Overview

Transfer Appliance is a high-capacity storage device that enables you to transfer and securely ship your data to a Google upload facility, where we upload your data to Cloud Storage. This page describes features for the 4.0 firmware models, TA40 and TA300. For Transfer Appliance 4.0 firmware capacities and requirements, see Specifications.

How it works

Request an appliance: We'll work with you to select the appropriate appliance for your requirements.
Upload your data: Linux and apple MacOS systems mount the NFS share exposed by the appliance. Windows systems use SCP or SSH to upload data to the appliance.
Ship the appliance back: Complete the transfer and seal the appliance.
Google uploads the data: We upload the data to your Cloud Storage bucket, then wipe the appliance when we're done.
Transfer is complete! You can now access your data in Google Cloud.

Security features

Your data and network security is important. Transfer Appliance helps ensure that you're connecting a trusted device to your equipment and network, and secures your data from end to end so that it is read by people you trust.

To ensure Transfer Appliance is trusted and safe to connect to your devices, Transfer Appliance offers the following features:

  • Tamper resistant—Bad actors cannot easily open Transfer Appliance's physical case. We also apply tamper-evident tags to the shipping case, so that you can visually inspect each appliance's integrity prior to opening the package.

  • Ruggedized—Transfer Appliance's shipping container is ruggedized, ensuring your data arrives safely.

  • Trusted Platform Module (TPM) chip—We validate the TPM's Platform Configuration Registers to ensure that the immutable root filesystem and software components haven't been tampered with.

  • Hardware attestation—We use a remote attestation process to validate the appliance before you can connect it to your device and copy data to it. If anything is amiss, we work with you to quickly send you a new appliance.

To ensure your data is safe during and after transit, Transfer Appliance uses the following features to protect you:

  • AES 256 encryption—Your data is encrypted with industry-standard encryption to keep it safe.

  • Customer-managed encryption keys—We use encryption keys that you manage using Cloud Key Management Service (Cloud KMS), enabling you to control and secure your data prior to shipping an appliance back to us.

  • NIST 800-88 compliant data erasure—We securely erase your data from Transfer Appliance after uploading your data to Cloud Storage. You can request a wipe certificate to verify that we've wiped your data.

For more information, see Security and encryption.

Performance

To enable you move data quickly and efficiently, Transfer Appliance has the following performance features:

  • All SSD drives—Increased reliability over hard disk drives to ensure your transfer is smooth.

  • Multiple network connectivity options—Quickly move data from your devices to Transfer Appliance, using either a 10Gbps RJ45 interface or a 40Gbps QSFP+ interface.

  • Scalability with multiple appliances—You can scale your transfers by ordering multiple appliance to increase your transfer speed.

  • Globally distributed processing—Reduced shipping times to and from Google ensures your data transfer to Cloud Storage is quick.

  • Minimal software—For Linux and Apple macOS systems, copy directly to Transfer Appliance by mounting the exposed NFS share on the appliance to your workstation, using common software already installed on the system. For Microsoft Windows systems, copy directly to Transfer Appliance from your workstation using SCP.

Is Transfer Appliance suitable for me?

Transfer Appliance is a good fit for your data transfer needs if:

  • You are an existing Google Cloud Platform (GCP) customer.
  • Your data size is greater than or equal to 10TB.
  • Your data resides in locations that Transfer Appliance is available.
  • It would take more than one week to upload your data over the network.

Other transfer options

Other Google Cloud transfer options include:

Transfer Appliance versions

Transfer Appliance offers the following firmware and hardware versions:

  • 2.2 firmware: This is a legacy firmware, offered in the TA100 and TA480 models using hard-disk drive technology. For more information on the 2.2 models, see the Transfer Appliance TA100/TA480 Overview.

  • 4.0 firmware: Our current firmware, offered in the TA40 and TA300 models using solid-state disk drive techology.

Where is Transfer Appliance available?

Transfer Appliance is available in the following locations:

Location TA40 TA300
United States
Canada
European Union
Norway
Switzerland

Data transfer speeds

With a typical network bandwidth of 100 Mbps, one petabyte of data takes about 3 years to upload. However, with Transfer Appliance, you can receive the appliance and capture a petabyte of data in under 25 days. Your data can be accessed in Cloud Storage within another 25 days, all without consuming any outbound network bandwidth.

Refer to the following table to see the approximate upload time for your dataset, based on size and network speed.

Dataset upload times.

Example use cases

Data collection

If you need to transfer data from researchers, vendors, or other sites to Google Cloud, Transfer Appliance can move that data for you. Once transferred to Cloud Storage or BigQuery, your data is accessible via our Dataflow processing service for machine learning projects. Google Cloud Machine Learning Engine is a managed service that enables you to easily build machine learning models, that work on any type of data, of any size.

Data replication

Transfer Appliance can assist you in taking advantage of hybrid architectures, supporting current operations with existing on-premises infrastructure while experimenting with the cloud. By transferring a copy of your data to Google Cloud, you can decommission duplicate datasets, test cloud infrastructure, and expose your data to machine learning and analysis.

Data migration

Offline data transfer is suited for moving large amounts of existing backup images and archives to ultra low-cost, highly-durable, and highly available archival storage offered through Google’s Cloud Storage Nearline and Cloud Storage Coldline storage classes. For other structured and unstructured data sets, whether they are small and frequently accessed or huge and rarely referenced, Google offers solutions like Google Cloud Storage, BigQuery or Dataproc to store and analyze that data.

Data handling for the European Union

For customers in the EU, appliances are shipped from Belgium. When data capture is complete, you ship the appliance to Belgium for data upload. Your data is then uploaded to a Cloud Storage location in a region that you have specified. If you choose a destination region within the EU, your data never leaves the boundaries of the European Union during any part of the data transfer process.

What's next?