How to Migrate Virtual Machines from AWS to Azure?

AWS and Azure offer secure, scalable, and reliable virtual machines for deploying enterprise workloads on the cloud. Being the larger cloud services provider, AWS has several users who have deployed their workloads on AWS instances. However, it is not uncommon to find use cases where organizations have had to transition from AWS to Azure. Lock in concerns, application compatibility and portability, cost benefits, and data consolidation during processes such as mergers and acquisitions can all result in the need to switch from AWS to Azure. In this article, we will elaborate on how to migrate virtual machines from AWS to Azure.

What Is the Procedure to Migrate AWS VM to Azure?

Although it is recommended to migrate AWS VM to Azure using the Azure Migrate service, it can also be done using Azure Site Recovery. Here are the broad steps involved in the migration of virtual machines from AWS to Azure.

AWS VM Discovery and Migration Pre-Requisites Assessment

The discovery and assessment of AWS VMs involve the process of ensuring that the AWS virtual machines are compatible with supported Azure configurations. Typically, AWS VMs are treated as physical machines for Azure migration as the cloud services are dissimilar. Consequently, you will have to set up an Azure Migrate project, discover and assess AWS virtual machines, and right-size them to estimate the cost, time, and resources that might be required to migrate them to Azure.

Preparing Azure Resources for Migration

Before you can migrate virtual machines to Azure from AWS, you will have to set up the infrastructure components. Here is what you need to do on Azure before initiating the migration.

  • Create a new Azure Migrate project.
  • Assign account permissions for creating virtual machines and write to an Azure managed disk.
  • Add the Azure Migrate: Server Migration tool to the newly added Azure Migrate project.
  • Set up the Azure Virtual Network (VNet) to which the newly created Azure VMs will be added during the process of migration.

Preparing AWS Instances for Azure Migration

The migration of AWS instances requires a replication appliance with a configuration and process server. Here is what you need to do to set up the replication appliance as a part of preparing AWS instances for the migration.

  • Set up an AWS EC2 instance with Windows Server 2012 R2 or Windows Server 2016 on which the replication appliance will be hosted.
  • Configure appropriate security group rules to enable the AWS VMs to be migrated to be connected to the instance with replication appliance in such a way that they have a network line of sight.
  • Ensure that MySQL is installed on the appliance and confirm that the Azure URLs for accessing public and government clouds are working.
  • Install the Mobility service agent on the AWS VMs to be migrated before initiating replication.

Replicating and Migrating AWS VMs to Azure

Before you can switch from AWS VMs to Azure VMs, you will have to replicate workloads from the AWS VMs to Azure. This is to be done from the Azure Migrate project that you created on the Azure portal. As many as 10 VMs can be replicated in a batch simultaneously. After the initial replication is completed, delta changes in AWS VM disks will be copied to the selected disks in Azure.

  • Use a non-production VNet to perform a test migration.
  • If the test was successful as expected, select the option to shut down virtual machines and perform a planned migration with no data loss in the Azure Migrate project.
  • Once the migration job is completed, you can select to option to stop migration and remove the AWS VMs from the replicating servers count, clean up the replication state, and cut over traffic to Azure.

Apps4Rent Can Help You Migrate Virtual Machines from AWS to Azure

While the steps to migrate virtual machines from AWS to Azure are well documented, the primary challenge of measuring and maintaining performance and meeting SLAs while using the new platform often requires assistance. As a Tier 1 Microsoft CSP, Apps4Rent can provide hassle-free AWS to Azure migration service at promotional prices. Contact our Azure cloud experts, available 24/7 via phone, chat, and email for Azure plans and migration assistance.

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