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Breaking Free: Transitioning Your Database Away from AWS SCT Extension Pack to Truly Open.

Updated: Jun 10

What is AWS SCT Extension Pack?

An Extension is primarily introduced as part of the conversion process from a commercial engine like Oracle or SQL Server to an open-source compatible option like PostgreSQL when using the AWS Schema Conversion Tool (SCT) in AWS for migrating to RDS or Amazon Aurora. It serves to conceal the procedural complexity by utilizing wrapper code defined within extensions stored as schemas, such as aws_oracle_ext, aws_sqlserver_ext, and others.

How AWS SCT Conversion Extension Pack is Introduce?

The Extension Pack is beneficial for initial acceleration and migrating workloads from commercial engines to AWS Database targets like RDS or Amazon Aurora PostgreSQL. It helps to accelerate the conversion process to managed instances.

To illustrate its functionality, let's consider a sample function, INSTR, commonly used in the Oracle world for text or string processing. During the conversion phase, the Conversion Tool utilizes the Extension Pack to transform each occurrence of INSTR within procedural code into AWS_ORACLE_EXT.INSTR. Internally, AWS_ORACLE_EXT.INSTR provides the wrapped implementation for the INSTR functionality, similar to how it operates in Oracle.

Initial Value to Customer

  • Build-In Migration pattern to mitigate complex Proprietary functions or DBMS_* packages.

  • Reduction in Code conversion person efforts for enterprise scale migrations.

AWS SCT Conversion with extension pack
AWS SCT Conversion

Why should i care about AWS SCT extension pack?

It's important to note that over time, customers who have migrated their databases to PostgreSQL-compatible instances may encounter challenges if they decide to migrate to another cloud vendor or self-host instance on a different platform. This challenge arises due to the dependencies and inherent stickiness of the Extension Pack and its usage within AWS.

AWS SCT extension pack dependency

Challenges of using Extension Pack.

  • Hidden Stickiness and Lock-in: Although we are using a PostgreSQL-compatible database, we are tightly coupled due to the dependency on the Extension Pack, if any.

  • Lack of Documentation on Extension Code, No Maintenance for Future PostgreSQL Releases or Enhancements

  • Reduce Database Code readability and future development or refactor for database developer.

Overall, even though we've migrated to PostgreSQL, the freedom to migrate or move out isn't straightforward. We're using code with internal implementations that are unknown to us, and there are many unknowns within our functional procedural code logic.

If you're looking for a way to avoid extension packs and opt for truly open PostgreSQL-compatible code, check out our open-source assessment tool to understand overall dependencies with the extension pack

Our Open Source Extension Dependency Assessment tool

If you are currently migrating to RDS or Amazon Aurora PostgreSQL from Oracle or MSSQL, or if you have already migrated, awareness of the extension pack is crucial and can help mitigate any lock-in.

Using our open-source extension assessment tool, you can scan the migrated code in PostgreSQL and capture underlying usage patterns and dependencies with various extension pack functions and present it in a report(sample report).

By analyzing the usage patterns, we can categorize the dependency on the extension pack as Simple, Medium, or Complex with functional category. This categorization helps to highlight the efforts required to address extension dependencies and resolve them using native PostgreSQL solutions like Orafce or native functionality.

Moving away from AWS SCT Extension Pack.

If you have already migrated to RDS or Amazon Aurora PostgreSQL or are in the process of migrating your commercial engines like Oracle to SQL Server, we can help drastically reduce extension pack dependencies introduced as part of the conversion process in AWS.

Our in-house automated solution helps to transform embedded extensions packs within procedural or schema to truly open source PostgreSQL that is without any hidden lock-in or stickiness.

Check out our sct-migrator app to get rid of AWS SCT extensions packs embedded in converted code as part of AWS Schema conversion tool.

Connect with us.

Our motto at DataCloudGaze Consulting is to make yours database codebases as native and open for all cloud or platform.


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