VMware Cloud on AWS

VMware Cloud on AWS: What’s New in Apr 2022

With VMware Cloud on AWS, customers have modernized IT infrastructure and applications and have significantly reduced their total cost of ownership of IT infrastructure. If you would like to check out real world experiences from our customers, please read this blog and see how customers are using VMware Cloud on AWS for variety of use cases. With customer’s requirements always on top of our mind, we release new features for VMware Cloud on AWS every quarter.

Now, in this blog, let’s talk about some of the new features and capabilities released in VMware’s Fiscal Year 2023’Q1

Enhancements to enterprise workload support:

  • Application modernization with VMware Cloud on AWS: With VMware Cloud on AWS, customers can start their modernization journey while minimizing disruption to their business. They can migrate their applications to the cloud while minimizing downtime. Once in the cloud, they can start transforming these applications by using modern frameworks such as Kubernetes, enriching them with native cloud services and automating the underlying infrastructure operations with DevOps/advanced operations tools. 
    • Application Transformer for VMware Tanzu: Application Transformer for VMware Tanzu is a tool that aids organizations to discover application component types, visualize application topology, choose a modernization approach based on scores, and containerize and migrate select applications to enhance business outcomes. Application Transformer allows organizations to customize their modernization journey. Check out the web page, announcement blog and a demo to learn more.
    • Enabling Tanzu services for existing VMware Cloud on AWS SDDCs: At VMworld 2021, VMware Cloud on AWS introduced Tanzu services, – an easy path to enterprise-grade Kubernetes on a fully managed, hybrid-cloud ready Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) for all enterprise applications. With Tanzu services support for VMware Cloud on AWS, customers can focus on application development and scalability on a unified IaaS, as opposed to spending time on infrastructure management, multi-cluster operations, security, and governance.

With this enhancement, cloud admins will now have an option to enable Tanzu services for existing VMware Cloud on AWS SDDCs upgraded to version 1.16 and above. Cloud admins can enable Tanzu services from VMware Cloud Launchpad and they will be able to enable it on per cluster basis. Please check out the Tanzu Services Deployment Guide to learn more about how to deploy these in VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC.

Enhancements in networking, storage, availability, and resiliency:

  • VMware Cloud Flex Storage, – Announcing preview of VMware Cloud Flex Storage, – a cloud storage and data management service for VMware Cloud on AWS. The service is fully managed by VMware and natively integrated into VMware Cloud on AWS. With just a few clicks in the VMware Cloud Services Console, customers can attach NFS datastore to the VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC and scale their storage environment without adding hosts. Customers can expand or decrease storage capacity as needed under a simple pay-as-you-go consumption model. Please read this blog to learn more.

