We are approaching the countdown to the release of Microsoft’s latest operating system, Windows 2016. It is estimated that it will be released sometime during Q3 of this year, most likely early September. We’ve already seen Technical Previews One through Five, each enhancing the previous one and introducing new features.
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In my last article, I spent a little time talking about the difference between automation, which is an automated task or scripted solution to perform a task, and orchestration, which is the complete process. I topped it all off with a discussion about how DevOps is a philosophy driving orchestration. For this article, I want to focus in on the some of the most common tools of the trade behind the automation and orchestration for different types of environments.
One of the things we associate with existing IT infrastructure vendors is their determination to go it alone for a major portion of their businesses. Vendor each believe that their solution is the best. They feel that integrating with competing solutions is unnecessary. Oracle and Microsoft were the most well-known examples, happily attracting users with a locked-in architecture and using that dominance to stifle competition. VMware has also exhibited this trait. You may layer additional technologies on top of vSphere, but you cannot put another hypervisor under a VMware product. What we see in open source is a willingness to integrate with other solutions, even competing projects. We are seeing some signs of a change in VMware, but not the dramatic shift that Microsoft has made.
In part one of Cost to Build a New Virtualized Data Center, we discussed the basic software costs for a virtualized data center based on VMware vSphere 6.0, Citrix XenServer 6.5, Microsoft Hyper-V 2012 R2 and 2016, and Red Hat. If you missed that, please click here to review before continuing.
Microsoft’s turnaround over the two years since Satya Nadella became CEO has been nothing short of phenomenal. During the Ballmer years, Microsoft had become increasingly sidelined and irrelevant, focused on aggressive and negative marketing techniques. Anybody remember the painful Microsoft Mythbusters video featuring then–Microsoft executive David Greschler and Hyper-V product manager Edwin Yuen? Not that you can find it anymore; all references I have located now link to the Microsoft store (even Microsoft is too embarrassed).
I hear that vendors are bundling cloud services with their other software licensing deals, and I have some thoughts about why. Azure credits are being bundled into Microsoft software license deals. Oracle customers can buy cloud credits as a way of avoiding problems that stem from database software licensing true-ups. There are a couple of ways of looking at such practices. One is that these credits are a great way of getting customers hooked on your cloud. Oops, I meant to say a great way of helping customers learn the value of your cloud. The less positive perspective is that the largely unused credits inflate the cloud services’ revenue without customers actually using the cloud. Naturally, the reality is more complex. I suspect that these are the primary reasons for bundling cloud services into license deals.