What is VM Import/Export


This blog is the English version of the following blog.

Virtual Machine

I think the following article explains virtual machine well.

AWS official

VM Import/Export

VM Import/Export enables you to easily import virtual machine images from your existing environment to Amazon EC2 instances and export them back to your on-premises environment. This offering allows you to leverage your existing investments in the virtual machines that you have built to meet your IT security, configuration management, and compliance requirements by bringing those virtual machines into Amazon EC2 as ready-to-use instances. You can also export imported instances back to your on-premises virtualization infrastructure, allowing you to deploy workloads across your IT infrastructure.

  • You can import virtual machine from on-premises to AWS
  • You can export virtual machine from AWS to on-premises


As part of the import process, VM Import will convert your VM into an Amazon EC2 AMI, which you can use to run Amazon EC2 instances. Once your VM has been imported, you can take advantage of Amazon’s elasticity, scalability and monitoring via offerings like Auto Scaling, Elastic Load Balancing and CloudWatch to support your imported images.

  • During the import process, the VM is converted to an AMI
  • You can launch an EC2 instance from an AMI
  • By launching it as an EC2 instance, it becomes possible to integrate with AWS services


You can export previously imported EC2 instances using the Amazon EC2 API tools. You simply specify the target instance, virtual machine file format and a destination S3 bucket, and VM Import/Export will automatically export the instance to the S3 bucket. You can then download and launch the exported VM within your on-premises virtualization infrastructure.

  • Use the EC2 API tools
  • Export the VM to S3
  • Download from S3 and launch it on-premises.

Use case

クラウド・オンプレミス間のデータ移行に役立つAWS Import/Export(Snowball)とVM Import/Exportとは|コラム|クラウドソリューション|サービス|法人のお客さま|NTT東日本


It seems to be used for on-premises cloud migration and backup purposes.


This time, I looked into VM Import/Export.
Here are the key points:

  • You can import virtual machine from on-premises to AWS
  • You can export virtual machine from AWS to on-premises
  • During import, the VM is converted to an AMI and then launched as an EC2 instance
  • During export, the VM is outputted to S3 and then downloaded from on-premises
  • Used for cloud migration and backup purposes

It was a brief overview, but I hope it can be helpful to someone.