  • Enhancements to VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery: As a recap, VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery offers on-demand disaster recovery to IT administrators responsible for IT infrastructure and services resiliency, delivered as an easy-to-use SaaS solution with cloud economics. It combines cost-efficient cloud storage with simple SaaS-based management for IT resiliency at scale, through simple testing and orchestration of failover and failback plans. Customers benefit from consistent VMware operations across production and DR sites and a ‘pay when you need’ failover capacity model for DR resources, while benefiting from instant power-on capabilities for fast recovery after disaster events, including ransomware attacks. Some of the key capabilities include pilot light feature for faster recovery times with minimal cloud footprint, Instant Power-On for VMs in the cloud in the event of a failover, optimized delta-based failback—all within a familiar VMware environment, reducing the need for IT re-training and driving ease of use as a core component of resiliency. SaaS-based management eliminates the need to deploy and lifecycle manage the DR software. Continuous DR health checks and built-in audit reports deliver a simplified operational experience and confidence in recovery readiness.
    • PCI DSS certification for VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery: VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery received the highest level of PCI certification (PCI DSS Level 1 provider status). By being certified as PCI DSS compliant level 1 service provider, VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery service operates in compliance with PCI DSS compliant security measures and controls, thereby supporting the needs of a broad range of customers and workloads that need to store, process, or transmit cardholder or sensitive authentication data. PCI compliance will be enabled in all the AWS regions where VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery is available today- AWS US West (Oregon), AWS US West (N. California), AWS US East (N. Virginia), AWS US East (Ohio), AWS Canada (Central), AWS South America (Sao Paulo), AWS Europe (Paris), AWS Europe (Frankfurt), AWS Europe (Milan), AWS Europe (Ireland), AWS Europe (London), AWS Europe (Stockholm), AWS Asia Pacific (Sydney), AWS Asia Pacific (Singapore), AWS Asia Pacific (Tokyo), AWS Asia Pacific (Osaka), AWS Asia Pacific (Mumbai) and AWS Asia Pacific (Seoul).
    • Direct Connect over Private VIF: VMware Cloud DR currently supports traffic over the internet and Direct Connect over Public VIF. In this release, we’re adding support for Direct Connect over Private VIF—a dedicated, fast channel from the on-premises site to VMware Cloud on AWS with flexible architecture. This new capability allows customers to benefit from high-bandwidth, low latency connectivity which provides improved network performance and faster initial data seeding. Customers with stringent compliance requirements can also leverage this feature to establish dedicated, private networking connectivity between on-premises and cloud sites.
    • Event log export to vRealize Log insight Cloud: With this capability, customers will be able to programmatically export in real-time all events in the event log to vRealize Log insight Cloud. The list of events includes user actions, replication/recovery events, audit events as well as health status notifications for any of the VCDR components that might impact the customer’s ability to protect and recover their workloads. vRealize Log Insight Cloud will help customers with centralized log management, deep operational visibility, and intelligent analytics and it will convert the raw log data into actionable insights that can help customers address both security and operational issues.
    • Public REST APIs for VMware Cloud DR: VMware Cloud DR now offers its first set of Public APIs, that allow you to utilize Java, Python and C# to get information about your DR configurations, including the Scale Out Cloud Filesystem, protected sites, protection groups, snapshots, protected VMs and recovery SDDCs. For more information and API documentation, visit our Developer Documentation Page.
    • Event log enhancements for protection group snapshots: VMware Cloud DR has done multiple event log enhancements for protection group snapshots to simplify troubleshooting and readability of events. The new enhancements include- event logging for failed/missed replications, each replication event details such as start time, end time, success/failure status, number of VMs replicated successfully, number of VMs that errored out during replication, any VM-level errors etc., alert notification prior to expiration of last protection group snapshot.
    • Protected logical capacity accounting at protection group, VM, and snapshot level: This enhancement provides customers visibility into how much they are being charged for the logical capacity of their incremental snapshots at multiple levels such as – globally across all sites, Protection Groups, VMs, for an entire protected site, for an entire protection group, for a given VM and for each snapshot. This will help customers in taking informed decisions about how to modulate their retention policies / protection schedules and balance cost vs. risk and how to define the scope of DR protection.
    • Compliance Certifications: VMware continues to expand its portfolio of compliance certifications of its offerings, now featuring SOC2 Type II and SOC3. VMware Cloud DR has obtained the SOC 2 Type 2 and SOC 3 reports. In addition, VMware Cloud DR is now PCI DSS compliant. SOC reporting gives customer and their auditors an understanding of how we manage and support security, operations, and compliance at VMware. Please reach out to your sales representative to obtain our SOC 2 Type 2 and PCI DSS Reports of Compliance. You can download our SOC 3 report and visualize all available compliance certifications through VMware Cloud Trust Center.

Check out this blog to learn more about new features released in VMware Cloud DR.

Enhancements in networking

  • VMware Cloud on AWS Multi CGW : With the VMware Cloud on AWS Multi CGW feature, customers will be able to create additional Compute Gateways or Tier-1 Gateways (CGWs) and manage the life cycle for those CGWs. This feature will support the addition of static routes, route aggregation, filtering, local DHCP server or DNS forwarding, and Traceflow. This feature will enable the following use cases:
    • Multi-tenancy within an SDDC,
    • Overlapping IPv4 address space across CGWs,
    • Support for static routes on customer managed CGW,
    • Access to the Connected VPC from customer managed CGW, and
    • Deployment of Isolated test ‘segments’ for Disaster Recovery (DR) testing or “sandbox” environments.

