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InfoQ Homepage News Google Cloud Announces Transfer Appliance in Beta for Cloud Data Migrations in the EU

Google Cloud Announces Transfer Appliance in Beta for Cloud Data Migrations in the EU

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Google announced that Transfer Appliance, a high-capacity server that lets customers move large amounts of data to Google Cloud Platform (GCP) quickly and securely, is available in beta in the European Union (EU). Google will handle the data transfer with Transfer Appliance in GCP in the EU, and data will not leave the EU.

With bringing the Transfer Appliance to the EU, Google aims to help customers move data around in compliance with the continent’s stricter privacy regulations such as GDPR. The device is now available in beta and is designed for jobs involving porting 20TB of data or more. Furthermore, the data customers send with Transfer Appliance is encrypted at capture, and only they have the encryption keys to decrypt the data when uploading it to its final Cloud Storage destination.   


Data ranging from audio to satellite imagery archives and wind data are typically moved using Transfer Appliance by GCP customers. Furthermore, according to the Google migrating, Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS) clusters to GCP is a widespread use case:

We see lots of users run their powerful Apache Spark and Apache Hadoop clusters on GCP with Cloud Dataproc, a managed Spark and Hadoop service that allows you to create clusters quickly, then hand off cluster management to the service. Transfer Appliance is an easy way to migrate petabytes of data from on-premise HDFS clusters to GCP.

Multiple public cloud providers offer appliances to allow customers to move data from their local servers into the cloud. For instance, Amazon’s solution Snowball features 50TB or 80TB capacities, Microsoft Data Box offers a 100TB of capacity, and IBM Cloud Mass Data Migration service is providing 120TB of capacity. The Snowball was the first Appliance service on a public cloud platform in 2015, followed by the other cloud providers - Google, IBM and Microsoft Azure with their similar offerings in 2017. Furthermore, Amazon was also the first to offer Snowball beyond the US, in Asia and Europe. Other vendors followed by expanding the service outside the US, to Europe and thus also complying with the EU regulations and keeping the data within the members of the EU.

Customers can request a Transfer Appliance in a 100TB configuration with a total usable capacity of 200TB directly from the GCP console. Furthermore, Google have stated that a 480TB configuration with a total usable capacity of a petabyte would be available soon.

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