Virtualization Technology News and Information
Nutanix Launches a VMware to Acropolis Migration Tool Called Xtract for VMs
Nutanix is the latest hypervisor vendor to take a shot across the bow at the reigning virtualization giant, VMware.  How?  You'll still hear the usual cries of "VM Tax" being levied against VMware, but now, Nutanix has gone one step further by releasing its own virtual machine migration tool that moves VMs from VMware ESXi to its own Acropolis hypervisor.  They call it -- Xtract for VMs.

"Xtract for VMs radically simplifies the adoption of Nutanix Enterprise Cloud by automating the manual steps required to move VMs from a VMware ESXi source infrastructure to Nutanix AHV," stated Marc Trouard-Riolle, a Nutanix Sr. Product Marketing Manager.

Trouard-Riolle went on to say that the benefits of migrating workloads in this manner are easily justified:
  • VM migration projects can be considerably quicker to complete than performing manual rebuilds or sourcing and testing replacements products.
  • Automating migrations frees up infrastructure admins' time to carry out other tasks.
  • Automated migrations are not prone to human error, resulting in more consistent migration results
  • Migrating from ESXi to AHV frees up customers' licensing budgets for other projects
Changing a virtual machine's format is nothing new.  It's a "been there, done that."  But Nutanix claims Xtract for VMs goes beyond the basic swapping out of metadata.  Instead, it takes things up a notch by "automatically injecting the required paravirtualized device drivers into the VM, such that when the VM is started on the target platform, it has everything required to deliver the best experience."  And by injecting the drivers at this phase, it also eliminates another set of manual steps during the cut over stage which minimizes any application outage.  Additionally, the necessary scripts are also injected into the VM so that the networking can be appropriately configured on the target VM to ensure static IP addresses are carried over.

Some of the features or abilities found with Xtract for VMs include:
  • Migrate powered on or powered off VMs
  • Pause and resume migration
  • Schedule migration
  • Schedule data-seeding for the virtual machines in advance and cut over to a new AHV cluster
  • Manage VM migration between multiple clusters from a single management interface
  • Sort and group VMs for easy migration
  • Monitor details of migration plan execution even at the individual VM level
  • Cancel in-progress migration for individual VMs
  • Migrate all AHV certified OSes

Adopting new infrastructure platforms often requires a migration of pre-existing systems.  But this new Nutanix Xtract for VMs tool will help simplify bulk migrations of existing VMs to Nutanix, thus eliminating some of the on boarding pains associated with new IT infrastructures.  And with it, organizations can quickly leverage the full potential of Nutanix Enterprise Cloud with near-zero VM downtime during migration.

However, Nutanix isn't the first nor will it be the last to go after the 800 pound gorilla's user base.  In a recent financial update, Nutanix reported that it had around 7,051 customers, and of those, only around a quarter of them use Acropolis as their hypervisor.  That's a very small percentage compared to the massive number of existing VMware ESXi customers.  So Nutanix has a tough row to hoe, with or without a migration tool, to try and migrate folks away from ESXi in favor of Acropolis.  I've said it before, talking with VMware users at VMworld and other VMware events, you hear a similar story of "you'll have to pry VMware ESXi out of my cold dead hands." 

There's an old IT saying that I've modified for 2017 that states, "Nobody ever gets fired for implementing VMware ESXi as their hypervisor." 

Xtract for VMs 1.0 is available for download at no cost to all Nutanix customers.

Up next, watch this Nutanix Xtract for VMs demo:

Published Thursday, October 19, 2017 7:38 AM by David Marshall
There are no comments for this post.
To post a comment, you must be a registered user. Registration is free and easy! Sign up now!
<October 2017>