What Is an AWS Snowball Device? - AWS Snowball

This guide is in the process of being deprecated and will no longer be updated.

Note

The first-generation 80 TB Snowball device is no longer available. Use the Snowball Edge storage optimized devices for all data transfer jobs. For Snowball Edge documentation, see the AWS Snowball Edge Developer Guide.

What Is an AWS Snowball Device?

Note

The first-generation 80 TB Snowball device is no longer available. Use the Snowball Edge storage optimized devices for all data transfer jobs.

The AWS Snowball service uses physical storage devices to transfer large amounts of data between Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) and your onsite data storage location at faster-than-internet speeds. By working with AWS Snowball, you can save time and money. Snowball provides powerful interfaces that you can use to create jobs, track data, and track the status of your jobs through to completion.

Snowball devices are physically rugged devices that are protected by the AWS Key Management Service (AWS KMS). They secure and protect your data in transit. Regional shipping carriers transport Snowballs between Amazon S3 and your onsite data storage location. For a list of AWS Regions where the Snowball device is available, see AWS Snowball in the AWS General Reference.

Note

Snowball is intended for transferring large amounts of data. If you want to transfer less than 10 TB of data between your on-premises data centers and Amazon S3, Snowball might not be your most economical choice.

Snowball Features

AWS Snowball with the Snowball device has the following features:

  • 80 TB and 50 TB models are available in US Regions; 50 TB model available in all other AWS Regions.

  • Enforced encryption protects your data at rest and in physical transit.

  • There's no need to buy or maintain your own hardware devices.

  • You can manage your jobs through the AWS Snow Family Management Console or programmatically with the job management API.

  • You can perform local data transfers between your on-premises data center and a Snowball. You can do these transfers through the Snowball client, a standalone downloadable client. Or you can transfer programmatically using Amazon S3 REST API calls with the downloadable Amazon S3 Adapter for Snowball. For more information, see Transferring Data with a Snowball.

  • The Snowball is its own shipping container, and its E Ink display changes to show your shipping label when the Snowball is ready to ship. For more information, see Shipping Considerations for AWS Snowball.

For a list of AWS Regions where the Snowball appliance is available, see AWS Snowball in the AWS General Reference.

Note

Snowball doesn't support international shipping or shipping between AWS Regions outside of the US. For more information on shipping restrictions, see Region-Based Shipping Restrictions.

Prerequisites for Using AWS Snowball

Before transferring data into Amazon S3 using Snowball, you should do the following:

  • Create an AWS account and an administrator user in AWS Identity and Access Management (IAM). For more information, see Creating an IAM User for Snowball.

  • If you are importing data, do the following:

  • If you are exporting data, do the following:

    • Understand what data will be exported when you create your job. For more information, see Using Export Ranges.

    • For any files with a colon (:) in the file name, change the file names in Amazon S3 before you create the export job to get these files. Files with a colon in the file name fail export to Microsoft Windows Server.

Tools and Interfaces

Snowball uses the AWS Snow Family Management Console and the job management API for creating and managing jobs. To perform data transfers on the Snowball device locally, use the Snowball client or the Amazon S3 Adapter for Snowball. To learn more about using these in detail, see the following topics:

We also recommend that you check out the job management API for AWS Snowball. For more information, see AWS Snowball API Reference.

This guide assumes that you are an Amazon S3 user.

Are You a First-Time User of AWS Snowball?

If you are a first-time user of the Snowball service with the Snowball device, we recommend that you read the following sections in order:

  1. To learn more about the different types of jobs, see Jobs for Standard Snowball devices.

  2. For an end-to-end overview of how Snowball works with the Snowball device, see How AWS Snowball Works with the Standard Snowball Device.

  3. When you're ready to get started, see Getting Started with AWS Snowball.

Pricing

For information about the pricing and fees associated with the AWS Snowball, see AWS Snowball Pricing.