Microsoft is making it easier for IT executives and professionals to keep track of how cloud computing portfolios of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Azure compare with its new Cloud Services Map.
Both cloud giants have seen their respective services catalogs grow by leaps and bounds over the past several years, making it tough for all but the most astute watchers to draw compare features and services two companies. Now, Microsoft is laying out the similarities and differences between their respective clouds with, helping customers plan their cross-cloud environments and migrations.
While the map provides a convenient new tool for current and potential customers, it also help Microsoft step up the marketing competition with AWS, which is by far the larger cloud platform.
It's not uncommon for businesses to rely on more than one provider for their cloud needs, as it turns out.
Published in February, RightScale's 2017 State of the Cloud Report discovered that enterprises are running their applications on 1.8 public clouds and experimenting with another 1.8 public clouds, on average. The study found that 85 percent of the 1,002 IT professionals said their organizations have a multi-cloud strategy in place.
The AWS-Azure cloud services comparison map between AWS and Azure may make the job of navigating those strategies a little easier.
"Whether you are planning a multi-cloud solution with Azure and AWS, or simply migrating to Azure, you will be able to use this service map to quickly orient yourself with the services required for a successful migration," wrote Michael Crump, a technical product manager at Microsoft Azure, in an Oct. 16 blog post. "You can use the service map side-by-side with other useful resources found in our documentation."
The guide (PDF) covers 13 categories, including compute, storage, database, big data and many others. As fierce cloud competitors, both companies cover a lot of the same ground. In some cases, Azure offers a solution that AWS doesn't, like the DevTest Labs app-testing service. On the other hand, Amazon's GameLift and Lumberyard cloud-based game development tools don't have Azure equivalents.
At least one major customer seems pleased with Microsoft's cloud portfolio as-is.
Symantec Picks Azure for Norton Consumer Security
Security software vendor Symantec announced that it had selected Microsoft Azure to deliver its Norton consumer services to its 50 million customers. The move is part of a hybrid-cloud initiative to improve agility, performance and innovation at Symantec. It's also a bid to increase operational efficiencies and reduce costs.
Microsoft and Symantec worked on migrating 105 consumer-facing security capabilities to Azure, including advanced threat protection and reputation scoring. Internally, Symantec is using Azure to power dashboards that provide security metrics along with real-time financial and operational information.
"Our focus is helping organizations, governments and people secure their most important data, wherever it lives," said Sheila Jordan, senior vice president and CIO of Symantec, in an Oct. 16 announcement. "The cloud is key to our strategy to accelerate innovation internally, streamline operations, and ultimately protect and empower our customers in the digital age."
The next step in the partnership involves moving Symantec's ecommerce system to Microsoft's cloud. Plans also call for migrating other internal IT services to Azure's machine learning, application container and platform as a service (PaaS) offerings.