Configure HCX for Cloud to Cloud Migrations

VMware HCX is an application mobility platform that is designed for simplifying application migration across cloud, workload rebalancing, and business continuity across data centers and across clouds.

Application migration

You can schedule and migrate thousands of vSphere virtual machines within and across data centers or Clouds without requiring a reboot.

Change platforms or upgrade vSphere versions

With HCX, you can migrate workloads from vSphere 5.x and non-vSphere (KVM and Hyper-V) environments within and across data centers or clouds to current vSphere versions without requiring an upgrade.

Workload rebalancing

Workload rebalancing provides a mobility platform across cloud regions and cloud providers to allow customers to move applications and workloads at any time to meet scale, cost management, compliance, and vendor neutrality goals.

HCX Deployment Types

  • Legacy vSphere to SDDC

    • In this deployment type, the HCX Manager at the Legacy site initiates Site Pairing, and the Service Mesh appliances initiate the Interconnect tunnels. The HCX Manager and Service Mesh appliances at the SDDC site are the receivers.
  • Legacy vSphere to Public Cloud

    • In this deployment type, the HCX Manager at the Legacy site initiates Site Pairing, and the Service Mesh appliances initiate the Interconnect tunnels. The HCX Manager and Service Mesh appliances at the Public Cloud are the receivers.
  • Cloud-to-Cloud

    • In this deployment type, the HCX Manager at the SDDC or Public Cloud can initiate or receive Site Pairing requests and act as the initiator or receiver during the HCX Interconnect tunnel creation.

In this post we are going to configure HCX cloud to cloud between two SDDC deployed on VMware Cloud on AWS


  • Deploy SDDC on Site A
  • Deploy SDDC on Site B
  • Deploy HCX on Site A
  • Deploy HCX on Site B

Connectivity Options

  • Over EIP
  • Over Direct Connect

In this post i will be configuring HCX cloud to cloud migration over EIP as HCX sets up its own secure tunnel with military grade encryption, so it is secure to migrate over EIP but you can also setup using VPN connection for management network or you can setup using direct connect between two clouds also.

Open Firewall

Once both the SDDC and HCX has been deployed , go ahead inside “Network & Security” section and create firewall rules for HCX as below inside management gateway.


with above firewall rules , you should be able to access HCX over the public IP.

Site Pairing

  • On HCX console , go to “Site Pairing” and enter the second site HCX server name and credential.

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  • if you want to do reverse migration then again do pairing from second site to primary site.

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Create Service Mesh

  • Click Create Service Mesh
  • Select Sites:
    • Click each drop-down and select a source and destination site. Only connected Site Pairs are displayed
    • Click Continue.
  • Select Compute Profiles: 
    • Click the Select Source Compute Profile drop-down and select a Compute Profile.
    • Click the Select Remote Compute Profile drop-down and select a Compute Profile.
    • Click Continue.

NOTE – you can pickup existing compute profile or you can create a new profile.

  • By default, the HCX interconnect uses the Uplink Network Profiles defined in the Compute Profile for the source and destination sites. You can override the default As an example, an override can be useful in vCloud Director-based deployments where an uplink network that deviates from a common configuration created for an Organization to consume during the Service Mesh creation.
    • Click the Select Source Uplink Network Profile drop-down.
    • In VMC case we will choose “External Network” which is already having two public IPs.
    • Click Close.
    • Click Continue.
  • Configure the Network Extension appliances deployed per switch and click Continue.
  • Optionally Configure HCX Traffic Engineering features such as Traffic bandwidth control etc..
  • Review the topology and name the service Mesh and click Finish.
  • Wait for few minutes , this will deploy all the appliances and show connectivity across site is up.

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if everything is done correctly , you should show all the HCX services are up and running.


Configure Network Extension

  • In the HCX dashboard, select Network Extension.
  • At the top of the page, select Extend Network.
  • Select one or more Distributed Port Groups or NSX Logical Switches.
  • Specify network segment which need to be extended.

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Live Migrate a VM from one Cloud to another Cloud

  • Choose a VM which you want to migrate from one Cloud to another Cloud
  • Specify destination resource pool , storage , network etc and click on Migrate
  • check the progress of migration in vCenter , your application user even will not come to know that their application has been migrated to another cloud/sddc.

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If you see with this HCX can easily migrate application based on requirement across cloud like AWS, IBM, Oracle or Azure or VCPP based or back to on-prem or hosted  clouds. Most important is that HCX solves problem of Cloud lock in. it gives freedom to customer to move VM across cloud with maximum security , most faster and without impact to applications.


please share feedback 🙂