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Microsoft Joins Hands With Red Hat To Bring Enterprise Linux To Azure Cloud Platform

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The wait is finally over as once rivals Microsoft and Red Hat join hands to work on Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform. Starting today Red Hat’s Enterprise Linux will be available on the Azure cloud platform.

Though Linux has been available on Azure for some time now, this is the first time that Red Hat’s version of the OS is being incorporated on the Microsoft’s cloud platform.

Azure users can directly access the Red Hat open source operating system on their virtual machines to use applications such as the JBoss Web Server and OpenShift.

Microsoft revealed that the deal was finalised after hard negotiations for a considerable length of time as speculations were rife that the two would collaborate shortly. The company acknowledged that it is because of the demands from the customers that a consensus was reached between the two companies.

Scott Guthrie, who heads Microsoft’s cloud platform stated that –

Businesses continue to grapple with the challenge of bringing together existing on-premises investments with a cloud environment for greater speed, scale and cost benefits. Hybrid cloud has emerged as a way to solve this.

Primarily Red Hat developed its Enterprise Linux for the big businesses. Though the Enterprise version of Linux OS is marketed as an open source OS, its users have to pay the developer the cost for its maintenance.

With the introduction of Enterprise Linux into Azure, Microsoft has side-lined its existing SUSE, Canonical, Oracle and other Linux providers by making the Red Hat’s Linux as the preferred version on Azure. It remains to be seen whether this new deal irks its existing partners, whose services will now be secondary to the Enterprise Linux.

This happens to be the latest turnaround in Microsoft’s strategy under the helm of Satya Nadella. Rewinding few years ago we see that Steve Balmer had tagged Linux as ‘Cancer’.

Now forced to accept the dominance of Linux, Microsoft has slowly changed its tone and the words by stating that ‘Microsoft Loves Linux’, which dropped straight out of Nadella’s vocabulary as he intends to shed Microsoft’s reserved attitude.

Microsoft has clearly signified a change and renewed its strategies amidst the fierce competition from other cloud platforms, mainly Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud.


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