Microsoft’s public cloud offering, Azure, was supposed to be released to the public in 2010, but still hasn’t made it to market. While the company claimed that big names like HP, Dell and Fujitsu were on board with Azure development, there is some concern that the company may be “stuck” and that Azure didn’t pan out as intended.
Initially, the idea was that Microsoft would sell a “cloud-in-a-box” that would come with the ability to access multiple “appliances,” something that the company has now confirmed are limited in scope and also very “early stage.” The company has also moved away from championing things like massive public clouds hosted by Dell and HP, and instead focused on hybrid and private clouds that allow users to retain some of their own control. Recently, security issues from virtual servers across the world and the feeling that many companies have of being lumped together with everyone else on a public cloud, have led to a much more consumer-focused Microsoft in recent months. A move away from making Azure like the upcoming Exadata from Oracle, which looks to be massive and large-business focused have also occurred.
Companies like Dell are still saying that they are going to be running at least one Azure public cloud, but also that they will be running another, unnamed one, one that is more than likely going be OpenStack, of which Dell is a member. HP has been mum on the Azure question, as has Fujitsu, and some are worried this means bad things for the new Microsoft offering. At this point, the company is still championing its “cloud-in-a-box” mandate, and appears to be finding a new way to brand Azure and make it viable in the cloud market.