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New Azure VMware Solution updates and global expansion drives customer success

Posted on 5 October, 2021

Corporate Vice President, Azure Dedicated

The pandemic has prompted many organizations to greatly accelerate digital transformation and cloud adoption initiatives to mitigate disruption, gain efficiencies, and take advantage of scalable infrastructure. At Microsoft, we provide our customers with flexibility and choice to adopt the cloud in a way that’s right for their business.

Because every customer starts their cloud journey at a different place, we help enable customers to migrate to the cloud on their terms and maintain support for the business platforms and investments they have today. Azure VMware Solution is one of the key ways we deliver customer choice, and we’ve continued our work to expand regional availability, add new features and deliver more integrations.

Azure VMware Solution is an easy way to extend and migrate existing VMware Private Clouds to run them natively on Azure. Azure VMware Solution offers symmetry with on-premises environments, enabling datacenter migrations to be accelerated, and the benefits of the cloud to be realized sooner. This symmetry also extends to the ability for IT teams to leverage the same VMware skills, processes, and investments made in on-premises VMware environments. Coupled with unique Azure hybrid benefits and Extended Security Updates for Windows Server and SQL Server, Azure VMware Solution is one of the fastest and most cost-effective ways to seamlessly migrate and run VMware in the cloud.

Our approach is clearly resonating with customers across industries, including travel, education, and technology:

Microsoft solutions are driving our digital transformation. Maximizing security and lowering operating costs for existing applications is a critical part of the journey, and with Azure VMware Solution we were able to migrate these to Azure cost-effectively, easily, and quickly.”—Juan Pablo Sanchez Gandur, Cloud Platform Manager, Avianca Airlines.

The cost savings for VMware licensing alone was a big benefit since that’s included with Azure VMware Solution. Gaining that—while eliminating needs for networking equipment, storage hardware, and professional services for deployment—amounts to six figures of savings for the university.”—Mari Lovo, Director of Cloud Infrastructure Services, University of Miami.

Our cloud migration needed to reduce costs associated with operating and maintaining hardware in the data center. We chose Azure VMware Solution because we could maintain the existing operations and management systems for our virtual server estate while reducing the impact to users and avoiding the challenges of a large-scale migration. Azure VMware Solution provided the ability to simultaneously perform bulk VM migration, without disruption to operations for our VMware virtualized environments. At the same time, we could migrate from older versions of the guest OS, and of course benefit from the integration with Azure PaaS services.”—Yoshihito Kimura, Planning Office, Information Systems Service Department, Nihon UNISYS.

Global expansion

Since the launch of Azure VMware Solution a year ago, we’ve been working to support customers globally with geographic expansion. Today, we are adding two new regions for Azure VMware Solution: Brazil South and East US 2. With this, Azure VMware Solution is now available in 17 Azure regions globally.

Geo Availbiltiy for VMworld Blog

While customers look for accelerated lift and shift options for cloud migration, regional availability is one of the most important considerations. To follow the expansion for the service, please reference the Azure products by region web page for more details on future planned availability.

Platform enhancements

Microsoft works closely with VMware engineering teams, our customers, and regulatory bodies to enable Azure VMware Solution to offer a robust and compliant platform for businesses across all industries.

Azure VMware Solution now has over 50 global and industry certifications. Most recently, Azure VMware Solution received a Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) High Provisional Authorization to Operate (P-ATO) issued by the FedRAMP Joint Authorization Board (JAB), in Microsoft Azure. This authorization validates Azure VMware Solution’s security and compliance for a wide range of public sector, industry, and enterprise use cases where handling of highly sensitive, private, and public sector data is involved.

