Azure, Google, and Amazon

Well, I got my PC rebuilt, and outside of a few files I thought I had backed up I have the bulk of my stuff back. 🙂 I’m thinking I may try leveraging Live Mesh a bit to see how it does for helping make sure I have redundant copies of some of my files. But that’s for another day…

I’ve been percolating thoughts about how Azure will compare against other cloud vendors such as Amazon, Google, and SalesForce. While I’m fully on the Azure bandwagon, at some point and soon I’m going to need to be able to speak to the capabilities of the other platforms and contrast/compare then for clients. To that end I’ve been doing some new searches and ran across the link below…

http://blogs.pcmag.com/miller/2008/11/cloud_thinking_amazon_microsof.php

Mr. Miller does a good job of giving a 10,000 foot overview of the “big three”. He’s got a couple points wrong on Azure… but given that he wrote article shortly after the last PDC I’m happy to cut him some slack. Especially with some of the time he’s saved me pulling that article together.

In a nutshell, Amazon will give you greater platform and application options, but Azure gives you a natural extension to your current VS development experience and offers load balancing and scaling out of the box. Google is the most restrictive of the three, but may have the edge on overall capacity, at least in the short term. I think the real deciding factor here is Microsoft’s approach of Software + Services. They’re not talking about just doing applications in the cloud. They’re really focused on using the cloud for both new application development and as a way to help extend applications by combining them with services (as touched on in my last posting).

This goal, to help enable organizations to take advantage of more options, in new ways will be the real differentiator IMHO. I can already see my client technical demos calling this out and making it a centerpiece. I also believe that focusing on this aspect, the extension and enhancement of applications will be a key selling point for enterprise clients who are used to holding their datacenters more tightly.

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