Transfer files from on premises to Azure VMs

Cristopher Aguilera 31 Reputation points

Good afternoon, we are exploring efficient methods to transfer files from on-premises servers to Azure Virtual Machines (VMs). Currently, we have established a site-to-site VPN connection, enabling connectivity between our on-premises infrastructure and Azure. Considering cost-effectiveness as a crucial factor, what are the best options available for transferring files to Azure VMs under these circumstances? We seek solutions that are not only efficient but also budget-friendly. Your insights and recommendations would be highly appreciated. Thanks, Cris

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  1. Luis Arias 3,926 Reputation points

    Hi Cristopher,

    I first advise to check the documentation to choose wich storage data transfer to use.

    Azure data transfer tools

    Besides, These are methods to transfer files from on-premises servers to Azure Virtual Machines (VMs):

    • Azure Storage Mover: This is a fully managed migration service that enables you to migrate your files and folders to Azure Storage while minimizing downtime for your workload. It’s a hybrid cloud service consisting of a cloud service component and an on-premises migration agent virtual machine (VM). (
      • Cost Insight: Azure Storage Mover is available at no additional charge, however, you may incur ingress/egress charges.
    • On-premises devices: Microsoft supplies a physical or virtual device that resides in your datacenter and optimizes data transfer over the network. The physical device is the Azure Stack Edge and the virtual device is the Data Box Gateway.( There an additional option for offline move with Azure databox (
      • Cost Insight: The cost of these devices can be substantial, especially for the physical device, but they provide high performance and security.
    • Azure File Sync: This service allows you to install agents on a VM that’ll take care of syncing up with an Azure File Share. (
      • Cost Insight: The cost of this service is based on the amount of data stored in the Azure File Share and the number of operations performed
    • Network Drive: You can create a network drive and then create a scheduler task with XCopy, Robocopy or PowerShell.
      • Cost Insight: The cost of this method is primarily based on the outbound data transfer rates
    • Scripted or programmatic transfer: You can use optimized software tools that Microsoft provides or call their REST APIs/SDKs directly. The available scriptable tools are AzCopy, Azure PowerShell, and Azure CLI. (
      • Cost Insight: The cost of this method is primarily based on the outbound data transfer rates
    • Managed data pipeline: You can set up a cloud pipeline to regularly transfer files between several Azure services, on-premises or a combination of two. (
      • Cost Insight: The cost of this service depends on the complexity and frequency of the data pipelines, but it can be higher than other options due to its extensive capabilities and automation features

    Main important aspects to thing to take the decition for data transfer in your environment are:

    • Data size
    • Transfer frequency
    • Network bandwidth
    • Security

    I hope this help you. Cheers,


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