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AWS Application Discovery Service
User Guide

What Is AWS Application Discovery Service?

AWS Application Discovery Service helps you plan your migration to the AWS cloud by collecting usage and configuration data about your on-premises servers. Application Discovery Service is integrated with AWS Migration Hub, which simplifies your migration tracking. After performing discovery, you can view the discovered servers, group them into applications, and then track the migration status of each application from the Migration Hub console. The discovered data can be exported for analysis in Microsoft Excel or AWS analysis tools such as Amazon Athena and Amazon QuickSight.

Using Application Discovery Service APIs, you can export the system performance and utilization data for your discovered servers. You can input this data into your cost model to compute the cost of running those servers in AWS. Additionally, you can export the network connections and process data to understand the network connections that exist between servers. This will help you determine the network dependencies between servers and group them into applications for migration planning.

Application Discovery Service offers two ways of performing discovery and collecting data about your on-premises servers:

  • Agentless discovery can be performed by deploying the AWS Agentless Discovery Connector (OVA file) through your VMware vCenter. After the Discovery Connector is configured, it identifies virtual machines (VMs) and hosts associated with vCenter. The Discovery Connector collects the following static configuration data: Server hostnames, IP addresses, MAC addresses, disk resource allocations. Additionally, it collects the utilization data for each VM and computes average and peak utilization for metrics such as CPU, RAM, and Disk I/O. You can export a summary of the system performance information for all the VMs associated with a given VM host and perform a cost analysis of running them in AWS.

  • Agent-based discovery can be performed by deploying the AWS Application Discovery Agent on each of your VMs and physical servers. The agent installer is available for both Windows and Linux operating systems. . It collects static configuration data, detailed time-series system-performance information, inbound and outbound network connections, and processes that are running. You can export this data to perform a detailed cost analysis and to identify network connections between servers for grouping servers as applications.

How to decide which discovery tool to use

If you have virtual machines (VMs) that are running in the VMware vCenter environment, you can use the Discovery Connector to collect system information without having to install an agent on each VM. Instead, you load this on-premises appliance into vCenter and allow it to discover all of its hosts and VMs.

The Discovery Connector captures system performance information and resource utilization for each VM running in the vCenter, regardless of what operating system is in use. However, it cannot “look inside” each of the VMs, and as such, cannot figure out what processes are running on each VM nor what network connections exist. Therefore, if you need this level of detail and want to take a closer look at some of your existing VMs in order to assist in planning your migration, you can install the Discovery Agent on an as-needed basis.

Also, for VMs hosted on VMware, you can use both the Discovery Connector and Discovery Agent to perform discovery simultaneously. For details regarding the exact types of data each discovery tool will collect, see Data Collected by the Discovery Connector and Data Collected by the Discovery Agent. A quick view comparison table of the Discovery Connector the Discovery Agent is provided below.

Discovery Connector Discovery Agent
  • Supported server types

    • VMware virtual machine

    • Physical server

  •  

  • yes

  • no

  •  

  • yes

  • yes

  • Deployment

    • Per server

    • Per vCenter

  •  

  • no

  • yes

  •  

  • yes

  • no

  • Collected data

    • Static configuration data

    • VM utilization metrics

    • Time series performance information

    • Network inbound/outbound connections

    • Running processes

  •  

  • yes

  • yes

  • no

  • no

  • no

  •  

  • yes

  • no

  • yes (Export only)

  • yes (Export only)

  • yes (Export only)

  • Supported OS

Any OS running in VMware vCenter (V5.5, V6, & V6.5)
  • Linux

    • Amazon Linux 2012.03, 2015.03

    • Ubuntu 12.04, 14.04, 16.04

    • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.11, 6.9, 7.3

    • CentOS 5.11, 6.9, 7.3

    • SUSE 11 SP4, 12 SP2

  • Windows

    • Windows Server 2003 R2 SP2

    • Windows Server 2008 R1 SP2, 2008 R2 SP1

    • Windows Server 2012 R1, 2012 R2

    • Windows Server 2016