Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) On VMware

Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS) On VMware

It was great announcement in VMworld Las Vegas and I thought to share some information about this announcement with my readers and followers. Even though it is still under development it is a great start of the VMware on AWS platform. It allows customers to run Amazon RDS Services to VMware Customers on-premises and hybrid environments within few clicks.

Mainly, this Amazon RDS on VMware designed for the applications with high sensitivity to data access latency, legacy and insufficient or fast moving datasets which are difficult to migrate. It helps traditional Database Administrators to more focus on application performance, compatibility and security with the high end automation the tasks such as operating system provisioning, setting up the databases, Operating system and database patching, taking care of backups and restore, scaling up storage and compute resources and the health check of the database instances.

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Amazon RDS On VMware Cloud Features


This service support for several databases and as I mentioned at the starting of this article this services are still underdevelopment and more services will be available in near future.

  • Supported Databases – PostgreSQL, MariaDB, MySQL, Amazon Aurora, Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle databases.
    • PostgresSQL, MariaDB, MySQL and SQL Server services are generally available (GA)
    • PostgresSQL 10.4, MySQL 5.7, SQL Server 2017 (Customer Supplied) services will be starting soon
    • Oracle RDS services is to follow

Availability And Durability

Before start, you have to be a customer of Amazon and whole process will start on the cloud but you can mange your database on-premises. High availability is supported for a single vSphere RDS instance or multiple vSphere instances, similar to multi AZ in AWS.

Read Replica instances are possible to place on on-premises datacenter or any datacenter on boarded in a different place or on the AWS Cloud.

Disaster Recovery options and backups can be stored on local datacenter or cloud. Single click read-only replica promotion is available as part of the recovery mechanism.


Deployments can be automated from RDS Console or the AWS API targeting the vSphere cluster. Planned or automatic OS and Database patching will be taking care of and can be automated. Automatic failure detection and the recovery mechanisms are available for the database instances and with this approach DBAs can more focus on the application optimization while rest of the operation is falling down to the cloud.

User Experience

Console will provide a single pane of glass for all the running database instances.

Amazon RDS On VMware Cloud : Single Pane of Glass
Image courtesy of VMware

vSphere console can be integrated with the vCenter plug-in and vSphere admins have more visibility for the instances. .

Image courtesy of VMware

vROps can be utilized to monitor the local and the entire database stack

Image courtesy of VMware

Also, AWS Cloud Watch can be leverage to monitor the database instances in the cloud console. These parameters can be monitored with Cloud Watch

  • CPU Utilization
  • Storage
  • Memory
  • Swap Usage
  • DB Connections
  • I/O (read and write)
  • Latency (read and write)
  • Throughput (read and write)
  • Replica lag
  • CloudWatch Logs integration

When deploying the RDS instance you can select the On-premises (RDS on VMware) which is normally not available in the AWS RDS Console.

Image courtesy of VMWare

Amazon RDS On VMware Cloud Onboarding Process

Image courtesy of VMWare

Deploying The Custom Availability Zone

This is a one time operation and it allows the vSphere Cluster to become an RDS Custom Availability Zone. It’s an one-to-one relationship with the AWS AZ and the vSphere Cluster.

Setting Up RDS Connector

Download and deploy the RDS connector in to the vCenter server is the next part and it allows the capability to the vSphere to connect with the RDS service.

VPN Connection Configuration With Amazon VPC

This brings the AWS connectivity to the vSphere cluster and RDS Connector should be enabled. Running Multiple clusters behind the same VPN tunnel is not supported at this point but it will support in the future. For a new cluster new VPN should be in place.

Automated Deployment And Configuration Of The Database Instances

As the final step, RDS instances will spin up on the vSphere components to run the RDS on VMware cloud, it completes the onboarding process.

Architecture Of The RDS On VMware

First of all to made the connectivity to the AWS Region, RDS connector should be installed out bound VPN tunnel will create to the single tenant DMZ zone. Connection traffic will made to your VMware cluster through this tunnel. That is the basic process of onboadring the datacenter

Image courtesy of VMware

As part of the preparation of the onboading process customer has to install the Amazon RDS Connector and it will provision collection of RDS Control and VMware control Virtual Machines, these Virtual Machine will allow to take the online snapshots and cloning and management tasks. Application Virtual Machines will interact with the application network.

Image courtesy of VMware

Automatic incremental snapshots will take once a day during the customer given time window. Within 30 days point in time restore can be performed from the snapshots. At the time of writing this article read-only replicas can be provisioned in the same datacenter.

Image courtesy of VMware

Coming Soon…

AWS Based on long term backup retention on cloud and datacenter to datacenter and datacenter to AWS read replicas will be available for Disaster recovery and migration purposes.

Image courtesy of VMware

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