Cisco and VMware are currently working on a new technology called Long Distance vMotion. This makes it possible to move application workloads between multiple datacenters without any downtime. The vMotion technology is already available within VMware vSphere. It is used to migrate one VM from one host to another or wit Storage vMotion move the VMs data from one storage location to another. This with the machine being fully operable and available to the end-user.
The changing model of data center management and provisioning allows VMware VMotion to be used for several purposes without violating the application SLAs.
● Data center maintenance without downtime: Applications on a server or data center infrastructure requiring maintenance can be migrated offsite without downtime.
● Disaster avoidance: Data centers in the path of natural calamities (such as hurricanes) can proactively migrate the mission-critical application environments to another data center.
● Data center migration or consolidation: Migrate applications from one data center to another without business downtime as part of a data center migration or consolidation effort.
● Data center expansion: Migrate virtual machines to a secondary data center as part of data center expansion to address power, cooling, and space constraints in the primary data center.
● Workload balancing across multiple sites: Migrate virtual machines between data centers to provide compute power from data centers closer to the clients (“follow the sun”) or to load-balance across multiple sites. Enterprises with multiple sites can also conserve power and reduce cooling costs by dynamically consolidating virtual machines into fewer data centers (automated by VMware Dynamic Power Management [DPM]), another feature enabling the green data center of the future.
In these cases the secondary cloud can be provided by a service provider through a “virtual private cloud” connected to your “internal cloud”. Bringing down the TCO of your server infrastructure, using capacity in the secondary datacenter only when you need it and making use of a pay-per-use model for the consumed capacity. So this technology is a real cloud enabler!
Read the paper on this subject created by Cisco and VMware here.