Microsoft announced Wednesday that Azure, technically a cloud-based IaaS (infrastructure as aservice) platform, will host not only Windows Azure but provideimages for a number of Linux variants as well, namely SuSE, CentOS,Red Hat and Ubuntu. Microsoft had originally seemed sold on a PaaS (platform as a service) model with Windows Azure in mind, but itappears the software maker has warmed up to Linux in order to offergreater platform diversity -- a move which may help keep Azure afavorite amongst developers and others who require such services. Earlier this year, ZDNet pointed out that getting Linux on Azure was an enormously popular requestmade, in particular, by big businesses. Although Microsoft has reasons for its close ties to SuSE , adding Ubuntu to the list was an interesting surprise. |
Shortlyafter Microsoft's Azure announcement, Ubuntu's commercial partnerCanonical followed up on their blog which spelled out the Canonical-Microsoft partnership. We"re announcing today that you can obtain and launchOfficial Ubuntu Images from Canonical on Windows Azure. WindowsAzure is a Platform as a Service (PaaS) from Microsoft that nowincludes the ability to manage individual virtual machines so thatyou can fully customize and control the infrastructure behind yourcloud instances. Many developers and IT shops use both Ubuntu andWindows and as workloads migrate to the cloud, the case for makingUbuntu available on Windows Azure became even more compelling. Canonical and Microsoft worked together to ensure that Ubuntu, theleading operating system for the Cloud is tested, certified andenterprise ready from the start.
Despite their obvious differences, some of which are outlined inUbuntu's infamously symbolic Bug #1 , Canonical seems happy to embrace Microsoft's Azure and commendsthe company for being open enough to make the partnership possible.Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Ubuntu, also thinks highly of Ubuntu's newfound camaraderie calling the partnership a"good fit for both of us" and describing Azure as"impressive". Although Microsoft will be offering Linux-based options, there doesexist a single snag: the company is not expected to providetechnical support for Linux images. However, as one of the perks tothe partnership, Canonical is working with Microsoft in order toensure Ubuntu is afforded a full range of support options.
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