IBM Cloud is upgrading a datacenter and users will have to halt their Power VMs

Big Blue will move two VMs in each five-hour window offered to those willing to stay

IBM Cloud has advised customers who run Power Systems Virtual Servers in its Toronto Canada (TOR01) datacenter of an upgrade to the facility, and outlined a not-so-cloudy process for tenants who make the move.

For starters, tenants need to log a ticket with the subject "TOR01 Customer Data Migration." That ticket should include "at least two preferred dates between 2/12/2024 and 3/1/2024 and times (Eastern Time) for moving your existing active virtual machines and data to the new TOR01 infrastructure." Customers will also need to advise IBM of their Project ID, VM IDs, and the OS installed on each VM.

The deadline for filing those tickets was January 20. If you forgot, IBM will assign you a time.

Tenants are advised to "Reserve five hours per time slot (3AM to 8PM Eastern)," during which "Up to two VMs will be migrated." We shudder to think what this means for folks with big VM fleets in TOR01.

VMs must be stopped before migration – making this a disruptive event. "Operations will notify you when the migration completes, and you can restart your VMs," states an IBM FAQ, adding "After you restart your VM, you will be up and running in the new infrastructure, and your migration will be complete."

Err … not quite.

On March 15, IBM will replace networking equipment in TOR01. Tenants will need to have configured redundant network links, or their VMs could lose connectivity for up to six hours during the upgrade.

Clouds are mostly sold as offering extraordinary resilience. Hyperscale operators shift workloads to new hardware without disruption – perhaps even without users being aware of it, unless they’ve specified bare metal resources.

IBM's Power – which Big Blue insists is terrifically resilient and reliable compared to the upstart world of x86 – clearly entails a different experience. At least in Toronto. ®

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