Private Cloud Platforms comparison & reviews

Summary
Rank
2nd 3rd 1st
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by John Gallucci Luciano Taranto
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  • Fully Supported
  • Limitation
  • Not Supported
  • Information Only
Pros
  • + Full-Fledged IaaS
  • + Mature Vendor
  • + Enterprise Solution
  • + Mature on-prem IaaS solution
  • + High-fidelity implementation of AWS APIs
  • + Proven at scale over years of operation
  • + True Disconnected Offering of Cloud System
  • + IaaS and PaaS Solution
  • + Enterprise Solution
Cons
  • - Complex
  • - Little PaaS Capability
  • - Heavily Dependent on Underlying Hardware
  • - Recent acquisition concerns
  • - No administrative GUI
  • - Missing features beyond API compatability
  • - Disconnected Mode Only Billed as Capacity
  • - New to Market
  • - Closed Solution
  Content  
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Content Creator
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Overview
VMware Cloud Foundation is an integrated software stack which bundles VMware components (see details)
Integrated software stack with AWS-compatible IaaS services.
Azure Stack is Microsofts extension of Azure that provides a way to deliver Azure services in an on-premises environment. (see details)
  Assessment  
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Maturity
VMware is a strong contender in the marketplace and VCF is comprised of components that have been tried and tested in the datacenter
Based on the Eucalyptus code-base that has been in production for over a decade, powering installations beyond 200K cores in size.
Azure Stack was made publicly available June of 2017 and builds off of Azure which has been available since February of 2010
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Disconnected Offering
VMware Cloud Foundation can be deployed on premises as a stack for a private cloud
Can be deployed in a disconnected environment
Azure Stack can be deployed in disconnected mode
Infrastructure Services expand
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  Compute  
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Virtual servers
VMware Cloud Foundation bundles vSphere which includes the ESXi virtualization platform for creating and running virtual machines and virtual appliances
Virtual servers are called cloud instances (equivalent to EC2 instances in AWS)
Azure Stack allows for the deployment of virtual servers called virtual machines
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VM Type - General Purpose
You can configure the virtual machine hardware to take advantage of the underlying hosts hardware
Virtual machine hardware can be configured to take full advantage of the underlying hosts hardware. A collection of instance types can be customized in terms of vCPUs, memory, and disk.
General purpose VMs are Basic A, Standard A, Av2-series, D-series, DS-series, Dv2-series, DSv2-series
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VM Type - Compute Optimized
You can configure the virtual machine hardware to take advantage of the underlying hosts hardware. For compute optimized instances, you would increase the CPU resources
Compute-optimized instance types can be customized by modifying the instance type
Computed optimized VMs are F-series, Fs-series, Fsv2-series
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VM Type - Memory Optimized
You can configure the virtual machine hardware to take advantage of the underlying hosts hardware. For memory optimized instances, you would increase the memory resources
Memory-optimized instance types can be customized by modifying the instance type
Memory optimized VMs are D-series, DS-series, Dv2-series, DSv2-series
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VM Type - Accelerated (GPU)
You can configure the virtual machine hardware to take advantage of the underlying hosts GPU hardware
GPU instance types can be customized through advanced configuration only. No official documentation.
There are no accelerated VM offerings with a GPU
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Metadata URL
There is no built-in way to access this functionality. (see details)
Metadata URL, featuring EC2-compatible information and thus compatible with cloud-init, is reachable from instances.
While Azure has an Instance Metadata service, this functionality is not currently supported on Azure Stack
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Rapid Provisioning
You can easily deploy VMs using a wizard, template, or cloning another VM
System components enable fast provisioning, particularly of EBS-backed instances.
You can easily and quickly deploy virtual machines using the Azure Stack console
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Resize existing VM
You can easily resize an existing VM by changing its virtual hardware after creation such as CPU and memory
EBS-backed instances can be resized after stopping by modifying InstanceType attribute via ModifyInstanceAttribute request (in CLI or Console).
This functionality is supported in Azure Stack as well
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Resource Management
Resources can be managed from either the vSphere Web Client or the vSphere Client
Resources can be managed from either the Console or CLI/API
The Azure Resource Manager provides a platform to manage all resources deployed within the Azure Stack
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Scalability
There is no vSphere functionality to easily scale up or down VMs from the console
AWS AutoScaling APIs are supported, with performance-based triggers for up- and down-scaling.
Azure Stack includes scale sets which allow for automatic scaling of instances based on load
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VM Imaging
You can clone a virtual machine to a template which can then be used to deploy other virtual machines later
Images (akin to AMIs and AKIs) can be created and shared with other cloud users. Existing instances can be saved into an image.
You can create and publish a custom marketplace item
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VM Import/Export
You can import and export virtual machines in the OVF and OVA formats
Instances can be imported using raw disk or VHD formats. Exports done manually at hypervisor level. No API support for the operation exists.