This feature will be available for VMware Cloud on AWS SDDCs version 1.18 and higher.

  • Route Advertisement with Aggregation: With the Route Advertisement with Aggregation enhancement, customers now have more control over which SDDC CIDRs are advertised externally over AWS Direct Connect & VMware Transit Connect.  These can be set via the NSX UI or NSX API.  The supported connectivity endpoints include:
    • Direct-Connect & Transit Connect, and
    • Connected VPC

In addition to the above, with the Route Advertisement with Aggregation enhancement, a customer can now:

  1. Define desired SDDC CIDRs to advertise in a ‘Prefix List’, and
  2. Associate the Prefix List with a supported ‘Connectivity Endpoint’ to advertise routes

This feature will be available for VMware Cloud on AWS SDDCs version 1.18 and higher.

  • VMware Cloud on AWS support for AD/LDAP: This feature will provide the ability to use Active Directory or OpenLDAP as an external authentication method in VMware Cloud on AWS. Customers can use this integration for assigning NSX-T cloud-admin roles based on Active Directory or OpenLDAP group membership. This feature will be available for VMware Cloud on AWS SDDCs version 1.18 and higher.

Check out this blog for all the details about networking enhancements.

Enhancements to commerce experience: 

VMware and AWS are constantly looking at ways to improve the experience of our joint customers. One key aspect of this is the commerce experience for customers that are purchasing the VMware Cloud on AWS service and associated value-added VMware solutions through AWS or its partner network. New enhancements planned in this area include:

VMware Cloud on AWS available on AWS Marketplace

AWS Marketplace is a curated digital catalog that customers can use to find, buy, deploy, and manage third-party software, data, and services to build solutions and run their businesses. AWS Marketplace includes thousands of software listings from popular categories such as security, business applications, machine learning, and data products across specific industries, such as healthcare, financial services, and telecommunications. 

In addition to category-leading products from VMware like CloudHealth, CarbonBlack, and Tanzu, we are pleased to announce that VMware Cloud on AWS is now available on the AWS Marketplace. Also, Through AWS Marketplace, VMware also offers flexible purchasing and consumption program options to deploy and manage add-on and complimentary solutions to VMware Cloud on AWS.

With listing on AWS Marketplace, customers will be able to purchase VMware Cloud on AWS hosts by purchasing SPP credits through AWS Marketplace by using any of the two options below:

  • AWS Marketplace Private Offers where the customer negotiates pricing and terms with VMware. In such cases, VMware creates a private offer for the AWS account designated for the customer, in a form similar to an enterprise license agreement, which gets recorded in the customer’s AWS Marketplace account.
  • AWS Marketplace Consulting Partner Private Offers (CPPO) where customers work with the channel partners who would resell VMware Cloud on AWS by extending a private offer to customers 

Here are some of the key customer benefits of purchasing VMware solutions through AWS Marketplace:

  • Faster procurement: Purchasing VMware Cloud on AWS hosts through AWS Marketplaces simplifies procurement approvals by enabling “Click to Buy” through your Master Payer Account with AWS. 
  • Simplified billing: Customers get a single consolidated AWS invoice for all the purchases made through the AWS Marketplace with complete visibility over their spending in a single location, thus giving them a  hassle-free experience.
  • Cost effective procurement by leveraging dedicated AWS spend: AWS Marketplace purchases count towards customer commitments under the terms of their Enterprise Agreements. It provides customers with another potential funding source to purchase VMware Cloud on AWS for vSphere-based workloads running on AWS cloud. By purchasing VMware services through AWS Marketplace, the AWS spend associated with Enterprise Agreements run down as the customer consumes VMware services that run on AWS. Thus, customers can take advantage of available AWS spend to accelerate planned projects and strategic cloud migration objectives across private cloud environments, cloud management and modernized applications.

