Microsoft Shares Dynamic Data Center Vision

Vision involves using a collection of Microsoft's own software to manage and provision the data center.

NEW ORLEANS—As Microsoft Corp. works to live up to its promise to bring revolutionary changes to the data center, the Redmond, Wash., software company Tuesday announced the road map for its initiative to create a dynamic data center.

Microsofts vision for the dynamic data center involves using a collection of its own software to manage and provision the data center, as well as Windows-certified servers, storage and networking switches connected in a well-defined network topology that could be changed on the fly, Eric Berg, a product manager for Windows Server marketing, told eWEEK in an interview here at the , or WinHEC.

Microsoft also on Tuesday announced that several new hardware partners, including Fujitsu, NEC and IBM, has signed up to support its Dynamic Systems Initiative (DSI) and that they will be testing and validating Microsofts Automated Deployment Systems (ADS) on their hardware and integrating this with their deployment solutions.

Microsoft shipped the first deliverable for DSI with the beta release of Automated Deployment Services for Windows Server 2003 last month. This will be a free add-on feature for the Windows Server 2003 Enterprise or Datacenter Editions, but the companys vision for reducing complexity in the data center wont be realized for some time.

To achieve this goal, Microsoft believes it needs to align itself and its products around a new software architecture, based on its System Definition Model (SDM)—essentially an XML-based schema for easily instrumenting systems, applications and other infrastructure components during the development of those elements.

While this is currently a Microsoft model, the company is working with its partners to ratify it. The SDM will be published and discussed further at Microsofts Professional Developers Conference later this year, Berg said.

Microsoft has not decided specifically how it will make this an industrywide initiative, but already has the support of a large number of its partners. "We will open up the SDM for others to support," Berg said. "And, in addition, there will be a wide set of products from ISVs, hardware vendors and system integrators that will support this new software architecture based on the SDM."