AWS re:Invent 2018: Key Announcements and Insights

AWS-reInvent-2018

Key announcements from AWS re:Invent 2018 that you need to know about.

As always, re:Invent was packed with technical content, hands-on learning experiences, and networking opportunities, this year. With around 65,000 attendees, the event involved five days of sessions and workshops across Las Vegas. With over 70 new product announcements delivered during the course of re:Invent, there was a strong focus on Machine Learning, serverless functions, storage, and compute. From DeepRacer, a 1/18 scale race car that teaches you Machine Learning to AWS Ground Station,  a fully managed service that lets you control satellite communications – and everything in between, AWS continues to build out its robust cloud platform. Let’s dive into a few key announcements that will resonate with our customers at Megaport.

AWS DataSync: Simplify, Automate and Accelerate Online Data Transfer

AWS has released an on-premise software agent to be used with your NFS file systems. It’ll securely automate data transfer from on-premise to S3 of Amazon EFS over your Direct Connect. This is a purpose-built protocol which AWS says will run ten times faster than any open source mechanisms.

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S3 Glacier Deep Archive: Achieve Long-Term Data Retention

It’s time to get rid of that tape storage. S3 Glacier Deep dive is a new storage class for long-term data retention that rarely needs to be accessed. At $1 per TB, per month, you can eliminate your on-premise tape storage and move that data to AWS which can be retrieved within 12 hours. Couple this with AWS Direct Connect support for jumbo frames and Megaport will help you scale up your Direct Connect, transfer the data into AWS, and scale it back down when you are done.

Amazon FSx for Windows File Server

Amazon has built a fully compatible native Windows file system to allow for easier lift and shift to the cloud. You can now migrate your Windows File Servers directly to AWS on a fully managed system with incremental backups taken on a daily basis.

AWS Outposts

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With Outposts, AWS is making a bold move to extend AWS to your on-premise data centre. Customers will be able to order a rack of AWS infrastructure to bring on premise. This will be a fully managed, supported, set of infrastructure that runs native AWS services. As a second option, you can run VMWare on this infrastructure as well.

This is a compelling use case for customers who have been using AWS but have requirements for edge computing where they need to have certain high compute workloads with extremely low latency requirements. This will give you a consistent experience on-premise and in AWS. Couple this with Megaport enabled Direct Connect to provide dedicated, low latency bandwidth between the cloud and your on-premise AWS Outposts.

AWS Transit Gateway

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Transit Gateway provides the ability to attach VPCs and VPN in the same region and route traffic between them, and effectively building out a hub and spoke network topology within AWS. You can also leverage AWS Resource Access Manager to attach VPC across different accounts to the Transit Gateway. As you evaluate Transit Gateways, there are a few things you should take into consideration:

Segmentation – Multiple route tables can be used to provide routing segmentation on a single Transit Gateway. This is a similar construct to Virtual Routing and Forwarding (VRF) providing route table isolation.

Availability Zones – It’s recommended to leverage multiple Availability Zones. This’ll allow you to route traffic from the Transit Gateway in the event that one of the Availability Zones becomes unavailable.  

Potential Limitations

– Only supported via VPN. Direct Connect expected in 2019.

– Does not support overlapping CIDRs between VPC’s.

– Number of transit gateways per Region per account: 5

– Number of transit gateway attachments per VPC: 5

– Number of transit gateway route tables per transit gateway: 20

– Number of routes per transit gateway route table: 10,000

– Total number of transit gateway attachments per Region per account: 5,000

Pricing – AWS Transit Gateway is billed hourly; based on the number of VPC and VPN connections as well as the amount of traffic that traverses the Transit Gateway. Rates vary dependent upon AWS region. Costs are specified on the AWS Transit Gateway pricing page.  

Overall, Transit Gateway is a major announcement that continues to build on AWS’s evolution of virtual networking capabilities. The initial launch supports VPN for hybrid and multicloud connectivity. VPN does have throughput limitations which can be susceptible to public Internet disruptions and could potentially be costly with AWS egress charges. So, we’re excited to partner with AWS to enable Transit Gateway support to all Megaport locations in 2019.

AWS re:Invent didn’t disappoint in 2018 with an array of great product announcements. For on-the-ground coverage from the event, visit our YouTube page. Got any questions about AWS and Megaport? Free free to Tweet us.

Shean Leigon

Author: Shean Leigon

Solutions Architect – North America

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