VMware Cloud on AWS Products

Announcing Preview of VMware Cloud Flex Storage

Today, we are announcing the preview of VMware Cloud Flex Storage, a new disaggregated cloud storage and data management service that is fully managed by VMware. 

Customer Challenge

Digital transformation has accelerated not only the growth of data but also the diversity of data types and storage requirements. To match the rapid pace of data expansion and heterogeneity, businesses today require more flexible, scalable, simple, and cost-effective ways to store and manage their data. In addition, as enterprises continue to distribute their workloads across multiple cloud environments, customers are expressing a clear need for consistent cross-cloud consumption and management of data across the entire data lifecycle. This is where VMware Cloud Flex Storage comes in.

Introducing VMware Cloud Flex Storage

VMware Cloud Flex Storage offers a scalable, elastic, and natively integrated storage and data management service that is fully managed by VMware and delivered with cloud economics. VMware Cloud Flex Storage intelligently combines cloud-native abstractions to deliver exceptional performance and cost across traditional and modern workloads. With just a few clicks in the VMware Cloud Services Console, customers can scale their storage environment without adding hosts, and elastically adjust their storage capacity up or down as needed, for every application. Customers also benefit from a simple pay-as-you-go consumption model.

VMware Cloud Flex Storage chart

VMware Cloud Flex Storage is built on a mature, enterprise-class filesystem that has been developed and production-hardened over many years, dating back to Datrium’s D­HCI storage product which VMware acquired in July 2020. It is the same filesystem that has been backing our VMware Cloud Disaster Recovery service. The filesystem has a two-tier design that allows for independent scaling of storage performance and capacity, using a Log-Structured Filesystem (LFS) design. You can read more about the filesystem architecture in Sazzala Reddy’s (Chief Technologist and a founder of Datrium) blog here. The combination of LFS with a 2-tier design, along with efficient snapshots and immutability, makes this a multi-purpose filesystem that unlocks many use cases, such as backup, disaster recovery, and ransomware protection and recovery. With VMware Cloud Flex Storage, we are extending this proven technology to primary storage and making it available in the public cloud, where it delivers exceptional storage performance, scalability, and cost efficiency for traditional and modern workloads.

Here are the key use cases of VMware Cloud Flex Storage:

  1. Seamless and cost-effective cloud migration: For customers who are looking to use VMware Cloud on AWS for a seamless and cost-effective cloud migration, VMware Cloud Flex Storage delivers true enterprise-class storage. It reduces complexity and time-to-value by supporting the lift and shift of virtual machines without a need to rework the data layer or re-architect the storage design. Customers can also simplify their operations with a storage solution that is natively built into the VMware Cloud on AWS service and readily available without manual configurations.
  2. Elastic data center extension: Customers who are looking to use VMware Cloud on AWS for data center extension can use VMware Cloud Flex Storage for easy access to additional storage capacity with dynamic scaling of resources. Common scenarios include high-performance burst capacity, on-demand scaling for data analytics, or cost-effective long-term storage of data repositories in the cloud. This gives customers the choice of keeping their data where it best serves their consumption needs, across their data centers and the public cloud. As a result, customers benefit from a VMware-consistent, enterprise-grade hybrid cloud environment with single pane of glass management through the VMware vCenter console.
  3. Scaling of storage-intensive workloads: For customers who are running certain workloads on VMware Cloud on AWS using local instance storage with VMware vSAN, but have other workloads that are storage bound, VMware Cloud Flex Storage offers a disaggregated storage service that allows them to independently, seamlessly, and optimally scale their performance and storage capacity to fit every workload individually. VMware Cloud Flex Storage is an ideal solution for scaling large volumes of data in an agile, flexible, and cost-effective way.

We will initially focus on delivering a fully managed and natively integrated service for VMware Cloud on AWS. Together with vSAN, VMware Cloud Flex Storage will offer more flexibility and customer value in terms of resilience, performance, scale, and cost in the cloud. We will also keep significantly advancing vSAN to expand its use cases for traditional and modern workloads, both on-premises and in the cloud.

We see a model for storage and data that is both increasingly distributed and diverse. Over time, our vision is to deliver VMware Cloud Flex Storage as a consistent experience across multiple clouds, and to enable multi-dimensional scaling of compute, performance and storage capacity, enterprise-grade data management and data reduction capabilities, combined with cost-effective multi-AZ and regional availability.

How to Learn More

We are opening early access nominations for this service now. As part of the early access program, we will provide a disaggregated storage solution that will allow customers to independently provision and scale storage capacity external to the VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC hosts.

If you are interested in applying for the early access program, please email vmcfs_ea@vmware.com.

Disclaimer: VMware makes no guarantee that services announced in preview or beta will become available at a future date. The information in this press release is for informational purposes only and may not be incorporated into any contract. This article may contain hyperlinks to non-VMware websites that are created and maintained by third parties who are solely responsible for the content on such websites. VMware Cloud Flex Storage, VMware, and VMware Cloud on AWS are registered trademarks or trademarks of VMware, Inc. in the United States and other jurisdictions.