AWS 101: How to Simplify AWS Database Migration

When it comes to database migration, all organizations have one goal: making the switch as quickly, seamlessly and securely as possible. If you’re in the AWS cloud, that’s where AWS Database Migration Service (DMS) comes in handy.

We briefly touched on this service in another blog, AWS 101: A Look at AWS Database Services. That piece gave you a basic overview of the service. Now let’s explore how to simplify your AWS database migration. You can do this with one tool: AWS Database Migration Service, a key component to consider when you're developing a data strategy.

What is AWS Database Migration Service

AWS Database Migration Service is tried and true. Amazon Web Services reports that users have successfully migrated more than 350,000 databases using DMS. That’s a lot of migrated data.

two colleagues discussing dataAWS DMS helps you make smart decisions and manages all of the complexities that come with typical database migrations. It ensures your source database remains fully operational during the migration process, without any changes to it. This minimizes downtime for all of your crucial apps relying on this database.

It also supports both homogeneous and heterogeneous database migrations. Homogenous migrations are ones where you are migrating data between the same kind of databases, such as Oracle-to-Oracle migration. Conversely, in heterogeneous migrations, DMS will transfer data between different types of databases, such as Oracle to Amazon Aurora or Amazon Redshift, for instance.

What are the Other Benefits of AWS Database Migration Service?

Besides keeping your source database running during both homogeneous and heterogeneous migrations, AWS Database Service eases a number of other process-related pain points.

You don’t need to install any drivers or software for your migrations. Instead, you simplify AWS database migration by starting the process with just a few clicks. AWS notes that most data replication tasks can be set up in less than 10 minutes in the AWS Management Console when you activate the Migration Wizard. All you have to do is:

  • Specify your source and target endpoints
  • Select or create a replication instance
  • Accept default schema mapping rules or create your own

Technician sitting on floor working on laptop in data centerOne thing to keep in mind is that you can set up the process as a one-time migration or as an ongoing replication task. The latter helps you keep your source and target databases in sync by continuously supplying the target database with source changes. This is done with minimal latency.

As soon as you complete the Wizard, your migration will start. Once it does, DMS monitors your source and target endpoints, the replication instances and network availability. It is highly resilient and self-healing so if any disruption occurs, the process automatically restarts and continues from where it left off before the interruption without affecting your source database.

You can switch your production environment over to the new database once the target database is caught up with the source database if you have opted to do a one-time migration. If you choose to perform ongoing replication, the task will run until you change it or end it. It doesn’t stop and switch over automatically.

When you use AWS DMS, you pay only for the services that you use during migration. You also will have to pay for any additional log storage. AWS indicates that database migration using DMS can cost as little as $3/terabyte for both homogeneous and heterogeneous supported-database migrations.

Dive into the many other services AWS offers with these other blogs in our AWS 101 series:

AWS 101: An Introduction to Modern Cloud Computing

AWS 101: What is Amazon WorkSpaces?

AWS 101: How Does Amazon EC2 Work in Cloud Computing?

AWS 101: What is Amazon S3 and Why Should I Use It?

AWS 101: How AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM) Works

AWS 101: How AWS Cloud Security Securely Protects Your Data

AWS 101: Why You Should Be Deploying AWS Lambda to Run Code

AWS 101: Using AWS Auto Scaling to Manage Infrastructure

AWS 101: What is Amazon Route 53?

AWS 101: What is Amazon S3 Glacier Storage?

AWS 101: A Look at AWS Database Services

AWS 101: Understanding Amazon Elastic Block Store

AWS 101: Monitoring with Amazon CloudWatch

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Meet the Author

Gerald Van Guilder, Senior Cloud Architect

Gerald Van Guilder, Senior Cloud Architect

Gerald (Jerry) Van Guilder specializes in GCP and AWS architecture, deployments/implementations and migrations. One of the many things that he enjoys is enabling clients to feel empowered not only by technologies but also in the skill/knowledge transfer that transpires during the course of an engagement. Jerry lives (and works) in Syracuse, New York, with his wife and two pups.

More Posts By Gerald Van Guilder, Senior Cloud Architect