What is Cirrus Data Cloud?

Cirrus Data Solutions’ Cirrus Data Cloud is the world’s first and only holistic cloud-based Block-Migration-as-a-Service (BMaaS) offering. This technology eliminates many of the manual steps associated with block storage migration and is an offering that requires no footprint for managing the complexity of storage migration at the block level. The cloud-based service provides the platform for defining multiple Migration Projects in one or more Migration Waves among multiple users to co-manage the projects in various roles, and to provide a single pane of management for executing and monitoring the migration projects. This allows for well organized execution of block-level migration at enterprise scale, managing hundreds or even thousands of host and disks.

The BMaaS offering features a pay-as-you-go model and is fully aligned with cloud-based services so that you don't have to pre-commit to a large investment up front, and offering you full control over the migration budget.

The typical manual project planning and execution process with a huge spreadsheet is no longer needed. Cirrus Data's patented mTDI (Transparent Datapath Intercept) is used to eliminate all downtime normally associated with block storage migration. Even the final cut-over outage that was once deemed inevitable is eliminated. Simply migrate, cutover, and remove the old source storage - all while your apps are still running as if the original storage volumes were still there. This is a huge improvement over file-level copying, whether using host-based file system functions such as cp/scp in Linux, xcopy in Windows, or GUI based copy-and-paste operations. These tools require many manual steps to prepare the new destination storage from alternative cloud block volume vendors such as Pure Storage Cloud Block Store and HPE Cloud Volumes Block. It's a challenge having to carefully schedule and execute the copy operations only during off-hours (if there is such a thing). Then, there is the headache of keeping track of open files and dealing with the performance impact to the source VM/Storage during the copy process. While it is possible to use backup software to back up the old storage and restore to the new storage, that process typically involves having an extended period of downtime to back-up and restore the complete sets of data with consistency. These tools are disruptive to users and businesses alike, so they are typically avoided whenever possible. Cirrus Data Cloud is a huge improvement over the back-up and restore process for storage migration.

For volumes that are already using an LVM, it is possible to migrate by creating a mirror using LVM so that all the extents (blocks of storage) from the source disk are mirrored synchronously to the destination (new storage). Once the mirror is established or "silvered," it is then possible to remove the source storage. However, there are limitations when using LVM mirroring for migration. One limitation is when LVM mirroring is already in use for data protection or DR. Due to the number of steps involved to add yet another mirror as the destination disks for migration (often not possible due to limitations of LVM mirroring), this approach significantly increases complexity. Another issue that must be addressed is the impact to performance during the "silvering" process. This is unavoidable, and there is no way to limit the copy process once it is started. For a small environment with a few VM’s or TB’s, this may be acceptable. However, in a large scale migration project where there are tens or hundreds of VMs and volumes needing to be migrated in a relatively short time, the LVM mirroring approach will quickly become an unbearable headache. The LVM process is not built for large scale migration. It provides a very limited set of automation & no ability to limit the aggressiveness of the copy process once started. All of this makes the LVM choice risky and likely to elongate your migration project.

Cirrus Data Solutions' Cirrus Data Cloud is specifically designed to perform automated, low-impact migration at an enterprise scale and is built for the cloud (available for AWS, Azure and Google Cloud and in fact, even for a physical host with block storage as source and destination). It is integrated, tested, and certified to enable migration for leading Virtual Cloud Block Storage vendors such as Pure Storage Cloud Block Store, HPE Cloud Volumes Block (and others to come). The end-to-end process is fully automated (including the interaction with the new block storage to allocate and pair up the new storage) and simple to deploy. The GUI based web-portal makes it easy to use. All the GUI operations can be automated with custom scripts using REST API. This eliminates much of the manual preparation work in large scale projects. The Intelligent Quality of Service, (iQoS) feature ensures the right balance between application performance and migration rate during the migration process. The patented "cMotion" feature enables online transition of the workload from your existing cloud storage to your new cloud block storage with no downtime, ensuring that the new features and cost-saving can be realized without application downtime or user disruption. Once cMotion is triggered and finalized, the original storage can be detached and deleted without impact.
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