migrate applications without rewriting the app or modifying the image.

The Google offering supports VMWare vCenter, AWS EC2 and Azure as sources locations for the migration.

In addition to Migration Compute Engine, Google has recently announced that they plan to offer IBM Power Systems via the GCP Marketplace.

This new offering has the potential to unlock legacy software that has always needed to reside in the corporate data to run on the Public Cloud. This new offering opens up the possibility to run SAP and Oracle on IBM Power servers in the Cloud.

The ability to move legacy software to the Google Cloud also opens up the opportunity for customers to run Windows and Linux based servers to the Cloud and use the Google low-latency network between Google cloud-native services and the Power Systems based applications.

Also, it will enable customers to take advantage of the GCP API and the integrated billing and metering capabilities of the Cloud.

As each cloud provider seeks to capture the Enterprise market, it is creating some interesting dynamics in the market that customers can take advantage of to help create the right cloud strategy to meet their Business, I.T and budgetary requirements.

In the next issue, we will explore the latest IBM Power Systems on GCP.

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We can provide rapid estate analysis and advisory and build your mass migration strategy and plan. We understand in detail what it takes to migrate workloads to the public cloud or between data centres.

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