Enhancements in sizing, pricing and subscription options:

  • Extension of limited time price promotion for VMware Cloud on AWS i3.metal hosts: Due to high demand from customers, VMware is extending 15% List Price reduction promotion on VMware Cloud on AWS i3.metal offering through July 26th, 2022. Through this offer, VMware is lowering the list price of on-demand, 1-year or 3-year subscription for i3.metal hosts of VMware Cloud on AWS by 15 %.  The lower list price reduces the total cost of ownership of IT infrastructure further in comparison to on-premises or traditional public cloud alternatives for vSphere-based workloads. The offer also makes it even easier for small and medium sized businesses to get started on their hybrid cloud journey with VMware Cloud on AWS. This offer is valid from March 15, 2022 through July 26, 2022 at 11.59 PM PT. Learn more
  • Discounted pricing for 2 &3 i3.metal and i3en.metal hosts for net new customers: Introducing a low-cost starter option for net new VMware Cloud on AWS customers. With this offer, net new VMware Cloud on AWS customers can purchase 1-year or 3-year subscription for 2 and 3 i3.metal hosts or i3en.metal hosts at up to 20% discount on the stated list price. This offer lowers the cost of entry for moving workloads to VMware Cloud on AWS, and thus broadens the access of this hybrid cloud service to small and medium sized businesses as well as to the customers who want to kick start their hybrid cloud journey.

Please note: This offer is available to net new customers only. Eligible customers can redeem this offer starting March, 15, 2022 through July 26, 2022 at 11.59 PM PT. Learn more

  • VMware Cloud Sizer enhancements: New API Endpoint support for total based sizing framework: VMware Cloud Sizer V5 API takes VM level information as input and produces VMware Cloud sizing recommendation consisting of SDDC topology. 
    • New API access requires Cloud Service Provider (CSP) authentication.  
    • Total based sizing is based on input workload characteristics
    • Workload eligibility assessment to filter out outliers 
    • Target cloud recommendation with SDDC topology
    • Supports data import formats from discovery tools like vRealize Operations, Live Optics and RV Tools.
    • Cost Optimized option to provide ability to size based on minimum cost. 

For more information on APIs, see https://developer.vmware.com/apis/vmc-sizer/latest/.

Enhancements to advanced cloud management:

vRealize Cloud Management

VMware vRealize® Cloud Management is an intelligent hybrid cloud management solution that enables consistent deployments and operations for apps, infrastructure, and platform services, across VMware Cloud on AWS, on-premises and/or hybrid cloud environments. The solution helps organizations accelerate application migration to VMware Cloud on AWS as well as innovate with quick and easy access to services, gain efficiency by improving visibility and automation, and improve control while mitigating risk through unified operations and governance.

VMware vRealize® Cloud Universal™ is a cloud management suite that combines on-premises and SaaS management into one license to help accelerate our customers’ business transition to the cloud. It gives customers the flexibility to deploy on-premises or SaaS, interchangeably, without the need to repurchase, for a consistent hybrid cloud management experience. In vRealize Cloud Universal, customers get vRealize Automation Cloud, vRealize Operations Cloud, vRealize Log Insight Cloud, vRealize Network Insight Cloud, and additional features exclusive to vRealize Cloud Universal. For more information, visit: https://www.vmware.com/products/vrealize-cloud-universal.html. Below are the enhancements for vRealize Cloud Management portfolio:

