AWS Storage Gateway
User Guide (API Version 2013-06-30)

Creating a Gateway

In this section, you can find instructions about how to download, deploy, and activate a volume gateway.

Choosing a Gateway Type

With a volume gateway, you can create storage volumes in the AWS Cloud that your on-premises applications can access as Internet Small Computer System Interface (iSCSI) targets. There are two options:

  • Cached volumes—Store your data in AWS and retain a copy of frequently accessed data subsets locally.

  • Stored volumes —Store all your data locally and asynchronously back up point-in-time snapshots to AWS.

To choose a gateway type

  1. Open the AWS Management Console at http://console.aws.amazon.com/storagegateway/home, and choose the AWS Region that you want to create your gateway in.

    If you have previously created a gateway in this AWS Region, the console shows your gateway. Otherwise, the service homepage appears.

  2. If you haven't created a gateway in the AWS Region you selected, choose Get started. If you already have a gateway in the AWS Region you chose, choose Gateways from the navigation pane, and then choose Create gateway.

  3. On the Select gateway type page, choose Volume gateway, choose the type of volume, and then choose Next.

Choosing a Host Platform and Downloading the VM

If you create your gateway on-premises, you deploy the Hardware Appliance; or download and deploy a gateway VM, and then activate the gateway. If you create your gateway on an Amazon EC2 instance, you launch an Amazon Machine Image (AMI) that contains the gateway VM image and then activate the gateway. For information about supported host platforms, see Supported Hypervisors and Host Requirements.

Note

You can run only file, cached volume, and tape gateways on an Amazon EC2 instance.

To select a host platform and download the VM

  1. On the Select host platform page, choose the virtualization platform that you want to run your gateway on.

  2. Choose Download image next to your virtualization platform to download a .zip file that contains the .ova file for your virtualization platform.

    Note

    The .zip file is over 500 MB in size and might take some time to download, depending on your network connection.

    For EC2, you create an instance from the provided AMI.

  3. Deploy the downloaded image to your hypervisor. You need to add at least one local disk for your cache and one local disk for your upload buffer during the deployment. A file gateway requires only one local disk for a cache. For information about local disk requirements, see Hardware and Storage Requirements.

    If you choose VMware, do the following:

    • Store your disk in Thick provisioned format. When you use thick provisioning, the disk storage is allocated immediately, resulting in better performance. In contrast, thin provisioning allocates storage on demand. On-demand allocation can affect the normal functioning of AWS Storage Gateway. For Storage Gateway to function properly, the VM disks must be stored in thick-provisioned format.

    • Configure your gateway VM to use paravirtualized disk controllers. For more information, see Configuring the AWS Storage Gateway VM to Use Paravirtualized Disk Controllers.

    If you choose Microsoft Hyper-V, do the following:

    • Configure the disk type as Fixed size. When you use fixed-size provisioning, the disk storage is allocated immediately, resulting in better performance. If you don't use fixed-size provisioning, the storage is allocated on demand. On-demand allocation can affect the functioning of AWS Storage Gateway. For Storage Gateway to function properly, the VM disks must be stored in fixed-size provisioned format.

    • When allocating disks, choose virtual hard disk (.vhd) file. Storage Gateway supports the .vhdx file type. By using this file type, you can create larger virtual disks than with other file types. If you create a .vhdx type virtual disk, make sure that the size of the virtual disks that you create doesn't exceed the recommended disk size for your gateway.

    For both VMware and Microsoft Hyper-V, synchronizing the VM time with the host time is required for successful gateway activation. Make sure that your host clock is set to the correct time and synchronize it with a Network Time Protocol (NTP) server.

    If you choose EC2, do the following:

    Launch an Amazon Machine Image (AMI) that contains the gateway VM image, and then activate the gateway. For information about deploying your gateway to an Amazon EC2 host, see: Deploying a Volume or Tape Gateway on an Amazon EC2 Host

    If you choose the Hardware Appliance, do the following:

For information about deploying your gateway to an Amazon EC2 host, see Deploy Your Gateway to an Amazon EC2 Host.

Connecting to Your Gateway

To connect to your gateway, the first step is to get the IP address of your gateway VM. You use this IP address to activate your gateway. For gateways deployed and activated on an on-premises host, you can get the IP address from your gateway VM local console or your hypervisor client. For gateways deployed and activated on an Amazon EC2 instance, you can get the IP address from the Amazon EC2 console.

The activation process associates your gateway with your AWS account. Your gateway VM must be running for activation to succeed.

Make sure that you connect to the correct gateway type. The .ova files and AMIs for the gateway types are different and are not interchangeable.

To get the IP address for your gateway VM from the local console

  1. Log on to your gateway VM local console. For detailed instructions, see the following:

  2. Get the IP address from the top of the menu page, and make note of it for later use.

To get the IP address from an EC2 instance

  1. Open the Amazon EC2 console at https://console.aws.amazon.com/ec2/.

  2. In the navigation pane, choose Instances, and then choose the EC2 instance.

  3. Choose the Description tab at the bottom, and then note the IP address. You use this IP address to activate the gateway.

For activation, you can use the public or private IP address assigned to a gateway. You must be able to reach the IP address that you use from the browser from which you perform the activation. In this walkthrough, we use the public IP address to activate the gateway.

To associate your gateway with your AWS account

  1. If the Connect to gateway page isn't already open, open the console and navigate to that page.

  2. Type the IP address of your gateway for IP address, and then choose Connect gateway.

For detailed information about how to get a gateway IP address, see Connecting to Your Gateway.

Activating Your Gateway

When your gateway VM is deployed and running, you configure your gateway settings and activate your gateway.

To activate your gateway

  1. To complete the activation process, provide the information on the activation page to configure your gateway setting:

    • Gateway Time Zone specifies the time zone to use for your gateway.

    • Gateway Name identifies your gateway. You use this name to manage your gateway in the console; you can change it after the gateway is activated. This name must be unique to your account.

      The following screenshot shows the activation page for a volume gateway.

  2. Choose Activate Gateway.

When the gateway is successfully activated, the AWS Storage Gateway console displays the Configure local disks page.

If activation fails, check that the IP address you entered is correct. If the IP address is correct, confirm that your network is configured to let your browser access the gateway VM. For other possible solutions, see Troubleshooting Your Gateway.

Configuring Local Disks

When you deployed the VM, you allocated local disks for your gateway. Now you configure your gateway to use these disks.

Note

If you allocate local disks on a VMware host, make sure to configure the disks to use paravirtualized disk controllers.

When adding a cache or upload buffer to an existing gateway, make sure to create new disks in your host (hypervisor or Amazon EC2 instance). Don't change the size of existing disks if the disks have been previously allocated as either a cache or upload buffer.

  • For a cached volume, you configure at least one disk for an upload buffer and the other for cache storage.

  • For a stored volume, you configure at least one disk for an upload buffer and allocate the rest of the storage for your application data.

To configure local disks

  1. On the Configure local disks page, identify the disks you allocated and decide which ones you want to use for an upload buffer and cached storage. For information about disk size limits, see Recommended Local Disk Sizes For Your Gateway.

  2. From the list next to your upload buffer disk, choose Upload Buffer.

  3. For cached volumes and tapes, choose Cache for the disk you want to configure as cache storage.

    If you don't see your disks, choose Refresh.

  4. Choose Save and continue to save your configuration settings.

Next Step

Creating a Volume