Microsoft to rebrand ?Windows Azure?; ‘readying itself for a cross-platform future’

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?New name is the new game? is seems to be Microsoft?s way of putting ?Windows Azure? cloud operating system into the lime light in order to defeat tempting offers of rivals.

Reports from ZDNet say that Microsoft will announce the change of name tomorrow and this will be effective on April 3, the first day of the Build developer conference.

Windows Azure is an open and flexible cloud platform that enables users to quickly build, deploy and manage applications across a global network of Microsoft-managed datacenters. Users can build applications using any language, tool or framework and can integrate public cloud applications with existing IT environment.

Released on February 1, 2010, Azure has been described as a “cloud layer” on top of a number of Windows Server systems, which use Windows Server 2008 and a customized version of Hyper-V, known as the Windows Azure Hypervisor to provide virtualization of services.

Way back June 2012, Windows Azure released a number of new features, namely:

1. Websites allows developers to build sites using ASP.NET, PHP, or Node.js and can be deployed using FTP, Git, Mercurial or Team Foundation Server.

2. Media services – A PaaS offering that can be used for encoding, content protection, streaming, and/or analytics.

3. Cloud services – Microsoft’s Platform as a Service (PaaS) environment that is used to create scalable applications and services. Supports multi-tier scenarios and automated deployments.

4. Virtual machines let developers migrate applications and infrastructure without changing existing code, and can run both Windows Server and Linux virtual machines.

5. Data management – SQL Database, formerly known as SQL Azure Database, works to create, scale and extend applications into the cloud using Microsoft SQL Server technology. Integrates with Active Directory and Microsoft System Center and Hadoop.

This rebrand plans of Microsoft can somehow be traced to the first public remarks of Microsoft?s new CEO Satya Nadella when he promised that Microsoft is readying itself for a cross-platform future. In addition, this step could also be inferred to the letter of the CEO to the Microsoft employees, which part read:

What do we do next?

To paraphrase a quote from Oscar Wilde ? we need to believe in the impossible and remove the improbable.

This starts with clarity of purpose and sense of mission that will lead us to imagine the impossible and deliver it. We need to prioritize innovation that is centered on our core value of empowering users and organizations to ?do more.? We have picked a set of high-value activities as part of our One Microsoft strategy. And with every service and device launch going forward we need to bring more innovation to bear around these scenarios.

Next, every one of us needs to do our best work, lead and help drive cultural change. We sometimes underestimate what we each can do to make things happen and overestimate what others need to do to move us forward. We must change this.

Finally, I truly believe that each of us must find meaning in our work. The best work happens when you know that it’s not just work, but something that will improve other people’s lives. This is the opportunity that drives each of us at this company.

Many companies aspire to change the world. But very few have all the elements required: talent, resources, and perseverance. Microsoft has proven that it has all three in abundance. And as the new CEO, I can?t ask for a better foundation.

Let?s build on this foundation together.


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