  • VMware vRealize Automation Cloud provides self-service IaaS consumption with governance for VMware Cloud on AWS. With vRealize Automation Cloud, customers can reduce the complexity of their IT environment, streamline IT processes and deliver a DevOps-ready automation platform. It enables automated workload provisioning by setting up a self-service infrastructure for developers and managing it with governance policies for better insight and control. It also delivers Infrastructure as Code-based automation for provisioning and management of SDDCs on VMware Cloud on AWS. VMware Cloud Templates (VCTs) created in vRealize Automation Cloud are written declaratively in YAML. Customers can automate SDDCs, virtual machines, networking, and other infrastructure components through VCTs, serverless functions (ABX) and other integrations. With GitLab and GitHub integration, blueprints and other automation scripts can be versioned and stored in a source code repository. New enhancements include:
    • Expanded regional availability: New geographic availability in Asia Pacific (Mumbai). This will be in addition to the available geographic locations for vRealize Automation Cloud, namely US West (Oregon), Europe (Frankfurt), Canada (Central), Europe (London) and South America (Sao Paulo), Asia Pacific (Singapore), Asia Pacific (Sydney) and Asia Pacific (Tokyo).
  • VMware vRealize Operations Cloud delivers self-driving IT operations management for private, hybrid cloud environments in a unified, AI-powered platform. Offering full-stack visibility from physical, virtual and cloud infrastructure – including VMs and containers – to the applications they support, vRealize Operations Cloud provides continuous performance optimization, efficient capacity and cost planning and management, app-aware intelligent remediation, and integrated compliance.
    • Expanded regional availability: New geographic availability in Asia Pacific (Mumbai). This will be in addition to the available geographic locations for vRealize Operations Cloud, namely US West (Oregon), Europe (Frankfurt), Canada (Central), Europe (London) and South America (Sao Paulo), Asia Pacific (Singapore), Asia Pacific (Sydney) and Asia Pacific (Tokyo).
  • vRealize Network Insight (SaaS) enhancements for VMware Cloud on AWS customers: vRealize® Network InsightTM Universal and vRealize® Network InsightTM Cloud is a solution for end-to-end network visibility, troubleshooting, and predictive analytics that enables application discovery to enable migrations, optimizes network performance with troubleshooting capabilities, and manages the scaling of VMware Cloud on AWS deployments.
    • VMware vRealize® Network InsightTM Universal is a cloud management solution that combines on-premises and SaaS management into one license to help accelerate network monitoring and analytics to the cloud. It gives customers the flexibility to deploy on-premises or SaaS, interchangeably, without the need to repurchase, for a consistent hybrid cloud management experience. There is also a federation capability to view all vRealize Network Insight Universal instances whether on-premises or SaaS in one dashboard.
    • New geographic availability in Asia (Mumbai). This new location in India will be in addition to the available geographic locations for vRealize Network Insight (SaaS) which will now total 7 locations globally. View the map here.
    • Mission Critical Analysis is a new capability to analyze user defined critical “crown jewels” applications and impact across that application with flows and other metrics.
    • Auto Proxy Deployment allows easier addition of data sources to VMware Cloud as well as new capabilities for bulk edit of sources.

To view the latest status of features and release updates for VMware Cloud on AWS, visit: https://www.vmware.com/products/vmc-on-aws.html. And refer to the release notes VMware Cloud on AWS release notes.

The following capabilities are available today: Application Transformer for VMware Tanzu, Enabling Tanzu services for existing VMware Cloud on AWS SDDCs, VCDR: PCI DSS certification for VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery, Direct Connect over Private VIF, Event log export to vRealize Log insight Cloud, Public REST APIs for VMware Cloud DR, Event log enhancements for protection group snapshots, Protected logical capacity accounting at protection group, VM, and snapshot level, Compliance Certifications, Networking: VMware Cloud on AWS Multi CGW, Route Advertisement with Aggregation, VMware Cloud on AWS support for AD/LDAP, VMware Cloud on AWS on AWS Marketplace, Extension of limited time price promotion for VMware Cloud on AWS i3.metal hosts, Discounted pricing for 2 &3 i3.metal and i3en.metal hosts for net new customers, VMware Cloud Sizer: New API Endpoint support for total based sizing framework, vRA Cloud: Mumbai region, vROps Cloud: Mumbai region, vRNI Cloud: Mumbai region

The following capabilities/offerings are in Preview today: VMware Cloud Flex Storage

The following capabilities/offerings are expected to be available in VMware’s Q1’Fiscal Year 2023: vRNI CLoud: VMware vRealize Network Insight Universal, Mission Critical Analysis, Auto Proxy Deployment

Resources

For more information related to VMware Cloud on AWS, here are some more learning resources for you:

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