This looks like another sign that Microsoft is serious about taking a leadership position in the cloud computing market. It is entering into a three-year relationship with NetApp covering sales and product integration. NetApp has been successful in winning some significant cloud computing platform customers. Its technology includes Unified Storage and Storage Vritualiation, which reduce the administrative complexity of managing large data farms, and allow for rapid changes at a hosting facility.
One of NetApp’s more high-profile clients is Rackspace; John Engates, Rackspace CTO, credits NetApp’s solutions with providing the ability to dynamically scales storage on Rackspace’s cloud platform.
According to the joint press release, the collaboration will cover the following product lines.
- Virtualized infrastructure solutions based on Windows Server 2008 R2, Microsoft Hyper-V Server 2008 R2, Microsoft System Center and NetApp storage systems. These solutions can provide reliable data availability and streamlined data management, and can help maximize server and storage utilization by using 50 percent less storage compared to a baseline of traditional storage.
- Storage and data management solutions for Microsoft Exchange Server, Microsoft Office SharePoint Server, and Microsoft SQL Server that improve communications and collaboration, enable faster, better-informed decision making, and greatly accelerate software development and testing.
- Efficient and flexible cloud computing and hosted services solutions that provide integrated data protection, “always on” data access, and a flexible, cost-effective infrastructure.
Microsoft is several weeks away from formally launching its Azure cloud platform.