Google Cloud reference architecture

Velostrata provides a path for you to migrate your virtual machines (VMs) running on VMware vSphere to Google Cloud Platform (GCP). Velostrata can also migrate your physical servers and AWS EC2 Instances to GCP.

The primary components of a Velostrata installation are:


  • The Velostrata Manager on GCP manages all components and orchestrates migrations. It also serves the Velostrata UI.
  • Cloud Extensions handle storage migrations and serve data to migrated workloads during migration. A Cloud Extension is a pair of Cloud Edge nodes.
  • The Velostrata Exporter creates GCP Persistent Disks when detaching disks.


  • The Velostrata On-Premises Backend virtual appliance serves data from VMware to the cloud extension.
  • The Velostrata vCenter Plugin connects vCenter vSphere to the Velostrata Manager.


  • The Velostrata Importer serves data from AWS Elastic Block Store volumes to Cloud Extensions.

Velostrata Architecture, showing all components of the infrastructure

Core technologies

Velostrata's decouples VMs from their storage and introduces capabilities that ease your move to GCP, including:

  • Easy deployment: Install Velostrata virtual appliances in just a few steps, without installing agents on servers.
  • Simple management in vCenter for VMware migrations: A plug-in flattens the learning curve for VMware administrators. Integration with tasks, events, and alarms provides visibility and control over migration.
  • Secure by design: Data transfers between Velostrata components use SSL and AES-128 encryption. Data at rest is de-duplicated, compressed, and encrypted with AES-256.
  • Boot over WAN: Velostrata performs a native boot in the cloud from your VMs in a few minutes, regardless of image size. While the image boots, Velostrata adapts it for the target environment. No changes to the application, original image, storage, drivers, or networking are necessary.
  • Intelligent streaming: Velostrata prioritizes the data necessary for an application to run and moves that data to the cloud first. Other data is streamed to the cloud when needed.
  • Multi-tier caching and optimization: Velostrata includes a multi-tier, read-write cache in the cloud. This cache stores data needed by the application. De-duplication, pre-fetching, asynchronous write-back, and network optimizations further accelerate the migration, reducing migration bandwidth by up to 75% in production migrations.
  • Resiliency: Velostrata Cloud Extensions use an active-passive configuration across two availability zones. Data is written in both zones and then asynchronously transferred back on premises to reduce the risk of data loss. Optionally, writes can persist solely in the cloud for development and testing.

    The recovery point objective (RPO) is the maximum acceptable length of time during which data might be lost due to an incident. Velostrata's architecture ensures a 30-second RPO for sync to Google Cloud Storage in the rare case of a dual zone failure and a 1-hour RPO for sync on-premises.

  • Supports multiple operating systems: See the list of Supported OS Versions.


A typical Velostrata deployment architecture consists of two parts:

The following diagram depicts a typical Velostrata deployment with GCP.

Velostrata deployment showing the logical connections between all components

On the left is the corporate data center (on-premises), and on the right is a GCP Virtual Private Cloud. The two connect using a Cloud VPN or Cloud Interconnect.

Other supported deployment architectures include:

  • Cloud-to-cloud migrations from AWS to GCP
  • Hybrid migrations from both on-premises and AWS to GCP

On Google Cloud Platform

Use the GCP Marketplace to deploy the Velostrata Manager on GCP. It orchestrates migration operations and serves the web UI. The Velostrata Manager connects with the Velostrata On-Premises Backend virtual appliance and accesses GCP API endpoints as well as Stackdriver Monitoring and Logs services.

Once you launch the Velostrata Manager and connect it to the Velostrata Backend, create Cloud Extensions, which manage storage migration. The Cloud Extension nodes (also known as Cloud Edge nodes) run in pairs in separate GCP zones.

In general, the Velostrata Manager and Cloud Extension require inbound access from the corporate data center to GCP. Inbound iSCSI access from on-premises VMs migrated to GCP into the Cloud Extension nodes is necessary to migrate storage.

Subnets where Cloud Extension nodes are deployed must allow outbound access to certain services, such as Cloud Storage and Stackdriver Monitoring.

Corporate data center

When performing on-premises to cloud migrations, the Velostrata On-Premises Backend virtual appliance on VMware:

  • Establishes a secure datapath with the Cloud Extension nodes.
  • Starts and stops VMs using VMware APIs.
  • Performs storage operations against virtual machine disks (VMDKs) using the VMware Storage API.


For migrations from AWS to GCP, the Velostrata Manager launches Importer instances on AWS as needed to migrate AWS EC2 source workloads and their EBS volumes. These instances run only when data is being migrated.

What's next

For a quick walkthrough of Velostrata's functionality, see Getting started with Velostrata.

For more information about a recommended Virtual Private Cloud configuration, see GCP account and Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) setup requirements.



Migrate for Compute Engine (formerly Velostrata)