Microsoft's Azure Cloud Platform Explained - Part 1

Grazed from Forbes. Author: Editorial Staff.

Microsoft launched its cloud platform, Azure, in 2010. Since the launch, the service has posted triple digit growth, and last year generated over $1 billion in revenue, according to reports. Considering the latest quarterly results, in which the company claimed that its cloud revenue grew a 128% year over year, we estimate that the annual revenue run rate for Azure can be close to $2.3 billion.

Azure, currently, is the only major cloud platform that is consistently ranked as a leader for both infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS). While Microsoft continues to use the same platform that is used in Azure for some of its offerings such as X-box live, Bing, Office 365, SQL etc., it is extensively marketing its cloud offering to enterprises to roll out their apps on its platform...

Open-source IaaS: OwnCloud 7 Enterprise Edition arrives

Grazed from ZDNet.  Author: Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols.

If your office is like mine, you already have a lot of storage. Over the years, it's probably become quite a mix of storage-area networks (SAN), network-attached storage (NAS), and servers. More recently, your staff has started to use tablets, smartphones, and Chromebooks instead of PCs for work. A cloud would make sharing your files with your mobile staff much easier So, what's a CIO to do?

Dump all your old gear and move to a new cloud-based storage system? I don't think so!  One possible good alternative to making the most of your existing storage infrastructure while providing a cloud-friendly, bring-your-own-device (BYOD) approach is the new ownCloud 7 Enterprise Edition...

10 Tips for Protecting Data When Using IaaS Solutions

Grazed from Virtacore.  Author: Editorial Staff.

An Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) plan can give organizations access to holistic infrastructure resources to meet their diverse operational needs. A good cloud infrastructure strategy will alleviate your day-to-day management burden. But you also need to keep your data safe. Here are 10 tips to help you protect data when subscribing to IaaS plans:

1. Know what you control
IaaS plans give vendors a great deal of responsibility, but you still have plenty to control. Knowing the nuances of your service plan, the infrastructure configuration and how users will access various resources plays a key role in figuring out how you can protect data...

Cloud Computing: A Rare Peek Into The Massive Scale of AWS

Grazed from EnterpriseTech.  Author: Timothy Prickett Morgan.

The idea behind cloud computing, as pioneer Amazon Web Services believed when it launched its first utility compute and storage products eight years ago, is to abstract away the underlying hardware and provide raw resources to programmers for applications to run on. This hardware is a competitive advantage for AWS, as it has been for its parent online retailer, and that is why AWS very rarely talks about its datacenters and systems. But with Google, Microsoft, and IBM all talking up their investments in cloud and the innovations they have come up with, Amazon has to lift the veil a bit.

The reason is simple. The Amazon online retail business may be a $70 billion behemoth, but it does not throw off a lot of cash. Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos is not interested in profits as much as he is about transforming the world around him, but the cloud computing business is one of the most capital intensive businesses there are in the world...

Peak Raises $9M in Funding for Cloud-based IaaS Platform

Grazed from TalkinCloud. Author: CJ Arlotta.

Peak on Wednesday said it has raised $9 million in funding to assist channel partners with leveraging cloud-based infrastructure as a service (IaaS). The Denver-based company enables resellers and agents to white-label Peak's cloud services as their own. It delivers on-demand computing, network and storage resources to customers offering services.

The company said it expects to leverage the additional funds to accelerate demand for its cloud computing platform, and fuel product development and innovation. Existing investing partners Meritage Funds and Sweetwater Capital led the Series A round, with participation from new investor Ares Capital. Peak has raised a total of $16 million in financing since December 2013...

Read more from the source @ http://talkincloud.com/cloud-computing-funding-and-finance/111214/peak-raises-9m-funding-cloud-based-iaas-platform

The Private Cloud Has a Silver Lining, and It's Called SDN

Grazed from InfoWorld. Author: Howard Baldwin.

