Microsoft Answers AWS Snowball With Azure Data Box

Microsoft Answers AWS Snowball With Azure Data Box

Microsoft joins rivals Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud Platform (GCP), to offer customers an appliance that can physically transfer large amounts of data from their on premises environments to the cloud.
The new Azure DataBox appliance, which was unveiled last week at Microsoft Ignite, is now available for public preview to both Microsoft ISV partners and customer organizations based in the United States.
The Azure Data Box, which is similar to AWS Snowball and can be used by companies as a digital briefcase to transfer large quantities of data from their datacenters into the Azure cloud. The appliance can be rented from Microsoft. Users connect the appliance to their network and transfer their data to the appliance. Microsoft will then upload the data back to Azure. This process is designed to speed up the process of migrating terabytes to petabytes of data to the cloud. This can be a lengthy process that can take several months if done over the internet.
Each Azure Data Box is 45 pounds in weight, can store up to 100TB data and supports 256-bit AES encryption. According to Microsoft’s announcement, it integrates with solutions provided by several Microsoft partners such as Veeam, Veritas, Commvault and NetApp to “seamlessly leverage offline transportation to the cloud.”
The Azure Data box opens up another front in the battle between Microsoft and AWS. AWS launched its own cloud migration appliance, Snowball, in 2015. The original Snowball appliance is available in 50TB or 80TB configurations. It can both transfer data and export data to and from AWS cloud.
AWS significantly increased the product’s capabilities late last year by introducing Snowball Edge, which can store 100TB of data, as well as the truck-sized Snowmobile. This is basically a shipping container that can transport 100PB of data.
GCP also offers a physical data transfer service, Transfer Appliance. It was introduced as a beta this July. A single Transfer Appliance is available in 100TB or 480TB versions.