Microsoft to Drop Windows Branding on Azure
Good-bye Windows Azure. Reflecting its embrace of competing technologies, the cloud computing platform will be known as Microsoft Azure in April.Microsoft's rebranding efforts are spreading into its cloud services portfolio. In a sign that the Redmond, Wash.-based software titan's cloud ecosystem has grown more platform-agnostic, Microsoft is getting ready for a change. According to ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley, the company will soon announce that Windows Azure is going by a new name: Microsoft Azure. "The announcement is expected to happen tomorrow, March 25, and to take effect on April 3, the second day of Microsoft's Build conference in San Francisco, said a couple of individuals who asked not to be identified, but who are familiar with Microsoft's plans," wrote Foley. Build 2014, Microsoft's developer confab, takes place April 2-4. Considering how far Azure has ventured from Windows, the "rebranding makes sense," she added. The company's cloud has supported various flavors of Linux since 2012—in addition to Windows Server—courtesy of the company's Azure Virtual Machine technology.
As of this writing, supported Linux distributions include Ubuntu 12.04.1, 12.10 and 13.04; CentOS 6.3; Oracle Linux 6.4; SUSE Linux Enterprise SP3; and OpenSUSE 13.1 and above. In his report for eWEEK, Darryl K. Taft noted that as of June 2012, "SUSE Linux Enterprise Server has the broadest industry support among enterprise Linux operating systems, with more than 9,200 certified applications from over 1,800 independent software vendors, expanding customer choice in cloud environments." Unsurprisingly, the popular open-source operating system factors significantly in the company's answer to Amazon's Linux-friendly cloud services platform.