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How to Migrate On-Premise Application To AWS Cloud?

Last updated on Jul 09,2024 29K Views

Priyaj Kumar is an AWS aspirant working as a Research Analyst at... Priyaj Kumar is an AWS aspirant working as a Research Analyst at Edureka. He is working on different AWS services and has good knowledge...
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Irrespective of the business, organizations always experience competition. Hence staying updated with the market needs, becomes a must, and ‘time’ becomes an integral constituent. What if there was a way business could focus on their business goals and outsource their maintenance and monitoring tasks somewhere else. Would that help save time & meet the market needs with more efficiency? Migrating to cloud lets you do exactly the same. This AWS Migration article would walk you through all the necessary pointers that you need to consider before you plan to migrate to Cloud. Learn all about the Amazon Web Services with the AWS Training.

For starters, let me define Migration for you:

‘Moving your data from an on-premise data center to Cloud is called Migration’.

Now that the definition is out of the way, let’s take a look at the pointers the article focuses on:

      1. Need For Migration
      2. What Is Migration?
      3. What Is AWS?
      4. Phases Of AWS Migration
      5. Application Migration Strategies ‘The 6 R’s’
      6. Benefits Of AWS Migration
      7. Services For AWS migration
      8. Demo: Implementing Migration Using Import/Export method

Need for MigrationDifficulties Without Cloud - Aws Migration - Edureka

Business is no easy task when it comes to handling situations like security, scaling up or down, etc. Let’s look at a few scenarios where AWS Migration could be a better resort.

  1. Your project has started receiving a high volume of traffic overnight
  2. Your clients want fast application implementation and deployment
  3. It’s becoming expensive to manage the growing database needs
  4. You are cautious about the mishap of data center going down

If you Migrate to Cloud then the problems mentioned above will get handled automatically. Let’s move further and understand what is Migration.

What is Migration?Migrating To Cloud - Aws Migration - Edureka

Migrating your project means moving your data from the on-premise data center to cloud. FYI we are not referring to clouds in the sky. In this case, cloud is the virtualization used over a data center to make the functionalities more flexible. Many companies like GoDaddy, Expedia etc., have recently moved their business to cloud.
Having defined Migration, let me tell you where, how, and who is going to help you migrate your data. The implementation is provided by Amazon Web Services (AWS). So, let’s find out what AWS is?

What is AWS?

AWS Logo - Aws Migration - EdurekaAmazon Web Services (AWS) is a subsidiary of which provides on-demand cloud services. AWS made a debut in 2006 with a few services. Then, in 2012 launched the AWS Marketplace that accommodated a vast range of services provided by AWS.

Again, Migration is a big task and AWS facilitates Migration in phases. So, let me walk you through the different phases of Data Migration.

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Phases of AWS Migration

Data Migration seems an easy process because in layman’s term, it means moving your data from one location to the other. However, it is more complex as the process involves different phases. Let me now talk about the various phases of Migration:


Phase of Migration - Aws Migration - edureka

Phase 1: Discovery – Apps which can be moved to Cloud?Discovery Phase-AWS Migration- Edureka

There are times you need not require to move your entire business to the cloud.This is where segregation is important. You need to identify the applications which can be Migrated and which cannot. This is what the first phase is all about. Now, let’s go to Phase 2 i.e. choosing the method for AWS Migration.

Assessment Phase- AWS Migration- EdurekaPhase 2: Assessment – Choosing Your Migration Method

Depending on the data, AWS provides different ways to Migrate your application e.g. AWS Snowball, AWS Snowmobile, AWS Direct Connect, etc. Once you have chosen an appropriate way to move your data, also look for the resources you’ll need for it. Let’s now explore the different ways of storing data on AWS Cloud in Phase 3.

