Carbonite Migrate Review

Great tool for one-to-one migration, but not suitable for multi-cloud migration

What is our primary use case?

Technically, we use this product in regards to cloud data infrastructure migration; however, these are all things that are driven by the customer. If they are interested in a solution, we make suggestions and provide recommendations. When it comes to cloud data infrastructure challenges, mostly we are attempting to achieve cloud migration from an infra point of view. That's where tools like Carbonite Migrate and RiverMeadow come in handy.

We use Carbonite Migrate to migrate our customer's data. The migration of data refers to application data and application infrastructure resources — how many Physical/Virtual servers and CPUs, VM’s, Containers, etc. We also focus on Applications data server dependency. In other words, if your application has 10 different servers, then 10 individual servers need to be migrated Afterward, Carbonite Migrate creates an original migration plan for the new environment and lays out the steps to accomplish this. As data migration can be risky, often it creates an automated pathway in order to reduce migration risk. Let's say a customer has a data problem, we then use these tools to gain access to the customer's environment, run an assessment and come up with the best migration route, identify the blockers and in return, they can create a migration plan. That's how we use this solution.

What needs improvement?

Some of the tools relating to multi-cloud migration need to be improved as they have a very limited capability at this point in time. These tools are suitable for one-to-one migration scenarios but they are not fit for multi-cloud or hybrid-cloud environments. I would like to point out that I don't have a hands-on very large scale production implementation experience, as that is the job of our infra team.

As I mentioned earlier, we find it very difficult to use these tools in a multi-cloud environment but they work well for single-cloud environments — from an on-premise environment to the public cloud. These tools are quite limited, making things much more complex in a multi-cloud environment.  

They should add a feature that supports multi-cloud and hybrid-cloud environment migration properly. The world is going to be very different five years from now, how will they support these kinds of container-based migrations? Currently, infrastructure as code is very limited. It's not as simple as just moving the server or data. The customer wants you to move the entire application, exactly as it is, and then deploy it. From that perspective, these tools offer only part of the solution, they are not fulfilling the holistic need, which the customer or organization needs. As of now, Carbonite Migrate is helpful on an infrastructure level. If we had to move 100 applications across a multi-cloud environment, then this solution would not work. 

In the cloud-world (the migration part of it) there needs to be better automation. Let me explain: automation refers to your infra, app, and data. Together, these three components combine and automate will provide you to deploy faster on any cloud platform. As of now, this tool doesn’t fit too much into a multi-cloud environment cloud data migrations. Together, these three components combine and automate it allowing you to deploy it. As of now, these tools cannot deploy it into a multi-cloud environment. That's where the challenge is; that's for other tools. We need to see what this product can do in terms of app, data, and infra. It is automated from the infra point of view, but not in regards to the app and data. 

Other vendors understand this problem and have taken the necessary steps to address it. In short, multi-cloud and hybrid-cloud environments pose a problem for this solution. I would like to know how I can take the automated path — data, app, and infra all together. That is something they need to enhance.

Recently, I have seen a lot of other companies implementing AI-based automation, where more things are taken care of by AI itself, and not people. Many of these migrations are too complex for humans to analyze and form solutions. It is better to use AI platforms to create recommendations and then automate them, that way you can reduce the burden. Currently, the migration time is vast, from six months to one year, it would be impossible to do 100 application migrations. This is very time consuming and needs to be improved. 

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I am not sure about the price of the solution, but it really depends on how much migrating you tend on doing: customer licensing, the way you implement it, how much workload data you're trying to move or migrate. They charge you based on that. Certainly, the cost is a factor where the customer is concerned. I am going to make a  general remark: all of the cloud migration tools generally overcharge. They should bring down the cost but unfortunately, the licensing costs are really high.

Often, customers would like to go with an open-source solution to bring down the cost. We also try to see which vendors are complying with the open-standard as their products are cheaper than their competitors. But generally speaking, these tools are on the more expensive side. 

What other advice do I have?

Overall, out of 10, I would rate Carbonite Migrate a seven. It's quite popular — we are using it, a lot of customers are using it. From an architecture point of view, I'd rate it seven out of ten. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: partner
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