Nutanix ushers its software onto AWS

.NEXT 2019 Nutanix is moving into the hybrid cloud world in a big way by making its software available on AWS.

Customers can launch Nutanix’s Enterprise Cloud OS within their AWS environment via Xi Clusters. They do not need to create a new AWS account, VPCs or WAN networking scheme, Nutanix announced today.

Xi Clusters brings up AOS nodes in AWS bare metal servers. These are managed using Nutanix’s Prism Central console.

With Xi Clusters, the complete Nutanix HCI stack runs directly on AWS EC2 bare metal instances. The bare metal runs the AHV hypervisor and, like an on-premises deployment, runs a Controller Virtual Machine (CVM) with direct access to NVMe instance storage hardware.

Nutanix first mooted deployment on AWS in 2017.

The life of Xi

Xi Clusters allows customers to spin up clusters on bare metal in EC2 on demand and in minutes. The cloud infrastructure is available from AWS at an hourly rate, and this AWS facility can be used for bursting.

AWS bills customers directly for infrastructure spend and Nutanix charges for the cost of Nutanix software when Xi Clusters are used.

With Xi Clusters, classic apps can be on the same subnets as cloud-native services and apps, Nutanix said. Apps can move between the Xi Clusters to AWS EC2 native without IP address changes or network reconfiguration. The company claims the result is native network performance with minimal overheads.

Xi Clusters AWS architecture diagram.

Nutanix has modified its AHV virtualization software to add AWS networking integrations that lower latency and improve performance. When virtual machines (VMs) talk to each other they are directly switched by AWS within the Xi Clusters or to native EC2 VMs.

AWS Xi Clusters can be hibernated in S3 and spun up again when EC2 compute resources are needed. This aids repeated bursting of EOS to AWS instances.

Read a Xi Clusters blog by Nutanix Cloud Services CTO Binny Gill to find out more.