Proof Of Concept-AWS Migration- Edureka

Phase 3: Proof of Concept (POC) for AWS Storage

Once you know how and what you are migrating, next, you have to figure out how and where you will store it. The entire motive of moving to AWS is to minimize expenses. In this phase, you’ll test your workload and understand about AWS Storage Service, their benefits, limitations, and the necessary security controls.

Application Migration- AWS Migration-EdurekaPhase 4: Application Migration to AWS

Now that you have all the pre-requisites like the blueprint, Migration tools, list of assignments, backups and its synchronization with your on-premises data repositories. You can finally migrate your project to AWS Cloud. Once you have Migrated your project to cloud, reliability, and durability are the added benefits you get. Let’s see the changes AWS brings to your architecture in Phase 5.

Enterprise Cloud Operatio- AWS Migration-Edureka

Phase 5: Enterprise Cloud Operations

At this point, you’ve already migrated to AWS, and AWS will bring updates that you’ll need to incorporate in your existing architecture. Hence, you must ensure that you have a 24×7 support team keeping track of system maintenance and upgrades after the Migration.

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So, this was about the different phases of AWS Migration and how to implement it. Let’s explore the strategies for AWS Migration.

Application Migration Strategies ‘The 6 R’s’

The complexity of migrating existing applications varies, depending on the architecture, Amazon came up with different strategies which they commonly termed as 6 R’s. Let’s look into each of them: 

  1. Rehost:- You have your application ready and working then you can simply Rehost it on AWS. Also referred to “Lift and Shift”. You lift your services and applications from your hosting environment and shift them to cloud using a third party exporting tool.
  2. Replatform:- You have an outdated version of your application running on your hosting environment so you have to modify your application and then Rehost it. Replatform is a modification of “Lift and Shift”. It involves optimizing the cloud architecture to achieve the benefits without changing the core architecture of the application.
  3. Repurchase:- There would be certain applications that won’t be compatible with the new architecture. In that case, you need to purchase a new application for the new architecture. AWS Marketplace provides a wide range of services that too with a “Pay as you Use” model. Repurchase is also referred to as “drop and shop” where you upgrade, ease the implementation and accept the new architecture and make changes to the existing model.
  4. Refactor:- You want to add up new features, scale up the limits of the existing business model and performance that are difficult with the existing environment. You reconsider your needs, though the solution is a bit expensive. Improving business by moving to a service-oriented architecture (SOA) will benefit your business in the longer run.
  5. Retire:-  After AWS Migration you can differentiate between useful and useless resources. Hence, you cut off all the resources that are no longer useful to the business and build a strategy around the new resources. This will cut down the extra cost. With lesser things to worry about, now you can focus on maintaining the resources used by the new business model.
  6. Retain:- As you know, the sections of your project you need to migrate. You can simply use any of the above-mentioned strategies. Then, build a strategy to retain those applications, which, according to your business model are yet not ready to be migrated to the cloud or the applications that were upgraded recently.

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We saw the different strategies, together known as 6 R’s, one should choose wisely while AWS Migration. Now let’s see the bigger picture that lies after implementing AWS Migration.

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Benefits Of AWS Migration

AWS Migration gives your organization limitless benefits. Let’s look into the major ones in brief.Benefits Of AWS MIgration - Aws Migration - Edureka

  1. Elasticity:- Adding and Removing capacity whenever it is needed is the greatest benefits of elasticity.
  2. Disaster Recovery:- With a 99.95% guaranteed uptime, businesses can be confident knowing that their data will always be available.
  3. Enhanced Cost Management:- The IaaS platform provides two major benefits. First, an IaaS such as Amazon Web Services is available as a monthly service. Secondly, it eliminates the need to continue to purchase and maintain physical hardware.

These were the benefits of AWS Migration. Let’s jump into the services offered by AWS to ease the process of Migration.

Services For AWS Migration

Out of the many tools provided by Amazon to automate data migration, I’ll be talking about the more commonly used ones.

Migration Hub - Aws Migration - EdurekaAWS Migration hubAWS provides a single location for tracking Migration process. Migration Hub gives you the freedom to choose the Migration partner and tools that fit your needs.


