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Nutanix Clusters on AWS debuts in 20 cloud regions

In technical preview since 2019, Nutanix Clusters on AWS will enable unified operations across private and public clouds

This article can also be found in the Premium Editorial Download: CW Asia-Pacific: CW APAC: Trend Watch – storage

Nutanix has made its hyperconverged infrastructure software available on bare metal servers hosted on Amazon Web Services (AWS) to tap the growing demand for hybrid cloud management tools.

Called Nutanix Clusters on AWS (NCA), the offering, which integrates compute and storage, will enable unified operations across private and public clouds.

Through integrated networking with AWS, and licence portability from private to public cloud, Nutanix said the offering will address key technical and operational challenges of the hybrid cloud era.

The technology has been in technical preview since 2019, when Nutanix’s former chief technology officer of cloud services, Binny Gill, described it as hybrid cloud offering that delivers true hybridity and elasticity.

“True hybridity calls for using the existing AWS accounts, VPCs [virtual private clouds], virtual private networks [VPNs], Direct Connects while bringing the private and public clouds together,” Gill said in a blog post.

“With NCA, current customers of AWS can leverage their existing environments and launch Nutanix Enterprise Cloud OS within their current environments, without the need to create a new AWS account, VPCs or WAN networking,” he said.

NCA also allows classic apps to be run on the same subnets as cloud-native services and apps, but they will also get native network performance with minimal overheads. Gill said this would simplify migrating apps from the NCA to AWS Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) native and vice versa, without the need of IP address changes or any network reconfiguration.

As for elasticity, Gill said NCA allows for hibernating a running cluster along with its virtual machines for any period of time into Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3).

“During hibernation, no compute costs are incurred. Whenever the workloads are required to run again, the NCA can be resumed and all the workloads are brought to life. This allows for an elastic infrastructure for seasonal but stateful workloads,” he said.

One of the first organisations in the Asia-Pacific region that is likely to sign up for the NCA is the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australia's national statistical agency responsible for, among other things, the Australian Census.

“The Census is Australia’s largest peacetime logistical operation and the increased IT demand needed to support this Census project is one of the main reasons we looked at hybrid cloud platforms. They provide the flexibility and agility needed to adapt to significant spikes in demand,” said Julian Doak, chief information security officer at the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

“We were already Nutanix customers, running our VDI [virtual desktop interface] and analytical workloads in our datacentre, and use AWS. A single cloud solution to manage multiple clouds will make it easier to scale our IT needs.

“Nutanix Clusters provides a seamless way to burst capacity into public clouds to increase our VDI workloads when needed to support Census activities, while knowing all our apps will just work – without needing to repackage or rearchitect them.”

NCA is currently available in 20 AWS regions. Enterprises can use their existing portable Nutanix licences or choose between cloud commit and pay-as-you-go models.

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