Microsoft announced this week that Azure has doubled its cloud compute usage over a year ago. Azure is currently ranked #2 behind Amazon AWS in terms of cloud computing usage and revenue. Microsoft added that revenue growth rates has doubled over a year ago. Microsoft’s meteoric rise has been mostly due to its support of Linux platforms. Azure compute usage have shot up since Linux distros have been made available.
Microsoft has been going through a transformation over the years. It has been slow, but the changes are dramatic if you haven’t been paying attention. Microsoft no longer makes a ton of money on the Windows platform. Far from it. Just take a look at the areas where Microsoft made the most money this past year based on revenue.
- Server and Cloud Services (Azure)
- Gaming (Xbox)
- Microsoft Office
- Windows OS
Windows OS is only 10% of Microsoft’s total revenue, and it grew a paltry 5% despite the Windows 10 release last year. Sales on Azure on the other end, grew a whopping 140% more than last year.
Microsoft and Redhat announced today that Redhat is now available on Azure Cloud Services. Previously only Ubuntu, CentOS, Oracle Linux, SUSE Linux Enterprise and openSUSE were the Linux OS options. In addition, JBoss middleware will also be available in the coming weeks. Here’s the announcement from Scott Guthrie, Executive Vice President of Cloud and Enterprise.
There’s proof Microsoft is building their own Linux distros especially suited for Azure.
From Microsoft’s blog:
The Azure Cloud Switch (ACS) is our foray into building our own software for running network devices like switches. It is a cross-platform modular operating system for data center networking built on Linux. ACS allows us to debug, fix, and test software bugs much faster. It also allows us the flexibility to scale down the software and develop features that are required for our datacenter and our networking needs.
Cloud Computing is a $20 billion yearly business. In the latest poll, Amazon Web Services dominates the market with a 28% market share. Microsoft Azure is gaining share at 10%, and there’s the rest of the pack lagging behind. Not only that, cloud revenues are increasing yearly. In 2014, cloud computing has gained 48% over the year before. ReadWrite’s article even mentions Digital Ocean as a favorite for web developers.