AWS Server Migration service (SMS): AWS SMS is an agentless service that helps migrate loads of on-premise workload to AWS easier and faster. It allows you to automate Migration and track replication of Server. It makes coordinating with your large scale-server Migration easy.


Amazon S3 transfer accelerationThis makes the transfer of files over long range to AWS S3 bucket faster and secure.


AWS Snowball: It is a petabyte-scale data transfer solution that uses secure devices to transfer a Aws Snowball - Aws Migration - Edurekalarge amount of data in and out of AWS.


AWS Snowmobile - Aws Migration - EdurekaAWS Snowmobile: It is an exabyte scale data transfer solution to move an extremely large amount of data to AWS. Snowmobile makes the transfer of massive volumes of data easier.


Amazon Kinesis FirehoseIt is the easiest out of all the methods. It can capture and automatically loadAmazon Kinesis Firehose - Aws Migration - Edureka
streaming data into Amazon S3. You can analyze real-time data to get timely insights of Migration.

Now that you know everything about AWS, and AWS Migration, let me show you a use case where you will be migrating a Virtual OS from my local machine to AWS Cloud.

Demo: Implementing Migration using Import/ Export method

You will be migrating an on-premise Virtual OS running on VMWare to AWS using Import/Export (AWS Direct Connect) method.


  1. VMware Workstation installed on your Local Machine
  2. Running AWS Account
  3. Created IAM User On AWS
  4. AWS CLI Configured On Your Local Machine
  5. Created S3 Bucket on AWS

1. Create a .vmdk export file for Ubuntu 14.04.

VM Import Vmdk File - Aws Migration - Edureka

2. Download & configure AWS CLI.

Upload File To S3 Using Aws Cli - Aws Migration - Edureka

3. Create an IAM User.

Create IAM User - Aws Migration - Edureka

Now click on “Add User”.

Create IAM User - Aws Migration - EdurekaNext, select a unique User name.

Create IAM User - Aws Migration - Edureka

Now give Administrator access.

Create IAM User - Aws Migration - Edureka

Click on Create User.

Create IAM User - Aws Migration - Edureka

4. Create an S3 bucket and add file(image file of the OS).

Create S3 Bucket - Aws Migration - Edureka

Select a unique Username.

Create S3 Bucket - Aws Migration - Edureka

Review and Create Bucket.

Create S3 Bucket - Aws Migration - Edureka

Add the exported .vmdk file.

Upload File To S3 Bucket - Aws Migration - EdurekaClick on Upload.

Upload File To S3 Bucket - Aws Migration - Edureka

Wait till the image reflect on the list.

Upload File To S3 Bucket - Aws Migration - Edureka

5. You can upload the file using AWS CLI also.

Aws Command To Upload File To S3 Bucket - Aws Migration - Edureka

6. Once the file is uploaded, create an AMI in AWS for the imported image file.

Creating AMI From The Imported Vmdk Image - Aws Migration - Edureka

Your image is now available as an AMI.

Final Screen Showing The Created AMI - Aws Migration - Edureka

7. You can run the AMI created in two ways:-
     7 (a). Using CMDER :
             Copy the connection string and paste it to the CMDER Console, it will take few minutes to connect and then will open your Ubuntu 14.04.

    7 (b). Using Putty :
          Configure the .pem file to your Putty and provide the username and the connection string. It will show initializing and few minutes later you will land on to Ubuntu 14.04.

In this way, we have successfully migrated a virtual OS on AWS. I hope you enjoyed reading this AWS Migration article. 

To learn the fundamentals of AWS, Cloud Computing and explain the various AWS migration concepts, check out the following video

If you want the source code to configure AWS CLI, please comment below.

Got a question for us? Please mention it in the comments section of ”AWS Migration” and we will get back to you.

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How to Migrate On-Premise Application To AWS Cloud?