Amazon S3 Import/Export Options for Big Data Shipments

Backing up data is a vitally important thing to all organizations, including colleges and universities.  With a warehouse full of past and current students’ data it becomes extremely important to keep this information safe and secure.

Amazon recently announced an Import/Export service for S3 that lets you ship or have them ship a hard drive loaded with hundreds of gigabytes or more that would normally take days or longer to backup through even the fastest data connection.  In the announcement Amazon states:

Amazon Web Services has announced the limited beta of AWS Import/Export, a new offering that accelerates moving large amounts of data into and out of AWS using portable storage devices for transport. For significant data sets, AWS Import/Export is often faster than Internet transfer and more cost effective than upgrading your connectivity. You can use AWS Import/Export for migrating data into the cloud, sending backups to AWS, and interchanging data with others.

You can learn more information about the service on their import/export information page.  The costs are fairly minimal considering the amount of data handled as it is $80 per device and $2.49 per hour for the labor involved in loading the data, plus the standard charges for storing the data on S3.

This service is still very much in a Beta limited environment, but there is some promise in this.  Let’s be honest if you had a T-1 line (1.5Mb per second) it would take over two months to send 1TB of data to Amazon!  When you are talking about that length of time, all of a sudden a few days using UPS suddenly doesn’t seem all that bad.  It will be interesting to watch as more and more companies move to the cloud, but this definitely looks like an extremely interesting tool to help those companies take that leap of faith to pull the trigger and move fast volumes of data.

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  • Flash July 6, 2009