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Microsoft Announces New Cloud Capabilities at Ignite

May 07, 2015

With one day to go, the Microsoft Ignite Conference in Chicago has made some announcements that clearly shows the company’s view on cloud computing. It is full steam ahead for Satya Nadella and company as they try to catch up with early entrants to cloud by investing heavily with key acquisitions, and mandating policies from the top down. As more organizations migrate to the cloud, finding the right balance between privacy and security has been a continuing issue. One of the ways to solve this problem has been a hybrid cloud platform that incorporates the accessibility of public cloud and the security of private cloud.

Mike Neil, General Manager for Windows Server, Microsoft wrote a blog post on the company’s site highlighting the next generation of hybrid cloud that will bring Azure to customer data centers. As Neil mentions in his post, 74 percent of enterprises believe hybrid cloud will enable business growth. Some of the solutions Microsoft announced earlier in the week to expand its cloud presence include:

  • A next generation cloud infrastructure that brings Azure IaaS and PaaS capabilities to customers’ datacenters with Microsoft Azure Stack.
  • The next versions of application platform and management solutions with Windows Server 2016 and System Center 2016.
  • Microsoft Operations Management Suite, a new hybrid management solution that helps with the management of corporate workloads no matter where it is being run: Azure, AWS, Windows Server, Linux, VMware, or OpenStack.

Microsoft is able to build this new generation of hybrid cloud, because according to Neil, the company is the only cloud vendor that builds and runs its own hyper-scale datacenters, which is allowing it to deliver the same technology back to customers’ and partners’ data centers. One of the ways it is doing that is with Microsoft Azure Stack.

Customers will now have the ability to extend the Azure model of developing and deploying applications to their own data centers so they can integrate their own enterprise applications, such as SQL Server, SharePoint, and Exchange. This will allow them to have the latest distributed applications and services while still retaining a centralized oversight to ensure control throughout the process.

The application deployment will be controlled using Azure Resource Manager, which was just released in preview last week, to get consistent delivery whether it was provisioned to Azure in the public cloud or Azure Stack in a datacenter environment. With this type of flexibility, developers will be able to create their applications once and have the option of where they can deploy them.

Azure Stack is going to provide:

  • A scalable and flexible software-defined Network Controller and Storage Spaces Direct with automated sync and failover.
  • Shielded VMs and Guarded Hosts bring “zero-trust” software-defined security to private cloud to securely segment organizations and workloads and centrally control and monitor access and administration rights.
  • Simplification of the complex process of deploying private/hosted clouds.

Azure Stack can be previewed starting this summer.

Edited by Dominick Sorrentino

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