Today, VMware introduced their VMware Cloud on AWS in a webinar. It is well worth your time to watch if you haven’t seen it yet.
Shortly after the webinar, we received an inquiry via our Quick Questions form. The question:
“After learning about VMware Cloud on AWS today,
what are the alternatives for small or mid-sized companies?”
A good question — so we’ll do our best to provide an equally solid answer.
Let’s start at the beginning.
What is VMware Cloud on AWS?
VMware Cloud on AWS is an on-demand service that enables you to run applications across vSphere-based cloud environments with access to a broad range of AWS services. Powered by VMware Cloud Foundation, this service integrates vSphere, vSAN and NSX along with VMware vCenter management, and is optimized to run on dedicated, elastic, bare-metal AWS infrastructure. With VMware Hybrid Cloud Extension, customers can easily and rapidly perform large-scale bi-directional migrations between on-premises and VMware Cloud on AWS environments.With the same architecture and operational experience on-premises and in the cloud, IT teams can now quickly derive instant business value from use of the AWS and VMware hybrid cloud experience.Source: VMware (https://cloud.vmware.com/vmc-aws)
Some background analysis:
We know this is likely a question about economics because the VMware functionality is consistently defined and delivered via on-prem models and via the On AWS configurations — including the bundle of VMware Hybrid Cloud Extension. Also, the fact that this question references small and mid-sized companies is an indicator that the existing configurations for VMware Cloud on AWS likely exceed the budget and/or technical requirements for this particular organization.
Now, let’s dive into the details.
When looking at VMware Cloud on AWS, a host configuration includes:
2 CPUs and 36 Cores for 72 Hyper-Threads
vSAN Flash Storage (3.6TB cache + 10.7TB Raw)
This is priced at $4,223/mo or $51,987 per year per host.
The challenge for a small or mid-sized business is that you can’t purchase a single host. The actual price, when delivered in the minimum four host cluster, is $207,948 per year. When you apply the one host for redundancy requirements of VMware to this, you actually receive 3 hosts for production and one host for redundancy in this configuration. This pushes the price of the usable hosts to $69,316 each, per year.
This is a lot for a small to mid-sized company to invest in a cloud environment.
With the basic details and a quick TCO out of the way, let’s get back to the question:
What are the alternatives to VMware Cloud on AWS for small or mid-sized companies?
At ServerCentral, we’ve offered fully managed VMware Cloud solutions for over a decade. Our Enterprise Cloud solution is specifically designed to support the flexibility requirements for small and mid-sized companies.
What is ServerCentral Enterprise Cloud?
ServerCentral’s Enterprise Cloud Service is a flexible, scalable, and secure Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) offering, allowing Customers to dynamically scale resources in response to changing business needs. Enterprise Cloud is delivered on an enterprise-class stack, including redundant servers, multi-gigabit networking, high performance storage, and VMware — the enterprise-class virtualization platform. Enterprise Cloud is architected for applications with performance requirements. The infrastructure is fully redundant and configured for automatic failover.
How is Enterprise Cloud provisioned?
Enterprise Cloud is provisioned via resource pools. Each resource pool includes a flexible configuration of network, compute, memory, storage, and security services.
Customers create and manage virtual machines (VM) in each resource pool, with complete control over VM provisioning, VM size, and the guest operating system. Resource pools are deployed on multi-tenant infrastructure and logically separated from one another, providing the benefit of virtually unlimited scalability while preserving secure access and isolation.
How is Enterprise Cloud supported?
Enterprise Cloud includes complete management of the underlying hardware and software tools including VMware platform management, hypervisor patching and updates, on-site hardware sparing for immediate and seamless expansion and upgrades, and full maintenance & support— all monitored 24x7 by ServerCentral’s Network Operations Center (NOC).
In these three questions you should have noticed a few key points:
Enterprise Cloud includes redundant capabilities so there are no additional costs for hosts associated with meeting VMware best practices.
Enterprise Cloud is provisioned in custom-defined resource pools, meaning you only pay for what you need, no matter how much or how little this may be.
Enterprise Cloud includes fully support and system administration resources, effectively saving you an average of $72,762 per year.
Finally, as a ServerCentral customer, you have the option, at any time, to transition your investment from Enterprise Cloud to a Private Cloud should your needs change.
To determine the actual cost of your unique Enterprise Cloud VMware configuration, and get a custom TCO comparison to VMware on AWS, you can configure your Enterprise Cloud requirements.
In answering this question, we may have painted a picture that VMware Cloud on AWS is a bad thing. This is definitely not the case. VMware Cloud on AWS is a fantastic development for many companies. However, for just as many companies, it isn’t a feasible solution. The investment levels are too significant.
At ServerCentral, we are solely focused on delivering the right solution to meet our customers’ requirements. Should that solution be VMware Cloud on AWS, we’ll help you achieve that. Should that solution be Enterprise Cloud, or a Private Cloud, we’ll help you achieve that, too.
The only right cloud is the cloud that meets your business, technical, and financial requirements.