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With almost 200 VM workloads across three data centres, nib appointed Mantel Group to undertake a mass migration to VMC on AWS in late 2018.

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Key Takeaways


Clear objective established to exit on-premises data centres


Project delivered within limited timeframe


Business as usual operations maintained

Company Overview

nib Group is a trusted international health partner, empowering members to make better decisions and improve health outcomes through greater accessibility to affordable health services and information.

nib Group provides health and medical insurance to over 1.4 million Australian and New Zealand residents and is Australia’s third largest travel insurer and global distributor of travel insurance through their business, nib Travel, providing financial protection and assurance to travellers wherever they are in the world.

The Problem

nib travel were required to exit multiple data centres in less than a year.

With almost 200 VM workloads across three data centres, nib appointed us to undertake a mass migration to VMC on AWS in late 2018. It was critical that ‘business as usual’ operations were maintained during the migration.

Other business requirements included that the nib travel technical team were brought along for the journey to ensure complete knowledge transfer and hand over at the completion of the project.

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The Solution

Following an extensive discovery process, the project deployed new AWS accounts with a landing zone for native services which would be linked to the VMC on AWS account.

A Transit Gateway was deployed for its capability to use route domains (VRFs) to manage traffic between the existing cloud native environments, and the new VMC environment.

A primary consideration was maintaining the complete separation of non-production and production environments, where the VMware environment being moved needed network access to both, and ensuring that transitive routing did not accidentally occur at the VMware layer.

An existing Direct Connect was used for migration traffic from VMware On-prem, and a new direct connect established for the VMC traffic.

To reduce the amount of storage required to be hosted by the VMC hosts using VSAN, a Volume Storage Gateway was established within the VMC, backed by S3, and the volumes mounted via iSCSI on the guest VMs.

Migrations were sequenced by data centre and VLAN, with extensive migration planning. The VMs were seeded to VMC on AWS using Replication Assisted Vmotion which allowed for a co-ordinated cutover at a predictable time, with no outage.

For a small number of critical business systems, the decision was made to take a maintenance window (common for these systems), and use a migration approach which consisted of a shutdown to ensure storage consistency, move the storage, and restart in the cloud.

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The Results

nib travel was able to meet its objective of an all-in-on-one AWS cloud platform within its migration timeframe of around 9 months.

This included the discovery program of work, AWS foundation build and application migration without interruption to ‘business as usual’ operations.

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