You can import and export a disk used by a VM. In addition, you may be able to import/export a VM state but this is not confirmed (see details)
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VM live migration
You can perform a live migration of a virtual machine without affecting availability, called a hot migration, using vMotion
VMs can be live-migrated using CLI / API. In the event of a host failure instances to not automatically restart.
Azure Stack supports live VM migration as a preventative measure to protect resources from failing hardware
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VM to host affinity
You can create VM to host affinity rules within a DRS cluster
Not supported. Can only be achieved by backend administration using instance migration.
This capability is not supported by Azure Stack
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VM to host anti-affinity
You can create VM to host anti-affinity rules within a DRS cluster
Not supported. Can only be achieved by backend administration using instance migration.
Azure Stack provides Availability Sets which replicate the VM across different hosts for high availability thus enforcing host anti-affinity
  Networking  
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Cloud virtual networking
VMware Cloud Foundation bundles NSX Data Center for vSphere which provides a platform programmatically managing software-defined virtual networks
Overlays a virtual network on top of your existing network. Supports EDGE (EC2 Classic) and VPCMIDO (AWS VPC) modes.
The Network Resource Provider delivers a series of Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV) features
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Cross-premises connectivity
The VCF platform is integrated into the customer datacenter and provides cross-premises connectivity to other customer networks
Support for AWS VPN Gateway is available but only when using VPCMIDO network mode.
Cross-premises connectivity can be established in Azure Stacks which are deployed in the connected mode
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DNS hostname resolution
You can install NSX Edge as an Edge Services Gateway (ESG) between networks which will then allow you to configure external DNS servers. (see details)
DNS names for VM instances is supported automatically
Azure Stack supports DNS hostname resolution
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DNS zone management
No mention in documentation. Functionality would need to be built up by the end-user and then VMware components can take advantage of it
No mention in the documentation
Azure Stack supports the creation and management of DNS zones and records using both the console and the API
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IP reassignment
You can statically set an VMs IP address from vSphere as well as specify a network protocol which is a pool of IPv4 and IPv6 addresses that vCenter will assign to virtual machines
Elastic IP and Elastic Network Interface functionality enables flexible IP address assignment.
You can reassign an IP by modifying the virtual network interface or by deleting it and creating a new one (Experience)
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Load balancing
You can install NSX Edge as an Edge Services Gateway (ESG) and take advantage of the logical load balancer
Elastic Load Balancer is an included service.
The Azure Stack provides load balancing functionality
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Network Interfaces
Virtual machines can have a variety of different network adapters added and configured
Elastic Network Interface functionality allows attaching and detaching of virtual NICs to instances
You can create and modify network interfaces attached to virtual machines (Experience)
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Outbound Network Connectivity
You can connect virtual machines to the physical network
Can be configured to connect to external networks with both EDGE (EC2 Classic) and VPCMIDO (Amazon VPC) networking modes.
The Azure Stack is integrated into the customers datacenter and has outbound network connectivity to the customers border
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Public IP Address
You can connect virtual machines to the physical network
Public IP addresses can be assigned to instances either automatically or from a pool of Elastic IP addresses.
Azure Stack supports IPv4 public addresses
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SR-IOV support
There is a specific network adapter type (SR-IOV passthrough) designed to enable and support SR-IOV networking
Can be customized to use SR-IOV for instance networking by advanced configuration only. No official documentation.
No mention of this capability for Azure Stack
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VM Security Groups
Virtual Machines can be added to a security group which has a specific network security policy applied to it
Instances can be added to a security group which has a specific network security policy applied to it.
VM Security groups are provided as network security groups
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Virtual Network Peering
You can set up cross-vCenter deployments as well as implement VPNs to access corporate and other cloud networks securely
Ability to create a peering connection between two VPCs is supported.
Not supported as of 20190124
  Storage  
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Object storage
No mention in the documentation
Supports S3-compatible object storage using its Object Storage Gateway (OSG)
Azure Stack provides blob storage for object storage
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Block storage
vSphere provides a variety of different storage options and functionalities
Elastic Block Storage (EBS) provides block-level storage volumes that you can attach to instances.
Azure Stack supports page blobs which are the equivalent of block storage
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Shared file storage
VMWare provides NFS but not SMB storage solutions
Shared file storage is not supported.
Azure Stack does not provide a SMB or NFS solution
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Backup
VCF provides backup and restore capability of components
Procedures for backing up and restoring everything except root disks of instance-store (ephemeral) instances are documented.
Microsoft Azure Backup Server can be used to back up data within Azure Stack (see details)
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Local Data Protection
Virtual Volumes support replication capabilities for disaster recovery
Relies on replication features of underlying software and hardware (RAID and Ceph) for local data protection from hardware failures.
Local data is encrypted and replicated across nodes in case of hardware failure