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Amazon vs Microsoft: Cloud battle begins to show

Mary has some thoughts on that:

Amazon currently is conducting a private beta for testers of hosted Windows Server and SQL Server, according to its site. Amazon is requesting developers interested in using the service fill out a form on the site. The form asks what kinds of applications and services developers plan to build in an Amazon-hosted Windows environment.

Amazon is positioning its hosted Microsoft offerings as “an ideal environment for deploying ASP.NET web sites, high performance computing clusters, media transcoding solutions, and many other Windows-based aplications.” Amazon is touting the new Microsoft offerings as part of its plan to “support any and all of the programming models, operating systems and database servers that you need for building applications on our cloud computing platform.”

Microsoft, for its part, has been rumored to be building a hosted development platform for more than a year. The company is slated to announce the platform officially at its Professional Developers Conference (PDC) in Los Angeles in late October when Bob Muglia, Senior Vice President of Microsoft’s Server and Tools Business, is slated to unveil Microsoft’s “cloud computing platform” during his keynote on October 27.

Microsoft is known to be working on a low-level “cloud OS” that is code-named Red Dog. Red Dog is expected to harness the power of multiple, distributed systems in a datacenter so that cloud apps can be more scalable and easier to write. And Zurich — Microsoft’s extension of its .Net programming model to the cloud — is part of Microsoft’s cloud platform, as well, according to various folks in the know. Microsoft’s SQL Server Data Services and its “Velocity” distributed caching technology are likely to figure in Microsoft’s hosted dev offering, too, as will its virtualization technologies. (The 3PAR blog has a nice explainer of how Hyper-V and virtual storage fit together to enable utility computing.)



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