Our partnership with VMware has also been integral to enabling the platform facilitates the core needs of customers. Our respective engineering teams work very closely in the development of the solution based on VMware Cloud Foundation, and together enable you to expand the environment with the latest portfolio of VMware offerings, running on Azure. Our most recent updates in this space include:

  • VMware HCX Enterprise edition is now generally availability on Azure VMware Solution to simplify bulk live migrations from on-premises. Learn more.
  • VMware Site Recovery Manager (SRM) for disaster recovery is now generally available on Azure VMware Solution. Learn more.
  • VMware HCX over SD-WAN is now supported on Azure VMware Solution. Learn more.
  • VMware vRealize Suite is now available on Azure VMware Solution. Learn more.

Our partnership with Microsoft has always centered on solving customer challenges. Our joint efforts on Azure VMware Solution are designed to help customers accelerate their application and cloud modernization initiatives with less risk and better economics than traditional approaches. Customer interest is fueling the rapid growth and expansion of Azure VMware Solution, and we look forward to continuing to support our customers together with Microsoft.”—Mark Lohmeyer, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Cloud Infrastructure Business Group, VMware

Seamless Azure experience

The ability to centrally manage, optimize, and modernize resources overtime has been a core ask from customers as they look to take advantage of Azure’s breadth of services.  Azure VMware Solution is Azure; it is a first-party Azure service that runs VMware in the cloud. And like other Azure services, we are focused on delivering a simplified experience through the Azure Portal for the management of Azure VMware Solution resources. Today I am excited to share several announcements that help simplify the experience for our IT professionals through the Azure Portal:

  • Run commands for Azure VMware Solution is now available in preview. Published in the Azure VMware Solution portal, these Run commands help simplify the execution of certain operations on vCenter. With this feature, customers can now easily run management tasks from Azure that require higher privileges. Learn more.
  • Placement policies for Azure VMware Solution is now in preview, simplifying the process for admins to specify constraints or rules when allocating virtual machines (VMs) within an Azure VMware Solution private cloud. This makes it easier to drive VM performance and availability and reduces the complexity of updating host groups during software-defined data center (SDDC) maintenance operations. Learn more.
  • Azure disk pools for Azure VMware Solution now in preview offering you a persistent storage option so you can gain flexibility for your data needs, with scalable and cost-effective cloud storage for VMware workloads running on Azure. Learn more.
  • Azure VMware Solution Network File System (NFS) datastores on Azure NetApp Files are now in private preview. Like Azure disk pools this will allow you to scale storage for your Azure VMware Solution environment independently of compute. Learn more.

Partner ecosystem integration and growth

The Azure VMware Solution partner ecosystem is essential to helping customers meet their cloud migration objectives. We now have integrations with some of the leading Independent Software Vendor solutions in the VMware ecosystem, and we continue to expand this fantastic network of partners for Azure VMware Solution.

Our partner collaboration also extends to Systems Integrators (SI), where we work closely across our Azure SI community to be Azure VMware Solution ready. One of the key enablers for our SI partners has been the launch of Azure VMware Solution advanced specialization, which helps partners validate, build, and develop necessary skills to execute Azure VMware Solution initiatives.

  • Citrix VDI on Azure VMware Solution is now supported on Azure VMware Solution. Especially in recent times, cloud migration and scale of virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) workloads has been a business priority. Extending our current partnership with Citrix, we now have more options for customers to easily migrate Cirix VDI running on VMware to Azure. Citrix has announced official support for Azure VMware Solution.
  • Jetstream DR for Azure VMware Solution is now in preview, providing customers with disaster recovery (DR) protection needed for business and mission-critical applications, while leveraging cloud storage, such as Azure Blob Storage, for cost-efficiency. Learn more.

Learn more

Azure VMware Solution is available from the Azure Portal today. If you are interested in a trial, please contact your Microsoft account team.

To learn more about Azure VMware Solution, please visit the Azure VMware Solution website. If you would like to stay up to date with the latest releases from Azure VMware Solution, please follow Azure updates.

VMware vRealize is a registered trademarks of VMware, Inc. or its subsidiaries in the United States and other jurisdictions.