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This paper presents VMFlockMS, a migration service optimized for cross-datacenter transfer and instantiation of groups of Virtual Machine (VM) images that comprise an application-level solution (e.g., a three-tier web application). The authors dub these groups of related VM images VMFlocks. VMFlockMS employs two main techniques: first, data deduplication within the VMFlock to be migrated, and among the VMs in the VMFlock and the data already present at the destination datacenter. Second, accelerated instantiation of the application at the target datacenter after transferring only a partial set of data blocks and prioritization of the remaining data based on previously observed access patterns originating from the running VMs.
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