For some CIOs, the idea of being able to offload their computer processing needs to third-party providers like Microsoft and Amazon and Google is heavenly. Their IT departments don’t have to procure, manage, or upgrade hardware. It’s all done magically in the cloud.

For other CIOs, the idea of sending mission-critical data off beyond the boundaries of their data center is like bungee-jumping for the perpetually queasy – something that makes their stomach do flip-flops just at the thought of it. So how can CIOs get that infrastructure-as-a-service agility without an IaaS vendor?...

Study: Amazon, Microsoft Continue IaaS Battle

Grazed from TalkinCloud. Author: CJ Arlotta.

Cloud services providers (CSPs) leveraging infrastructure as a service (IaaS) platforms seem to have differing opinions on which services provider offers the best option, especially when market research conflicts. Even Talkin' Cloud's own research confirms a difference in results among respondents. According to the 2014 Talkin' Cloud 100 — which ranks the world's top cloud service providers, aggregators, brokers and more according to cloud revenues and other metrics — Amazon Web Services (EC2) is the favorite IaaS platform among CSPs.

Not only did Amazon rank as the most commonly used IaaS platform among CSPs, the Seattle-based tech giant also showed its dominance on our research list overall, snagging the number three spot with $3.94 billion in total recurring revenue in 2013. Microsoft (MSFT) Windows Azure took the number two spot on Talkin' Cloud's most commonly used IaaS platform list. VMware (VMW) vCloud Hybrid Service ranked third. Citrix Systems (CTXS) took fourth...

Read more from the source @ http://talkincloud.com/cloud-computing/study-amazon-microsoft-continue-iaas-battle

ProfitBricks Slashes Cloud IaaS Pricing Again - Continues To Lead Industry In Price/Performance Ratios

Grazed from MarketWire. Author: PR Announcement.

ProfitBricks, the price/performance leader in Cloud Computing IaaS, is challenging the industry yet again, slashing prices 30 percent, and has doubled the price drop percentage of the industry leader in the last year. "Customers should have fundamental control and flexibility over their cloud experience, and not have to worry about being gouged on price," said Andreas Gauger, co-founder of ProfitBricks.

"With our approach, customers can tailor their service to meet their exact requirements, and avoid over- or under-buying of cloud infrastructure. It's an 'unbound' philosophy that we feel delivers on the true promise the cloud was intended to be. We kicked off the current price war with a 50 percent drop in July 2013 and we are now seeing the largest players in the industry resort to the old, tired pricing, packaging and lock-in schemes of yesterday's enterprise IT."...

Tech Data to bring SaaS/IaaS platform to Canada

Grazed from ComputerDealerNews. Author: Paolo Del Nibletto.

Tech Data’s StreamOne platform for cloud and software-as-a-service (SaaS) has arrived in Canada. As part of a global launch rollout, Tech Data Americas president Joe Quaglia told CDN that StreamOne will be made available wherever the distributor does business. Going forward, these types of rollouts will be part of a North American strategy.

The StreamOne platform offers channel partners cloud services that they can resell to their own customers along with software in an as-a-service model. Through an online solution store solution providers in Canada can now search, compare, quote and order products for independent software vendors and cloud providers. This also includes Platform-as-a-Service and Infrastructure-as-a-Service offerings...

Can Amazon and Microsoft be beat in IaaS?

Grazed from VentureBeat.  Author: Editorial Staff.

There’s no denying that cloud services, in particular Infrastructure-as-a-Service, has come of age. Its main gatekeepers are now playing a no-win game that limits the value you get from using their services. Businesses are getting smart to this game, but how did we end up here? More importantly, what’s next?

Feature-driven market

Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure built their lead in the IaaS market (and PaaS market in the case of early Azure) by adopting the exact same strategy: by broadening their offers through new features. And it was a winning strategy. Every time they launched a new feature, they essentially created a new market and cornered the demand. As long as they could show acceptable reliability, they had little concern for additional metrics like price or performance. It’s hard to blame them since there was no one for them to compare unfavorably to, and they were making major investments to get these new services lit up...