In a Hurry? Ship Your Storage to Amazon Web Services
Amazon Web Services (AWS) has made available Import/Export for Amazon Elastic Block Store (EBS). In short: If your bandwidth is limited but the amount of data that needs to get into Amazon’s enterprise cloud isn’t, just ship your storage volumes directly to Amazon.
For $80 per USB or eSATA device — plus $2.49 per import-hour — AWS users in the U.S. East and U.S. West regions can leverage the IaaS and cloud infrastructure provider’s internal network. Amazon is promoting Import/Export as an expedient and time-saving measure when ISVs and cloud service providers absolutely need to get data backed up to the cloud over some figuratively narrow tubes. And AWS will even foot the bill for “reasonable” return shipping charges, according to the offering’s product page.
Any data brought into your EBS snapshot via AWS Import/Export is charged at the normal rates, and can be attached to an Amazon EC2 instance. From where I’m standing, it’s part of a larger trend on the part of both Amazon Web Services and competitors such as Microsoft Windows Azure to make it easier to pull data into the cloud.